GENE CLARK – ” Collected ” Limited Edition 3LP set

Posted: October 22, 2021 in MUSIC
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Gene Clark: Collected: Limited Edition 3LP

Gene Clark American singer-songwriter and responsible for The Byrds’ greatest hits, including “I’ll Feel A Whole Lot Better”, “She Don’t Care About Time”, “Eight Miles High” and “Set You Free This Time”. After making music in several group formations furthermore with The Gosdin Brothers, Doug Dillard, Carla Olson and recording several albums with members of The Byrds over the years, Clark embarked on a solo career that encompassed heavily orchestrated treasures like “No Other” and folk-focused “White Light”. Through it all and in every setting, Clark’s clear and true vocals, his poetic turns of phrase, and his skill at weaving melancholy melodies never wavered. His body of work is impressive and, long after his passing in 1991, has remained influential to each new generation of pop artists who followed in his wake.

To honour his legacy and the impressive repertoire he left behind, Music On Vinyl proudly presents the new Collected compilation album in collaboration with Universal Music. Collected is a compilation featuring Gene Clark’s greatest songs and is a career-spanning 2LP including tracks by The Byrds and with The Gosdin Brothers, Carla Olson and his other collaborations

Clark would go on to record three more albums: Two Sides to Every Story (1977), Firebyrd (1984)—reissued posthumously in 1995 as This Byrd Has Flown, featuring additional tracks—and So Rebellious a Lover (1987), with Carla Olson.

2021 marks 30 years since the passing of folk-rock pioneer and co-founder of the Byrds (formed in 1964), Gene Clark. Clark was a key figure in the brief, but influential early period of the Byrds, who played a significant role in the expansive and electrified “pop” turn of folk music in the mid-1960s. He also had an intriguing solo career in its own right, before his life was tragically cut short.

Harold Eugene Clark was born in the small, working-class town of Tipton, Missouri, November 17th, 1944, the third of 13 children. In 1949, the Clark family moved to Kansas City, Missouri, living much of the time in abject poverty.

However, in 1954, Clark’s parents saved enough money to purchase a television, through which the young Clark would be introduced to Elvis Presley. Besotted by Presley, Clark developed a deep interest in the music. His father subsequently introduced him to Hank Williams and taught him to play the mandolin, harmonica and guitar. He began writing songs as early as nine years old—his first song being, “Big Chief Hole in Pants.”

Clark would go on to play in many aspiring folk groups in the early 1960s, including most prominently Michael Crowley’s the Surf Riders and later the New Christy Minstrels led by Randy Sparks. Clark played and worked as a backing-vocalist for two albums with the New Christy Minstrels, before leaving the band in early 1964, disillusioned with the musical approach.

Like many musicians of the time, a major turning point came in 1964 when Clark came across the Beatles’ songs “She Loves You” and “I Want to Hold Your Hand” on a jukebox while in Canada. Clark found his calling, saying, “I knew, I knew, that this was the future, this was where music was going and … I wanted to be a part of it.”

Clark moved to Los Angeles where he met fellow folk musician and Beatles-convert Jim (later Roger) McGuinn at the Troubadour Club. In early 1964, McGuinn and Clark worked together as a Peter and Gordon-type duo, but began to assemble a band—once David Crosby was recruited—known as the Jet Set. Soon after, Chris Hillman and Michael Clarke would join the trio on bass guitar and drums, respectively.

Initially playing under the name the Beefeaters, the young musicians released two singles, “Please Let Me Love You” and “Don’t Be Long” in October 1964. One month later, the band’s manager, Jim Dickson, got the band an audition with Columbia Records, where they signed as the Byrds and would soon be billed as “America’s Beatles.”

The Byrds became, in fact, a key element in the early flourishing of the “folk-rock” sound. They essentially bridged the electrifying pop studio sound of the Beatles with, literally at times, the lyrics and “edge” of Bob Dylan and other folk musicians. McGuinn’s “jangly” 12-string guitar melodies, coupled with Clark and Crosby’s expansive harmonizing, had very little precedent in popular music to that point. The band’s impact would help shape the direction of “folk rock” for at least the next decade.

Clark played a leading part on the band’s two 1965 albums, Mr. Tambourine Man and Turn! Turn! Turn! with his superlative compositions and emotionally alluring voice. Clark wrote or co-wrote many of the Byrds’ best-known originals from their first three albums, including “I’ll Feel a Whole Lot Better,” “Set You Free This Time” and “Eight Miles High.” At a time when the Vietnam War was raging, with antiwar and civil rights protests erupting across the US, Clark focused on intimate matters. His lyrics placed emphasis on personal reflection, reconciliation and relationships. He was also capable of writing moving songs about heartache, such as the band’s “Here Without You,” set to its signature “cascading” sound.

Notwithstanding the tremendous success of “Mr. Tambourine Man,” which peaked at Number 1 on the singles charts in 1965 in the US, United Kingdom and Ireland, and Number 2 in Canada, Clark would abruptly leave the band in February 1966, prior to the release of “Eight Miles High,” featured on “Fifth Dimension” (1966), ostensibly over his fear of flying. Clark, who had witnessed a fatal airplane crash as a youth, experienced a panic attack on a plane bound for New York, resulting in his refusal to take the flight. In effect, Clark’s exit from the plane represented his departure from the Byrds, with McGuinn telling him, “If you can’t fly, you can’t be a Byrd [bird].”

Interviewed in 1991 just days after Clark’s death, Hillman said, “We lost Gene the other day. It doesn’t matter how or why. He’s just gone. I think we lost Gene in 1967. … At one time he was the power in the Byrds, not McGuinn, not Crosby—it was Gene who would bust through the stage curtain banging on a tambourine coming on like a young Prince Valiant.”

The limited edition of Gene Clark – Collected includes an exclusive third bonus LP, which won’t be included with the regular 2LP edition. The bonus LP features “So You Say You Lost Your Baby (Acoustic Demo)” with The Gosdin Brothers, “Lyin’ Down The Middle” as Dillard & Clark, “Del Gato (Live)” and “Changes” with Carla Olson, “I Pity The Poor Immigrant”, “Stand By Me” and alternative versions of “One In A Hundred” and “She’s The Kind Of Girl” amongst others.

This 3LP edition of Gene Clark – “Collected” is available as a limited edition of 3000 individually numbered copies and includes a 4-page insert with liner notes and photos.

 

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