The Musicians of Laurel Canyon and the Sunset Strip.

I'd like people who join this little blog to discuss the amazing hippy musicians who convened on a little town called Laurel Canyon, in West Los Angeles, to play their music together. Let's use our words, pictures and autographs to better describe the music, the scene, the decadence, the alliances and the fallouts of the greatest gathering of talented musicians ever to assemble in one place during such a short period of time. 

The music movement in Laurel Canyon was also a reaction to the social and political injustices that the musicians saw happening all around them.

These young, idealistic musicians thought they could change the world, specifically the socioeconomic and political status quo that they so eagerly tried to escape. The late 60's and early 70's were turbulent times, with a lot of political and social upheaval. The hippies in Laurel Canyon were reacting to what they saw happening, particularly the war in Vietnam. They wrote lots of protest songs; songs of hope, change, of coming together, stopping the war, hanging out and learning to love one another. 

Let's discuss the club's these musicians played in, along side other soon-to-be greats, in order to hone their skills and create new alliances. The clubs were a 5 minute hitchhike south of Laurel Canyon: The Roxy, Whisky-A-Go-Go, Troubadour and more.

This should be an amazing adventure. Won't you join me?

I welcome all your creative input and your memories.

Views: 1546

Comment by Dave Stein on December 10, 2015 at 9:07am

Henry Diltz was the primary photographer in Laurel Canyon. Without Henry's candid pictures of the artists there, we wouldn't have many visuals of the scene.

I just purchased a Diltz signed copy of a picture, from the original negative, of

Joni Mitchell in the desert 1970. I love this picture. I bought it from the Morrison Hotel Galleries of West Los Angeles and Soho district of Manhattan. Their is a short bio of Henry's work as well.

Here it is : 

Comment by Barry S on December 10, 2015 at 9:33am
I was born when that was happening, would have liked to been there during that time. Love all those bands. Enjoyed looking at the photos from Diltz, your picture is really cool Dave.
Comment by Dave Stein on December 10, 2015 at 12:42pm

Thanks Barry,

I'm glad you liked my picture of Joni Mitchell. She and Cass Elliot "help court" in Laurel Canyon. They were the "den mothers" there.

. They brought Crosby, Stills and Nash together to sing for the first time in one of their dens. (It's not clear in which person's home that this happened)

It's also not clear which of these two women got Nash to come to Laurel Canyon because he was so disillusioned with being in the Brit band The Hollies.

Please join our group. If you love the music that's all you need. You don't have to be born during the time of Laurel Canyon to learn about it and have fun.


Dave S

Comment by Paul on December 10, 2015 at 12:54pm
The canyon scene must have been different to the riff raff san fran.
There were some deep artist that were in the canyon that ive only recently heard about.
Comment by Dave Stein on December 10, 2015 at 12:55pm

Here's an auto/pic of Waddy Watchel I purchased on eBay. He was in Laurel Canyon in the late 60's and early 70's. He was hanging out and playing guitar

with Keith Richard and Gram Parsons. Of course, he went on to be one of the most sought after and highly paid sidemen in the history of Rock and Roll. A documentary was just released of his life called King of The Sideman. Among all the albums he's played on, he is best known for playing for and producing records

for Warren Zevon, ,playing in the Stevie Nicks and Linda Ronstadt bands.

Here's the picture of Waddy. It's a great shot and captures his spirit.

Comment by Dave Stein on December 10, 2015 at 1:31pm

I neglected to say that Waddy Wachtel also toured and recorded with his friends from the canyon: James Taylor and Jackson Browne

Comment by Dave Stein on December 10, 2015 at 1:33pm

There was a kind of a parallel hippie/freak scene going on in both Laurel Canyon and in San Fran. There were more freaks in San Fran though.

Comment by Steve Cyrkin, Admin on December 10, 2015 at 3:06pm

The freak ratio has evened out. And now the freaks are rich--in both places.

Comment by Dave Stein on December 10, 2015 at 5:20pm


Comment by Terry G. on December 10, 2015 at 11:44pm

Linda Ronstadt writes of her time in Laurel Canyon in her autobiography "Simple Dreams" and the parade of artists who lived in/or around her little shack there was amazing. They seemed to have all hung together and influenced each other a ton.


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