EXPERIENCE ROCK HISTORY!
(the) VENTURES IN SPACE – January 25, 1964 – Space Rock is born!
In 1964 there was a feeling of change; 00individual was only thirteen in ’64, the perfect age to grow up and absorb the Pinnacle of Pop Culture of the 1960s and later the Pinnacle of Rock of the early 1970s – but right now in ’64 every day seemed to have an exciting magical aura about it. Perfect.
Coming off the late ’50’s Soviet Sputnik satellite craze (I had a Sputnik replica transistor radio) and the early ’60’s U.S. first man to orbit the Earth celebrations; the Space Race was a fully-engaged competition between the Soviet Union (USSR) and the United States (US) for supremacy In Space exploration.
The ongoing paranoid era of Atomic Bombs and Radiation spawned the classic late ’50s, early ’60s fascination with movies where renegade science or radiation was the cause of everything from gigantic insects to Alien invasions. All of this contributed to the heightened mysterious interest in outer space, science, the supernatural, robots, aliens, monsters, the future and the paranormal.
Capitalizing on this new era of the unknown becoming the known, Rod Serling created one of the most iconic television programs in TV History with the Twilight Zone.
“There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call the Twilight Zone.”
The Twilight Zone ran from 1959 – 1964
Another terrific television anthology series, “The Outer Limits” explored the regions of science, space exploration and the supernatural.
The Marketts had a hit with an instrumental version of the theme to “The Outer Limits” but because of legalities, even though they were riffing the Twilight Zone’s theme not the Outer Limits’ theme, they had to change it to “Out of Limits“.
“There is nothing wrong with your television set. Do not attempt to adjust the picture. We are controlling transmission. For the next hour we will control all that you see and hear. You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to The Outer Limits.”
The Outer Limits ran from 1963 – 1965
The entertaining series, “One Step Beyond”, was also an anthology of the unexplained that was inspired by “Science Fiction Theater” from the ’50s. Harry Lubin’s theme “Fear” was just that, a real creepy and spacey theme.
“What you are about to see is a matter of human record. Explain it: we cannot. Disprove it: we cannot. We simply invite you to explore with us the amazing world of the Unknown… to take that
One Step… Beyond.”
One Step Beyond ran from 1959 – 1961
The Ventures; Bob Bogle – bass, Don Wilson – guitar, Nokie Edwards – guitar, Mel Taylor – drums and Red Rhodes – pedal steel guitar, with thirteen successful albums released in less than four years, were so inspired by the current interest in space exploration, science fiction and the supernatural that they chose to make an entire album about those themes; an album that was as important to Space Rock as the Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s was to Pop Rock.
This was undeniably a conceptually- themed album of Space, Sci-Fi, Satellite Wars, a touch of horror, Fear and Terror, a vampire Bat, a Fourth Dimension, a Twilight Zone and a Love Goddess from Venus that combined – like the Outer Limits and the Twilight Zone – an anthology of spacey tracks that together created the first true Space Rock album – as well as the first Space Rock themed album.
The Ventures would continue on to be wildly successful with dozens of world-wide releases yet to come; but on this album they hit on Rock History truth, a transcendent single album packed with seminal Space Rock instrumental gems.
And even more impressive, The Ventures slip cover states that “. . . all the unique, unworldly sounds featured in the album’s tracks were made with musical instruments, rather than with electronic devices.”
Their talents and prescient understanding of what was musically possible created a historic album and a gift to all of us Space Rock Fiends.
In 1964 I was there for the Birth of Space Rock and listened to it grow up to become Pink Floyd!
An extreme top favorite of 00individual’s.
“Out of Limits“
Michael Z. Gordon – The Ventures – 2:14
“He Never Came Back“
Bob Bogle / Nokie Edwards / Mel Taylor / Don Wilson – The Ventures – 2:07
Cissy Wechter – The Ventures – 2:07
Harry Lubin – The Ventures – 2:24
“Exploration in Terror“
Bob Bogle / Nokie Edwards / Don Wilson – The Ventures – 2:14
“War of the Satellites“
Dan Hamilton – The Ventures – 1:57
Lou Forbes – The Ventures – 2:14
Steve Leonard – The Ventures – 2:09
“Love Goddess of Venus“
Don Wilson – The Ventures – 2:36
Bob Bogle / Nokie Edwards / Don Wilson – The Ventures – 2:35
“The Fourth Dimension“
The Ventures – 2:15
and the dreamy, spooky, spacey classic:
Marty Manning – The Ventures – 2:37
One last comment about probably one of the Best Album Covers of All Time.
While parking and making-out in a cherry hot rod in a quiet spot overlooking the city was every guy’s ultimate ’50s /’60s wet dream, this photo caught a moment in time when that’s all it took for a trip to the stars and a night in Heaven; a guy, a girl and a car.
However, there’s something strangely otherworldly about the image; the city lights seem to extend out into the vastness of space and the pristine quality of the white and chrome hot rod seems to emulate “basic white” spacecraft imagery, all set in an ambient blue “outer space” environment. Groovy!
A classic and perfect piece of Album Art!
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