Saturday, October 29, 2005

The Hallmarks: Soul Shakin' Psychedelic Sally (Smash S-2115)

Now, here's something interesting. This New Jersey group first recorded this as "I Know Why" in 1966, but didn't get it released until it surfaced years later on "Back From The Grave, Vol. 4." When the group got picked up by Smash, they re-recorded it, added lots of groovy psychedelic effects and echoes and altered the words a bit.

Now, it becomes a tale of one "Soul shakin' psychedelic sally from this side of town." It's still a warning of a girl who's "gonna put you down," just as the original was. But now, she's a psychedelic swinger with plenty of wild effects to back her up.

Luckily, this version is just as snotty as the "BFTG" version. The guitars are hot and mean, the singer is snarling and nasty and the drummer is crashing down the rhythms at lightning speed. So, which version is better? I don't know. I like 'em both. Therefore, if the very word "psychedelic" makes your bowels crawl, better stick with the "BFTG" version. But me, I like my kicks any way I can get 'em, so there's plenty of room for the likes of "Soul Shakin' Psychedelic Sally" on my turntable."

BTW, the flip "Girl of My Dreams" is okay teen pop, nothing too special.

4 comments:

Larry Grogan said...

These guys were from Oceanport, right here on the Jersey Shore. I have a 'Sounds of Vista' radio promo LP (it was a radio show featuring a number of artists doing promos for VISTA, which I think was a federal jobs program) that features TWO Jersey Shore garage bands, the Hallmarks (doing this tune) and the Inmates, as well as the Byrds and Simon & Garfunkel.

Tim said...

Is there anyway we could find that track, Sally I mean, anywhere online?

Anonymous said...

I am second cousin to both the songwriter/lead singer/rhythm guitarist Russ Scalzo and the drummer Joe Scalzo of the Hallmarks. I'd like to get that Vista disc. I have a cassette of their songs: the Smash 2115 single, a dub of "I Know Why" off an acetate, and also an unreleased song called "Soul Shakin' Psychedelic SANTA", off which I have an acetate of. It is "SSPS" with different lyrics...

Chris Golda

cpgolda@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

Years ago I picked up a bunch of records that were originally owned by New Jersey rock promoter Johnny Dee. The batch included some test pressings prodeced by Tommy Falcone. One is a song by this group, The Hallmarks, called "Baby We Can Make It Together." It's pretty pop-psych with girls and guys trading verses, and even some almost spoken word, with snakey organ fills in the background. Looks like it was recorded in West Oragnge, NJ. Pretty cool! - Walt Cuje, Little Silver, NJ