Hamilton Camp: Here’s To You (1967)

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While this album is quite different than his previous two albums, it isn’t so far out there that it is barely listenable. Instead, it leans more toward orchestrated pop-arranged and produced by Felix Pappalardi.  Hal Blaine and Earl C. Palmer, Jr., handled the percussion and drums. Larry Knechtel  played piano  with Van Dyke Parks stepping in to play some of the piano and organ parts for the occasion.  Hal, Earl, and Larry were all members of the infamous Wrecking Crew. And this is what you get on some of the songs, that mysterious amount of depth, beauty, and musicianship. Bud Shank’s lovely and hauntingly played alto-flute on “Garden of Love” is simply profound. For the remainder of the album, he is featured playing the standard concert flute, but lively done I might add.  Dick Rosmini, once called the best 12 string guitarist in the world keeps even the average sounding songs interesting.

Interestingly enough Hamilton Camp is credited with writing all of the songs on the album, save for one. A pretty impressive feat.

Copy from the backside of the Lp:

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While tracks on the album have a similar theme throughout, the styles range from mildly flavored psych, to breezy bossa, to sunshine pop. Throw in one old-timey song that sounds like it should’ve been on a Harpers Bizarre album, but it’s  a shorter number and is quickly on to the next band. Yet the album’s track listing spaces the songs out so that one will want to play both sides of the album equally.

It’s always refreshing to find an album that has gotten lost along the way, that never quite made it, outside the popular music category to listen for the first time. The full album is below:

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