The old timers give the young'ns tips on the 60s.

I love the music of the was such a magic time musically. Unfortunately I wasn't born yet. Of course, we young'ns know about the greats....CSN, Jefferson Airplane The Doors, Neil Young, CCR, the obvious ones...but it took me awhile to find Moby Grape, Richie Havens or Nick Drake. How about some tips of some great sixities music that somehow has dropped off the radar.
As I started reading your post I was thinking Moby Grape but you already found them. Try these:
Spirit - Twelve Dreams Of Dr. Sardonicus, it holds up very well.
It's A Beautiful Day - It's A Beautiful Day.
Chicago Transit Authority, it's the first Chicago album and is still a fantastic album. Great songs, one of the best guitar players of the 60s, just a perfect snapshot of the times.
Try this...


Of course when Joe wasn't on mind altering substances...he made some really good music..if just a bit of an acquired taste!
How about Spooky Tooth, Spooky Two is the cd you want.
Early Steve Miller- Your Saving Grace or Sailor
Youngbloods- Elephant Mountain
early Allman Bros- Idlewild South, Live @ Fillmore East
Quicksilver Messenger Service- Who do you love
Dave Mason- Alone Together
Santana- Abraxas
i've always felt that the kinks "village green preservation society" was one of the more underrated albums of the 60's.
OK, lets work on the term 60's music are we pre or post Beatles. For Early work the Beach Boys, start with Pet Sounds. They say this album inspired Sgt. Peppers. Jan an Dean, probably best for Dead Man's curve or perhaps Sidewalk Surfing. You might try the Surfaris also.

Ok dating myself and when music really started getting in the blood.
There are many great and seminal albums.

I can second the Allman Brothers "Fillmore East/Eat a Peach" and Kinks "Village Green" listed above.

For sheer live power, The Who's "Live at Leeds" captures the band in top form. This album is often over shadowed by "Tommy" and "Who's Next" in "best of" shout outs by the press, but remains one of the best live artifacts of the 1960s. This "pre-metal" sound was in direct contrast to the Summer of Love vibe that informed most song structures of 1968 to 1970 (i.e. Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin). The deluxe edition of the CD includes the entire "Tommy" set, the first rock opera, plus a nice mixture of rare early songs ("Fortune Teller," "Tattoo")used to warm up to. Keith Moon's drumming is superb on this and gives the songs true meaty weight. Led Zep duly listened to this and crafted a similar sound in the 1970s that becam heavy metal.

The Small Faces, and the later Faces, pioneered a sound not too dissimilar to today's alt rock. This was sloppy bar band rock at its finest. The Faces had four consecutive albums (1969 to 1973) of brilliant journeyman playing and Rod Stewart never sounded better as a lead singer. Rhino has a definitive 4 CD set called "Five Men Walk Into a Bar." They were often call a pub man's Rolling Stones. Speaking of Jagger and Co., The Rolling Stones had an incredible "later" decade from 1966 to 1970. "Let It Bleed", from 1968, captures the band at their height--these songs still remain the core of their live set. American music anchored in country and blues never sounded so good done by English musicians, Faces or Stones.

The Band produced two brilliant albums, "Music from Big Pink", and "The Band". No one did Americana better, and these still sound incredibly fresh today.

The Beatles work are well documented. I think the first solo albums are under-rated, from 1970. George Harrison's first album, "All Things Must Pass", and Sir Paul's first two albums, "McCartney" and "Ram", are interesting albums that are simple in their execution but feel miles of away from the weight of being legends in their first band. They sound like they found the joy of making music again.

Iggy and the Stooges pioneered what became "punk rock", a full six years ahead of the curve. Match this with the Velvet Underground, and you can experience music that was brutally honest and inspired so many countless later bands, from The Clash to REM.

