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Sir Douglas Quintet was a rock band active in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Despite their British sounding name, they came out of San Antonio, Texas and are perhaps best known for their 1965 hit single written by Doug Sahm, the 12-bar blues "She's About a Mover" named the number one 'Texas' song by Texas Monthly. With a Vox Continental organ riff provided by Augie Meyers and soulful vocals from lead singer and guitarist Doug Sahm, the track features a Tex-Mex sound. Other influences came in from blues, jazz, and contemporary rock.

In addition to "She's About a Mover," (1965) the band is known for its songs "Mendocino," (1968) "Can You Dig My Vibrations?" (1968) and "Dynamite Woman" (1969). "Mendocino" was released in December 1968, and reached #14 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 by early 1969, spending 15 weeks in the chart.[1] It was more successful in Europe selling over three million copies there.[1]

Contents

Style

The Sir Douglas Quintet is considered a pioneering influence in the history of rock and roll for incorporating Tex-Mex and Cajun styles into rock music.[1] However, early influences on the band's emerging Texas style were even broader than this, and included ethnic and pop music from the 1950s and 1960s, such as doo-wop, electric blues, soul music, and British Invasion. [2] The Quintet brought the older styles into a contemporary context, for instance by adapting the doo-wop feel, beat, and chord progressions. Perhaps even more off-beat for a late 1960s rock band than some inclusion of doo-wop type songs was that the band also played in styles like Western swing and polka (a Country & Western form and rhythmic style, from the Texas Hill Country, rather than a straight European style). They approached these styles with an instrumental line-up that was typical of blues bands: one guitarist, keyboardist, bassist, and drummer, and a member who could play either trumpet or saxophone.

In the mid 1960s, the band relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area and absorbed features of the San Francisco Sound, including the loud and lush electric bass tone and freer percussion and guitar stylings. Band members also explored musical elements specific to modern jazz at that time. For studio recordings, they sometimes added an extra session musician or two, often to flesh out the brass dimension of a track's sound. Good examples of what they achieved when they absorbed the new jazz and psychedelic elements into their music can be found on the album, Sir Douglas Quintet + 2.

In live performances, blues, often with swing or shuffle beats, was usually a substantial component of the set. Besides doing their own original material, the Quintet revived several classics such as Jimmie Rodgers' "In the Jailhouse Now" and Freddy Fender's "Wasted Days and Wasted Nights" to be found on the albums Son of San Antonio and Texas Fever, respectively.

In 2005 they were among the new class of musicians chosen for the nominating ballot to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. [3]

Members

In addition to Sahm and Meyers, original Sir Douglas Quintet members included Jack Barber on bass, Frank Morin on saxophone, trumpet and keyboards and Johnny Perez, Ernie Durawa and T.J. Ritterbach on drums. 1969 Harvey Kagan joined the Quintet on bass, forming their most familiar line up - Kagan, Morin, Perez, Sahm, and Meyers. Bassist Jim Stallings also contributed to several albums during this period of shifting personnel which included, among others, guitarist Tom Nay of Sarasota, Florida (who played with the group for about a year), and John York, who later replaced Chris Hillman in The Byrds. Sahm and Meyers were also members of the Texas Tornados in the early 1990s.

In 1972 the group split up when Sahm contracted to produce a solo album. Meyers, Perez, Morin, and Stallings briefly regrouped as The Quintet, with Farlow taking Sahm's place. In 1973 several Sir Douglas Quintet outtakes were released in their final album from the group's classic era, Rough Edges.

Sahm and Meyers continued to work together throughout the late 1970s and rejoined with Perez in 1980 for a reunion tour and album.

Founder Doug Sahm died of a heart attack in his sleep in a motel room in Taos, New Mexico on November 18, 1999, at the age of 58.

Augie Meyers continues to tour, and record on his own independent record labels, based out of Bulverde, Texas.

Harvey Kagan now performs with a San Antonio area wedding/event band, The Oh So Good! Band, best known for discovering American Idol contestant Haley Scarnato.

Frank Morin now continues active in music teaching, production and movie's soundtracks.

Selected discography

Albums

  • 1966 - The Best of the Sir Douglas Quintet (Tribe) [not a compilation, despite its title]
  • 1968 - Sir Douglas Quintet + 2 = Honkey Blues (Smash)
  • 1969 - Mendocino (Smash)
  • 1970 - 1+1+1=4 (Philips)
  • 1970 - Together After Five (Smash)
  • 1971 - The Return of Doug SaldaƱa (Philips)
  • 1972 - Future Tense (as simply The Quintet)
  • 1973 - Rough Edges (Mercury)
  • 1977 - Live Love (Texas)
  • 1980 - Motive
  • 1981 - Quintessence (Varrick)
  • 1983 - Border Wave (Chrysalis)
  • 1983 - Live Texas Tornado (Takoma)
  • 1983 - Midnight Sun
  • 1985 - Luv Ya' Europa
  • 1994 - Day Dreaming at Midnight (Elektra/Nonesuch)
  • 2006 - Live from Austin, Texas (New West)

Compilations

  • 1980 - The Best of the Sir Douglas Quintet (Takoma)
  • 1988 - Sir Doug's Recording Trip: The Mercury Years (Edsel)
  • 1988 - Spotlight (Sonet)
  • 1990 - The Best of Doug Sahm & the Sir Douglas Quintet 1968-1975 (PolyGram)
  • 2000 - The Best of the Sir Douglas Quintet (Sundazed/Beat Rocket)
  • 2004 - Prime of Sir Douglas Quintet: The Best of the Tribe Recordings (Westside)
  • 2005 - The Complete Mercury Masters (Hip-O Select)
  • 2008 - Scandinavian Years (Universal Music, Norway)

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 248. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.  

External links








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