Legend, The


Band members                          Related acts

- E. Brooks - (1968)
- B. Corso - (1968)
- S. Romans - (1968)

 

 

- Dragonfly ???

- The Lords of London ???

- The Obvious ???

- The Pawns ???

 

 


 

Genre: rock

Rating: *** (3 stars)

Title:  The Legend

Company: Megaphone

Catalog: S-101

Country/State: Los Angeles, California

Year: 1968

Grade (cover/record): VG+ / VG+

Comments: --

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 6293

Price: $125

Not to be confuse with the late-1960s English band (featuring Mickey Jupp), or a late-1970s Connecticut progressive outfit, I simply don't know much about this quintet.  Judging by the slim liner notes the membership apparently included E. Brooks, B. Corso and S. Romans, and judging by the cover image, two other nameless members - unfortunately there were no performances credits on their album ... 

Online references variously indicate they were from California, Colorado, Nevada, or Texas. Personally, I've always wondered if at least one of the members was a non-American.  At least to my ears some of vocals seem to have a distinctive accent (check out 'With a Girl Like You' or 'Where Oh Where Is Mother').  Regardless of where they were from, they somehow got signed by the small Los Angeles, California-based Megaphone label. with their 1968 debut album "The Legend" teaming them with producers Marty Brooks and Tony Sepa.  Offering up a mixture of band originals and popular covers (Bob Dylan, The Troggs, The Who), musically the set wasn't particularly original, but had more than its share of charms.  With Corso and Brooks/Romans credited with half the material, tracks such as 'The Sky That Is Blue', 'Zepplin's Good Friday' and 'Yesterday's Child' showcased a tasty blend of tight, Bealtesque harmonies and surprisingly commercial melodies.  It certainly wasn't perfect with the band occasionally drifting too close to The Left Banke, or Mamas and Papas-styled MOR ('Sunny Day' and 'Gigi').  Far more impressive were their stabs at a harder rock sound, including the fuzz guitar and feedback propelled 'Where Oh Where Is Mother' and their vox-powered cover of Dylan's 'Baby Blue' (always liked the song's sitar fadeout).  All told, the results weren't half bad; making for an album I pull out from time to time. C all me anal, but wasn't Townshend's song actually entitled 'The Kids Are Alright' (single "l")?   Naturally the album vanished without a trace, followed in short order by the band.

 

- Their cover of The Troggs hit 'With a Girl Like You' wasn't a major departure from the original version, but it's always fascinated me, if only due to the fact the lead singer seemed to have a strange accent  that I've never been able to place.  Great tune, with a touch of Mersybeat harmonies and there was even plenty of cowbell ...   rating: *** stars

- 'The Sky That Is Blue' was a breezy, mid-tempo pop song that showcased some nice vox organ and wonderful group harmony vocals that would made The Beach Boys proud.   rating: **** stars

- Kicked along by some wonderfully cheesy organ, 'The Sky That Is Blue' had one of those classic mid-1960s vibes - imagine something that tried to cross The Young Rascals and The Beatles.  Highly commercial with some nice fuzz guitar in the background.   rating; **** stars

- The album's first out and out rocker and one of the album's few psych-tinged numbers, 'Where Oh Where Is Mother' was built on an intriguing mixture of fuzz guitar, electric harpsichord, weird studio sound effects, and another display of the band's impeccable harmony vocals.   This was another one where the lead singer (Corso?) seemed to display a noticeable accent.   rating: **** stars

- Pulling a page out of The Beatles songbook, 'Yesterday's Child' was seemingly a stab a writing a socially relevant ballad --  in this case life sucks when you get old.   Pretty, but it wasn't exactly 'Eleanor Rigby'.  rating: ** stars

- Even though it was heavily orchestrated, 'Eyes of the World' was actually one of the album's most interesting performances with some wild assed lead guitar and an energetic lead vocal.     rating: *** stars

- While it wasn't going to make you forget the original, their vox-powered cover of The Who's 'The Kids Are Allright' (their spelling, not mine), was actually pretty good with some chugging drums and a nice, fuzz-drenched lead guitar.  The track was tapped as a single.   rating: *** stars

- One of the album's most pop-oriented efforts, 'Cold Wind In August' had a decent commercial tinge, but was a bit pedestrian for my tastes (though the song had a great bass line throughout and the backing harmony vocals were nice).  rating: ** stars

- Another stab at top-40 commerciality, 'Sunny Day' had a pleasant sunshine-pop feel to it with backing vocals that would have made John Phillips happy.   rating: *** stars

- With the band playing at hyper-speed (wonder what substances they'd ingested during the recording sessions ...), 'You'll Be Sorry Someday' was simply hysterical.  Nice fuzz solo at the tail end of the track.   rating: *** stars

- I've always been a pushover for harpsichord, so his one grabbed my attention from the opening chords.  The fact that ballad 'Gigi' sounded like a Left Banke outtake didn't hurt either.   It certainly wouldn't appeal to everyone, but so what ...   rating: *** stars

- So if you're going to do a Dylan cover why not toughen it up and give it a fuzz-driven garage edge?  To their credit that's exactly what these guys did on their version of 'Baby Blue'.   Along with the totally biazrro sitar closing, the result was one of the album's best tracks and one of the best Dylan covers I've ever heard.   rating: **** stars

 

As mentioned, the album was tapped for a single:

 

- 1968's 'The Kids Are Alright' b/w 'Baby Blue' (Megaphone catalog number 701) 

 

"The Legend" track listing:

(side 1)
1.) With a Girl Like You   (Reg Presley) - 2:17
2.) The Sky That Is Blue   (B. Corso) - 2:47
3.) Zepplin's Good Friday   (E. Brooks - S. Romans) - 2:42
4.) Where Oh Where Is Mother   (B. Corso) - 3:03
5.) Yesterday's Child   (B. Corso) - 2:31
6.) Eyes of the World   (Don McGinnis) - 2:27

 

(side 2)
1.) The Kids Are Allright (sic)  (Pete Townshend) - 2:53
2.) Cold Wind In August   (B. Page) - 2:32
3.) Sunny Day   (E. Brooks - S. Romans) - 2:11
4.) You'll Be Sorry Someday   (B. Corso) - 2:41
5.) Gigi   (Lerner - Loewe) - 2:17
6.) Baby Blue   (Bob Dylan) - 5:27

 

 

There were also a non-LP single:

 

- 1968's 'Portrait Of Youth' b/w 'Enjoy Yourself' (Megaphone catalog number 703)

 

 

I suspect it isn't a legitimate release, but the English Fallout label reissued the album in CD format with four bonus tracks (Fallout cataog number FOCD 2087)

 

bonus tracks:

1.) Portrait Of Youth   (G. Jimerfield)
2.) Enjoy Yourself   (R. Russ - B. Davis)
3.) I Love The Little Girls
4.) I Know

 

 

If you look around you'll note that various reference indicates these guys morphed into the band Dragonfly.  While the two bands shared the same label, I've never seen anything that verifies the link and musically there isn't much similarity between the two outfits.

 

 

 

 

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