From The Desk Of The Feelies’ Dave Weckerman: Sly And The Family Stone At Woodstock (1969)

Percussionist Dave Weckerman has been part of the Feelies story since 1976 when he, Glenn Mercer and Bill Million formed the Outkids, which quickly evolved into the Feelies. Following the release of seminal 1980 debut Crazy Rhythms, the group went on a sort of short-lived hiatus, though the band members played together in a number of offshoots, including the Trypes, the Willies and Yung Wu. 1987’s Shore Leave was the sole album by Yung Wu, which featured Weckerman as singer/songwriter backed by Mercer, Million and fellow Feelies Brenda Sauter and Stan Demeski. The long-out-of-print Shore Leave has just been reissued by Bar/None, so we asked Weckerman to guest edit He said yes and will be writing about “some favorite things and cultural touchstones in my life (so far)” all week.

Weckerman: You had to be there—and I was. Half the bands I wanted to see didn’t show up. (Jeff Beck Group, Procol Harum and the Moody Blues.) The only bands that I wanted to see were the Incredible String Band and the Who. I saw lots of bands: Santana who were billed—I think—as the Santana Blues Band; they were great. Creedence was like the Ramones of their time, hitting you over the head with hit after hit. But the unexpected surprise was Sly And The Family Stone. I had no idea how powerful a live act they were. They definitely won the battle of the bands. The movie fails to capture an iota of the power of this performance.