ALLMEN JOY - DENVER 1967

January 15, 2014 – 4:39 pm

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

ALLMEN JOY
Denver 1967 [no label, 1CD]

Live at the Denver Dog, Denver, CO; December 1967. Given its age, good to fairly/very good soundboard [Family Dog (M2-SBD)]. A bit of hiss, probably inevitable.

NOT the pre-Allman Brothers Band called The Allman Joys.

Thanks to CoolSonics 290, kneesfudd and everyone else involved in getting this being shared at Dime.

CoolSonics 290 noted:

Thanks to the original taper & traders! Corrections welcome. When this came along it was a welcome addition to my West Coast music library as I’d seen the name on so many cool psychedelic posters but never actually heard the band. Most everything about it is great, jamming, instrumentation & vocals & only a couple of funk numbers overdo it a bit for me, though they more than have their good moments as they contain extensive jams & feedback sessions.

The drugged-out material is staggeringly great, with astonishing SUPER HEAVY psychedelic lead guitar. Nice to have entered an age where one can increase one’s listening pleaure in so many ways with home mastering. Aside from a couple of bad splices, this is massively improved over my original tape. Anyway, according to “Fist”, the band name was changed to Allmen Joy in part because of the candy bar (loved by band members) & partly, “because the band was very promiscuous & was a hit with many of the female followers”!

Many posters with Allmen Joy exist as they were Avalon Ballroom regulars & played the Straight Theatre, Matrix & most Bay Area venues, toured California, & played as far afield as the Vancouver Retinal Circus. There certainly are more tapes out there. Please consider letting us hear some of them.

In the meantime, your heart will nearly stop at times. Be sure the pacemaker & air guitar fuzzbox have fresh batteries. If you had trouble coming down from your last acid trip, however many days, months or years ago that was, then be careful with the volume on “You’re Gonna Miss Me”, cause it SURE ain’t for those who aren’t into doin’ some cerebral travelin’. Pretty well guaranteed to leave whatever mind noodles ya got left all over the floor & the ghosts of Christmas past howling down your chimney. Get ready to ENJOY the Allmen Joy!

kneesfudd’s notes:

If Blue Cheer made cream cheese outta the air, then these guys musta crystalized the heavens on a good night. Some kind of a mix of Blue Cheer & Big Brother guitars, Country Joe & The Fish style ethereal moves & organ, & occasional Dead-like feedback & vocal insanity, mixed with ’60s garage sounds & a nod to the Chambers Brothers… ’60s West Coast manna from the vault.

“You came here to enjoy yourselves, so why not trip out?”

- EXC stereo SBD with a few bad splices.
- Warts: Slightly overdriven vocals at times. Some dullspots/dropouts unrepairable or surely missed but fixed most of ‘em. #4 has brief glitch in middle (but patched so unless yr countin’ beats ya won’t notice). #5 fades in. #6 has BAD splice at start & after it they’re possibly into another song but it’s a monster of a jam ’til the guitar player breaks a string, but they wander thru space til the end. #8 cuts.
- Parts of 2 sets(?) from 1 night during December 29-31, 1967. Gingerbred Blu, Allmen Joy with The Doors headlining.
- VERY heavy Haight Ashbury psychedelic band with funk influences that evolved out of the FAC’s (Fungus Amongus Committee) in summer 1966.
- Band never had ANY commercial 45s or an album as far as I can see. Musta done studio sessions & recorded other gigs.
- Some tracks likely from a late set or 2nd show.
- #1 & #5 song titles are guesses & the #8 instrumental title is unknown to me.
- You’ve waited 47 YEARS for the ALLMEN JOY… Welcome to 2014!

Click here for more detailed notes by kneesfudd.