Jimi Hendrix set the standard for guitar playing and all of his albums are interesting to reexamine. I personally like the experimentation of the third one.
The early 60s, now there was some scary stuff that you probably don't want to listen to. Before all this stuff we're talking about here.
When most people say 60s music what they really mean is rock 1965/66 on, so only half of the 60s.
Most of the music mentioned hasn't "fallen off the radar" as you wrote, but here are a few bands to also consider:

Amboy Dukes
Fever Tree
Steppenwolf (first 3 albums)
Guess Who (Canned Wheat)
Mothers of Invention
Blues Project
Paul Butterfield
John Mayall
Velvet Underground
Beau Brummels
Fairport Convention
If we're talking late 60's, I suggest a few:

Jethro Tull - my all time favorite prog. rock band. Their style ranges anywhere from hard rock to blues to folk to...

Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band - suggest "Safe As Milk" to start out with as they can be an acquired taste. They're a unique mix of blues/jazz/rock/experimental all mixed into one.

Taj Mahal - Blues all the way.
...don't forget 'iron butterfly'
I second Audiofeil's mention of The Blues Project, especially the album "Projections."

Also, if you are interested in the folk genre, The New Christy Minstrels. Take a look at a list of some of their former members, in this writeup:

Also in the folk genre, Tim Hardin.

-- Al
After reading many of these posts, a simpler answer might be:

Look at the line-up on the 2 Woodstock album sets.

BTW, some different ways to go:

Late period doo-wop shows vocal music morphing into rock. You might consider The Showmen who worked with Allen Toussaint - a pioneer in this process.

Motown compilation. Berry Gordy's attempt to package black bands for the lucrative white audience.

Stax/Volt compilation - as above, but Southern fried and less "dressed up".
Listening to the radio and my brother spinning records during the late 60's and early 70's I grew to dislike a lot of these groups since I heard them over and over and over. One performer who I probably heard a few times but rediscovered a few years back was Tim Buckley. His music is more in the folk rock vein, but there's a sincerity to it without being too sappy.
Re The Blues Project's "Projections," here is a comment someone posted about it at

The original Blues Project's only studio album "Projections" is easily one of the best rock albums to come out of the 60's. Though it is very hard to find in it's original form, it can easily be obtained by purchasing the "Anthology" CD that is offered by Disk 2 of the "Anthology" contains the entire "Projections" album in its original song sequence. The rest of "Anthology" is also well worth your money, since it is loaded with their best material live, plus numerous rarities previously not available. Go there NOW to get a copy of one of the top 10 albums to come out of the 60's.

I agree. One of the best "under the radar" rock albums ever, and quintessential 1960's.
-- Al
The exciting thing about this period of music (1965-1975) was how the bands and the blues/rock/soul sound were all inter-related. Musicians would start a band, record solo, or go on to another band. Here are some great bands/albums all related in a Kevin Bacon 'Six Degrees of Separation" kind of way.

Blood Sweat & Tears - Child Is Father to the Man
Electric Flag - A Long Time Comin'
Blues Project - Live at Cafe Au Go Go
Super Session - Kooper, Stills, Bloomfield
Byrds - Fifth Dimension or Younger Than Yesterday
Gene Clark - White Light
Buffalo Springfield - Last Time Around or Retrospective
Stephen Stills - 1st solo album

Best regards,

Agree with all those mentioned. A couple others I loved in the 60s' were Cold Blood - ahhhh Lydia, and Spirit.
Allman Brothers-The Filmore Concerts
Bruce Springsteen-Born to Run
Crosby,Stills and Nash-Crosby,Stills and Nash
Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young-Deja Vu
Grateful Dead-"Beyond Description 73-89"
Fleetwood Mac-Fleetwood Mac
James Taylor-Sweet Baby James
Jerry Garcia-"All Good Things-Jerry Garcia Studio Sessions"
Roger McGuinn-Live from Spain
Stevie Nicks-Bella Donna
Van Morrison-Moondance
U2-The Joshua Tree
Neil Young-After the Goldrush, Harvest
Spirit - 12 Dreams of Dr Sardonicus is really good. It is one of my all time favorite 'listenable' albums, it always seems fresh and fun. Timrhu nailed that one.
If you haven't heard Janis Joplin in a while look her up on youtube for a treat, man now thats a voice with a heart attached.
20 responses in the first day! Thanks, you've given me a lot to chew on... Let me see which one is first...the Blues Project might be first...

