Shawn Phillips is one of those legends that had been swept up in mystery, disappeared under the cloak of the sixties, or stripped of acknowledgement due to dirty management and contracts. Such is the case with the twelve-string acoustic genius, Shawn Phillips, one time flat partner with Tim Hardin, who played the Indian sitar for Donovan on “Sunshine Superman” and exquisite “Three Kingfishers”.
At the age of twenty Shawn moved to London and became known as a prolific writer, musician, and vocalist. Not only did he tutor Joni Mitchell at a very young age, but also this Texas born folk musician was a regular at the Bleecker / McDougal folk clubs of the early sixties.
Shawn’s 1974 Furthermore release has ex Big Three / Quartermass bassist John Gustafson ploughing into the progressive intro “January First”. It is here that you realize that Shawn was far from folk, but more in the jazzy confines of intricate Progressive Rock. As if to pacify the mayhem Shawn paints his brushes through the tranquil “Starbright” with Peter Robinson etching the canvass with his rippling keyboards while ex Blue Mink Anne Odell bends the mellotron on this choral stargazer. Shawn once told me on a 10min radio interview that Furthermore was his absolute assault and creation.
The album also boasts the ethereal cello of Paul Buckmaster, a master arranger of note. This album has dimension beyond the shifting sands of Camel or Caravan such as the spacey “Cape’ Barras” airlifting Shawn’s yodel vox. Shawn recruited phase axe innovator Caleb Quaye for the guitar inquisitions that sprouted out of “Ninety Two Years” and “Talking In The Garden”.Perhaps the most moistening deliverance saddles the infectious “Breakthrough”, a master in it’s own reflection. Each of Shawn’s albums has a dazzling gem that often blinds the listener, namely Collaborations that gave us the stirring “Moonshine” and “Spring Wind” while Furthermore, shimmered through “Talking in the Garden”, and then there was Bright White and the underrated Rumpelstiltskin Resolve.
by Shiloh Noone
1. January First (Shawn Phillips, Peter Robinson) - 3:11
2. Starbright - 3:51
3. Breakthrough - 5:45
4. Ninety Two Years - 3:07
5. See You - 4:14
6. Planscape (Shawn Phillips, Paul Buckmaster) - 4:16
7. Troof - 4:24
8. Cape Barres - 4:01
9. Song For Northern Ireland - 2:06
10.Mr. President - 3:35
11.Talking In The Garden - 3:13
12.Furthermore - 2:32
All selections written by Shawn Phillips except where noted
*Shawn Phillips - Vocals, Guitars
*Peter Robinson - Keyboards
*John Gustafson - Bass
*Barry De Souza - Drums
*Caleb Quaye - Guitar
*Paul Buckmaster - Cello
*Raul Mayora - Percussion
*Ann Odell - Mellotron On "Starbright"
1969-72 Shawn Phillips - Faces (2014 remaster)
1970 Shawn Phillips - Contribution / Second Contribution (2009 remaster)