THE PENTANGLE – BASKET OF LIGHT – October 1969
Hippies grew up with the Folk songs of the ’50s and the early ’60s of Peter, Paul and Mary, The Kingston Trio, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, and The New Christy Minstrels, to name just a few.
Thanks to Dylan’s heretical electrifying of the Folk genre, bands like The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, CSN&Y, The Band, and a legion of others, took Folk Rock to a highly-successful genre that melded nicely with the whole ’60s music explosion and British Invasion.
Out of this fusion of Folk and Rock came the popularity of the English and Celtic Folk Rock groups; Fairport Convention, Fotheringay, The Incredible String Band, and The Pentangle.
The Pentangle were unique in that they were the first “Supergroup” of musicians and singers that had already established a well-known and respected pedigree within the music industry. These iconic members are: Bert Jansch – lead and backing vocals, guitar, banjo, Jacqui McShee – lead and backing vocals, John Renbourn – lead and backing vocals, guitar, sitar, Terry Cox – drums, glockenspiel, hand drum, lead and backing vocals, and Danny Thompson – double bass.
And then we have Shel Talmy – producer. The truth is any band he is associated with rises to the top – The Kinks at their Rockin’ height, The Who “My Generation”, Rumplestiltskin – Best Unknown Band of the Entire ’70s – and many more. Here he takes an already super group and sprinkles on the magick.
Basket of Light was/is a unique high-point album and timely in that it dovetailed with the whole current Renaissance Faire and Tolkien mystique and fashion influence that permeated the Hippie Culture – 00individual’s girl friend used to wear a low cut empire mini-dress with puffy loose sleeves: Renaissance HOT!
Franco Zefferelli’s 1968 film “Romeo and Juliet” was a sure-fire aphrodisiac and the Pentangle-esque music from the film was extremely popular. The instrumental “Love Theme from Romeo and Juliet” (“A Time For Us”) was a 1969 number one Pop Hit in the U.S. for Henry Mancini.
Basket of Light tapped into that vibe and was a perfect album to transport one to the earthy Renaissance era with beauty, grace and a driving beat.
Under this already mystical vibe The Pentangle conjured-up an intoxicating version of Sally Go Round the Roses; which kind of serves as the reveal.
Here we have a very mysterious choice of a song done originally by The Jaynetts in 1963 that to this day is a song that struck a very seductive strange core vibe in people upon its release and ever since.
THE PENTANGLE – BASKET OF LIGHT
Light Flight – 3:18, Once I Had A Sweetheart – 4:41, Springtime Promises – 4:09,
Lyke-Wake Dirge – 3:36, Train Song – 4:48, Hunting Song – 6:45,
Sally Go Round the Roses – 3:37, The Cuckoo – 4:29, House Carpenter – 5:29
On top of all of this mysterious excellent Roots Folk Rock we have The Pentangle itself,
five members representing the five points of a Pentagram, one of the strongest Occult sigils.
The Pentangle’s Folk Rock Basket of Light was/is an addicting joy and a rare treat.
A few months after high school graduation in February 1969, 00individual moved out into a beach pad with two friends, and the Summer, Fall, Winter and early Spring of ’69/’70 (when L.A. had discernible seasons) became an extremely special time in life for many reasons and one was the mystical vibe and psychedelic tinge of The Pentangle’s Basket of Light.
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