Thursday, December 28, 2006

Evergreen Blueshoes - "The Ballad of Evergreen Blueshoes" (with Skip Battin) {USA} [1968] (@320)

Throughout the mid-1960s singer/bassist Skip Battin played and recorded with a string of groups including The Pledges, Gary and Clyde, Skip and Flynn and Skip and the Groop. Tired of paying his bills as a sessions bassist, by 1968 Battin was ready to try to make it with a real rock band. Recruiting long time friends Al Rosenberg and Clarence White, he decided to put together an outfit that would play a mixture of Byrds-styled folk-rock and West Coast psychedelia. White quickly dropped out of the project, leaving Battin and Rosenberg to recruit drummer Chester McCracken, along with keyboard player Ken Kleist, guitarist Lanny Mathijssen. Playing at a Topanga Canyon club named 'The Corral' the band began attracting considerable word of mouth publicity, which led the small Amos Records to sign them to a recording contract. Produced by Jim Post, 1969's "The Ballad of Evergreen Blueshoes" offered up an odd hodge-podge of musical genres. Battin (here spelled as 'Battyn') and Rosenberg were responsible for the majority of the 12 songs, which bounced all over the musical spectrum. Jug, country and western, pop, psych, etc. were frequently lumped together on tracks such as 'Life's Railway To Heaven' and 'Amsterdam in 1968'. Connected by a series of spoken word segments, the results were frequently maddening, though these guys simply had too much talent to turn in a complete dud. 'The Hedge Hog's Song' and their cover of Dylan's 'Walking Down the Line' were all quite good. Amos also saw fit to release a truly bizarre cover of 'Johnny B. Goode' b/w 'Walking Down the Line' as a single (Amos #115). Unfortunately, as a small label, Amos lacked much promotional clout, effectively guaranteeing the set would enjoy limited sales. (The back and inner sleeves are pretty funny - wonder if they had to worry about ticks while prancing around naked in the woods?). [SB]

A1 - Life's Railway To Heaven (Skip Battin / Al Rosenberg / Ken Kleist / Lanny Mathijssen / Chester McCracken) /
A2 - Walking Down The Line (Bob Dylan) /
A3 - Line Out (Skip Battin / Al Rosenberg) /
A4 - Amsterdam In 1968 (Levine) /
A5 - Everything's Fine Right Now (Heron) /
A6 - Johnny B. Goode (Chuck Berry) /
B1 - The Hedge Hog's Song (Heron) /
B2 - The Raven (Skip Battin / Al Rosenberg / Edgar Allan Poe) /
B3 - Mrs. Cohen's Little Boy (Leonard Cohen) /
B4 - Moon Over Mount Olympus (Al Rosenberg) /
B5 - Jewish Teahouse (Al Rosenberg) /
B6 - The Everblue Express (Skip Battin / Kim Fowley)

- Skip Battin / Bass, Vocals
- Lanny Mathijssen / Guitar, Vocals
- Al Rosenberg / Guitar, Vocals
- Ken Kleist / Organ, Vocals
- Chester McCracken / Drums, Percussion

Thanks to ZenBa for the rip & info

Side A...

Link for download "Evergreen Blueshoes - The Ballad of Evergreen Blueshoes" in comments ...


isabelbc said...


Anonymous said...

Thank you ZenBa for the rip and PNF for the post - my vinyl of this died a long time ago. It's great to hear it again!

Ben Ross said...

I am Al Rosenberg's son and he is starting to get his stories together. Anyone interested can email me at and I would be happy to pass on qualified referrals.


vagabond77 said...

Hey Ben, I am good buddies with Skip's son out here in Oregon. You guys should link up.

Ben Ross said...

@vagabond77 not sure if this is super old but I'm sure my dad would want to speak with him,

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