Recording:
soundboard > unknown reel-to-reel equipment > master stereo reel > 1st generation reel or cassette > 2nd generation Maxell XLII-90 cassette, Dolby B on.
Remastered without EQ

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (224 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Track 01. Walk With Me 6:38 (11.2MB)
Track 02. Funky Broadway 11:02 (18.5MB)
Track 03. On Broadway 9:58 (16.7MB)
Track 04. You’re Gonna Miss Me 10:55 (18.3MB)
Track 05. Need Your Love 6:55 (11.6MB)
Track 06. The Merry Tripster 7:01 (11.8MB)
Track 07. The Monkey Time 6:43 (11.3MB)
Track 08. Freak Out/Instrumental (?) 4:22 (7.3MB)
64 mins

Lineup (unconfirmed):
Lu “Fist” Stephens - organ, vocals
Roger “Rog” Alan Saunders - lead electric guitar, vocals
Ken Zeidel - rhythm electric guitar, vocals
Dennis “Funky” Parker - electric bass, vocals
Rod Harper - drums

Click here for more on the Allmen Joy.

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  1. 36 Responses to “ALLMEN JOY - DENVER 1967”

  2. figuring no one else will mention this and this might as well go here…

    http://ultimateclassicrock.com/gary-grimshaw-dead-at-67/

    By darth on Jan 15, 2014

  3. if anyone wants to see the poster for this -

    http://www.wolfgangsvault.com/the-doors/poster-art/poster/FDD018.html

    By darth on Jan 15, 2014

  4. this is my fave find of the year so far. 2nd is the previous one. i absolutely love this recording. if i had gone to this event and they announced the doors couldnt make it and this band ended up playing a little longer.. id have gone home happy. i really want more recordings of these guys. im betting thats not going to happen tho.

    By darth on Jan 15, 2014

  5. i really want more recordings of these guys. im betting thats not going to happen tho.

    we know your game jerk, stirring the pot, you made that quite clear in your little love letter to lowendbill.

    By dropkick sarge on Jan 15, 2014

  6. damn it all to hell. bill.. hes on to me. plan b. quick.

    By darth on Jan 15, 2014

  7. At ease, Sarge. It’s only rock n’ roll. Actually, I almost wish I had darth’s power to provoke. All he’s gotta do is post “Good morning, all my musical brothers-in-arms. Have a nice day!”, and the fur flies.

    That darth, may be taken as plan B.

    By lowendbill on Jan 15, 2014

  8. this band is why eric cartman wants to kill all hippies. entirely derivative i doubt they ever had an original musical idea. they must have been on bad acid trips while listening to the music that “influenced” them.

    on broadway is the most absolute worst rendition ever of a leiber & stoller song. just play it from the 5:00 - 7:00 marks. i double dog dare ya! it would have been ruled justifiable homicide if the audience had murdered them after hearing this atrocity.

    “The drugged-out material is staggeringly great”… only if youre staggeringly drugged out. theyre well-deserving of their almost total anonymity online. only the losingest loser in loserville would want more of this.

    thanks for sharing, bigO. from the sublime- son house- to the ridiculous.

    By barth on Jan 15, 2014

  9. “only the losingest loser in loserville would want more of this”

    ha! truly a magnificent comment, Barth, and one of the reasons it’s a pleasure to keep coming back to Big O!

    By E on Jan 15, 2014

  10. thx E. how bad is it?

    its so bad that anyone who praises it and wants to see more of the same thing here would be trying to sabotage this fine site.

    its so bad that they named the band “all men” to try to get groupies.

    its so bad that anyone who praises it should never have his musical opinions taken seriously.

    its so bad that a troll who gives a link to buy a poster of the album art must be a shill for the seller.

    By barth on Jan 15, 2014

  11. Lead guitarist Roger Saunders also played in Chicken Shack http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken_Shack#Members

    By JB on Jan 16, 2014

  12. Roger Saunders also played in a group called Medicine Head, which had Keith Relf as a member at one time also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medicine_Head

    By JB on Jan 16, 2014

  13. Great stuff-especially ‘On Broadway.’ Thankx Bigo

    By InnocentBystander on Jan 16, 2014

  14. Remember the old SNL skits with Dan Ackroyd as Leonard Pinth-Garnell critiquing very bad art? Well, this would have fit right in.

