BEAUTIFUL FREAKS-WAVING OUR FLAG HIGH, WAVE ON, WAVE ON: MUSIC FROM THE ORIGINAL COUNTER CULTURE

Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture.

Label: TAD.

The TAD label recently released Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture, which is another lovingly curated compilation that is a cut above the competition. This eighteen track, two CD celebration of the  counter culture features everyone from Allen Ginsberg and Timothy Leary to The Grateful Dead, The Fool, The Incredible String Band, The Third Ear Band  and The Holy Modal Rounders  to Gong and Hawkwind right through to Yoko Ono and Brigitte Fontaine. Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture is a truly eclectic compilation and a reminder of another era when they world was a very different place.

The music on Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture is very different from what many people were listening to during this period. There’s nothing by The Beatles, the Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Beach Boys or even Jimi Hendrix, James Brown, The Doors or Love. This isn’t a compilation  of classic rock, the sixties West Coast sound, British psych pop, soul or funk. Instead, this is a music that eschews the mainstream and embraces and celebrates alternative music. However, not just alternative music, but what’s billed as: “the alternative of the alternative,” the music of the Freak Left.

The compilers of Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture combine a truly eclectic selection of music that includes overusing from comedy and country, to the sound of busking, folk and music hall. There’s chanting,  raga percussion, chanting and blistering and shimmering lysergic guitar solos. It sounds as of acid has played a large part in the writing and recording of the music on Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture, which became the soundtrack to the daily life of the Dead Heads and Freaks who settled in Los Angeles,  New York,  San Francisco and  Berkeley. Soon, others further afield decided to tune in turn on drop out.

In London, Paris and  Berlin, the music on Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture could be heard. The counter culture could also be found in Sydney , Australia and Sao Paulo, Brazil as many young people rejected the values of their parent’s and  embraced what they saw as a new way, and an alternative way of life. Part of the counter culture was the music, including the eighteen tracks on Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture.

Allen Ginsberg’s Footnote To Howl opens Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture and gives way to The Grateful Dead’s That’s It for the Other One (Parts. I-IV). Jerry Garcia and Co’s who were leading lights of the counter culture, also provided part of the soundtrack which has stood the test of time.  So has Earth from the Third Ear Band’s 1970 eponymous genre-melting album, and The Incredible String Band’s Way Back in the 1960s from The 5000 Spirits Or The Layers Of The Onion where folk and psych combines.

Another groundbreaking trippy track is Nimm Einen Joint Mein Freund from Witthüser and Westrupp 1971 cult classic Trips + Träume which includes folk rock, psychedelic rock. Then there’s sonic explorers Gong who contribute Fohat Digs Holes In Space from their 1971 album Camembert Electrique. It’s a an innovative fusion of progressive rock, psychedelic rock and space rock. Another purveyor of space rock and psychedelic rock are Hawkwind who contribute Be Yourself from their 1971 eponymous album.

The STP Song is taken from the  Holy Modal Rounders’ 1968 folk rock album The Moray Eels Eat The Holy Modal Rounders. 

Very different and somewhat surreal is Timothy Leary’s Part II: One Final Word from Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. Timothy Leary played a huge part in the developing counter culture and was an advocate for the use of LSD. He developed a philosophy of mind expansion and personal truth through using  LSD.[

Closing Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture is Exorcising the Evil Spirits from the Pentagon, October 21, 1967 from The Fugs’ 1967 psychedelic rock album Tenderness Junction. Here’s a track that epitomises the type of music that the counter culture listened to the late-sixties. 

Sadly, nothing lasts forever and eventually the counter culture that offered an alternative lifestyle and philosophy to a generation was a thing of the past. It had lasted ten years, which was longer than most movements. Throughout that time, the music on Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture was part of the soundtrack. Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture is a carefully curated collection of eclectic tracks that oozes quality and celebrates the counter culture, which offered an alternative lifestyle and hope for the future during what was a troubled time when war, poverty and racism blighted civilised society.

Beautiful Freaks-Waving Our Flag High, Wave On, Wave On: Music From The Original Counter Culture.

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