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Everything Playing (Remastered)

The Lovin' Spoonful

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Album Review

The Lovin' Spoonful's fourth album, Everything Playing, was made under trying circumstances. Musically, the Sgt. Pepper/Summer of Love era had made the Spoonful's good-time, jugband approach obsolete, and chief songwriter John Sebastian had to try to keep up. Personally, the group had suffered the disaster of a drug bust that resulted in the departure of lead guitarist Zal Yanovsky, who was replaced in August 1967 by Jerry Yester. Despite these problems, Sebastian was able to turn out a good album paced by its three Top 40 hits, "Six O'Clock," "She Is Still a Mystery," and the deceptively comic "Money," in which he castigated financial aspects of the music industry. Also excellent were "Boredom" and "Younger Generation," which Sebastian later would sing at Woodstock. When Sebastian wasn't at the mic, the singing could be mediocre, and the group was often all over the map in its attempt at musical sophistication, but the record was saved by Sebastian's writing and singing. Then he too jumped ship. [The 2003 Buddha reissue contains alternate versions of three songs from the album: "She is Still a Mystery," "Only Pretty, What a Pity" and "Try a Little Bit".]

Biography

Formed: 1965 in New York, NY

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '80s, '90s

Right on the tails of the Beau Brummels and the Byrds, the Lovin' Spoonful were among the first American groups to challenge the domination of the British Invasion bands in the mid-'60s. Between mid-1965 and the end of 1967, the group was astonishingly successful, issuing one classic hit single after another, including "Do You Believe in Magic?," "You Didn't...
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