The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #27241   Message #3897664
Posted By: GUEST,Bennet Stolz
05-Jan-18 - 10:22 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Flight 641 (Lawrence Hammond)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Flight 641 (Lawrence Hammond)
In about 1975 while visiting San Francisco I wandered into a pretty noisy club somewhere down towards the waterfront or lower Market St area near the Bay. Hammond and his band were on stage in what was a fairly raucous set. It seemed to me that they did play some original stuff despite the appreciative but really half-attentive audience. I had played around the bluegrass scene some in New England and New York so I was surprised to see and recognize (the late) John Herald of Greenbriar Boys fame wandering in. I wasn't the only one who noticed though, as Hammond shortly called him up to the stage, and launched into that great Floyd Chance song "Alligator Man," while handing his Martin off to Herald. That was followed as I remember by the Marty Robbins classic "End of a Long Lonely Day,". Herald was in fine voice and seemed astounded that all of the 5 other musicians on stage knew his stuff and carried the songs off without blinking, with Hammond on fiddle and his teenaged steel player and astounding lead guitar picker (Bob Weir's half-brother: I looked him up) taking their soloes. I accosted Herald after he left the stage and asked if that was all planned. He said (somewhat bewildered, I think) " Never saw these guys before in my life" I had been unfamiliar with them as well, but went to check them out on a tip from a friend. When I returned to the Bay Area again in '77, I was able to score the COYOTE's Dream album, which is really a classic of off-center 70's California country, but Lawrence Hammond had dropped out of sight and no one seemed to have any idea of where or why. I've always wondered through the years, and finally went looking online (following clues on his 2nd album liner notes) and ended up here. This is really a pretty remarkable thread. 18 years and counting: I suspect it is as extensive as it is because there is precious little elsewhere on the web and Mudcat just filled the vacuum. I recently chased down a burn of PRESUMED LOST and that has some wonderful playing and more REALLY unusual country songwriting. The stuff in this thread about his deceased fiancee is too heartbreaking. I understand he is (STILL!) practicing medicine. An unusual life, for sure