AB Skhy – Camel Back


Howard Wales


Listen – AB Skhy – Camel Back – MP3″

Greetings all.

The end of the week is upon us, and I figured that I ought to close things out with something a little hot.
Just last week a commenter specifically requested “some more those obscuro greasy funky kickin’ Hammond 45’s”, and never one to neglect the wants and needs of my audience, I bring you just such a record today.
Though I’ve known the name ‘A.B. Skhy’ for years, I had no idea what the group sounded like, nor – once I was deep in the crates – that their organist was none other than Howard Wales.
Wales, who played keyboards on the first ‘A.B. Skhy’ LP, also recorded with the Grateful Dead (he’s on ‘American Beauty’) and Jerry Garcia (‘Hooteroll’) , as well as cranking out the rare Hammond killer ‘Huxley’s Howl’ (yes, I’m still looking for a copy…). Prior to A.B. Skhy he played on the road with the likes of Ronnie Hawkins and the Coasters, and in the studio with Freddie King and Lonnie Mack.
I was first turned on to ‘Camel Back’ – as has happened many times before, and will continue to happen – via the sales list of my man Haim*. I listened to a sample and decided that whatever the cost I needed to give this particular 45 a home in my DJ box (I dropped it at the AP 45 Sessions back in March).
The very cool thing about this 45, aside from the obvious funkyness, and the Hammond and the drums, is the fact that when you buy this one, you get the 45 edit on one side and the full five minute plus LP edit (which I bring you today) on the flip. That’s what I call service.
Things get off to a slamming start, with the blazing horns, and Wales working it out on the clavinet, until about a minute and a half into the song, where the horn section drops out, Wales switches to the Hammond and the band gets into a very tight groove.
Oddly enough, ‘Camel Back’ actually charted (just barely) in 1969, though giving the first section of the tune a good listen, it’s not too far removed from the Blood Sweat & Tears/Chicago Transit Authority vibe that was so popular at the time.
As always, I hope you dig it, and I’ll be back on Monday with some more sounds.


PS If you missed the very first Funky16Corners Radio Show over at Viva Internet Radio, it’s archived here.

*Haim is an old friend, who also happens to be a serious record collector and dealer who has turned me on to COUNTLESS fantastic records over the years. Do a Google search for “funky16corners+haim” and see how many times I’ve mentioned him over the years. His crates, and knowledge are deep.

PSS Don’t forget to head over to Iron Leg for some 60s pop

PSS Check out Paperback Rider as well.

8 Responses to “AB Skhy – Camel Back”

  1. Molly Says:

    Ah… it doesn’t get much better than this. Red hot Hammond, screamin’ trumpet, great beat! Thanks for sharing this one.

  2. funky16corners Says:

    My pleasure. I was beginning to wonder if anyone liked it!

  3. Guy Magic Says:


    Real nice one indeed Larry, thanks.

  4. Corey Says:

    Great track! Thanks Larry.

  5. John Spencer Says:

    I did buy the 45 in ’69. Of course, I ‘lost’ the 45. I did purchase the CD that contained Camel Back. It really was the horns that struck me. And as a drummer at the time, I really did like what the drummer was doing.

    Than(x) for this great post!!

  6. Can’t Help Lovin’ « The Hits Just Keep On Comin’ Says:

    […] “Camel Back”/A.B. Skhy (12/6/69). Rockin’ the clavinet with a group featuring Howard Wales, sometime sideman with the Grateful Dead. More at Funky16Corners. […]

  7. Kate Xavier Says:

    THANK YOU! Been looking forever for a listen to my friend Denny Geyer’s band,
    most especially CAMEL BACK ! It got a lot of play here in Sacto in the 70s and I miss it since I didn’t have a turntable to play my album for a long time. Glad to know others appreciated them as much as I do.
    Kate Xavier, fka Kathy Shedlosky

  8. jsh Says:

    man…I didn’t know Wales had this in him! I have a ‘jazz’ album of his and Jerry Garcia’s that I love (Side Trips) that is nothing like this

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