[alert_box type=”info”]This piece was taken from the 26th July 1969 edition of Rolling Stone.[/alert_box] Trout Mask Replica, Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band (Straight Sm 1053) Captain Beefheart, the only true dadaist in rock, has been victimized repeatedly by public incomprehension and critical authoritarianism. The tendency has been to chide C.B. and his Band as a potentially acceptable blues band who were misled onto the paths of greedy trendy commercialism. What the critics failed to see was that this was a band with a vision, that their music, difficult raucous and rough as it is, proceeded from a unique and original consciousness. This became dramaticallyRead More →

Compiled by Jasper Leach. If you can help with any further info, please get in touch. All songs (unless noted differently) Produced by Frank Zappa Engineered by Dick Kunc Recorded at Whitney Studios, Los Angeles, CA; April 1969 1. Frownland Captain Beefheart: vocal Zoot Horn Rollo: glass finger guitar & guitar (left channel) Antennae Jimmy Semens: steel guitar & guitar (right channel) Rockette Morton: bass Drumbo: drums 2. The Dust Blows Forward ‘n the Dust Blows Back Captain Beefheart: vocal Produced by Don Van Vliet Engineered by John French Recorded at Beefheart House, Woodland Hills, CA; c. 1969 3. Dachau Blues Captain Beefheart: vocal, bassRead More →

Not sure when this little collection was distributed but as it has the Straight logo and address we can presume it was as a promotion for the first release. Was it only sent out to the press, radio or who? It’s a collection of five handwritten poems, one for each member of the band included in an envelope that carries a great typed quote from a disc jockey. Significantly Drumbo is again left out (as he was on the credits of the original release). Update: John French was shown these poems and he immediately recognised the writing, it’s Jeff Cotton’s who often acted as ‘scribe’Read More →

Recording details Date – late 1968 and March/April 1969 Studio – Sunset Sound, Hollywood; Whitney Studios, Glendale Producer – Frank Zappa Engineer – Dick Kunc Musicians Don Van Vliet Bill Harkleroad Jeff Cotton John French Mark Boston Victor Hayden Gary Marker Doug Moon Many of the musicians on this album had a poem written for / about them by Don Van Vliet. View Leach’s Listing for a thorough guide to who did what on Trout Mask Replica. Track list Frownland The Dust Blows Forward ‘N The Dust Blows Back Dachau Blues Ella Guru Hair Pie: Bake 1 Moonlight on Vermont Pachuco Cadaver Bills Corpse SweetRead More →

US Vinyl Releases 1968 US Original on Blue Thumb BTS1 The first release on this label named by Don and set up by the producer Bob Krasnow who had also been involved with the production of Safe As Milk. Very thick card gatefold sleeve. Two different issues (that we know of): Black label with silver lettering; banded; there are pressings with different matrix numbers: J-1-RE-1 (on both sides) BTS 5001 D-1 (side 1), BTS 5002 D-1 (side 2) Black label; unbanded Jim Neher wrote to pass comment on the quality of the different releases: Next to the black label banded version, the black label unbandedRead More →

11 digitally remastered tracks recorded between October 1967 and May 1968 – missing only “Korn Ring Finger” from all known Strictly Personal cuts. The CD was compiled and annotated by John Platt. Note that track 11, “Dirty Blue Gene”, is actually an early version of “Ice Rose”, from the 1978 album Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller). “Dirty Blue Gene” was the actual label on the original tapes, so the labelling on the CD is correct. The Magic Band often swapped song-titles around, as must have happened here. No longer available. However, all these songs (and the missing “Korn Ring Finger”) are readily available on Buddha’sRead More →

A brand new audiophile vinyl re-issue of Strictly Personal, released on 29th November 1999. Track list Track list is the same as on previous versions. Press release from Simply Vinyl: OK, before we kick off on this one can we just say that Captain Beefheart’s vinyl sales are nothing short of phenomenal. Both Safe As Milk (SVLP122) and The Mirror Man Sessions (SVLP143) are just steaming away sales-wise! So, for all you intrepid Beefheart fans out there we’ve decided to make Strictly Personal available on 180g for the first ever time! This is the Captain in one of his best periods, i.e. after Safe AsRead More →