It's too bad I came along after Jefferson Airplane had morphed into Starship... just my luck.
To understand that era you need Early to Mid Dylan in your collection. If you want to truly connect to my period then I suggest you read back to back: On the Road then Electric Kool Aid Acid Test. R.I.P Neil Cassady
"Love"-Forever Changes. One of the best Psychedelic Albums of all time and on everyones top 10 rock albums of all time list.Love's 1st 4 albums were great!Arthur Lee's Psyhedelic Band.
The Allmans Live at the Fillmore East is certainly not off the radar being one of the best Live rock albums of them all....JD
Suzi Quatro

Grand Funk Railroad

Sly and the Family Stone


Young Rascals

Qucksilver Messenger Company



The Animals

Dave Clark Five


The Supremes

Simon & Garfunkle

James Gang
Check out Hot Tuna also, If I remember right that was Jefferson Airplane minus Grace Slick when she was having a baby.
Love - Forever Changes
The Kinks Something Else, and totally and utterly second "Village green preservation society"
Get yourself some CD's of various artists from the 60's and 70's. Like Mistic presents Groovin' or Billboard disks, most will have 20 plus groups per disk. The cd's are only okay for the most part (my wife likes groovin') but it gives you a list to start with. You can also see whom you may or may not like for little money. Most of us from the 60's and 70's sometimes need help remembering group names also but not the music. We had fun though. You can find these at most BJ's and Costco stores. You can also find them at the Salvation Army or Goodwill for a buck!
Vanilla Fudge
Grateful Dead
Richie Havens
Joe Cocker
Traffic- esp Low Spark of High Heel Boys
(listen to all of these before the smoke clears)
Check out the deluxe edition (2CD) of the "Easy Rider" movie sound track. It's a nice compilation of music from this period.
Savage Grace- "All Along the Watchtower"
I also enthusiastically recommend the Blues Project, thanks to Al for the link to the anthology, as my Projections album is in awful condition. Danny Kalb remains one of my favorite guitarists of all time. Also, any Byrds or Yardbirds (look at the guitarists they had in their group--Beck, Clapton and Page, as I recall) albums. Tim Buckley's Hello Goodbye album and Tom Rush's albums in the folk-rock genre. All of the Pentangle's albums are worth getting (especially for John Renbourne's guitar work). And Vanilla Fudge's album is worth it just for their rendition of the Supremes' hit You Keep Me Hangin' On.
Just a bunch I think I haven't seen mentioned yet. Most of these and the ones already mentioned actually sit astride 1970 but I would guess that is not a hard cut-off date for your purpose.

The Nice
Soft Machine
Gong (the Kevin Ayers era)
Ten Years After
The Crazy World of Arthur Brown
Edgar Broughton Band
Pink Fairies
Tyrannosaurus Rex
One other significant record that reflects the style of the era is the 1972 double album "Something/Anything" by Todd Rundgren.
Here's the next batch worth (some even essential!) to check out.

Kim Fowley (Animal God of the Streets!)
Electric Prunes
Family (the one with Roger Chapman, that is, do not confuse this with the 80's Band that went by the same name!)
Wisbone Ash
Graham Bond Organization (figure this: Graham Bond, Jack Bruce, Ginger Baker, John McLaughlin, Dick Heckstal-Smith, John Hiseman!)
Electric Flag
Giles, Giles & Fripp (the ones to become King Crimson, a group that hopefully remained on everyone's radar, otherwise they should be mentioned here as well in BIG, DayGlo characters)
Jefferson Airplane's After Bathing at Baxters. Barely recognized, but one of the best of the '60's, and surely their best. Sound quality is pathetic, alas.

Pretty Things - S.F. Sorrow and Parachute.
"fanny adams",only one album made i think.check it out.
try Mountain, Yardbirds,for rock, for pop, Bobby Fuller four,Dave Clark Five,Mcoys with Rick Derringer
Garland Jeffreys - "Ghost Writer" if you can find it, or the latest compilation which has most of the songs from that album on it. New York rock and R & B, great !
Off the radar... at least not mentioned yet: Sir Douglas Quintet, Sandy Bull, Harvey Mandel, The Animals, Them, West Coast Experimental Pop Art Band (saw them live with The Mothers of Invention), Ian & Sylvia, Country Joe and the Fish, Moody Blues...
My top 3: Beatles, Beach Boys and that order - for me.

