Band members                         Related acts

  line-up 1: (1965-68) as The Beau Gentry

Russell DaShiell -- vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards
- Rick Jaeger (RIP 2000) -- drums, percussion

- Doug Killmer (RIP 2005) -- bass

- Lance Massey -- vocals, guitar

  line-up 2: (1968-70) as Crowfoot

Russell DaShiell -- vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards
- Rick Jaeger (RIP 2000) -- drums, percussion


  line-up 3: (1970) 

Russell DaShiell -- vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards

- Don Francisco -- drums, percussion, vocals

- Rick Jaeger (RIP 2000) -- drums, percussion
NEW - Sam McCue -- lead guitar, vocals
- Bill Sutton -- bass


  line-up 4: (1971)

Russell DaShiell -- vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards

NEW - Don Francisco -- drums, percussion, vocals (replaced

  Rick Jaeger)
- Sam McCue -- lead guitar, vocals
- Bill Sutton -- bass


  line-up 5: (1971)

Russell DaShiell -- vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards
- Sam McCue -- lead guitar, vocals
NEW - Bill Meeker --  drums, percussion (replaced 

  Rick Jaeger)
- Bill Sutton -- bass







- AB Skhy (Russell DaShiell, Rick Jaeger, and Sam McCue)

- Atlee (Don Francisco and Sam McCue)

- The Beau Gentry (Russell DaShiell and Rick Jaeger)

- Russell DaShiell (solo efforts)

- Tom Fogerty

- Don Francisco (solo efforts)

- Don Harrison Band (Russell DaShiell)

- Jerry Harrison Casual Gods (Rick Jaeger)

- Highway Robbery ( Don Francisco)

- The Legends (Sam McCue)

- Harvey Mandell (Russell DaShiell and  Rick Jaeger)

- Sam McCue (solo efforts)

- Messenger (Russell DaShiell, Rick Jaeger and Doug Killmer)

- Jeff Moretti & the Impalas (Sam McCue)

- The Silverados ( Don Francisco)

- The Sonics 

- Wha-Koo (The Big Wha-Koo) ( Don Francisco)







Genre: rock

Rating: 4 stars ****

Title:  Crowfoot

Company: Paramount

Catalog: PAS 5016

Country/State: US

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: --

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 6169

Price: $40.00


Crowfoot traces its roots back to the Melbourne, Florida based high school band The Beau Gentry Featuring singer/guitarist Russell DaShiell, drummer Rick Jaeger, bass player Doug Killmer and singer/guitarist Lance Massey, the band started out as a covers group, slowly incorporating some of DaShiell's original material into their act.  Manager Ken Adamany discovered the group, putting them on the road in 1966 and they eventually landed in Wisconsin, spentdingseveral years touring the Midwest.  Their moment of glory coming with the release of a pretty, slightly lysergic-tinged ballad backed with a more upbeat garage rock tune on  Adamany's small Janesville, Wisconsin based Feature Records:




- 1967's 'Dream Girl' b/w 'Just In Case' (Feature catalog number 202 A / B)






With Massey having dropped out of the band, by late 1968 the remaining members opted for an image change, moving to Marion County, California and morphing into Crowfoot.  They found work on San Francisco's burgeoning club scene, including dates at Bill Graham's famed Fillmore West, but never attracted the attention of a record label.  In order to pay their bills the various members started working sessions, providing support to A.B. Skhy on their self-titled debut, Harvey Mandel's third LP "Games Guitars Play" and Norman Greenbaum's "Spirit In the Sky".  Greenbaum's success with the title track saw DaShiell join his recording and touring band for several years.  The resulting connections saw DaSheill finally score a recording contract for Crowfoot with Paramount Records.  


Co-produced by DaSheill and Russ Gary (best known for engineering some of the Creedence Clearwater Revival catalog), by the time Crowfoot stepped into the studio the line-up was down to DaSheill and drummer Jaeger.   Given DaShiell was credited with penning all eleven tracks and handling vocals, guitar, bass and keyboards, 1970's "Crowfoot" could easily have been released as a DaShiell solo effort.  In the interests of full disclosure, the first time I owned this album it didn't make much of an impression on me.  After a couple of spins I sold it.  And then several years later, in the wake of finding and enjoying DaShiell's 1978 solo album "Elevator" I stumbled across a cheap copy of "Crowfoot" at a yard sale and decided to give it another shot.  About all I can say is my initial impressions were way off target.  While this isn't a masterpiece, there are enough standout performances to make it worth hearing.  The album's predominant sound favored country-rock and there were plenty of echoes alluding to the likes of America (the opener 'Winter Comes'), The Buffalo Springfield ('You Won't Cry') and Poco ('Maybe I Can Learn To Live').  Witness the catchy rocker 'California Rock'n Roll' and Groove Along', DaShiell also had an ear for commercial viability.  I actually found DaShiell's atypial forays into light psych and hard rock to be among the album highlights.  Check out the ballad 'Dry Your Eyes' and the rocking 'No Don't Leave'.  It certainly wasn't the year's most original album, but the performances were uniformly enjoyable with DaShiell showcasing a first rate voice and overlooked talent as lead guitarist. 





