Take note: most of what's mentioned in this page are made possible by the CD  Blood, Sweat & Tears, "What goes up" album, all written by Al Quagleri.

Blood, Sweat & Tears

How It All Began

     Steve Katz and friend Bobby Colomby, a jazz drummer, are listening to the Buckinghams' Time and Changes LP, and saying "Jeez , I wish we could do that kind of thing." That kind of specific "kind of thing" is a pop group attached to the ambitious horn and string arrangements of producer James Guercio.  Al Kooper was recruited by the two as the keyboardist for the band.
       This was the beginning of what is to be called "
       On November 11, 1967, Blood, Sweat & Tears enter the Columbia studio for the first time. In one month's time, the debut album as to be started. John Simon produced.


The Debut

     The debut album "Child is the Father to Man" was released on Febuary 21, 1968 under Colombia records.  And what was the audience's first reaction? "What in Holy Hell is this?!!". Even so, it won the appraisal of Rolling Stone saying "Blood,Sweat & Tears is the best thing to happen in rock and roll so far in 1968".  This album contained the songs: "I Can't Quit Her", "House in the Country", and "I Love You More Than You'll Ever Know".  For the first time in rock, horns are there for more than R&B riffing or symphonic interludes; they're the gold threads seamlessly interwoven into paisley tapestry. Even though it was a breakthrough in music, the album peaked at only #47 in the charts.  Because of Rolling Stone's praise and a Grammy nomination, Al Kooper began working on the next BS&T album, searching for songs in his collection for follow-up material.
       Two months after the release of their debut album, there arose an argument within the band members.  On this album, Kooper was given the position to do what he can for BS&T, say, to be the band leader.  Because of what happened, Katz and Colomby wanted to try their luck on handling this band. Both of them wanted to get a new, better, stronger vocalist. Suspecting a power-play, Kooper backed out and leaves.  Kooper then got an offer to go solo and accepts, leaving the band after their last gig at the Garrick Theatre in New York.
       Kooper stated: "
If people don't believe in what I'm doing, then I don't want to push them. I just can't play personality games". Colomby reacted: "The truth is, if this band were successful, he wouldn't have gone anywhere".
       To make a final effort to lure the public in their album, they released their very first single, "I Can't Quit Her / House In The Country", that came to the shelves on May 28. It didn't reach the chart.

The   New   Cast
The very first regrouping

       Time passed and Blood, Sweat and Tears changed face.  Randy Becker leaves to join the Thad Jones-Mel Band.  He was replaced by Chuck Winfield.  Trumpeter Jerry Weiss departs as well, replaced by Lew Soloff. Dick Halligan transferred from trombone to organ.  Jerry Hyman (trombone) is added, expanding the three-member horn section to four.
      After some searching, Katz finally found the jackpot.  David Clayton-Thomas, a recording star in Canada was invited as the singer for the band, and he accepts.
Right now, Colombia wants another record, ASAP.
They hire producer James Guercio for the upcoming album, whom, as Colomby puts it, "He really didn't stick around. He hated David, he hated Steve, it was like "These guys are prima donnas, I can't stand it, I gotta get outta here."