Some groups off the top of my head:

Airplane, Cream, Frigid Pink, Blue Cheer, Steppenwolf, Yardbirds, DC5, Kinks, Beau Brummels, Neil Young, Hermans Hermits, Animals, Hendrix, Butterfly, Blind Faith, Who, Canned Heat, Donovan, Zeppelin, Blues Magoos, Chambers Brothers, Standells, Grassroots, Association, Great Society (pre Airplane), Status Quo (I think they were in the 60's), Sabbath (pre first album).....
"Cheap Thrills" (Janis Joplin, Big Brother and the Holding Company) - a defining 60's album - (and of course the Beatles White Album and Sgt. Peppers)
"Nuggets" box set (4 cd). This has great early-mid sixties garage rock (beginning of punk) such as "Louie, Louie," "Wooly Bully", "Pushin too Hard," "Liar, Liar" etc.

Also, Wishbone Ash, "Argus" great guitar work for a prog-rock album.
Ok. All of you other old geezers have filled in the music. The best tip I can give from the 60's is:

"Don't bogart that joint, my friend! Pass it over to me. You've been hangin' on to it, and I sure would like a hit!"

Come to think of it, it has worked in every decade since. ;-)
Bumper Sticker

Some of my suggestions are from the very early 70s which should be included in this collection of the best music of all time, Classic Rock

America first lp a must have album
The Association
Black Sabbath first few
Bobby Blue Bland
Blind Faith
Blood Sweet and Tears
David Bowie Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust
Clarance Gatemouth Brown any lp you can get
Roy Buchanan can strum the guitar
Buckinghams greatest hits
Creedence Clearwater Revival any
Canned Heat boogie man
Captain Beyond holoman lp to the raging river of fear
Ray Charles a must have
Eric Clapton take your pick
Cream take your pick
Crosby Stills Nash and Young any collaborations of the 4
Deep Purple O yea
Derek and the Dominos Layla and other assorted Love Songs and maybe even better Live in concert
Neil Diamond belongs here for sure
Doobie Brothers are smoking Doobies
Dr John is in the right place
Eagles pick any you cant loose
Electric Light Orchestra turning to stone man
Emerson Lake and Palmer some of the best music of all time
Rory Gallagher can lay it down get some
Buddy Guy plays all music including the Blues
Elton John yes little Elton most certainly belongs here
JoJo Gunn
Albert King will play rock and roll
King Crimson in the court
I second Led Zeppelin anything
Little Feet serious rock and roll
Little River Band
Loggin and Messina sittin in and more
Mamas and Papas play fine music
Marshall Tucker Band with a little county very nice
Dave Mason can play the guitar
John Mayhall belongs here for sure
Wheres the Moody Blues any lp all day or night
Mott the Hopple wheres the young dudes man
Van the man Morrison any early lp will do
Pink Floyd tripping man
You guys may not know this but Pot Liquor Levee Blues is down right awesome
Poco more slight country rock
Procol Harum remember them classic yea
Rare Earth i know im loosing you
My man Otis Redding is the 60s
Leon Russel can play classic rock
Savoy Brown English dudes who can lay it down
I will mention Spirit again love them guys
Rod Stewart his own lps belong here
I have to admit Cat Stevens to this group
Yes Three Dog Night is here to
Robin Trower can play here also
Johnny Winter is here
Yes you bet they are included
Beatles Beatles and more Beatles
Quite a list there Stltrains. I'll ad a couple of Harrys, Nilsson and Chapin.
The Leon Russel suggestion is a good one.
I read many of the above, and skipped a few but I didn't see any thing about the Moody Blues.Days of Future Passed came out in 1968.
I second for Jethro Tull,one of my favs.

There are so many.It was the best of times,it was............