Monday, December 22, 2014

The South Spotlight: Dr. Spec's Optical Illusion - Tryin' To Mess My Mind/She's The One

The final day of our regional Battle of the Garage Bands for the South Region. Today we are in New Orleans, Louisiana where we get the unique-named band, Dr. Spec's Optical Illusion. This very rare record was released on the not infamous Flambeau Records in the Summer of 1967. The band had gone by the name of the Illusions but when it came time to make a record the label owner's wife and business partner changed the name on the pressing to make it sound more psychedelic. The singer, Kris Sherman, his brother, drummer Scott Sherman, guitarist Marshall Clyburn, bassist Bryce "pinky" Hatchett and organ player Rick Stelma had no idea this name change had gone down. And, apparently, their parents weren't too hip on how things went down and didn't trust the manager, James Miglaccio. Being that not all in the band were old enough to sign, some parents refused to sign the contract. That means the record never got a release beyond it's initial pressing from the plant and never made it's way into stores. Very few of these records are thought to exist today. 

Both songs, Tryin' To Mess My Mind and She's The One, were written by the Kris and Scott Sherman as well as Marshall Clyburn. Somehow they spelled Clyburn's name two different ways on either side of the record. 

Both sides are ravers in the first order. The A-side, Tryin' To Mess My Mind, is ultimately a soul number hidden under a Psych-Rock coat. I dig Pinky's bass work on this number. She's The One starts with a nice bass line and warbly guitar that hint at a slightly earlier era in garage rock. The reverb drenched organ and Kris Sherman's raging vocals put the number right back in 1967.

Until next time, we'll see you On The Flip-Side!


  1. Fantastic selection of original 60's garage/psych and this one is one of the best. Thanks for your time

  2. Two GREAT charging angry numbers! Great guitar work, great singing. The first one, with its blues structure, has a Pretty Things vibe to it.