As someone born at the end of 1967, I could, at a push, be described as a child of the Summer Of Love. But in or new and very special issue of Uncut to celebrate the 50th anniversary of that profound cultural uprising, we speak to many architects of peace and love who really were there – and who can, contrary to cliché, remember everything that happened. Eric Burdon, for instance, recalls the splendour of the Monterey Pop festival from that June. “It was so beautiful,” Burdon tells us. “People with facepaint, wearing flowers, and flags with peace. The colours alone were revolutionary. The smell of sage and marijuana was all around. It was the vibe of acceptance, grooving with one another. Old, young, straight, gay.”
Psychedelic revolutions were a little slower to manifest themselves in the market towns and mining villages of North Nottinghamshire. But still, intimations of change seeped into millions of homes: The Beatles, on June 25, singing “All You Need Is Love” to a massive worldwide TV audience, surrounded by every conceivable signifier of hippiedom. “It was amazing,” remembers one participant. “Smoking a joint in front of 400 million people.” By the end of September, Radio One had launched, and The Move’s “Flowers In The Rain” – along with many other songs in our Summer Of Love Top 50 – were subtly turning on a generation.
Beyond our 1967 happening, it’s a busy month in Uncut’s world. We memorialise the founding father of rock’n’roll, Chuck Berry, and get a sneak preview of his last album. We have an exclusive interview with one of 2017’s most auspicious comeback bands, the Fleet Foxes, and Robin Pecknold has compiled an amazing 15-song CD of some of the key influences on their new album, which comes free with the issue.*
There’s an unravelling of the mysteries of Twin Peaks’ music, and a night in Stockholm with Bob Dylan and his frank, unblinkered fans. Plus interviews with Fairport Convention (also celebrating their 50th anniversary), Royal Trux, the great Hailu Mergia, Supertramp’s Roger Hodgson and James Brown’s horniest horn man, Fred Wesley, plus a heavyweight reviews section that includes Feist, Paul Weller, Ray Davies, Perfume Genius, Joan Shelley, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, John Martyn, Johnny Cash and me on Alice Coltrane.
Come on people now; smile on your brother!
*Please note: the CD will not be available with copies on sale in the Birmingham, UK, area. Robin’s selection of tracks is, however, posted as a playlist on Spotify.
The new issue of Uncut, dated June 2017, is now available in shops and also to buy digitally