    Still it’s a really FUN listen! I’m glad you guys posted it. The fuzztone is from Mars. Not really that different from early Dead or Country Joe, but I can see why they never got signed!

    Thanks, BigO, you brightened my day.

    By Just Bill on Jan 16, 2014

  15. “on broadway” by allmen joy is the “metal machine music” of hippy acid rock.

    leiber & stoller paid royalties to allmen joy every time they DIDNT play their songs.

    By barth on Jan 16, 2014

  16. I WANT MORE OF THIS!

    By Losingest Loser in Loserville on Jan 16, 2014

  17. TRIPPIN IS RIGHT!!! that 1st tune is soooo doors…great find! thanxxx so much, bigO

    By metaljohn333 on Jan 16, 2014

  18. Is this post in fact “So Bad” that it will make the music haters go back under the rock they craweled out from? Then surely it has come full circle and become “Good” again.

    This was 1967 dudes…classic rock and jam band music were just being invented. Baby steps are being taken. Mistakes made. And with them wonderful discoveries like using distortion and fuzz tones on purpose and eschewing the limits of the 3 minute pop song.

    while nobody would confuse these guys with the Allman Brothers circa 1969, it isn’t THAT far away from their 1967-68 sound when they in fact called themselves The Allman Joys or The Second Coming. I also see the Doors comparison in the first track. Had this band lasted a couple of more years (’67-’69 were HUGE years in the history of rock, BTW) and gotten a chance to grow and find its direction…who knows.

    Thanks for this, Big O. It is like a look deep inside Rhino’s Nuggets box sets. Keep em coming regardless if the prudes like em or not.

    By RollingStoner on Jan 17, 2014

  19. I agree with the dude up there. This is some fun garage psychedelia.

    By YogaforCynics on Jan 17, 2014

  20. meh.

    By barth on Jan 17, 2014

  21. leiber & stoller paid royalties to allmen joy every time they DIDNT play their songs.’

    meh. weak,lame comments….who cares?

    By InnocentBystander on Jan 17, 2014

  22. the one who responded, that’s who.

    jus stirrin up tha ol hornets nest yeah boyee

    By barth on Jan 17, 2014

  23. as i said.. this is fabulous stuff. cant get enough of this kinda stuff. especially 66-73

    By darth on Jan 17, 2014

  24. the power to provoke is strong in this one!

    plan b had been implemented, the fur is flying like never before!

    great googly moo!

    By barth on Jan 17, 2014

  25. as you can plainly hear for yourself if you have any ears at all and aren`t under the influence of some mind whacking medicated goo not everything about the 60`s was cool.
    this is absolute dreck, i remeber garage bands that sounded better than this crap.
    pretentious noodling for spaced out zombies who thought they had elevated to a higher aural plain.
    think I`d rather revisit the tambourine pounding airport krishna`s at least they didn`t have amplifiers.

    By dropkick sarge on Jan 17, 2014

  26. I downloaded this when it turned up on sugarmegs and thought the first song was typical 1966-1967 West coast psychedelic fare. It had all the elements of the Doors, Iron Butterfly, etc. The rest of the tape is enough to fry the brains of every runaway flower child turning up at the corner of Haight-Ashbury during the entire summer of love. Interesting, and this would seem to be the darker side of the Strawberry Alarm Clock. I agree that much of this would best be categorized as “Battery Acid Rock”. The audience responded at the end of the songs, so I guess they were partaking that night of whatever was in the Kool-aid. It would be interesting to see how the members of this band turned out in the long run.

    By eastsidecellardwellar on Jan 26, 2014

  27. While this is definitely not A level stuff, it’s a fascinating moment in time. They groove harder than Iron Butterfly and Roger Saunders definitely had something going on. I, for one, am glad I heard it! Thanks, BigO.