Recording details: Date – 25 April to 2 May 1968 Studio – Sunset Sound, Hollywood Producer – Bob Krasnow Engineer – Gene Shiveley, Bill Lazerus Musicians: Don Van Vliet – vocals, harmonica, electric flour sifter Alex St Clair Snouffer – guitar, backing vocals Jeff Cotton – guitar, backing vocals Jerry Handley – bass, backing vocals John French – drums, backing vocals Track list Ah Feel Like Ahcid Safe As Milk Trust Us Son of Mirror Man – Mere Man On Tomorrow Beatle Bones and Smokin’ Stones Gimme Dat Harp Boy Kandy Korn Myths and legends According to legend the album was ruined by producer BobRead More →

You can view the information on the site by year, and find out what Don Van Vliet was up to at particular times of his life including music recording, performing, painting, interviews, exhibitions and important life events. It’s far from complete and only contains links to the info on the site, rather than offering a comprehensive timeline. As the site’s content continues to grow, the timeline will become more complete. 1941 1951 1958 1962 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995Read More →

Track list Tarotplane Kandy Korn 25th Century Quaker Mirror Man Musicians Don Van Vliet – vocals, harmonica, oboe Alex St. Clair – guitar Jeff Cotton – guitar Mark Marcellino – keyboards John French – drums Jerry Handley – bass Myths and legends The original cover proudly proclaimed “recorded one night in 1965” thus making it seem, in 1971 when it was eventually released, like an unearthed time capsule providing proof that the Magic Band were at least a couple of years ahead of the competition and made the very first psychedelic sounds to be recorded. Fantastic and ground-breaking though it certainly is, it was recorded in 1967. Album overview from Graham Johnston Four long,Read More →

[alert_box type=”info”]This review of Mirror Man (Buddah BDS 5077) was originally published in the 1st April, 1971 edition of Rolling Stone. Kindly sent to me by Jim Flannery.[/alert_box] Captain Beefheart still plays to a relatively minor following, but most of them believe, as I do, that he’s one of the four or five unqualified geniuses to rise from the hothouses of American music in the Sixties, an innovator whose instinctive idiomatic syntheses and wildly original approach to composition and improvisation preview an era of profound changes to popular music. Statements like that would be extreme anywhere else, but only Cap has managed to fuse theRead More →

Releases 1971 US Original on Buddah BDS-5077. There are four distinct issues here: Multi-colored label, die-cut cover Multi-colored label, no die-cut cover Reissue on regular Buddah label, die-cut cover (pictured) Reissue on regular Buddah label, no die-cut cover Scan very kindly sent along by Chris Perry 1971 UK Original on Buddah 2365 002 Black Buddah label and gatefold sleeve 1982 UK Re-issue on PRT NCP 1002 Two versions exist of this with slightly different layout on back (Export version?) 1986 UK Re-issue on EDSEL 184 This version features more appropriate artwork – alternative Cannes Beach Publicity Shot on the front cover, photograph of the bandRead More →

A brand new re-issue of Mirror Man, complete with the glorious remastering and bonus tracks from Buddha’s 1999 CD reissue. Released on 15th November 1999. Track list Side 1: Tarotplane Side 2: 25th Century Quaker Mirror Man Side 3: Kandy Korn Trust Us (take 6) Side 4: Safe As Milk (take 12) Beatle Bones N’ Smokin’ Stones Moody Liz (take 8) Gimme Dat Harp Boy Press release from Simply Vinyl It’s taken us literally ages to get access to the good Captain’s better material but we think you’ll agree that it’s been worth the wait because a whole heap of additional bonus tracks and differentRead More →

