Friday Song: ‘The Hip’ by The Sparkles
The Sixties saw the birth of a million and one garage bands, groups of friends getting together to jam and hopefully record some tracks and get famous like The Beatles. While fame and fortune were rare, many of these bands scraped together enough cash to record a song or two. Some of them even got airplay on regional radio, back when there was such a thing.
The Sparkles were just such a band. Hailing from Levelland, Texas, the band was a going thing from 1957 all the way up to 1972. That’s a long time for a garage band. Two of their recordings are more famous (relatively speaking of course) than ‘The Hip’ thanks in large part to their inclusion on some indispensable compilations.
‘No Friend of Mine‘ appeared on both the 1998 Rhino Records box set Nuggets: Original Artyfacts from the First Psychedelic Era, 1965–1968 (out of print but worth every penny if you can find it) as well as the equally cool comps Pebbles Volume 1, Songs We Taught The Fuzztones, and Garage Beat ’66, Vol. 1. Their garage basher Hipsville 29 B.C. was featured on Mayhem & Psychosis, Vol. 2 and Garage Beat ’66, Vol. 1. Both songs were recorded in 1967, but it’s a track from a year earlier that’s got my ear today. ‘The Hip’ was a hit in the Austin area in 1966. And it’s a gasser.
So, it’s Friday. Time to let our hair down. Time to get hip to ‘The Hip.’ On Sparkle Records. It’s got a good beat and you will dance to it.