    By Jeremy Shatan on Jan 29, 2014

  28. that cnn 60s program that i mentioned the other day is on again now. it repeats again tomorrow sunday 9pm and 10pm eastern time. there are a few other programs that cnn is running as well that might be of interest. check out the one at midnite tonite called crimes of the century. its about the lennon assassination 33 years ago. this program is from june last year. the next program after that at 1am is about weed. this program repeats a few times.

    By darth on Feb 2, 2014

  29. Hello all
    WOW, I just ran across this and didn’t remember it existed, for you see, I am the original keyboardist from Allmen Joy (Lu “Fist” Stephens. The line up is correct so you can confirm that, I’ll up date you a little here, …..

    Lu “Fist” Stephens - organ, vocals,
    Still alive and kicking in the Sierra Foothills in California

    Roger “Rog” Alan Saunders - lead electric guitar, vocals,
    Passed away in 2007 from Heart Attack in San Francisco

    Ken Zeidel - rhythm electric guitar, vocals,
    UNKNOWN, have searched for him, but I think he fell off the planet

    Dennis “Funky” Parker - electric bass, vocals,
    Living in Mexico, still playing with a band called HaraganY Compania, http://www.haraganycompania.com.mx/

    Rod Harper - drums, Still alive and well in the Concord area in California,

    I, Lu “Fist” Stephens was the original keyboardist and singer for Allmen Joy, I joined the band in the summer of 1966. I had just recently graduated from high school and had moved out of my parents house. I had been playing with the Just Us band and living in the Haight Ashbury. The band dissolved mostly because (I think) our manager Bernie Quintana (a triple Aries) wasn’t getting us very many gigs and we were the typical starving musicians. Needless to say the band members were dissatisfied and finally went out on their separate ways. It was just the beginning of the flowering of the Summer of Love and I was spending a lot of time in the Haight Ashbury. One day as I was strolling around the neighborhood and I heard music and I sought it out, as I came closer to it, I found that it was a band practicing. I believe they were called FAC’s (Fungus Amongus Comittee) at the time. The location was 101 Belvedere Street (corner of Waller St.) on the first floor. The band had an open rehearsal session and there were many people sitting and standing around, the marijuana was prevalent everywhere. This is when I first met Roger. Roger was the lead guitar player, singer and leader of the band, Dave Harper (deceased) Roger’s cousin, on keyboards and vocals, Larry Smith on drums and vocals, Dennis “Funky” Parker on bass and vocals, Ken Zeidel (whereabouts unknown) on rhythm guitar and vocals and Cindy (whereabouts unknown) female lead singer but her last name escapes me. After listening for some time, I asked Roger if I could sit in and maybe jam on some blues or rock songs, well….., being as open and friendly as he remained throughout his life he invited me in to play, so I jumped at the chance. We must have played a dozen songs and jammed for hours, our chemistry was evident immediately, I liked them a lot and they seemed as if they liked me. After our jam session was over we sat down and talked a while and during our conversion I brought up the subject of whether they knew of any band that might need a good keyboardist. To my surprise Roger told me that Dave Harper was leaving the band, and if the other band members agreed, they would have me join the band. It was a long week before I heard the answer I was hoping for, I sat expectantly waiting for Roger’s call, and finally it came. I was in…., all the band members agreed unanimously that I should be in the band, and after all we really “clicked” during that first jam session. Around this time the name of the band was changed to Allmen Joy, partly because of the well known candy bar that was savored by the band members and partly because the band was very promiscuous and was a hit with many of the female followers. Yes, it is a common misconception that the Allmen Joy band was (or evolved into) the Allman Brothers Band, this never happened. Allmen Joy was and has always been its own entity. From then on we practiced a lot, wrote new original songs and did our own version of popular songs. We got real good and even started getting a following. Roger at this time was doing the booking for the band, he had made many connections to other musicians and promoters and after many auditions and free guest appearances we started getting some gig’s. Many of our first gigs were unpaid free appearances only for exposure, they included outdoor venues like playing in the Panhandle in Golden Gate Park and Speedway Meadows in Golden Gate Park. Our following grew, we started getting requests to play in local clubs, benefits and appearing as the guest band. At this time The Avalon Ballroom (Chet Helm’s Family Dog) and Fillmore West (Bill Grahams Fillmore) had jam sessions every Tuesday night where local bands could come in and play for free to get a little exposure, needless to say Allmen Joy was a regular fixture on these nights. As our popularity grew Roger thought it was time to look into getting a manager / promoter instead of doing this himself, doing the booking distracted him from focusing on what he loved and wanted to do the most, entertain. This is where Hillel Resner and Lucy James came in.

