Spirit | The Family That Plays Together . . .

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randycaliforniaandspirit.com

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United States - California

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Rock: 60's Rock Rock: 70's Rock Moods: Featuring Guitar
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The Family That Plays Together . . .

by Spirit

Produced in the 1969's Summer of Love--after Ed Cassidy had become Randy California's stepfather--THE FAMILY furthered Spirit's reputation as one of the most inventive and creative groups in the early 70's.
Genre: Rock: 60's Rock
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1. I Got a Line on You
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2. It Shall Be
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3. Poor Richard
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4. Silky Sam
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5. Drunkard
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6. Darlin' If
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7. It's All the Same
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8. Jewish
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9. Dream Within a Dream
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10. She Smiles
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11. Aren't You Glad
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12. Fog
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13. So Little to Say
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14. Mellow Fellow
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15. Now or Anywhere
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16. Space Chile
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
The second album released by the band in 1969's Summer of Love, it furthered their reputation as one of the most inventive and creative groups in the early 70's, and resulted in the hit I've Got A Line On You. The band was true family - Ed Cassidy had become Randy California's stepfather in 1965, and the entire group and their families shared a big yellow house in Topanga Canyon, California. The rural setting provided creative inspiration for Spirit, as well as contemporaries Canned Heat, Neil Young, and Buffalo Springfield. Produced in the 1969's Summoer of Love--after Ed Cassidy had become Randy California's stepfather--THE FAMILY furthered Spirit's reputation as one of the most inventive and creative groups in the early 70's, and resulted in the hit I've Got A Line On You. The family's big yellow house in rural Topanga Canyon, California also provided inspiration.

"The Doors were all right -- but for many rock fans in the late 60s, the band that really mattered was Spirit". This quote by Jim Washburn of the LA Times voices the opinion of classic rock fans the world over. Spirit, the legendary California group featuring Randy California, First broke on the scene with their incredible first album featuring a remarkable assortment of jazz, rock and blues. Over the years the band continued to perform in various arrangements until Randy California's death in 1997. The band retains a loyal following and new releases have made Spirit more popular than ever.

Classic Rock

"The Doors were all right - but for many rock fans in the late 60s, the band that really mattered was Spirit". This quote by Jim Washburn, Los Angeles Times is the common opinion of classic rock fans the world over. Strongly influenced by Jimi Hendrix, the legendary California group first broke on the scene with a ground-breaking first album released in 1968, featuring a trademark mix of jazz, blues and rock forays. Over the years the band continued to perform in various arrangements until Randy California's death in 1997. The band retains a loyal following and new releases have made Spirit more popular than ever.

One of the first bands to typify the late 60's California sound, Spirit has long remained an exciting and innovative example of just how wide the rock spectrum can be. From Ed Cassidy's status as the oldest working drummer in Rock and Roll (Cass recently edged out Ringo Star and Ginger Baker in the Reader's Poll in England's New Musical Express for best drummer of all time), to Randy's tenure as a 15 year old guitarist with Jimi Hendrix, Spirit has an incredible history and a wealth of stories. Randy California, stepson of 60's Jazz drummer Ed (Cass) Cassidy, played with Jimi Hendrix, who gave him the nickname, for three months in New York, Soon after the band was formed, Spirit's musical accomplishments became legendary. The original band played together until 1971. Between 1971 and Randy California's accidentaly death in 1997, Spirit released several additional albums with varying lineups. In some of the latter work, Randy California performed all the parts except for cameo appearances by other members. REFLECTIONS OF SPIRIT In 1965 jazz drummer Ed (Cass) Cassidy was playing gigs with Ry Cooder and Taj Mahal in a group called the Rising Sons at the Ash Grove in Los Angeles. It was here that Cass and Bernice Pearl met and were soon married. A year later Cass took the family with him to New York City when he went to play some jazz gigs. With high hopes they loaded up the 'ol yellow Chevy which they called "The Yellow Submarine" and headed across America. When they arrived in New York City Cass discovered that stepson Randy's guitar had been lost in shipping. Randy went to Manny's Music to replace his guitar. He was only 15 when he met Jimi Hendrix. "Jimi was playing a Stratocaster in the back of the store and our eyes met and there was instant spiritual contact" recalls Randy. With the boldness of a teen, Randy asked Jimi (not knowing who he was) if he could play that guitar. Jimi complied and was so impressed he invited Randy to play with him at his gig in the Village that night. The Marquee read "Jimi James & The Blue Flames." For the next three months, five sets a night, Randy played in the band. "It was an incredible experience," says Randy. "A lot of people don't know this about Jimi, but he was one of the most gentle and generous people I've ever known." To distinguish Randy from the other Randy in the band, Jimi started calling him Randy California and the name stuck. After three months Jimi was ready to go to England to put together another band and he invited Randy along. His parents refused to let him go...he was only 16 years old! This was right before the Jimi Hendrix experience. Jimi never forgot the friendship.


