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1960s

Pretty Things, The

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One of the 60s most underrated bands. From their badder than bad, raucous R&B early in their career, the band shifted gears in the underground, first with freakbeat then psychedelia. Their tenure at Abby Road, recording with Norman Smith, ranks as some of the greatest music created in Britain in the 60s. Yes, it really is that good.

Founded: 1963

Location: London, England

Website: The Pretty Things

Procol Harum

Procol Harum's formative years were in an R&B based band called the Paramounts. Named after producer Gary Steven's cat, Harum released their first single and to instant world-wide success. Immediately afterward, they reshuffled their line-up back to the formative one, and perservered through four more albums of sophisticated pop. After a series of personnel changes, the band continued into the late seventies with a degree of success in the US, though the UK proved more elusive

Founded: 1967

Location: Southend-On-Sea, Essex, England

Website: Procol Harum Beyond the Pale

Rare Bird

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Charisma label band that scored a hit with "Sympathy". In 1972, Mark Ashton and Graham Field left, and the band ditched the dual-keyboard format, recording three infinitely listenable albums for Polydor. Dave Kaffinetti is best known for his part in Spinal Tap.

Founded: 1969

Location: London, England

Website: The JupiterSpace Rare Bird Web Site

Reichel, Achim

One of Germany's most legendary musicians, Achim Reichel's career started in 1960 with The Rattles, one of the countries first beat-era bands. The 70s saw him delve into the progressive music scene, first as A.R. & Machines, and then later as a record producer. Reichel's long and successful career as a solo artist started in 1976 with an album of seafaring songs, appropriately enough for the Hamburg native.

Founded: 1944

Location: Hamburg, Germany

Website: Achim Reichel

Members:

Renaissance (Yardbirds)

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Jim McCarty and Keith Relf's post-Yardbirds project was one of the early experiments fusing classical and rock music.

Founded: 1969

Location: London, England

Website: Renaissance 1969 to 1971: JohnHawken.com

Rustic Hinge

After Brown left to form Kingdom Come, the rest of the Crazy World continued on as Rustic Hinge, before morphing into High Tide. Their lone recording was released some twenty years later.

Founded: 1969

Location: England

Sam Gopal's Dream

Named after the tabla player, Sam Gopal's Dream were regulars on London's underground, playing at the UFO, Middle Earth, etc. They later released one eponymous album which featured Ian "Lemmy" Willis on guitar and vocals.

Founded: 1967

Location: London, England

Website: Tabla Music by Sam Gopal

Skin Alley

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As with other Clearwater Production groups, Skin Alley had their roots in the London underground and free festival scene. After recording two albums for CBS the band signed with Transatlantic, who licensed two albums to the famous US Stax label. Latter albums feature the Daltrey-esque vocals of Nick Graham. Thomas Crimble left to work with Hawkwind.

Founded: 1968

Location: London, England

Soft Machine, The

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One of two Canterbury bands formed from the Wilde Flowers, Soft Machine's earliest days were in the psychedelia of London's underground of the late 60s. By Third however the band matured into one of Britain's finest jazz-fusion bands. After Robert Wyatt's departure in 1971, the band ventured further and further into a jazz-idiom, gaining members from Ian Carr's Nucleus along the way. Archival material on Cuneiform is highly recommended.

Founded: 1966

Location: Canterbury, England

Website: SOFT MACHINE (Calyx site)

Members: