Monday, March 3, 2008

Sixties' Garage Bands From Connecticut (No, Really!)

(Right: The Shags.)

In the mid-1960s, the state of Connecticut actually did have popular garage rock bands on the radio. Local groups influenced by such bands as The Beatles, The Byrds, The Rascals, Them and others, ruled, for a brief time, the Connecticut airwaves. Now, Sundazed Music has put together a nice CD (& vinyl LP!) collection of these bands, Don't Press Your Luck! The In Sounds of 60s Connecticut. The album features choice cuts from 1966-68 of such bands as The Shags, the Bram Rigg Set, the Wildweeds (who formed the foundation for the later NRBQ) and the Lively Ones. All these groups' singles were local hits heard between New Haven and Hartford, and beyond. This article from the NY Times gives a little bit of background on some of the groups, as well as Walliford-based producer Thomas "Doc" Cavalier.

Yep, I've ordered this for the library. Despite some rough production, the CD provides a good showcase for these bands that never were able to break through nationally but became, for a brief time, local heroes to the kids. The performers themselves were mostly high school & college kids, whose bands broke up due to outside realities, like school/college graduation and the draft, among other factors. But the sense of fun and enthusiasm these guys had in their prime becomes totally infectious with each listen. -Ed

Links: From 1967: The Wildweeds on YouTube

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