Classic proto hard rock: Vanilla Fudge debut (1967)

Songwriting certainly isn’t the reason this LP is a classic. It consists entirely of half-speed covers and three short original instrumental compositions. The fact that the covers were played in a new, bombastic version however, makes it special. It’s an album that marks the start of a new era. The flower people were about to make place for Hard Rock. In 1967 the Fudge’s heavy version of You Keep Me Hangin’ On was a top ten hit in the US:

Vanilla Fudge was a big influence for bands like Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin. In 1969 the group broke up. Drummer Carmine Appice and bassist Tim Bogert formed the solid Hard Rock outfit Cactus and then Beck, Bogert And Appice with Jeff Beck. Lead singer and keyboardist Mark Stein turned up with the great Tommy Bolin and Alice Cooper. He wrote his autobiography in 2011. read more