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Friday, 8 June 2018

Bureman & O'Rourke “Strawberry Pickin’s” 1974 US Private Psych Folk Rock


Bureman & O'Rourke “Strawberry Pickin’s” 1974.US Private Psych Folk Rock
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This is a solid LP put out by Pearce and, like most Pearce Recordings, it was done in the Cavern Studios of Independence, MO. The band’s later release was discussed here, but this is the more sought after of the two. The LP has sold for hefty amounts thanks to buzz terms like “Rural Folk,” “Psych Folk”, and “Acid Archives” in which the album is discussed, however, it’s a little more basic than all that. It’s a well done country rock album, a bit more rural than something like the Eagles, and a bit more mellow than the stuff the Byrds were doing in the 70’s. It’s value is probably also aided by the Pearce label which collectors have seemed to latch onto. 
On the top of the back cover, Bureman & O'Rourke indicate to the listener that the songs featured here are were selected by fans at Putche’s Strawberry Patch (clever title now, right?) in Kansas City. It’s a collection of some well thought out covers and decent original material. Like other bands that frequented the Strawberry Patch, they do play through some bluegrass at speed, but these guys keep it pretty mellow otherwise. The original song, “Genevieve”, is a good example of what the two were capable of. Solid harmonies, haunting melodies, and desire to story tell with their songs. 
Other highlights include the cover of “Fox and the Run” as a bluegrass number. The adapted version of “K.T.A.” by the group with Kansas towns thrown in throughout is fun. The band’s tune “86 Proof” is a spirited attempt at a rock song, it’s amusing but falls a bit short. They get all yacth rock with a Kenny Loggins “Love Song,” which isn’t as bad as it should be, kind of pleasant. Their original tune, “Chanson de L'Oiseau”, has some teeth to it and one of their strongest original tunes on the LP, despite the idea of the song being about the middle finger……~


This is a fairly well-known title among private press rural rockers, yet listening to it I think it deserves a little more attention. It’s simply a good, enjoyable album that could well have come out on a real record label. Music-wise it’s bluegrass-oriented roots sounds, utilizing a standard rock setting plus banjo and mandolin. It’s not a hippie barnyard thing like Sodbusters, but a more genuinely dedicated effort that reminds me of the Brown County Band.Side 1 is more traditional, while side 2 leans more towards rural rock with a possible New Riders Of The Purple Sage influence. That said, “Genevieve” on side 1 is the strongest track of all, an excellent original that could have come from the Modlin & Scott LP. Covers include a fine “Mr Bojangles”, “Love Song” by Loggins & Messina, and a couple of trad numbers. While not quite up there with Cambridge or the Black Canyon Gang, Strawberry Pickin’s (it’s their apostrophe) plays through like a charm, and will appeal to anyone with an ear for rural rock, country-rock and modern bluegrass. This used to be in ‘The Attic’, but both quality and recent going rates promotes it as a matter for the main Acid Archives. The duo had at least one more album. …Acid archives….~


Credits 
Banjo – Jim McGreevy 
Bass – Norton Canfield 
Drums – Frank Infranca 
Guitar, Banjo, Vocals – Bruce Bureman 
Guitar, Vocals – Tim O'Rourke 
Keyboards – Bob Parke 
Lead Guitar – Terry Moulder 
Mandolin – Kevin McCusker 
Vocals – Jim Jones 

Tracklist 
A1 Bo Jangles 3:45 
A2 Frankie And Johnnie 2:15 
A3 Genevieve? 3:45 
A4 Going Home 2:13 
A5 Fox On The Run 2:15 
A6 K.T.A. 2:27 
B1 86 Proof 3:30 
B2 Rotation 2:25 
B3 Back Down On The Road Again 2:51 
B4 Love Song 2:59 
B5 Chanson de l'Oiseau 2:15 
B6 Ol’ Bill 4:03 

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