Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Family Tree - Miss Butters (1968 canada, sophisticated psychedelia, Rev Ola extra tracks edition)

It’s great to see an album like Miss Butters finally getting the reissue treatment it deserves. The Family Tree was the product of the genius of Bob Segarini, and their only album is a fantastic and interesting conceptual piece with tunes as memorable as any Broadway musical (only really cool).

This record is a must for any Nilsson fan, not alone for some of the similar feels, it was recorded at the same studio as Aerial Ballet, using the same arranger for orchestra parts, same producer, and Harry even wrote a track. A Nilsson album in spirit, but unlike anything he was capable of creating. The Miss Butters recording is superb in its production, the equal of any Beatles record, and soars with string arrangement, backing vocal, and complex song structure.

Previously, Miss Butters was presented in an unapproved stereo mix on vinyl. The CD reissue has remastered audio from the master tapes presented in original mono (and really, really nice sounding). This is a masterful reissue from Revola for a record that truly deserves it. Bravo.
by Brendan McGrath 
1. Birthday/ Dirgeday - 1:29
2. Melancholy Vaudeville Man - 2:02
3. Any Other Baby - 3:27
4. Sideshow - 3:21
5. Mrs. Mcpheeny (Has Flu In Her Chest And Has Needed A Rest For So Long) - 4:11
6. Butters Lament (Harry Nilsson) - 2:14
7. Simple Life - 3:38
8. Slippin' Thru My Fingers - 2:47
9. Nine To Three - 2:53
10.Lesson Book Life - 1:57
11.Nickelodeon Music - 2:04
12.Miss Butters - 4:18
13.Underture - 1:33
14.Keepin' A Secret - 2:19
15.Do You Have The Time? - 2:10
16.She Had To Fly - 1:49
17.He Spins Around - 2:36
All songs by Bob Segarini unless as else stated
Bonus Tracks 14-17

The Family Tree
*Bob Segarini - Guitar, Vocals
*Bill Trochim - Bass
*Jimmy De Cocq - Guitar, Keyboards
*Michel Dure - Vocals, Keyboards
*Vann Scater - Drums

Free Text


  1. I love a good late 1960's Beatles inspired album. There were quite a few of these released in the states in 1967-1968 when many of the garage bands traded in fuzz and snarl for moustaches and melody in the post Sergeant Pepper apocalypse. Music cynics have often declared this period as the end of pop's innocence, paving the way for overblown stadium rock and the like. There may be a little bit of truth in this, especially in the mainstream but there are always exceptions. Bob Segarini is an exception, a true champion of the melodic pop song. Bob knew that no matter what, you gotta have pop!

    A classic of West Coast psychpop. and a much sought after gem, after the breakup of San Francisco garage groups The Brogues ("Ain't no miracle worker"), most members went on to Quicksilver Messenger Service. Bassist Bill Whittington formed The Family Tree with Bob Segarini of The Ratz and the enigmatic Lee Michaels....the latter soon dropped out, and a couple of innovative singles for the mysterious LA based Mira label brought them to the attention of not only RCA, but Sunbury music's Dick Campbell and his friend and big hope, Harry Nilsson....with input from Harry (at this time being hailed as a genius by The Beatles nd writing songs for everyone from The Monkees and The Turtles on down) the band embarked on the semi-conceptual album "Miss Butters". An amazing semi-lost gem of West Coast psychpop genius on a par with Harry Nilsson's own records of the period - the evidence? Draw the comparisons to Nilsson's "Aerial Ballet": ‘Miss Butters’ was recorded in Los Angeles in 1968. Same producer. Same arranger. Same album cover painter. Same studio Nilsson co-wrote one of the tunes. Released the same week as "Aerial Ballet." (The "Aerial Ballet" RCA selection number was 3956. "Miss Butters" was 3955), But the thing is... it's even BETTER than that, and this deluxe first-time reissue also contains the great and amazingly rare non-LP singles...what are you waiting for!!!!! First EVER time on CD for this enigmatic and collectable group! Beautifully remastered from the original MONO mastertapes (the stereo mix was done by an assistant engineer alone and is a travesty according to the band members!). Amazing packaging including previously unpublished photos and in-depth liner notes with the participation of the legendary Bob Segarini. Predated Roxy, The Wackers, and his solo power pop opus, "Gotta Have Pop".
    Thx Marios.

  2. What a surprise !! A great album of 60s pop, very Beatles/Beach Boys/Zombies-sounding. Thanks a lot Marios for this gem !!