30. THE KALEIDOSCOPE - Keep Your Mind Open

KALEIDOSCOPE - 'Keep Your Mind Open' (Epic BN 26304) June 1967

The Kaleidoscope were one of the most enigmatic and mysterious groups from Los Angeles whose music came across like a gypsy ensemble on acid. They utilized exotic instruments like saz bouzoukee, dobro, dulcimer, caz, oud and layered the Persian sound with keyboards, 12 string guitars, banjos and fiddles.

When I bought my first Kaleidoscope album in the mid 80s (the Edsel collection called 'Bacon From Mars') I must admit I was perplexed and just didn't understand where Kaleidoscope were at apart from some instant psychedelic jewels like 'Pulsating Dream' and 'Keep Your Mind Open'.

'Keep Your Mind Open' is from their debut album 'Side Trips' and is one of their most instant songs with it's laid back trippy sound and lysergic production. The song was written by bass player Christopher Darrow who also wrote the previously mentioned and classic acid/folk rocker 'Pulsating Dream'.

Although 'Side Trips' was released in June 1967, the songs were recorded much earlier at Columbia Square, Los Angeles during November and December 1966.

THE KALEIDOSCOPE - Keep Your Mind Open


  1. Killer Cut, I've Always loved this... nice posters there too, I've never seen them before!!!

  2. Kaleidoscope were a fabulous band, who appeared to be able to handle any sort of music that they fancied (even flamenco!). "Keep Your Mind Open" is typical of their short pop tracks, but the true beauty of the group was best displayed in their extended pieces: "Beacon From Mars", "Taxim", and their crowning glory "Seven_Ate Sweet".

  3. The picture of Kaleidoscope is from my gatefold LP released by Edsel in 1983 called 'Bacon From Mars'....it's the only place I've seen that shot. No doubt it will end up on YouTube uncredited as usual.

    The other two pics are from KRLA Beat newspaper.

    I've never went deeper into The Kaleidoscope discography apart from 'Side Trips' LP... at the time I was purist '66 garage so their eclectic music didn't appeal like I mentioned in my blog entry. Maybe it's time to delve deeper....

    Do dig deeper!
    Kaleidoscope records are just amazing and the kind of stuff that grows on you...I fell in love with them instantly, since I always liked Eastern music and infact I prefer say Taxim to Beacon from Mars.
    I'm sure you'll find enough to like on both albums...
    the third album is not as good, mainly cause the first two are just too much!
    Still Seven Ate Sweet is brilliant.
    Mind you, having bought that Edsel comp you'd have enough...but if you still didn't, it should be interesting to play Side Trips and Beacon from Mars as they were...

  5. What I would love to hear is the 6-7 song demo by the Floggs, Chris Darrow band before Kaleidoscope...They were announced as a forthcoming release about 3 years ago.

    Also a very interesting connection here:
    have fun!

  6. Featuring David Lindley famous sideman with Jackson Browne and many others.

  7. One of my absolute favourite tunes, hands down. Totally unique for its time. I've always wondered if the gun shots you can hear in the distance were an influence on 'Draft Morning' by the Byrds?

  8. I saw Lindley around 1971 backing
    Terry Reid at the Roundhouse (on
    drums was Mitch Mitchell) and I
    went up to David afterwards and he
    was amazed that anyone in England
    had heard of Kaledoscope...
    Later on I saw him backing Crosby &


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