We get a lot of vinyls in our mailbox for giveaways and promotions but this fat stack of 8 singles from The Turtles made for a cool weekend of throwback psychedelic pop surprises.
The Turtles put out 4 albums between 1965 and 1970 that produced a few commercial hits which included the #1 "Happy Together" (written by Garry Bonner / Alan Gordon) as well as the top 10 Bob Dylan penned cover "It Ain't Me Babe".
These chart toppers, as well as a few other Top 40 breakthroughs such as "Let Me Be" and "You Baby" are included along with this high quality series of singles 7" vinyls.
I was familiar with only 2 songs from The Turtles and I was looking forward to delving into these platters for the hidden gems that I wasn't aware of from their releases.
The first single out of the box was "It Ain't Me Babe" with B-side "You Don't Have to Walk in the Rain" which we had a listen to as a primer.
Thick high quality pressings with good sound and simple packaging....impressed already!
Next up were the hazy mid-day dreamers "You Showed Me" and "Sound Asleep" which were made for a teenage movie soundtrack from today.
Hard not to enjoy the love ballad "Elenore" with the bubble gum flip-side "You Baby".
I can picture the frustrated teenager sitting in her living room listening to "Let Me Be" for the first time and hearing the lyrics
"Don't try to change me or rearrange me
To satisfy the selfishness in you
I'm not a piece of clay to mold to your moves each day
And I'm not a pawn to be told how to move
I'm sorry I ain't the fool you thought would play by your rules
A 'To each is own' philosophy"
Even better is the Ray Davies produced B-side "Love in the City" which should have garnered a better showing back in the day but worth its weight in gold today and will surely get it's fair share of airplay in our headphones.
Other notables the we enjoyed were the upbeat and soulful "Outside Chance" as well the ultra- twangy B-Side "Grim Reaper of Love"
But I would have to say that the best was meant for last as we came to the final record in the box.
Get this collection for this 45 alone..."She's My Girl" was fantastic and after the inital spin we played again and again raising the volume level every time. Give it a flip and you have another great tune in "Can I Get to Know You Better"
Pick this collection up for your vinyl aficionado for a great holiday gift
Classic tunes that hold their own today.
The Turtles featuring Flo and Eddie tour annually (sometimes with Detroit's Mitch Ryder)
and their website can be viewed at http://theturtles.com/
The Turtles have released a box set of eight 7-inch vinyl singles celebrating their biggest hits from that decade. The Turtles 45 RPM Vinyl Singles Collection was recently released via FloEdCo/Manifesto Records. The collection includes the #1 hit, “Happy Together,” and the band’s top 10 cover of Bob Dylan’s “It Ain’t Me Babe.” Also included are other various singles which should have been hits. The Turtles music exists somewhere between early 60s pop and the psychedelia of the latter part of the decade. This collection provides an opportunity for today’s vinyl enthusiast to relive the songs the way they first appeared; as 7- inch singles.
The band was often compared, back in the day, to acts such as The Beatles, The Byrds, and The Lovin’ Spoonful but upon listening to the Turtles body of work there is something unique and avant-garde about the songs. The Turtles formed in Los Angeles in 1965 and quickly scored a hit with their Dylan cover. This debut was the first in a series of top 40 charting singles in 1965 (“Let Me Be”) and 1966 (“You Baby”). But it isn't just the hits that are worth a listen; some of their most interesting and innovative singles were not hits.
Their second LP featured a single that didn't chart, “Outside Chance.” The song is included in this collection and is a hidden gem written by the late Warren Zevon. This collection features both the instantly recognizable tracks as well as work by the band that deserves another look by aficionados of late 60s music.
This compilation of singles also includes the Ray Davies (Kinks) produced track, “Love in the City;” yet another example of a song deserving reexamination by music fans.
The Turtles have an interesting history beyond the five year duration of the band. After their five years together (with some personal reshuffles) the he band broke up in 1970 with founders Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman joining Frank Zappa’s The Mothers of Invention and subsequently striking out on their own again as Flo & Eddie. The duo also sang backup with T Rex and continued to be a force in rock music just outside the mainstream.
Their body of work is of particular interest today with the resurgence of interest in both pop bands and psychedelic rock from the late 60s and early 70s. The music is a precursor to bands today such bands as The Black Angels, Rain Parade, of Montreal, The Wytches and The Horrors. The music is as relevant today as 40 + years ago when it was released; in fact the intervening years have, if anything, burnished these tunes, demonstrating their timeless appeal.
The Turtles featuring Flo and Eddie tour annually and their website can be viewed at http://theturtles.com/
Full box singles listing:
It Ain’t Me Babe #8 b/w You Don’t Have To Walk In The Rain #51
Let Me Be #29 b/w Love in the City #91
You Baby #20 b/w You Know What I Mean #12
Happy Together #1 b/w Grim Reaper Of Love #81
She’d Rather Be With Me #3 b/w Story Of Rock And Roll #48
She’ s My Girl #14 b/w Can’t I Get To Know You Better #89
Elenore #6 b/w Outside Chance NA
You Showed Me #6 b/w Sound Asleep #57