The Second Album

       The BS&T eponymous second album was released on December 11, just in time for Christmas gift-giving.
       It is a lot different from Child is Father to the Man. The 2nd album was streamlined and un-psychedelic. The first and last parts of the song were straight pop/rock, while in the middle, it is where you can see the jazz influences of the group. Not only do vocals cease, but tempos and feels often change drastically, welcoming the arrival of jazz parts.
       Blood, Sweat & Tears, the album, featured the songs "You've Made Me So Very Happy", "More and More", "And When I Die", "Sometimes In Winter", "Smiling Phases", "Spinning Wheel", and "God Bless The Child".  
   The very first single, "You've Made Me So Very Happy", reaches #2 in the charts, goes gold, and pulls the album along for a ride.
       Colomby: "So, all of a sudden, we were the band du jour, as big as any band could be." Indeed, BS&T were everywhere, from radio to TV to rock/jazz festivals. "The jazz critics loved us, and that was the biggest surprise. I expected to get lambasted by jazz critics, but I think they saw us as an opportunity, a door opening for what they did, where all of a sudden, jeez, you know, like I'm writing for nine people in this jazz magazine; if a lot of people like jazz, I got a shot here. So it was sort of self serving" Colomby continues.
      Despite their success, there was one group that hated BS&T: the rock critics. They said that BS&T's new album betrays the promise of Child is Father to the Man, that the rock doesn't rock enough, and that the jazz wasn't avant enough.
in April 1969, Blood, Sweat & Tears (the album) goes gold.
      But for the young, they suspected BS&T's popularity. They were in The Tonight Show, The Lawrence Welk Show, and because of this, they were associated with your parents. People say: "They sound nice, but they are so ugly". Colomby states, "We're the ugliest band ever born.  When we play, I expect to find puke in the aisles".
      But, they did score some points when they played in Woodstock. I bet you did not know that, for every Woodstock historical souveneir, from the soundtrack to the movie, BS&T was excluded. It just ain't fair.
      The month following Woodstock, they return to the studio to begin work on their next album. Some songs that they were planning to do are: "All Along The Watchtower", "Can't Be So Bad", and "Martha, My Dear".
      By the end of September, a new single, "And When I Die / Sometimes in Winter" hit the shelves. By the next month, it reached #2. In the same month, Blood, Sweat & Tears was certified platinum, then triple platinum. The people, still hungry for this sort of music, bought BS&T's first album. Child Is Father To Man then became gold.

Problems Arising
Part 1

      The management of the band began negotiations with the U.S. Immigration to give the Canadian lead singer David Clayton-Thomas a green card.  After some talk, in the end, BS&T was going to do a little favor for the U.S. State Department.  
      Still deeply involed in the unpopular Vietnam War, the Nixon Administration's State Department needs desperately to connect with the American youth.  It then proposes Blood, Sweat & Tears on a $40,000 goodwill tour of East Europe. The idea was to bring a straight rock/jazz band behind the Iron Curtain to bring good vibes and a small taste of America to the youth of Romania, Poland and Yugoslavia.
      The band hated the idea but they didn't have much choice, especially if they wanted to have future plans with their lead vocalist.  The tour itself was a major disaster.  On the first night, the Romanian audience began standing and shouting "U.S.A.".  The Bucharest police's response was to release attack German shepherds.  The Communist government gives the band explicit rules on performance: more jazz, less rock; if the audience begins to make noise, leave stage; no more than two encores; no throwing of musical instruments; fewer body gestures; no removal of clothes. The result was a concert whose audince was totally repressed teens.  Colomby stated: "There was an article in the New York Post, I did an interview with somebody, and they made it sound like I and the rest of the band were like stunch right-wingers, we believed in the massacre at Kent State, this was our idea, we all should have short hair, we worked for the CIA...it was unbelievable."

The Third Album
"Blood, Sweat & Tears 3"

      Colombia has timed the release of this album to correspond with the triumphant return of the group to these shores.
       Instead of spring boarding off the good vibes, their promotion department spends most of its time knee deep in damage control.
      The band had mixed feelings about the band.  "We were self-conscious.  When you put out a record and you have fun doing it, like we did with the second one, all of a sudden it's like this huge album.  And your'e compared to all these bands, and you need to put out a better album next time.  It's unbelievable pressure, and you get lost in it.  You lose the fun.  As soon as it's not fun anymore, it starts sounding like the third album sounded, like 'Sympathy For The Devil', which is, like ridiculous.  And that's when the fun started to leave the band, as far as I was concerned." says Steve Katz.  Still, the third album had some high points, like "Hi-De-Ho", "Lucretia Mac Evil", "He's A Runner", "Something's Coming On", and "40,000 Headmen".  Upon release, it spent two weeks at the top of the charts.  The single "Hi-De-Ho / The Battle" tops out at #14.  The jazz critics continue to fawn over the group, praising their precision, their arrangements, and their musicianship.
      Still, the rock critics hate the group, calling BS&T inflexible.  Clayton-Thomas responds: "Man, your'e so used to the concept of an Alvin Lee / Ten Years After-type jam session, where the rhythm section holds three chords and the guitar player goes crazy for an hour.  This band, man, does more free blowing on stage than practically any rock band that I know of.  But we do it within a very literate and educated framework. A lot of people say, well gee, it sounds so precise.  Well, that's the way these guys play.  I mean, if you go to Julliard for five or six years, you learn to play precisely."
      On September 14, the single "Lucretia Mac Evil / Lucretia's Reprise" hits the street, to peak two months later at #29.

