Listened to Quicksilver Messenger Service - Happy Trails and WOW

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by timind, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. mds

    mds Forum Resident

    Location:
    PA
    I agree. Happy Trails is an album you commit to listening to. You cannot just listen to a cut or two which can be done with the first. In addition of songs with lyrics dominates more of the first album and is a bit more traditional in its format. Happy Trails just blows you away, it is a very emotional album that you either get or you don't get. I grew up on the East Coast during this time period so I never did get to see them live however from my reading they were it, the SF band of choice in the beginning, not the Dead, or Airplane or Country Joe, it was Quicksilver. This however did not last.
     
    lbgarcia, timind and Hardy Melville like this.
  2. Hardy Melville

    Hardy Melville Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    QMS

    The first two are awesome, the third, Happy Trails, is very good but uneven. Basically it replaces the twin guitar work of Cipollina and Duncan with Nicky Hopkins replacing Gary. The songs are uneven in places, but there's a lot of excellent work by the band here. Gary Freiberg, the bassist, who went on to work with Starship, carried more/most of the vocals with Duncan's departure. After that, I don't care for the Dino Valenti stuff.

    I first heard them with Happy Trails in late 69 and was immediately entranced by the record. For me the best part is the guitar solo as Who Do You Love? nears the end. This is perhaps the best acid rock guitar work ever. Of course in the studio The Fool gives it a run for the money, too. But John Cipollina? Simply the best of the genre. Playing guitar myself I find him very hard to imitate, though.

    Anyway, no need imo to compare other San Francisco bands to Quicksilver. Yes they were a big part of that scene while not being as well known as others. But to me, their first two stand on their own without comparisons to others. They both belong in one's collection.
     
    Gio Mio likes this.
  3. Hardy Melville

    Hardy Melville Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    Another album, a compilation, is Lost Gold and Silver:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Some of the recordings are not of the highest quality. But if you are a fan it is a great addition to your collection.
     
  4. mds

    mds Forum Resident

    Location:
    PA
    Ever region had their psychedelic sound and QSMS (Happy Trails) certainly highlighted SF as did the Dead (Anthem), Big Brother (Cheap Thrills), Country Joe (Electric Music), The Airplane (Baxters), Moby Grape (ST) and Steve Miller (Sailor). The list certainly does not stop with Steve Miller but if one wanted to complete their SF Psych album collection these are the artists at a minimum to have in that collection. Of course this is just one opinion.
     
  5. davmar77

    davmar77 I'd rather be drummin'...

    Location:
    clifton park,ny
    parts of that were included on the lost gold and silver collection but inferior quality.
     
  6. davmar77

    davmar77 I'd rather be drummin'...

    Location:
    clifton park,ny
    I just noted that release. the 68 live material is mostly from the same fillmore east recordings but as good sound as other versions that are around.
     
  7. Raunchnroll

    Raunchnroll Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle
    I'd add It's A Beautiful Day, self titled. From 1969 its the tail end of that original SF period.
     
  8. Raunchnroll

    Raunchnroll Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle
    You mean Shady Grove?
     
  9. Raunchnroll

    Raunchnroll Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle
    When CDs became prevalent we used to trade early live QMS recordings. It was like a side adjunct to trading live Dead recordings.
     
  10. MarcS

    MarcS Forum Resident

    Location:
    Oradell NJ
    That's it.
     
    PJayBe and Paperback Writer like this.
  11. MarcS

    MarcS Forum Resident

    Location:
    Oradell NJ
    I used to trade QMS tapes with people listed in Goldmine but the same handful of shows kept getting circulated with different dates.
     
    Raunchnroll likes this.
  12. Ignatius

    Ignatius Forum Resident

    Read Deke Leonard's Rhinos Winos and Lunatics memoir for a delightfully malicious take on "Valenti's tuneless honk".
     
    vanhooserd and zphage like this.
  13. davmar77

    davmar77 I'd rather be drummin'...

    Location:
    clifton park,ny
    That should read not as good sound as other versions.
     
