Sunday, June 17, 2007

Green Lyte Sunday - S/T (1970)

Singer/keyboard player Michael Losekamp had been a late-inning member of The Cyrkle (replacing Earl Pickens). Following that group's break-up he apparently returned to his native Dayton, Ohio where the late-1960s found him working with Green Lyte Sunday. Showcasing the talents of Losekamp, woodwind player Fly Barlow, singer Susan Darby, guitarist Jason Hollinger, drummer Rick Kalb and bassist James Wyatt, the band attracted the attention of King Records which signed them to a contract resulting in the 1969 single 'She's My Lover' b/w 'Lenore' (King catalog number 6178). While the single did nothing commercially, it attracted the attention of RCA Victor, which promptly picked up the band. Recorded in Hollywood with Peter Shelton producing, 1970's "Green Lyte Sunday" featured an interesting mix of originals (largely penned by Losekamp) rounded out by a series of three covers - a Joni Mitchell effort and two Laura Nyro compositions. Musically the album offered up a pleasant mixture of breezy pop with some nice jazzy touches ('Glen Helen' and 'What Makes Him Happy') and tougher rock moves ('Happy Happy' and 'Woman's Blues'). Darby and Losekamp were both impressive singers (Darby was particularly good), and while their silky smooth group harmonies drew apt comparisons to the likes of The Free Design, or The Gentle Soul numbers such as 'Lenore' and 'High Up in the Sky' benefited from fuzz guitar and other rock touches. (One or two more rock songs and this would be a four star collectable.) [SB]

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