Saturday, July 18, 2015

Chamaeleon Church - 1968 - Chamaeleon Church

Chamaeleon Church 
Chamaeleon Church 

01. Come In To Your Life    2:16
02. Camillia Is Changing    4:11
03. Spring This Year    4:15
04. Blueberry Pie    3:30
05. Remembering´s All I Can Do    4:00
06. Flowers In The Field    2:33
07. Here´s A Song    2:02
08. In A Kindly Way    3:05
09. Tompkins Square Park    3:02
10. Picking Up The Pieces    2:15
11. Off With The Old    4:20

Arkama Bonus Tracks:
12. Ready Eddy    2:48
13. Your Golden Love    3:13

Vocals, Drums, Percussion, Piano, Organ, Keyboards [Roxichord] – Chevy Chase
Vocals, Electric Bass, Guitar, Piano – Kyle Garrahan
Vocals, Guitar – Ted Myers
Vocals, Guitar, Electric Bass, Harpsichord – Tony Scheuren

Recorded May to June 1968 at Mayfair Studios, New York City

Before finding fame as Clark Griswald, a 24 year-old Chevy Chase was living his rock n’ roll dream as the keyboardist/drummer for Boston psychedelic band Chamaeleon Church.  Their sole album appeared on the MGM label in 1968 and was marketed as part of the Bosstown Sound that included other lysergic warriors from the area Ultimate Spinach, Orpheus, Beacon Street Union, Phulph, Eden’s Children, and Puff.

Although the marketing plan back-fired, as the press deemed the whole scene as nothing more than record label hype, the albums made by the Bosstown groups contain many gems including this harmony-laden winner Camillia is Changing.  Produced by the ultra-prolific Alan Lorber, who also master-minded the whole Bosstown gimmick, the song has the usual 1968 flourishes and some killer harmonies, which I am sure Chase’s perfect pitch lent to extensively.

Before playing with the Church, Chase jammed with school friends Walter Becker and Donald Fagan in The Leather Canaries, who of course would find fame sans Chevy as Steely Dan.  Although his music career didn’t quite pan out, Chase simultaneously worked with an underground comedian gang called Channel One that would lead to his eventual TV and comedy career.

When the Boston-based band called the Lost broke up in 1967, their singer/guitarist Ted Myers met Tony Schueren through some friends he had in the Ultimate Spinach band. Beginning to work together, they recruited another ex-Lost member, Kyle Garrahan, to play bass. Myers, who was still under contract to a New York City producer named Alan Lorber, met Chevy Chase while recording in New York. Chase was added to the band’s lineup as their drummer, and Alan Lorber agreed to produce them. They called themselves Chamaeleon Church (sometimes spelled Chamæleon Church) and would on release one album, self-titled, on the MGM label. The band was short-lived, however, and they broke up in 1969, having never made any sort of commercial success. The band’s biggest association with fame would be that their drummer, Chevy Chase, would go on to be an international star as an actor, comedian, and original cast member of Saturday Night Live.

Interview with Ted Myers

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