Problems Arising
Part 2

      On January 1971, Blood, Sweat & Tears help inagurate Columbia's new San Francisco studios with tracking for their next release.  This time around, the horn section, seeking a savvy outsider with an objective point of view, recruits jazz writer/saxman/composer Don Heckman to co-produce. Heckman has never produced a recording, but claims that "anyone can produce as long as they have the musical credentials to bring it off".
       In a brief, significant break from recording, BS&T becomes one of the first "rock bands" to every play in Las Vegas.  What they were thinking was the rock critics would thank them for paving the way into a new market.  They could not believe that the only thing that happened to them was to be called a "lounge act".  It opened the doors for other bands to play there, and everybody did.  But because they were the first, they were called a "lounge act".

Their Fourth Album
BS&T  4

       Back in the studio, in a suprising move, they asked Al Kooper to come a lend a hand in the album to put in some balance, to write some arrangements, and/or contribute a song , but the main thing was to help BS&T to recover from their deep-jazz direction.  Kooper: "Man, I got off the phone and I jumped up and down for ten minutes, I was so happy".  
       The album 'BS&T 4' came out at the end of june.  It featured mostly original songs, and, in a month, turned gold.  Rock critics were impressed, stating: "The best Blood, Sweat & Tears album since the first".  Clayton-Thomas wrote "Go Down Gamblin'" and "Lisa Listen To Me".  Steve Katz wrote "Valentines Day" and also co-wrote ""Mama Gets High" with Dave Bargeron.  Al Kooper contributed "John The Baptist (Holy John)".
       The album reaches the chart at #10.  The single "Go Down Gamblin' / Valentines Day" reaches #32.  The single "Lisa, Listen To Me / Cowboys and Indians" rose only until #73.
       At this point, the band was generally seperated into three groups: 1) The rockers, which is composed of the rhythm section; 2) The jazzers, which is composed of Colomby and the horn section; 3) The Vegas star, composed of David Clayton-Thomas.  Because of this, creative tension became plain tension as one group begins to hate the other.

The Big Change

       Of course bands have to change personnel one time or the other, but nothing comes close to this.
       First to leave was trombonist Jerry Hyman, who is replaced by Dave Bargeron.  Several months later, David Clayton-Thomas left the band.  Fred Lipsius also quits.
       Colomby: "When David quit, it was certainly okay for everybody.  He needed to quit for us and for him.  There was certainly less acrinomy than when Al Kooper left.  This was sor of mutual, 'We've been married way too long' thing.  His lifestyle, his musical ambitions and ours were very different".
       Clayton-Thomas was replaced by Bob Doyle, a talented vocalist/pianist.  Fred Lipsius was replaced by Joe Henderson, a respected player with a string of Blue Note and Milestone LP's to his name.  Georg Wadenius, a Swedish guitarist, was recruited to join the band.  At this time, no advances happened for the band was feeling each other out because of the big changes in personnel.  It was a very, very difficult time for the band.  
       During this time, Columbia releases Blood, Sweat & Tears: The Greatest Hits.  In two months, it peaks at #19.  After another month, it was certified gold.  
       Still, the band went through more changes.  Doyle had a hard time singing above the horns, and Jerry Fisher, a better musician, replaced him.  Joe Henderson was replaced by Lou Marini Jr.
Larry Willis replaced Dick Halligan on keyboards.  

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