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Born to Be Burned

The Great Society

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Album Review

The only recordings released during the Great Society's 1965-1966 lifetime were the two sides of its Northbeach Records single, "Free Advice"/"Someone [Somebody] to Love." This album reissues those two sides along with the rest of the group's previously unreleased recording sessions of the fall of 1965. There are two more takes of the Indian-influenced "Free Advice," the group-written "Father Bruce," about comedian Lenny Bruce, and a set of pop-oriented songs written by singer David Miner. The tracks are rough, little more than demos rather than finished recordings. (No wonder it took 30 years for someone to release them.) But they provide tremendous insight into one of the '60s San Francisco scene's forgotten bands.

Biography

Formed: 1964

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s

Before joining Jefferson Airplane, Grace Slick sang lead and played various instruments for the Great Society, who were nearly as popular as Jefferson Airplane in the early days of the San Francisco psychedelic scene. Instrumentally, the Great Society were not as disciplined as Airplane. But they were at least their equals in imagination, infusing their probing songwriting with Indian influences, minor key melodic shifts, and groundbreaking, reverb-soaked psychedelic guitar by Slick's brother-in-law,...
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Born to Be Burned, The Great Society
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