Classic Singles #59: The Magic Mushroom – She’s Gone / Cry Baby (1966)

MM_labelThe Magic Mushroom were from San Diego, California and their only single was released on Warner Brothers in August 1966. The 45 had already been issued on the Coastline label earlier in the year but under the less evocative band name The Sons.

Ringing guitar chords introduce the splendid teen punk of ‘I’m Gone’. The song alternates between stomping garage with very effective harmonica and neat backing vocals and a more reflective minor key bridge with keyboards and later lead guitar. A strong performance from the singer throughout, and the harmonica takes centre stage in fine fashion on the break.

‘Cry Baby’ is the more commercial side. With its winning melody and strummed acoustic guitar you might even call it a folk rocker, except for the pounding drumming that periodically drives this upbeat gem along. Some very tasteful guitar work on the solo too.

‘I’m Gone’

‘Cry Baby’

Band members Michael Allen and Chris Gaylord had previously been members of The Lyrics, who were responsible for the marvellous ‘So What!!’ on Era from October 1965.

The Magic Mushroom later moved to New York and changed name to Love Special Delivery (a pattern seems to be emerging!), releasing a single on Lance Records in 1967, ‘Babe / Say That You Love Me’.

Reissues: ‘I’m Gone’ is on Pebbles Volume 9 (CD) and Mayhem and Psychosis Volume 1, ‘Cry Baby’ on Psychedelic Unknowns Volume 6.

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3 thoughts on “Classic Singles #59: The Magic Mushroom – She’s Gone / Cry Baby (1966)

  1. Pingback: Classic Singles #73: The Lyrics – So What!! / They Can’t Hurt Me (1965) | Cosmic Mind at Play

  2. When I interviewed Chris Gaylord and Mike Allen back in the ’80s they were a bit vague about whether they actually played on this record. Since then I’ve figured out that they most likely didn’t join the Magic Mushroom until after this single had been recorded and released as the Sons. The Sons made two previous singles as the California Sons and members included Gary Williams, Rocky Lucia (now a famous radio personality as Ray Lucia), and John Buell. Gary recalls that the harmonica on “I’m Gone” was played by a member of the Seeds — could it have been Sky? I think more likely a Seeds associate. I will have to unravel the whole Sons/Magic Mushroom saga for a future issue of Ugly Things.

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