Reviews


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François Thouvenin (France)

Just great, for sure !
I recently found this LP in my cellar and started to play it again : why the heck had I put it away in the cellar, by the way ?... My favourite : "Darling if". The gentle music, the moving lyrics, the sincere and compelling voices, the feeling of hopelessly lost love : everything's just perfect. Boy, those guys sure could sing and play ! Mr Randy California, I do pray for your soul : may it rest in peace.

John S Cramer

Much anticipated-definately pleasing-album of the decade
When I first heard [Family] in December of 68;it literally blew my mind.I know,it says that this album was released in the summer of 69-by then Spirit had released Clear and were touring to promote that album.Three events will testify to the truth regarding the release dates of these wonderful discs.First,on December 10th, I received in the mail that dreaded peice of mail;my draft notice.Academic suspension-college is not like high school;there were quotas to be failed to make way for the Military to legitimize draft induction for their efforts in Viet-Nam.I was dying; the end of my band and what of my relationship with my girl which had intensified to my satisfaction and now my world was shattered. You remember things like this. Now getting back to the album,I don`t remember who gave it to me, but I received a copy for Christmas.My father was a 2 star Vice Admiral who served on the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon.He advised me to calm down-take a week or two and decide which branch of the service I would like to Volunteer to avoid draft induction and a surefire ticket to Nam.I was sworn into the naval reserve on January 5th and I would Have a 2year active-4 year inactive hitch in Submarine Service.This was my 20th birthday and things were definately turning around and it was still morning.That evening,as I was preparing myself for that eagerly and much anticipated date with my girl when the phone rang.It was friends and members of my band L.S.D. [Ludicris Sunflower Dynasty]that wanted to honor my birthday by bringing me my present. Imagine my surprise when they handed me 2 tickets to see in mid January[the date eludes me] but some where between the 12th and the 20th at the Alexandria,Va. Roller-Skating Rink[ Blood,Sweat and Tears with Special Guests;Spirit! I had been telling everyone about the 1st Spirit L.P. and saying how much I loved the music but that you could never see them live[studio material only-just too technical to perform live,on stage. I had no earthly idea of the enormous talents assembeled before me,the Spirit portion of the show alone lasted over2 and a half hours. They only had 2 L.P.s ;Mark and Jay performed the [hambone-handclap thing]Cass did 2 solos-Elijah and All The Same; John played a solo on a portable mouth organ;Randy showed the diverse range of his talents by extending his solos with John and Mark.My favorite parts of the show were songs like Drunkard, Darlin If,Dream within a Dream and she smiles. This is because of their depth and beauty when performed live.This is Definate must for any Spirit fan.Buy all four of the original bands discs and any new discs from that period-you won`t be dissappointed.

Georgene


If I was stranded on an desert island and could only have one cd, this would be the one! To me, no other cd typifies the hopes and dreams of the 60's like this one. I would love to see a nomination to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for this group...

Phil Hensler

One of the best albums of the 60's !
On this album Spirit comes of age. The music is deep and
thoughtful & I Got A Line On You is fun. The music still
stands on its own today! The songs are well crafted, and
contain all of the elements of good music.

Paul Stevenson

All together now,FOUNDATIONAL!!!
Contains one of rocks most covered guitar anthems,I Got a Line on You,a Randy California classic.Great writing on other tunes by the always catchy Jay Ferguson,also worthy of much note are bonus tracks like Mellow Fellow by John Locke featuring some great guitar and keyboard work by Randy C. and John Locke respectivly.Thanks again,CD Baby,for the opportunity to play rock reporter!!! Nobody deserves one more than Spirit!!!