A Lovin' Spoonful Of Sugar

Jenise Blanc & Randy ChanceBy Jenise Blanc & Randy Chance      August 7, 2020

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A Lovin' Spoonful Of Sugar
The Canyon Chronicle is a great paper! I had a lot of fun reading about all the bands and those are all the favorite stations that I love to listen to right now, the ‘50s and the ‘60s over and over and over again with Randy [Chance], as we drive together! (See,“The Sound of Summer Playing,” by Joel Bellman, The Canyon Chronicle, July 24, 2020). Anyone who has driven with us has gotten the best stories from Randy (who was lead guitarist in the Lovin’ Spoonful and the Boxtops at one time and who did play with Philip Sloan amongst other bands). Whenever he is driving you, he will be giving you a little piece of something from that era to think about!

Randy Chance Remembers

Memories. Having played blues, folk, and rock in Chicago since my early teens, I came to LA in 1973 and started a band right away with friends I met here. We called the band “Free Gravity” and we played the Topanga Corral for the first time that year. We played all the clubs around, shuttling our gear in my VW, the bus I’d driven out here from the Midwest with the mattress in the bottom and the curtains all around.

The Lovin’ Spoonful were more than a favorite band for me, because I’d started out with folk and blues, and like any stoner, I loved Jug Band music. They were also role models for me. For a while during my tender high school years, they (and the Byrds and Dylan) were probably as much of a blueprint of how to be a man as the Very Beatles Themselves!

Jerry Yester played piano on their first hit, “Do You Believe in Magic,” but didn’t become a full-fledged member of the band until right after “Summer in The City” when Zal Yanovsky quit.
Jerry and I met when he’d come out to Chicago to teach some studio production classes that friends of mine were attending. We became bosom buddies and he told me if I ever came out to LA, I could stay with him.

Low and behold, the next spring found me knocking on his door!

One night soon after I’d moved out here, I went to visit Jerry in the studio to see what he was up to. He was editing a song and the phone rang. It was Zal, ex-lead guitarist from the Lovin’ Spoonful, in town to lay down some guitar tracks for one of John Sebastian’s solo albums. Jerry, Zal and I got plastered together that night and hit it off perfectly.

It wasn’t until years later, when Joe Butler, the drummer, and Steve Boone, the bass player, wanted to put the “Spoonful” back together again and do a reunion tour that I got to be in the band.

Those first experiences, you have to understand, how much they meant to me. I had only been in LA for maybe three months, and here I was, hanging out with people who had been heroes of mine just a few years before!
Jenise Blanc & Randy Chance
      August 7, 2020

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