Songs You May Have Missed #625

Mortimer: “Where Dragons Guard the Door” (1968)

Although psych pop band Mortimer were signed to the Beatles’ Apple record label and had a very English sound, they actually were originally from New York.

While visiting England they had the chance to play in front of an exec at the Apple offices. In the kind of scenario that seemingly could only happen in a bad rock and roll biopic, as they began to play George Harrison literally danced through a door into the room, said “Sign them up!”, did a twirl and danced out through a door opposite the one he’d come in.

They were signed.

Their first single was slated to be a tune called “On Our Way Home”, which was given to them personally by Paul McCartney. Due to management change at Apple, the single was never released by Mortimer, and instead became the Beatles’ own “Two of Us”, which appeared on their Let it Be LP.

“Where Dragons Guard the Door” is a bit of baroque psychedelia one would never expect from an American band.

Songs You May Have Missed #624

Golden Smog: “Cure for This” (2006)

Golden Smog, the alt-country supergroup made up of members of Wilco, the Jayhawks, the Replacements, and Soul Asylum among others, enjoyed a nice decade-and-a-half run beginning in the early ’90’s.

By the time of the release of Another Fine Day, the Jayhawks band members were doing most of the heavy lifting. The gentle “Cure for This” was contributed by that band’s bassist, Marc Perlman.

If you’re the parent of a young child, this one should hit that special spot for you.

Songs You May Have Missed #623

Todd Snider: “Beer Run” (2003)

Todd Snider’s live albums, with their combination of stoner-fied storytelling and folk songwriting chops, call to mind Arlo Guthrie. This version of “Beer Run”, recorded on the Bob and Tom show, is good inebriated fun.

Songs You May Have Missed #622

Supergrass: “Seen the Light” (2002)

3-chord punk pop was a thing in both Britain and America in the 90’s. The difference is that, whereas bands like the Clash, the Jam and the Sex Pistols may have influenced bands on both sides of the big pond, British pop punks of the 90’s additionally had a strain of Madness in their DNA…along with some Kinks and Small Faces. And Supergrass is the result. Sort of the English Green Day. Sort of.

Songs You May Have Missed #621

Moby Grape: “8:05” (1967)

 

1960’s San Francisco band Moby Grape were the epitome of a perfect democracy–or perhaps a hippie commune. Every member sang. Every member contributed material. And that material was more diverse than their pigeonholing as a psychedelic band would suggest.

moby

Their catalogue shows off a variety of influences: blues, folk, country and straight-ahead three-guitar rock, often ornamented by four-part harmonies. “8:05”, from their much-hyped 1967 debut, shows their acoustic country rock side.

The band were short-lived due to personal issues and poor management. Like the innocence of hippie 60’s San Francisco, they basically washed out by the end of the decade; their chapter in rock history is perhaps a perfect microcosm of the story of the summer/bummer of love.

Songs You May Have Missed #620

The Monroes: “What Do all the People Know” (1982)

San Diego pop band The Monroes enjoyed their one moment in the sun in 1982 with the infectious “What Do all the People Know”, which peaked at number 59 on the American pop charts. It echoes the sounds of all those new wavey songs you’ve heard before–except you’ve probably not heard this one before.

Songs You May Have Missed #619

The Outdoor Type: “Day to Day” (2015)

The Outdoor Type are a Melbourne, Australia indie pop band led by singer/songwriter/guitarist Zack Buchanan.

The band was signed to Canadian indie label Nettwerk on the strength of their single “On My Mind”, which earned them 100,000 Spotify plays. But “Day to Day” is as gloriously melancholy and melodic as anything the band has yet done.

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