    Roger Saunders was the lead guitarist and singer, Roger passed away recently I have posted his memoriam Here….>http://wingswest.net/roger/roger.htm. Roger and I stayed best friends throughout the years even until his passing. I can’t even begin to express to you how much I really miss him. Roger especially loved to play the guitar, a past time that brought him immense joy and contentment. He was a professional musician for 40 years. His main instrument was the guitar, but he also sang, played the drums, bass, and keyboards. He played rock, blues, and jazz and also composed, arranged, and produced music. He was a founding member of the San Francisco bands “Allmen Joy”, “Black Magic”, and “J4″ . During the past 25 years, During the time of the band in the late 1960’s, Roger was likened to Jimi Hendrix (before Jimi had even gotten famous yet!). Roger and Jimi had many of the same characteristics in style of dress, vocal attributes and guitar riff’s. Roger played out his adventurer and explorer fantasies mostly through his gift as a compelling storyteller and writer. Through his love of movies and filmmaking, Roger founded and was President & C.E.O. of RJC Productions. He embraced technology, loved science fiction, and humor, all being prevalent themes in most of his works. As an extremely creative screenwriter, director and producer, he wrote many screenplays and teleplays including “HellaVator”, “D. Walker”, “Killer Roaches From The Hood”, and “Lacey’s”. Roger also produced and directed NetStarMaker a site where young up-and-coming singers and musicians could show off their talents get some exposure. I originally web mastered this site and tutored Roger on the principles of web site production. Roger learned quickly and took over the reins of web master and completed the site. Listen to Roger play on my Music page, click here….>.Music

    Dennis “Funky” Parker was our bass player and singer. Dennis has had many musical accomplishments throughout his career. Dennis now resides about an hours drive from Mexico City, Mexico. He is playing with a popular band called Haragan y Compania. He has been in the band since 1994. Dennis has always worked in the music industry, first as a working musician in the studios in LA (70’s), then as a recording engineer, also in LA (80’s). Dennis left LA for Mexico City in November of 1990, planning on staying a few months. Well, he’s still in Mexico . . . he moved out to the country (about an hour south of Mexico City) about 8 or 9 years ago to build a recording studio for a rich guy who wanted it as a sort of “hobby”. A few years later he sold it to the present owner (who was the best client of the studio), Joan Sebastian. Dennis has recorded his last 8 CD’s (winning 3 Grammy’s and 5 Latin Grammy’s in the process). His first Grammy nomination was in 1970, as a musician playing with the Don Ellis Orchestra (CD “Live at the Fillmore”). There were many more nominations over the years, both as a musician and as a recording engineer. A CD that Dennis recorded was nominated this year, too. Vicente Fernandez “Para Siempre”, which is Mariachi music. Dennis is now known as “Deaf Pea”, the old nick name “Funky” didn’t stick. I have just recently re-connected with Dennis after an extensive internet search, but fortunately I found him and he has contributed much of the information about Allmen Joy. My memory just isn’t as good as it was 40 years ago and Dennis helped me recall many details about the band.

