1967 — The Year That Brought Us The Summer of Love!
I'm sure AARP Magazine is working up a 45th Anniversary of The Summer of Love special, a dry run for the big 50th Anniversary coming up in -- let's see if my math is right -- five years. Though the chances are good that if you were of a certain age you were busy working that summer and didn't have the time or the money to make it out to San Francisco, a decent amount of upper-middle class kids made their way over to slum in the slums and they gave the media their hook. The Golden Gate Park Human Be-In on January 14, 1967 sounds like the kind of thing that as a young person I would've been curious about and as an older person much prefer to watch on YouTube, since I have a nice computer and a fantastic television set that I worship every night while counting the oodles of money I make from compiling these lists, drunk.
The first volume of my lists for 1967 consists of the well-known, the tried and the true. Nothing leaps out at me as being particularly obscure, which says a lot about how interesting music was in 1967 and how the business part of the music business was at the mercy of the music end. Music this diverse and groundbreaking for its day doesn't make the charts anymore -- or not with any regularity. Sure, there's always the odd woman out who captures an audience, but most interesting bands today have a small box of fans, who often don't even share the same tastes as their friends. But a nine-CD box on the making of In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida? Who wouldn't come up with $270 to buy that one! (It's a 1968 album for those wondering.)
So, what do you say we all stand out in front of our office building and breathe the second-hand smoke for an extra high!
25) Rod McKuen -- Listen To The Warm: Sure, Aaron Freeman (Gene Ween) just recorded an album of Rod McKuen covers and clearly illustrated how even the most sentimental and trite ideas have movement. Whether you listen to this because it's of good quality or because there's something oddly appealing about its weirdness, is something for you to work out with your creator. I wouldn't pay big bucks to hear this stuff, but if it's on, I don't turn it off.
24) Frank Zappa and The Mothers Of Invention -- Absolutely Free: Zappa would go on to record enough guitar solos to confuse anyone who wasn't already onboard. Then again, Zappa's music divided the red sea of hipsters and dilettantes. Freak Out made such an impact and was so idiosyncratic that the follow-up could never equal its freshness. But who doesn't love an album with "Status Back Baby" and "America Drinks and Goes Home." He never stopped me from loving brown shoes.