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The Greatest West Coast Acid Rock Bands in the World (or rather my favourites)


On the West Coast of America lysergic acid had a dramatic effect on bands and music from LA and San Francisco in the mid to late sixties. The counterculture was in full swing and a whole slew of music sprang up that reflected the values and catered for the preferences of these counterculture communities.

They were actually influenced by earlier bands such as the Loving Spoonful and Byrds and also by Bob Dylan.

Some of the bands came in from the Folk Scene – such as Jefferson Airplane and Country Joe and the Fish and some came in from the Blues side – such as Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band, the Grateful Dead and the Doors. Then we had Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention who were a more experimental mixture of Doo-wop and social satire with dollops of weirdness.

The LA scene tended to be different to the San Francisco scene but the two cross-pollinated.

Here’s some of my favourites:

Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band

Country Joe and the Fish

The Doors

Buffalo Springfield


The Mother’s of Invention

Big Brother and the Holding Company

Jefferson Airplane

Quicksilver Messenger Service


Grateful Dead

Blue Cheer

Crosby Stills Nash and Young


Electric Prunes

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