It's always been a mystery to me, but I've always wondered why Joel Isowitz's back cover woodcutting illustration reflected four people when the recording line-up was DaSheille and Jaeger.  I'm sure someone out there will have the answer.





"Crowfoot" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Winter Comes (Russell DaShiell) - 3:38 rating: **** stars

Opening up with some blazing DaShiell guitar, 'Winter Comes' then shifted into a decent slice of country-rock. I're sure it'll leave many people puzzled, but imagine the original version of the trio America deciding they wanted to play a rock song.  DaShiell had a likeable voice and anyone into country-rock (particularly early America) with an emphasis on the rock component was liable to enjoy this one.  DaSheill's second solo was even better.

2.) Love Is Everywhere (Russell DaShiell) -  2:33 rating: *** stars

'Love Is Everywhere' was a pretty, jazz-tinged  ballad that again showcased DaSheill's sweet, Double tracked voice and effects-treated lead guitar.
3.) You Won't Cry (Russell DaShiell) -  3:14
rating: **** stars

As a big Buffalo Springfield fans, the highly melodic 'You Won't Cry' immediately struck a chord with me.  Great folk-rock melody; awesome acoustic guitar solo and the harmony vocals are to-die-for gorgeous.  Very Springfield-ish ...  Hard to imagine why Paramount didn't tap this one as the single. 

4.) Lady Fair (Russell DaShiell) -  1:14 rating: *** stars

'Lady Fair' was a pretty acoustic ballad that exhibited a distinctive English folk edge to it - kind of a Donovan, Nick Drake vibe here with a cool DaShiell jazzy guitar solo too boot.  Perhaps a touch too precious for some listeners, but I liked it.

5.) Maybe I Can Learn To Live (Russell DaShiell) -  2:45 

Another nice example of the group's country-rock orientation, but this time around the song paid tribute to the Poco school of country-rock with the emphasis on a sweet vocal and a more country-oriented melody.  Another potential single, though Paramount relegated it to the "B" side of the 'California Rock'n Roll' single.


(side 2)

1.) California Rock'n Roll (Russell DaShiell) -  1:56 rating: **** stars

The album's most commercial and radio-friendly pop tune, 'California Rock'n Roll' had one of those bubbly, summer-ready melodies and a raging guitar solo that was almost worth the price of admission..  DaShiell's vocal twang has always reminded me a touch of Neil Young at his most commercial (yeah, that's a mind teaser).  In fact the only thing wrong with this one was it was too short.  Released as a single, it's a shame this one didn't attract airplay.

-1970s 'California Rock'n Roll' b/w 'Maybe I Can Learn To Live' (Paramount catalog C006 91939)

2.) Dry Your Eyes  (Russell DaShiell) - 3:03 rating: **** stars


'Dry Your Eyes' was actually a remake of a track DeShiell had written for Harvey Mandel's 1969 "Games Guitar Play" LP.  DeSheill handled vocals on the original and the two arrangements are very similar.  Perhaps not quite as acid-tinged as the Mandel version, the Crownfoot version has a smoother, more polished feel.  Regardless with a flowing, lysergic edge, a great melody and some sweet harmonies, it was my favorite performance.  This was another one where my only complaint was the song was too short, fading out just as DeSheill's guitar solo was starting to pick up speed.



3.) A Falling Leaf (Russell DaShiell) -  3:48 rating: *** stars

Shifting into a higher register, the fragile ballad 'A Falling Leaf' was another track that had an early America flavor. Love the ragged guitar solo on this one.  It also gave drummer Jaeger an opportunity to showcase his chops.

4.) No Don't Leave (Russell DaShiell) -  3:38  rating: **** stars

The album's heaviest number, 'No Don't Leave' demonstrated DaShiell could easily handle hard rock.  Love the tone on his guitar and the slight echo on his vocals.  Awesome tune that could have been an FM hit.

5.) Dancing Lady (Russell DaShiell) -  2:38 rating: *** stars
The first disappointment, 'Dancing Lady' bounced between ballad and more uptempo number, all the while sounded like a second tier Poco performance.  Ultimately I gave the performance an extra star for the melodic bass line and the nice harmonies.

6.) Groove Along (Russell DaShiell) -  3:52  rating: **** stars

It opened up with some needless in-studio goofiness and then shifted to a Jaeger solo section.  Things were not looking good.  And then the song's commercial melody burst through.  Another catchy melody, great refrain, radio-friendly vocals and one of DaShiell's best solos ...  Paramount actually released the song as a promotional 45:




- 1970's 'Groove Along' (mono) b/w 'Groove Along' (stereo) (Paramount catalog number PPA 0074)