  14. lbgarcia

    lbgarcia Forum Resident

    Location:
    Fargo, ND
     
  15. davmar77

    davmar77 I'd rather be drummin'...

    Location:
    clifton park,ny
    a great track from the dino era but mainly because he's not on it.

     
    Bruso and Hardy Melville like this.
  16. Raunchnroll

    Raunchnroll Forum Resident

    Location:
    Seattle
    I've always struggled a bit with Dino Valente as a writer, singer, and performer. The guy wrote some great songs but also some cringe worthy (to me) stuff. His singing voice was limited, some songs it works, others it does not. The Dino era QMS albums all have some good tracks on them but some bland ones too unfortunately. He stands out too much in some of the QMS performances, a little too self consciously 'stagey.' Over the decades I've talked with people who saw him or had some tangential connection with the SF scene or QMS. He was a slightly older east coast folkie who tried to do the west coast rural hippie lifestyle - something he just wasn't organically. A guy I knew in the 70's who roadied with the band said that when they lived in Marin, Gary Duncan would go out to the woods with an old rifle, cigarette hanging from his mouth, and shoot bottles off a stump, while Dino seemed a bit nervous or intimidated. When bikers would drop by to party, the band gelled with them, would get f**ked up and jam out while Dino was on the periphery, i.e talking to some chick on the porch.
     
    Bruso, gd0 and Hardy Melville like this.
  17. Ignatius

    Ignatius Forum Resident

    Strangely, an old friend of mine who reveres Cipollina from the mescaline epoch enjoys the Valenti period.
     
  18. Hardy Melville

    Hardy Melville Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    Yes.
     
  19. Hardy Melville

    Hardy Melville Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York
    Right. Lost Gold and Silver is somewhere between a bit and rather muddy.
     
  20. zphage

    zphage Beatard

    Location:
    Bucks County, PA
    pretty enjoyable show from the Dino era, nicely shot

    Quicksilver Messenger Service - Full Concert - 08/15/69 - Sonoma State College (OFFICIAL)

     
    mds likes this.
  21. davmar77

    davmar77 I'd rather be drummin'...

    Location:
    clifton park,ny
    Actually from 1970. Mona was posted earlier. That's the one available on the DVD I linked a few posts back.
     
    zphage likes this.
  22. gd0

    gd0 Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies

    Location:
    Golden Gate
    That's a good overview. I tend to be a little more forgiving of Valenti, mainly because he often brought excellent songs (among more than a few cringers, no doubt). I saw them as a sextet in early 1970, and it was the best of everything: long jams, tight songs, Duncan-Cippolina, Dino in measured doses, and Nicky Hopkins who always made EVERYthing better. They outplayed the headliners (Airplane), who were excellent themselves.

    But I don't try to sell that point of view much, as most fans seem to be adamant that The Only Quicksilver is all-guitar, all-long-jams. Period.

    [​IMG]
     
  23. ~dave~~wave~

    ~dave~~wave~ Forum Resident

    Location:
    Lincoln, NE
    The album cover, which for some strange reason has yet to appear in this thread, was painted by George Hunter of the Charlatans.
    There's a great story about it in the liner notes by Jeff Tamarkin in the brick walled Culture Factory CD box set.



    Happy Trails ~ Capitol Records ~ 1969

    [​IMG]






    George Hunter ~ 1966 ~ Photo (c) by Herb Greene

    [​IMG]
     
    notesofachord, clhboa and Bruso like this.
  24. MarcS

    MarcS Forum Resident

    Location:
    Oradell NJ
    That album was so poorly recorded though.
     
  25. ermylaw

    ermylaw Forum Resident

    Location:
    Kansas City
    Cool thread. Led me to give this album a spin yesterday during family time -- my 4 month old really digs late 60's psych music, or at least, that's the impression I got from his facial expressions. :righton:

    Ordered the cheap t-shirt from upthread this morning.
     
    Fox67 and clhboa like this.

Share This Page