Gary Usher was a songwriter and producer who had a hand in some of the most gorgeous pop records of the 1960s. He co-wrote songs with Brian Wilson early in the Beach Boys career, including the resplendent In My Room. He produced my favorite Byrds LP The Notorious Byrds Brothers, their last record to include the nucleus of the original band. His revolutionary production merged psychedelic effects throughout that record. Along with cohort songwriter and musician Curt Boettcher they released one of my favorite lost sike-pop LPs Present Tense under the band moniker of Sagittarius.
The oddly named Song to the Magic Frog (Will You Ever Know) boasts one of the most exquisite melodies that I can think of. The accompaniment is mostly acoustic guitar and harpsichord, with xylophone thrown in for good measure. Against this baroque pop atmosphere are angelic vocals that leap and soar into the heavens. Frankly it can be tear inducing if it catches me in the right moment.
Above the cloud-like, shimmering oval
Through some misty blue
Still before me
Stands the morning when I first saw you
Jack Bruce, 1943-2014
2 hours ago