Listen – Chad Mitchell – For What It’s Worth – MP3
I hope the end of the week finds you well.
The tune I bring you today is something I dug up at the last Allentown All-45 show. The last trip to the storied maelstrom of 7-inch vinyl was a rewarding one, the spoils of which were at least as Iron Leggy as the were Funky16Cornered (i.e. lots of great pop and rock alongside the funk and soul).
While I was there I managed to stop by a number of favorite dealers, some who I hit up for big ticket items, and others who just seem to always bring boxes of good cheap(er) stuff as well. One of these guys always manages to have a little of both, i.e. a few small boxes of heavy stuff (garage, psyche and soul) and several crates of unsorted, less expensive but always interesting stock that I love digging through whenever our paths cross.
This time was no exception, and I left his table with a nice fat stack of pop, rock and psyche stuff, some of which has already appeared in this very space.
Today’s selection was part of that stack.
I’m always on the lookout for interesting cover material, and when I flipped past the familiar name (Chad Mitchell) doing an interesting cover (the Buffalo Springfield’s ‘For What It’s Worth’) I pulled it out and tossed it on the keeper pile.
Mitchell is best known for his years leading the popular commercial folk act the Chad Mitchell Trio. He left the group in 1965, after which he was replaced by a young up and comer named John Denver. The group continued on for a few years (as the Mitchell Trio), and Mitchell went on to a somewhat less successful solo career.
He headed west and recorded with a heavy group of LA sessioners. The results were the single you’re going to hear today (from 1968) and a full album a year later.
Mitchell’s version of the Springfield’s oft covered, biggest (only) hit would register as fairly run of the mill folk rock, were it not augmented by extra-heavy, era-appropriate fuzz guitar courtesy of Al Casey and Jerry McGee.
If the power chords during the chorus weren’t jarring enough, wait until the years ahead of their time twin lead guitars pop up!
I haven’t been able to track down a copy of the 1969 LP, which features some interesting cover material (Tim Buckley, Joni Mitchell, HP Lovecraft (?!?), but I’ll definitely keep my eyes peeled.
I hope you dig this track, and I’ll be back next week with something cool.