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Brewer & Shipley - Shake Off The Demon (1971)



Brewer & Shipley – amerykański duet folkrockowy założony w 1968 przez Michaela Brewera i Toma Shipleya. Jego styl opiera się na skomplikowanej pracy dwóch zharmonizowanych gitar i świadomych społecznie tekstach, dotyczących trosk ówczesnego pokolenia (szczególnie wojny wietnamskiej).

Ścieżki Brewera i Shipleya przecinały się wielokrotnie podczas różnych lokalnych występów, lecz dopiero w 1968 w Los Angeles muzycy postanowili działać wspólnie. Wydali tam 2 albumy – Down in L.A. i Weeds, po czym, w 1969 postanowili przenieść się do Kansas City, z którego regionu oboje pochodzili. Początkowo prowadzili tam skromne życie, grając koncerty w miasteczkach studenckich. Przygotowywali także materiał na nową płytę.

Wydany w 1970 album Tarkio przyniósł duetowi największy sukces komercyjny. Album zawierał największy przebój Brewer & Shipley – "One Toke Over The Line", który miał zostać napisany podczas przygotowań do jednego z koncertów. W kwietniu 1971 utwór osiągnął 10. pozycję w rankingu magazynu Billboard).

Ze względu na wyzywający tekst (grupa twierdzi, że jest on żartem na temat narkotyków) prezydent Stanów Zjednoczonych Richard Nixon obwołał Brewera i Shipleya jawnymi złoczyńcami.

Duet Brewer & Shipley występował z wieloma popularnymi artystami, m.in. Black Sabbath, Stephenem Stillsem, czy Jerrym Garcią, który wystąpił także na płycie Tarkio.
  • Mike Brewer – Vocals, Guitars, Piano, mouth harp & percussion
  • Tom Shipley – Vocals, Guitars, Bass & Banjo
  • Mark Naftalin – Piano, Organ & Vibes
  • John Kahn – Bass
  • John Cipollina – Electric and slide electric guitars on "Shake Off the Demon"
  • Spencer Dryden, "Little John" Harteman III & Glen Walters – Drums
  • Jose "Chepita" Areas – Congas, bongos, timabales
  • David LaFlamme – Electric Violin

Shake Off the Demon was the fourth album released in 1971 by Brewer & Shipley. Brewer & Shipley were a folk rock duo of the late 1960s through 1970s, consisting of singer-songwriters Mike Brewer and Tom Shipley. They were known for their intricate guitar work, vocal harmonies and socially conscious lyrics, which reflected the concerns of their generation -- especially the Vietnam War and the struggles for personal and political freedom. Their biggest hit was the song "One Toke Over the Line" from their 1970 album Tarkio. They also had two other singles which made the Billboard charts: "Tarkio Road" (1970) and

"Shake Off the Demon" (1971). They continue to perform, both separately and together, usually in the Midwestern USA.The two Midwestern natives crossed paths numerous times at various coffeehouse gigs before settling in Los Angeles to write music together, producing their first two albums Down in L.A. and Weeds. Even though mutual friends in bands such as The Association and Buffalo Springfield also lived in Los Angeles, they left California in 1969, returning to Kansas City, where they made a meager living through playing in college towns. They derived the name of their next album, Tarkio, from a regular gig they played in Tarkio, Missouri. This album was their most commercially successful, featuring the hit "One Toke Over the Line", which they wrote as a joke while preparing backstage for a performance.

Following airplay of the single, President Richard Nixon labeled Brewer & Shipley public miscreants. In retaliation, they referred to Nixon by name in their song, "Oh Mommy," (from Tarkio). Oddly, the song was performed on The Lawrence Welk Show, a television program known for its conservative, family-oriented bent, by a duo known as "Gail and Dale." At the conclusion of the performance of the song, Welk remarked, without any hint of humor, "There you've heard a modern spiritual by Gail and Dale."

This led Michael Brewer to comment: "The Vice President of the United States, Spiro Agnew, named us personally as a subversive to American youth, but at exactly the same time Lawrence Welk performed the crazy thing and introduced it as a gospel song. That shows how absurd it really is. Of course, we got more publicity than we could have paid for".

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