    Rod Harper was our drummer. Rod had formally been the drummer for Santana, late 1966 May thru 1967 Carlos Santana (guitar, percussion and vocals), Michael Carabello (percussion), Tom Frazier (guitar), Rod Harper (drums), Gus Rodriguez (bass), Gregg Rolie (keyboards and vocals) and June 1967 Carlos Santana (guitar, percussion and vocals), Michael Carabello (percussion), Steve De La Rosa (bass), Rod Harper (drums), Gregg Rolie (keyboards and vocals) before joining Allmen Joy. I think Rod regretted leaving Santana, his old band was popular with Bill Graham because of the new Latin rock sound and I’m sure he knew that Santana would be on the rise. The last time I heard from Rod, he was stilling living with Roger on Mullins St. in San Francisco. Rod was a biker at heart and loved Harley Davidson’s Later when the band broke up I was told that Rod had joined up with a bunch of biker’s and I never heard from him since. Rod was an excellent drummer. He was rock steady and kept the rest of us in check when we got excited and started rushing the tunes we were playing.

    Ken Zeidel played rhythm guitar and vocals. Ken was an accomplished song writer and had contributed many new tunes for the band to play. Ken original composition of “Peace Brother” was a popular favorite amongst the audience. I lost track of Ken sometime in the late 1970’s. I had heard the he and his wife Jan had moved to Seattle Washington but this has never been confirmed.

    And there you have it!

    Lu

    By Lu on Feb 7, 2014

  30. You guys are so clueless, you should not be so much of a critic, they helped pave the way for many bands. As for the name, what about the Beatles.You were not there. You cant appreciate it.It was the best and i know of many who try to recreate this kind of music.They cannot because its too complicated for them and you. If you were not there shut the big hole off.And they did cut and LP under different name. Played on the same bill as Santana. Duh!

    By vics on Feb 7, 2014

  31. You guys are so clueless, you should not be so much of a critic, they helped pave the way for many bands. As for the name, what about the Beatles.You were not there. You cant appreciate it.It was the best and i know of many who try to recreate this kind of music.They cannot because its too complicated for them and you. If you were not there shut the big hole off.And they did cut and LP under different name. Played on the same bill as Santana. Duh! And consider this they were just teens and motivated in a new world of music.

    By Vickie Stephens on Feb 7, 2014

  32. You guys are so clueless, ..vickie stephens

    looks like we have a female darth now !

    By pablopeephole on Feb 7, 2014

  33. Hello Lu

    Great to hear from you and thanks for the feedback. Cheers.

    By bigozine2 on Feb 7, 2014

  34. Hello bigozine2
    I have a question, do you know who has the original TAPE of This Allmen Joy sound track or copy of that TAPE? As being an original member of this band, I sure would like to have a copy! Let me Know!

    By Lu on May 7, 2014

  35. lu - since the recording here was gotten off of dime.. in all likelihood the closest u can get to this copy of it.. is to dl it off of dime yourself. that copy will be a flac recording.
    dime has changed a little however and it isnt as easy to join as it used to be. there are people on this site who might be able to help u obtain a membership tho. they have about 100k members.
    there were cds of this pressed but believe it or not this fixed copy is actually better than the pressed cds. trust me lu.. u dont want one of the cds. its listenable but if u make your own cd from this copy here its much more enjoyable.

    By darth on May 7, 2014

  36. Yes Darth in Female form I married Lu “Fist”. He was my first sweet heart in those days. And still is. Blessed to find him again after 45 yrs. We are now married and I still love all their music and my Fist plays for me still at home. It does not get any better

    By Victoria Stephens on Jun 14, 2017

  37. I was there. Sorry to say I don’t remember Allmen Joy, but the Doors came on around 12:30 a.m. (New Years Eve/Day), opening with ‘When the Music’s Over’. They requested the light show be shut down for this first number. I was 14 and the entire experience terrified me.

    By friendlier on Jul 10, 2018

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