Before we stroll down Memory Lane into June 1967 ...
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Unreal. Groovy. Surrealistic. Here we are … we have arrived in the future, my fellow Rockin’ Boomers! How did we get here?!
Fifty Years Ago this Month, we were part of an authentic “happening” … an epiphany … a true phenomenon … the “Summer of Love.”
I attended the KFRC/San Francisco Fantasy Fair and Magic Mountain Music Festival the weekend of June 10-11. It transformed the serene top of Mount Tamalpais into a swirling haze of musical mayhem and dancing Mary Janes. Breathe deep …
It was not pure mountain air, m’dears! But it was a celebration of young and old, hippies and button-downs, and a whole lotta Rock & Roll. This was the weekend that slid us into the Summer of Love.
KFRC may have been mostly Top 40 fare the Summer of ‘67, but their innovative support broke the ceiling for progressive Rock that weekend. The brainchild of Program Director, Tom Rounds, its lineup included an eclectic spectrum of performers from Smokey Robinson, Dionne Warwick, and The 5th Dimension, to Country Joe and the Fish, The Steve Miller Band, and fast-chart-climbers, The Doors.
The Fantasy Fair, while grudgingly acknowledged as the first large scale outdoor Rock / Pop concert, was outstripped by a bigger event a few weeks later. But the Monterey Pop Festival with nearly double attendance, certainly didn’t dampen the Fair’s status for avid Rock fans. In fact, MPF benefitted from the Fair’s success. More importantly, the Fair operated as an altruistic charity benefit, without the MPF’s commercial business vibe.
Sadly, very few images and only a couple of truncated film clips survived the decades. But as long as memory survives, the weekend that kicked off the 1967 Summer of Love will live again.
As for today … look around you … young and old still love mind-altering drugs, we still protest for love, not war, and this year has seen more society and political upheaval than there has been since the Sixties. Put a flower in your hair, “White Rabbit”* in your headphones, and welcome the “2017 ‘Golden’ Summer of Love”!
Featured Radio Survey: While KFRC’s listeners discovered new music and a new way to party at the Fantasy Fair, in Lexington, Kentucky, WVLK fans stuck with the Top 40. What the “Mighty 590” lacked in radio station polish they made up for in advertising ingenuity. Check out the music survey that doubled as an ad agent’s promo, week of June 10-16, 1967 …
Celebrate JUNE 1967: 50 Years Ago and … Rock On!
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