Shady Grove

Shady Grove

by Quicksilver Messenger ServiceQuicksilver Messenger Service

CD(Remastered / Special Edition)

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The third long-player from San Francisco psychedelic icons Quicksilver Messenger Service (QMS) is a direct contrast from their previous discs. Shady Grove (1969) is comprised mostly of shorter and self-contained pieces as opposed to the long and extended jams that were so prevalent on their self-titled debut (1967) and Happy Trails (1969). Ironically, the one stretched-out instrumental is courtesy of their latest acquisition -- Brit recording session guru Nicky Hopkins (keyboards). Another possible reason for the shift in style as well as personnel is the conspicuous absence of Gary Duncan (guitar) -- who is rumored to have been a "guest" of Bay Area law enforcement at the time. The band incorporate a number of different styles on the album. Kicking off the disc is an up-tempo rocking version of the traditional Appalachian folk song "Shady Grove." The QMS reading is highlighted by John Cipollina's trademark fluid fretwork and a familiar "Bo Diddley" backbeat -- reminiscent of both "Who Do You Love" and "Mona" from the live ensemble LP Happy Trails. The slow and dark "Flute Song" is a trippy minor chord masterpiece that is augmented by the shimmering effect of Hopkins' airy piano lines which mingle throughout the light orchestration. Additionally, QMS try their hand at the same country & western-flavored sound that was making the rounds with their San Fran contemporaries the Jefferson Airplane ("The Farm") and the Grateful Dead ("Dire Wolf"). However, the down-home cowboy waltz "Word's Can't Say" never gets out of the stable, unfortunately. This somewhat uneven effort would sadly foreshadow QMS's journey from psychedelia and into a much more pop-oriented sound on their follow-up, Just for Love (1970). However, enthusiasts of those albums will find much more to revisit on Shady Grove than those who favored the first two records.

Product Details

Release Date: 06/05/2012
Label: Culture Factory
UPC: 0850703003361
catalogNumber: 336
Rank: 998

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Quicksilver Messenger Service   Primary Artist
John Cipollina   Guitar,Vocals
Nicky Hopkins   Organ,Piano,Celeste,Harpsichord
Greg Elmore   Percussion,Drums
David Freiberg   Bass,Guitar,Viola,Vocals

Technical Credits

John Cipollina   Composer
Nick Gravenites   Composer
Nicky Hopkins   Composer
Dan Healy   Engineer
John Palladino   Executive Producer
Bob Shumaker   Engineer
Mike Leary   Engineer
Dave Brown   Engineer
D. Freiberg   Composer
Denise Jewkes   Composer
P.O. Wands   Composer

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