Track list Tarotplane 25th Century Quaker Mirror Man Kandy Korn Trust Us (Take 6) Safe As Milk (Take 12) Beatle Bones N’ Smokin Stones Moody Liz (Take 8) Gimme Dat Harp Boy Album overview Graham Johnston: The first four tunes were previously available on Mirror Man, the remaining five were previously available on the now deleted I May Be Hungry But I Sure Ain’t Weird Sequel collection. The Mirror Man album has been thoroughly re-mastered, bringing massive improvements in sound quality. Packaging is based upon the original vinyl release, with new sleevenotes by John Platt. A small press item appeared announcing this release. Released onRead More →

1977 UK SAM/MM Combination Re-issue as Beefheart File of SAM/MM on Pye FILD 008 Two inner sleeves contain “rare” photos and informative article by Connor McKnight First sleeve has real slot on front later sleeve front cover has Internal Memo artwork and no slot 1983 UK Re-issue as Music In Sea Minor Six tracks from SAM and two from MM on a 10″ Album with Cannes Beach publicity shot cover on Buddah PRT DOW 15. 1984 UK Re-issue as Top Secret – Breakaway BWY 66 Five tracks from SAM and two from MM. 1984 UK Re-issue as Top Secret on 12″ Picture Disc Design PIXLP4 HasRead More →

1967 US Original on Buddah (Red) The US release has always been thought to have been in September 1967, but a ‘New Action Albums’ feature in the 19 August 1967 edition of Billboard lists Safe As Milk which may indicate an earlier release date. The inner has weird artwork and photos, along with the words “MAY THE BABY JESUS SHUT YOUR MOUTH AND OPEN YOU MIND” and “CAUTION: ELECTRICITY MAY BE HAZARDOUS TO HEALTH” – it also contained the 4″ x 15″ Bumper Sticker folded inside. Apart from the band, with Ry Cooder pictured separately in profile, Bob Krasnow (plus wife and kids), Hank Cicalo, D.J.Read More →

Cheetah Magazine wrote on November 1967: ‘Safe As Milk is a total delight. It’s hard to characterise the group, because they are capable of sounding like anybody. But everything they do is permeated with a weird and fascinating sense of humor… There are some obvious parodies, like ‘I’m Glad’, which is like The Miracles’ ‘Baby, Baby’, but is ‘Sure Nuff N’ Yes I Do’ a take-off on one of the West Coast blues bands? Is ‘Zig Zag Wanderer’ a parody of The Grateful Dead? It doesn’t really matter: their sense of humor (and it’s musical as much as it is verbal) isn’t anything as pointed asRead More →

[alert_box type=”info”]A 1999 re-issue of the Magic Band’s debut album, complete with the glorious remastering and bonus tracks from Buddha’s 1999 CD reissue.[/alert_box] Track list: Side 1: Sure ‘Nuff N Yes I Do Zig Zag Wanderer Call On Me Dropout Boogie I’m Glad Electricity Side 2 Yellow Brick Road Abba Zabba Plastic Factory Where There’s Woman Grown So Ugly Autumn’s Child Side 3 Safe As Milk (take 5) On Tomorrow Big Black Baby Shoes Flower Pot Side 4 Dirty Blue Gene Trust Us (take 9) Korn Ring Finger. Press release from Simply Vinyl: It has taken us ages to finally get a decent Captain BeefheartRead More →

Track list As the original Safe As Milk, but also with: Safe As Milk (take 5) On Tomorrow Big Black Baby Shoes Flower pot Dirty Blue Gene Trust Us (take 9) Korn Ring Finger Notes: All of the above tunes, apart from Korn Ring Finger, were previously available on the now deleted I May Be Hungry But I Sure Ain’t Weird Sequel collection. The Safe As Milk album has been thoroughly re-mastered, bringing significant improvements in sound quality. Packaging is based upon the original vinyl release, with new sleevenotes by John Platt. A small press item appeared announcing this release. Released on 1st June 1999Read More →