physnotes - Who Do You Love(Quicksilver Messenger Service...

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Who Do You Love?(Quicksilver Messenger Service, 1969) Quicksilver Messenger Service was one of San Francisco's original psychedelic bands of the late 1960s. Essentially a jam band, their early albums and live shows contributed to some of the best instrumental jams of the period. They were popular around the Bay Area and achieved international recognition among devotees of psychedelic rock, but they did not reach the broader popularity enjoyed by their San Francisco contemporaries, Jefferson Airplane, Grateful Dead and others. Their first album charted at 63 and their next four albums charted in the top 30 of the billboard Pop Albums charts. The original band members were John Cipollina (guitar), Gary Duncan (guitar, vocals), David Freiberg (bass guitar, vocals and viola), Greg Elmore (drums), and Jim Murray (vocals, guitar and harmonica), although Murray left before the band recorded. There is some confusion as to whether or not the group was formed around Dino Valente, who was added on vocals and guitar, as the group changed personnel during formation. Having split company with Murray, the band began a period of heavy touring on the West Coast of the United States. They held back from signing a record deal but eventually signed to Capitol Records in 1967. Capitol had failed to pick up a San Francisco hippie band during the first rush of record company interest and so Quicksilver managed to negotiate a better deal than many of their peers. At the same time, Capitol signed the Steve Miller band, with whom Quicksilver had appeared on the movie and soundtrack Revolution . Quicksilver released Quicksilver Messenger Service in 1968, followed by Happy Trails the following year. These two albums define a classic period in Quicksilver's career and are most strongly associated with their unique sound, emphasizing extended arrangements. Cipolina's highly melodic, individualistic lead guitar style combined with Gary Duncan's driving guitar work showcased a jazzy rock style unparalleled in its day. Archetypal Quicksilver songs include an elongated, multiply re-titled suite of Bo Diddley's "Who Do You Love?". Duncan left after the recording of Happy Trails . "Well, let's put it this way," says he, remembering back 18 full years, "at the end of 1968, I was pretty burned out. We'd been on the road for, really, the first time in our lives. I just left for a year. I didn't want to have anything to do with music at all. And I left for a year and rode motorcycles and lived in New York and L.A. and just kind of went crazy for about a year." Freiberg later recalled that "the engine" of the band had been removed. Nevertheless, Duncan was replaced by the English piano journeyman Nicky Hopkins, who had played on albums by The Rolling Stones, The Who and Steve Miller, among many others. This version of Quicksilver released 1970's Shady Grove , dominated by Hopkins' virtuoso piano boogie.
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