Dan Garcia pictured circa 1967
I was delighted when Dan Garcia, bass player with The Lyrics happened upon my blog and emailed me after reading my review of 'Wake Up To My Voice' / 'Can't See You Anymore'.
I decided to send Dan some questions about his time in The Lyrics. He's also just set up a Lyrics myspace page with more information about the band aswell as some pics, press cuttings and other memorabilia. I'll add the link at the end of this article.
1. It was interesting to read those press cuttings on your myspace page. I was intrigued to read that an album was due to appear. Did the band cut any demos in the studio for the album or did any studio time for an album not happen in the end?
I believe “Why Did He Go” was the last song we recorded
2. Also it was mentioned that Craig Carll had more than 30 original songs. Can you recall any titles that you may have recorded as demos or played live at gigs?
Songs we were working on and playing live , “Im Missing You” “Dr. Trips Medicine Band” “Teach You To Love” “ Night Flight” ??
3. How much of an effect did it have on the band when singer/songwriter Chris Gaylord left after the 'So What!' record. Michael Allen also left. That must have left a big hole. Did The remaining Lyrics consider all quitting at this time?
No not at all. I remember it being a relief in a way, Chris and Michael were hard to manage and it was just a matter of time before Chris left the group to do his own thing. Me , Billy Garcia and Craig Carll were going in a different direction.
The earlier line-up of The Lyrics recorded the classic garage punkers 'So What!' and 'They Can't Help Me'
4. Did you ever play the Sunset Strip. If yes, can you recall the names of the Clubs/venues. Names some other bands you shared the stage with. Any stories to share with regard to gigs. Any that went badly? What kind of reaction did the crowd give the band?
Yes we played a club called The Hullabaloo across the street from The Whisky A Go Go, we played with “The Byrds” “The Yellow Payges.
We also went on a TV show called the “The Woddy Wood Berry Show” I remember we were on with Betty White, singer Vic Danon and a comedian from Canada.
The crowd was great we had a large following and had a fan club.We also went on another TV show called 'The Groovy Show' I believe.A guy named Mike Blochet was the MC it was done outside in a park.
The Lyrics performing at San Diego Sports Centre, 1967
5. What cover versions did The Lyrics perform live?
Ray Charles, Doors, Vanilla Fudge, Hendrix, lots of groups.
6. Where was the promo picture taken of The Lyrics used for the Japanese sleeve for 'Mr Man' ....it's also used for the poster circa 1967.
That picture was taken in Torrey Pines State Park in La Jolla.
7. What was your bass guitar of choice. Did you have any bass players you admired or were influenced by?
My Epiphone , Gibson EBO, Fender P-bass.
Players that I admired Jack Bruce from Cream , Harvey Brooks from Electric Flag, Tim Bogart from Vanilla Fudge.
8. I find it a little sad in a way that The Lyrics never made it beyond your locality because I rate 'Wake Up To My Voice' an awesome slice of raga(esque) psychedelia. Way ahead of anything The Doors came up with and you guys were 'supporting' them in some shows. Maybe you should have wore some tight leather jeans....ha ha ha.
I think if we would have changed the name Lyrics and like you said wore tight leather we may have had a better chance. It was a great experience.
Dan Garcia has set up a myspace page dedicated to The Lyrics....just follow the link: http://www.myspace.com/thebandthelyrics
Lyrics recording 'Wait'/'Mr Man' at Gold Star Studio, Hollywood in 1967
|Danny Reyes (The Bear) drummer of The Lyrics for a short period|
|Craig with arranger Don Ralke|
Originally posted on 'Flower Bomb Songs' October 2008
The show that Dan is thinking of is Groovy, hosted by Michael Blodgett and filmed on the beach at Santa Monica. Blodgett was an actor but he also recorded a 45 for Capitol, the amazing Fire Engine Sky/Clay People of Boxtown - truly groovy! (Clear Light)
interesting words:! thanks! glad the band split up or I'm Gone by the MR would have never been released! and it's a KILLER ONE! (Anon)
OK - here's the deal - some of the information here is incorrect - I should know, I am Christopher Gaylord, or at least I was. I changed my name several years ago to Raymond Clearwater.
Mike Allen and I were kicked out of the Lyrics by the manager, Harlan Peacock. This guy was a total control freak and managed to mess things up pretty badly. I did NOT join any band called the Sons. Don't even know who they were. I did join the Magic Mushroom just before they took off for New York. We recorded three of my songs at Les Pauls house in New Jersey and then the band fell apart.
Look, if you are really interested in any of this, my email address is - firstname.lastname@example.org Feel free to contact me there and I will get back to you
If you want a full on interview, we can set that up as well -
One more thing, I am still writing music and playing and I will be releasing a CD within a couple of months. Again, the name now is Ray Clearwater (Ray)