Randy Holden: Early Works (1964-66, Garage,Psych & Surf)


A '60s guitar hero who never seemed to be in the right place at the right time, Randy Holden has attracted a small but intense cult following for his work with various California groups in the '60s. After a couple of surf singles with the Fender IV that featured his inventive reverbed fretting, Holden joined the Sons of Adam, a Los Angeles band that cut three decent garage-psychedelic singles. Holden's characteristic Jeff Beck-like sustain can already be heard on these, the best known of which is "Feathered Fish," which was penned by Arthur Lee of Love (although Love never recorded it). When the Sons of Adam broke up, drummer Michael Stuart, in fact, joined Love, while Holden joined the underrated punky San Francisco psychedelic band the Other Half. His searing, suspended leads are the highlights of their sole album (they also recorded a few single-only songs).


A nifty compilation of most of the rare mid-'60s singles that Holden played on before joining the Other Half. The two 1966 singles by Sons of Adam are solid psych-pop-punk, particularly the scorching "Saturday's Son." Those four tracks are joined by three previously unreleased Sons of Adam cuts that show an unexpected Zombies/Beau Brummels influence. The remaining six selections are by the Fender IV, including both of their Imperial singles and a
couple of previously unreleased items. It's solid surf music, highlighted by Holden's stellar w all-of-staccato reverb on "Mar Gaya" (also available on Rhino's Legends of Guitar: Surf, Vol. 1) and the propulsive (vocal) surf-Merseybeat hybrid "You Better Tell Me Now." If only it had the third and last Sons of Adam single, this would be a complete retrospective of Holden's pre-Other Half output; unfortunately, that third Sons of Adam single ("Feathered Fish"/"Baby Show the World") was the group's best, so its omission is significant. (It is available on a hard-to-find EP on Moxie that has all three Sons of Adam 45s.) Incidentally, unlike many such import compilations of impossibly obscure '60s music, this is personally authorized by the artist himself.


Amazing compilation of one of the best guitar players of the 60s...remeber that Randy was part of Fender IV (surf-rock), Sons of Adam and Other Half, before joining Blue Cheer. Not a good career ah??? ( ! ! ! )
This album contains a lot of great Surf-rawn-rock-music, great covers, yes, "Mr, you are a better..." its just amazing!. Some surf classics as "Highway surfer" and "Mar Gaya" among others. Highly Recommended.


Pablo "Pochola" Cazorla said...


henry said...

i've heard the Sons of Adam ep, but never the Fendermen IV stuff ... so this should be really interesting. another treasure to discover! Ah, thanks.

transoniq said...

Very nice to have these tracks in such good sound quality. Many thanks!

Anonymous said...

Wow! The Fendermen is the best on 60's surf, thanks!!!

John Trashe

Anonymous said...

Do you have somenthing about The Raymarks? This bands is the best on pacific northwest

John Trashe

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this great album.

Brandonio! said...

I wouldn't really call this "in great sound quality".Randy should look a little deeper.the sound is on the border of terrible if you ask me.Some songs are worse than others though.I hate to complain and it's not your fault, it's just the fact Randy Holden actually released this collection of less than acceptable versions of these songs. I've heard them sound a whole hell of alot better on different sources. So don't be content with all this and think this is as good as it gets.Just so you all know.I love Randy Holden and his work througout the years,but this could have been done way better.

Zer0_II said...

Thank you once again Pablo. I recently posted 'Randy Holden - Population II' on Digital Meltd0wn. You can find it here:

Randy Holden - Population II

If you don't mind, I'm going to cross post this on my blog for the person who requested Population II. Of course I'll give credit to you for being the original uploader. Take care.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for this one!

Romuald said...

Already knew Randy Holden's work with Fender IV and Sons of Adam. Brilliant stuff.
Their guitarist, singer and co-songwriter Joe Kooken (the one with the sunglasses) changed his name to Jack Tanna to evade the authorities who were after him for not paying his taxes.
Randy Holden eventually turned his back on music business after he discovered all his equipment had been stolen after a gig (around 1970).

Pablo"Pochola"Cazorla said...

thanks x the info man!
about the deleted links, ask for a re up mission, cause I dont have time to rip the cd again and the upload, sorry mate.

Mark said...

oh! nice web page , Relay fantastic