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Author Topic:  The Youngbloods, Banana
Mark Eaton


From:
Sonoma County in The Great State Of Northern California
Post  Posted 27 Jul 2012 9:48 am    
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Joachim, it was no great accomplishment on my part to see all these groups that came under the banner of "San Francisco Bands." there are a number of forumites that spent their "formative years" here in the greater Bay Area, and I don't doubt that a lot of us were at the same shows together. There was so much music going on all the time and even being a teenager with a low paying part time job, the tickets were cheap back then. I was in a good situation with two older brothers who were also addicted to music so I got to tag along to many shows before I was even old enough to be the driver.

If my parents had seen the thick cloud of pot smoke in the air at these shows they probably would have grounded me!
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post  Posted 27 Jul 2012 4:09 pm    
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Sugar Babe is one of those special songs. The sound is wonderful and unlike anything that a commercial player would get. Even though Banana wasn't really a steel player, he knew what he wanted to hear. Try playing it, it's not easy. I think he was using a weird tuning. Also it was mentioned that it was a Fender 400, but wasn't it an Elekra-harp or a Multicord?

Joe
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post  Posted 27 Jul 2012 9:23 pm    
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Thanks Mark!
Another good one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWSxthwNqso
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post  Posted 13 May 2019 7:27 am    
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Simple Song Of Freedom sounds a lot like Banana.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3uVcr7LIusc
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Don R Brown


From:
Rochester, New York, USA
Post  Posted 13 May 2019 9:59 am    
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Looking at the date this thread was started, I guess we can consider this "Ten Years After"! Laughing

But re the sequence of albums, the YouTube notes of "Reason To Believe" include the following:

The track appeared on their second LP, Earth Music, released in November 1967 by RCA.

I make no claim that is or is not accurate, but FWIW.....
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post  Posted 13 May 2019 10:32 am    
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Don i was talking about Simple Song Of Freedom not Reason To Believe. Btw they were both songs from Tim Hardin. The latter written by Bobby Darin.
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K Maul


From:
Mechanicville NY/Hobe Sound FL
Post  Posted 13 May 2019 10:35 am    
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I only saw them one time in the very early 70s around the time the album Good and Dusty came out. They were really good. I was a particular fan of Elephant Mountain. I remember in probably ‘69 seeing them on American Bandstand. Dick Clark was interviewing them. He got to Banana (who had a really righteous Afro) and he said “is that your real hair?”
Banana leaned in closer to him and said “yes would you like to touch it?”
Dick recoiled in awkwardness.
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Tony Prior


From:
Charlotte NC..
Post  Posted 14 May 2019 1:50 am    
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AHHH from 2009 ! Which proves the internet will never die . Regarding what Steel he used on the recordings, he told me in a very long email that he only had the Fender 400 which Garcia gave him. If memory serves me I think we talked on the phone for a bit as well, one time. He sent me a CD with several songs he wrote which were aimed at his grandchildren. I sent him a CD of some songs I tracked. We last communicated be email way back then.

A very pleasant guy , I hope he is still around and doing well.

Seeing the Youngbloods live during the "Get Together" era was and is still a moment a few of us (friends) still talk about now and then. It was iconic.
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Mike Bacciarini


From:
San Luis Obispo, California
Post  Posted 14 May 2019 11:40 am    
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I saw the Youngbloods back in '68 at Tamarack Lodge in the California Sierras. Unusual act opened for them called "The Pulse". One guy with a major drum kit & tons of percussion. After enduring that, our boys played a great set, but I don't recall any psg.
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John McClung


From:
Olympia WA, USA
Post  Posted 15 May 2019 3:49 pm    
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Joachim, you brought back some old memories. I actually auditioned for Lawrence Hammond's band in the late 70's, he had put out one album that was in constant rotation on radio station KFAT in Gilroy. I was too green and naive to know any better than to audition for anyone too early in my career, didn't geg the gig, obviously. But it was still a good learning experience.

After I moved to LA, one of the first steelers I ran into was Bill Weingarden, who inexplicably played with all 4 fingers, but no thumbpick and never used his thumb at all as I recall. Knew every song you could throw at him, and how to kick off every one of them! Interesting guy. Anyone know of his current status or whereabouts?
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Jack Hanson


From:
San Luis Valley, USA
Post  Posted 15 May 2019 4:10 pm    
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K Maul wrote:
I remember in probably ‘69 seeing them on American Bandstand. Dick Clark was interviewing them. He got to Banana (who had a really righteous Afro) and he said “is that your real hair?”
Banana leaned in closer to him and said “yes would you like to touch it?”

The Grizzly Bear, starring Dick Clark. My favorite song from the Youngbloods:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbRvXhyFmZY
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Larry Dering


From:
Missouri, USA
Post  Posted 15 May 2019 5:20 pm    
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Wow, the memories for sure. Sunlight was my favorite from that era. Cool band. I was 20 and yet to see my first steel guitar.
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post  Posted 16 May 2019 2:52 am    
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Very interesting to hear that you once auditioned for Lawrence Hammond, John.
Here's an interesting Jerry Corbitt track. I posted this a few years and via Chris LeDrew, Lloyd Green let us know that he didn't play on the track.



It's track four with John McFee's name mispelled.
It's a good song and this is J.C. Youngs version from a few years later:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45F3BEofsQk
Banana and J. Corbitt guested on Hammonds band Mad River as steel players on two songs:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5D3i1hsouw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0PD6EU-ktc
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K Maul


From:
Mechanicville NY/Hobe Sound FL
Post  Posted 16 May 2019 4:54 am    
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Ah...it was ‘67! Dick Clark was a little hipper than I recalled. And he said to JC Young “ I know you from another scene”. That would’ve been the Folk/ Blues scene and his SOUL OF A CITY BOY album when he was in Buck’s County, PA, not far from Philadelphia where Clark had his base.
I also remember I saw them twice in the 70s. Once a main act and once opening for Edgar Winter. Bad pairing there, but they were good both times.
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post  Posted 16 May 2019 8:43 am    
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Love the Youngbloods, but Tony I'm not convinced that Banana ever played the steel on gigs. I saw them a few times and they didn't have a steel on stage, and I've never heard of that or seen a picture. Could it have been his electric piano?
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Tony Prior


From:
Charlotte NC..
Post  Posted 16 May 2019 9:34 am    
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Joe Goldmark wrote:
Love the Youngbloods, but Tony I'm not convinced that Banana ever played the steel on gigs. I saw them a few times and they didn't have a steel on stage, and I've never heard of that or seen a picture. Could it have been his electric piano?


You don't have to be convinced. Doesn't matter to me. And oddly enough, I know what an electric Piano looks like, even a Wurlitzer like Banana played. I actually bought one because of the Youngbloods.

I saw the Youngbloods and Banana played Guitar, Piano and Pedal Steel. He was the first LIVE Steel player I ever saw.

He told me that their gear van was broken into , the Steel was stolen and he never replaced it which may explain why many never saw him play Steel. He didn't own one !
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post  Posted 16 May 2019 9:59 am    
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OK, thanks Tony. That's interesting!
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