What: Harry the Keeper (b/w "The Rolly Pole Coaster")
Found: Reckless Records, Soho (RIP)
Cost: One pound
Now, this is more like it. This is the kind of thing you dream about digging up when you approach the bargain section in the corner of the second hand record shop, dipping in for possible underpriced gems. The clues are there for all to see, and whilst I'd be happy to print them upside down at the bottom of this blog entry as some sort of quiz feature, it's probably more sensible if I just outline them. This is a Morgan production by Danny Beckerman and Geoff Gill. The former would be enough to make this a compelling curiosity, but the fact that Beckerman and Gill are involved makes it doubly interesting, as the pair have been engaged with some of the more cultishly successful collectable psychedelic records of the period.
Buggy's "Harry The Keeper" has been late to pick up any sort of critical praise from the usual British Psychedelic websites (it only began to get noticed shortly after I bought this, actually, which partly explains its ridiculous low price) but it is beginning to be appreciated by lovers of the twee, toytown end of the spectrum. It's the usual sort of twisted childlike nonsense about a zookeeper cheerily feeding his friends to the lions, the kind of lisping innocence with a nasty underbelly that the period churned out in enormous quantities. There's no question that it will be best appreciated by those who like "that sort of thing", and utterly despised by everyone expecting something akin to The Grateful Dead. If you have an aversion to the frothier end of McCartney inspired psychedelic pop, you'd do well not to bother clicking on the download button.
The flip side "Rolly Pole Coaster" would indicate that rather like Kidrock's "Ice Cream Man" (see the "Circus Days" entry) this single may have been aimed at the junior market whilst still retaining a period sound. I'm sorry to say that the effects put on the vocals on the B-side make it sound as if its being sung by Joe Pasquale, and subsequently it becomes extremely irritating within a matter of seconds. Still, I'll leave it bundled in so you can be the judges of its quality (or otherwise).