Gary McFarland – Fried Bananas (45 Edit)

By , April 23, 2013 11:50 am


Gary McFarland


Listen/Download Gary McFarland – Fried Bananas (45 edit)

Greetings all

It has – by and large – been a chilly, gray Spring so far.

It has always been thus here in NJ, but you can’t blame me for hoping that the door into summer would swing wide, just this once.

It is in that spirit that I bring you a 45 that is the very essence of summery warmth.

Gary McFarland was one of the preeminent vibists and arrangers of the 1960s working extensively with others as well as building a fairly substantial catalog of his own work.

He was, with Gabor Szabo and Cal Tjader one of the founders of the short-lived (but excellent) Skye label, and died, not yet 40, when someone mysteriously poisoned his drink in a New York bar.

As a performer, McFarland had a style that seemed light on the surface, but always had a lot of complexity running underneath.

He also had some idiosyncratic tendencies as a performer, that were occasionally transcendently groovy, and sometimes annoying.

The track I bring you today falls on the groovy side of things.

Released on his 1966 ‘The In Sound’ LP, ‘Fried Bananas’ is a laid back, sexy Latin groove, featuring a nice guitar solo by Szabo, trombone by the great Bob Brookmeyer, and flute by Sadao Watanabe.

What it also features is McFarland’s wordless singing (a weakness on some of his other records).

The version heard here is the slightly truncated single edit, with the LP version running about 90 seconds longer.

If you get a chance to grab a copy of the original album, do so. It features a number of excellent tracks, but also one of the coolest pop-art covers of the era.

Cal Tjader covered ‘Fried Bananas’ on his 1968 ‘Solar Heat’ album, which featured arrangements by McFarland.

As far as I can tell none of McFarland’s Verve LPs are available in reissue, though much of the Skye catalog can be purchased on iTunes.

I hope you dig the tune (and warm up a bit) and I’ll see you on Friday.

Keep the faith






Also, the brand new Funky16Corners ‘Keep Calm and Stay Funky’ stickers have arrived!

The stickers are 4″ x 3″ and printed on high quality, glossy stock.

They are $2.00 each, with free shipping in the US ($2.00 per order shipping outside of the US).

Click here to go to the ordering page.
Also, make sure that you check out the links below to the Be The Match Foundation and POAC (click on the logos for more info).




PS Head over to Iron Leg too.

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