Sopwith Camel -Sopwith Camel 1967








Sopwith Camel - HISTORY


HISTORY ACCORDING TO WARNER BROTHERS, 1973
Formed in 1966, the Sopwith Camel was the second San Francisco band to be signed by a major record company -- right after Jefferson Airplane and before the Grateful Dead. They might also have been the first San Francisco group to break up, disbanding after only one album and a "wildly commercial" single "Hello, Hello."
The Sopwith Camel began in a San Francisco bookstore when Terry MacNeil met Peter Kraemer. Peter had been writing poetry for some time and, remembers Terry, "I met him at the Big Little Bookstore on Polk Street. He was bopping around with some lyrics he'd written. 'Well,' I told him, 'I play guitar.' We got together at a party later that evening and again the next day." A month later they decided to audition musicians for a group. PETER KRAEMER AND TERRY MACNEIL Terry had been a graphics student at the San Francisco Art Institute. He'd learned to play piano and classical guitar somewhere along the way and had been working in groups since he was sixteen. Peter was originally from the ghost town of Virginia City, Nevada (well, not quite a ghost town -- Peter's father was a mining engineer, and there were 350 or so people living in the area.) Peter's parents had an active interest in the Arts, he recalls. "My mother owned an art gallery, and was an artist herself. Virginia City in the early forties was an artists' community like Taos, New Mexico is now, only smaller. Salvador Dali once chased a bird through our house. We lived in a 15-room brewery; I was raised around bars, poker tables and wood stoves."Peter came to San Francisco many times during his youth. "In some ways, Virginia City is a suburb of San Francisco. A lot of the money in the city came originally from Virginia City mining." He finally emigrated to San Francisco "to go to a good school."After several false starts, Terry and Peter found guitarist William Sievers and drummer Norman Mayell. "Willy had a good guitar and a big amp," recalls Terry, "and Norman had the Big Beat.".............................



The first album on Kama
Sutra Records in 1967, featured "Hello-Hello." The single reached number one in many markets and the Top 10 in Billboard. The Sopwith Camel had the first national hit out of San Francisco's pyschedelic band scene. The album cover was done by Victor Moscoso. This album was re-released by Edsel Records featuring "Frantic Desolation"
in the late '80s.

Tracklist:
1. Hello Hello
2. Frantic Desolation
3. Saga Of The Low Down Let Down
4. Little Orphan Annie
5. You Always Tell Me Baby
6. Maybe In A Dream
7. Cellophane Woman
8. Things That I Could Do With You
9. Walk In The Park
10. Great Morpheum
11. Postcard From Jamaica

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