The Hour Glass
Listen/Download – The Hour Glass – The Power of Love
I hope the new week finds you all well.
The tune I bring you today is something I picked up recently, and while I have been a fan of the band in question for a long time, their vinyl output has eluded me until recently.
I should start by saying that of all the stereotypically classic rock of my youth, much of which has (rightfully) fallen by the wayside, the music of the Allman Brothers has remained in favor.
They are, much like the Grateful Dead, unfairly lumped in with a lot of bands that look the way they do, with little regard for how they actually sound.
This probably has a lot to do with the bare-chested, greasy haired fan base, many of them wrapped carelessly in little more than tattered Confederate flags, which is truth be told more an accident of geographical proximity than anything else.
It’s a wonder how many hillbillys forget that the Allman Brothers Band was integrated, not to mention that fact that for all of the so-called jazzy improvisers of the late 60s and early 70s, few of them did it as well as they did.
Sure, they have hung on tie-dyed life support long since they should have, but that shouldn’t diminish their early greatness, which brings me around to the band that I being you today, the Hour Glass, which is as early and great as the brothers Allman (specifically Gregg and Duane, i.e. brothers in actuality) get.
Formed in the mid-60s from the ashes of the ill-named Allman Joys (like the candy bar, dig?), the Hour Glass were far less jazzy (and jammy) that the Allman Brothers Band would become, and much more a fusion of blue-eyed soul and 60s pop.
They emigrated to Californ-y where they hooked up with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band/Liberty Records axis, which is where they found stellar material like the Jackson Browne-penned ‘Cast Off All My Fears’.
The tune I bring you today ‘The Power of Love’ is from the band’s second album (which also bore that title). Written by the legendary Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham, the song is a great showcase for Gregg Allman’s always wonderful voice, and manages to encapsulate all that was good about the Hour Glass into just over two and a half minutes of sweet, vaguely psyched out soul.
Both of the Hour Glass albums have been reissued on CD with copious bonus material, and are definitely worth hearing.
I hope you dig the tune, and I’ll see you all next week.