Chris Darrow’s first paid gig was playing bluegrass with David Lindley on the streets of Disneyland in the early 1960s. The duo went on to form Kaleidoscope — a Middle Eastern-inflected psychedelic combo — and released a pair of cult classics before Darrow headed out on his own to become a hired gun for everyone from Leonard Cohen to the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. In the early 1970s, he released a pair of solo albums: Chris Darrow in 1973, and Under My Own Disguise the following year. The good folks at Everloving Records are releasing both as a double-LP box set that also includes the CD version.Darrow is a crack player and picker, and these two discs are brimming with equal parts country blues and starry bluegrass. Delightfully obscure and chock full of that California cowboy melancholy thatÂ so many great records are steeped in. It’s great stuff from a brilliant producer who has been hard at it for a long time. Fans of the New Riders of the Purple Sage, CSNY, David Grisman, Dave Alvin, or just good ol’ California roots music will really find something to enjoy here.
Akron/Family together with Ben Harper, Howlin’ Rain and others are performing a special Tribute to Chris Darrow at the (legendary) McCabe’s Guitar Shop in Santa Monica. For tickets and more information, go to Everloving Dot Com.