Ordering Info

 

 


CD cover for the new digital download
edition at BANDCAMP



CD cover for the physical edition of
the album available from us HERE



Hey Podcasters and DJs:
want some free tracks to play on your shows?
Head over to MusicAlley for some
PURPLE MERKINS

Click HERE for a feature article on the band

back to the PCMP main page



______________________________

Thanks to the LITTLE STEVEN'S UNDERGROUND
GARAGE national broadcast and satellite radio
shows for featuring THE PURPLE MERKINS as
a "garage band of the week"!




 





THE PURPLE MERKINS
___________________________________________________________________________

NEW! DIGITAL DOWNLOAD EDITION
now available at our Bandcamp page!
includes full-size CD cover & traycard graphics to print out,
rare photos and complete liner notes

Preview the entire album below: click the >>I button to go to the next song


WANT A REAL MANUFATURED CD INSTEAD OF A DOWNLOAD?
VISIT THE ORDERING PAGE HERE
TO BUY THE PURPLE MERKINS
"Merkinmania!"
CD

__________________________________________________________

about THE PUPRLE MERKINS

By 1991 The Marshmallow Overcoat was getting fancy. The garage-psych group was preparing for
a European tour and recording a new album full of string quartets and Rickenbacker 12-string pop.
So to keep in touch with his 1966-garage-roots, bandleader Timothy Gassen hatched a “side group”
— and named them The Purple Merkins.

The Marshmallow Overcoat would continue on their quest for more sophisticated psych-pop sounds
with bigger budgets in real studios — the Merkins would record crude ’66 fuzz garage, mainly in a
band member’s living room.

The Purple Merkins (named in honor of a pubic toupee Gassen saw in Canada during an Overcoat
tour) would use essentially the same line-up as the Marshmallow Overcoat, and managed to spit
out four seven-inch vinyl releases and two compilation appearances from 1992-1998. All the tracks
— and unreleased songs — were assembled into the limited edition “Merkinmania!” vinyl-only album
in Italy.

Producer Gassen finally dug out the master tapes in 2005 and re-mastered and edited them for a CD, and with some minor additional edits in 2013 for this digital download edition.

The Purple Merkins’ debut tracks (songs #1-2) were recorded in 1991 at 7n7 Studios, where the
Overcoat was at the time also working on new demos. Songs #3-11 were recorded from 1992-1994
at a band member’s house on a ¼” tape machine with three or four microphones and a plethora of
cheap beer.

These tracks are remarkably vibrant considering the crude recording environment and lack of
equipment — and capture the band’s desire for an authentic ’66 sound with plenty of spittle and
mood. They remain Gassen’s favorite of all the Purple Merkins recordings.

Songs #12-19 were recorded in December 1994 at a “real” studio — WaterWorks in Tucson, Arizona — which was also the site of many fine Marshmallow Overcoat recordings from 1986-2011. Randy McReynolds engineered most of the Overcoat sessions, and he joined in on guitar for the Merkins both in these recordings and on stage as well.

These eight songs were recorded “live,” with the band performing all in the same room and with no
overdubs. More than that, they were recorded one after another as if the band were performing a live stage show. (There was a small studio audience, too.) A rough mix of the session was later broadcast on the local “Peyote Stomp” concert radio show.

The Merkins and Overcoat were so intertwined that Misty Lane Records mistakenly issued the Purple Merkins’ version of “My Flash On You” as The Marshmallow Overcoat on the 1996 “Transworld Garage” compilation. (An improved, shorter version of the song is issued for the first time here.)

Conversely, the Overcoat issued “A Song For Steven” as a bonus cut on a 1996 CD; the track was
actually recorded in the WaterWorks session by the Merkins.

It’s easy now to consider “Merkinmania!” only as a phantom album from the Marshmallow Overcoat,
filling in the parent group’s musical gaps. But The Purple Merkins stand on their own fuzz guitar feet,
Farfisa organ pumping away, empty beer cans piled in the corner.

So get going, kids — start your own ’66 garage band!

Liner notes by Marcus Tybalt, Jr.
___________________________________________________________________________

THE PURPLE MERKINS

Timothy Gassen:
vocals, congas, keyboards and tambourine
Debra Dickey:
Vox & Farfisa keyboards
Alan Ostreicher:
DanElectro & Rickenbacker guitars
Sean Randel:
Fender bass

with guests:
drums: Bryan “Itchy” Merkin (#12-19), Dylan Smith (#1,2) Howie Salmon (#3-11)
guitar: Randy McReynolds (#11-19) & Al Perry (#1,2)

Engineered by Randy McReynolds, T.G. and Jim Waters
Special thanks to What Wave, Rockadelic, Dionysus, Dr. Vinyl/Zebra, and Psych-Out!
___________________________________________________________________________

PURPLE MERKINS DISCOGRAPHY

"Purple Merkin Power" b/w "Get On This Plane" vinyl 45, 1992
What Wave Magazine, Canada

"Ain't Got Enough" b/w "The Wind Blows Your Hair" vinyl 45, 1994
Rockadelic Records, USA

Dig It! 4 song 7" vinyl EP, 1995
Dionysus Records, USA

Baby's Got Kinks! 4 song 7" vinyl EP, 1996
Doctor Vinyl Records, Belgium

Transworld Garage (compilation) vinyl LP, 1996
Misty Lane Records, Italy
"My Flash On You" (mistakenly credited to The Overcoat)


Battle Royal (compilation) vinyl LP/CD, 1998
"Cock-A-Hoop"
Blood Red Records, USA


Merkinmania! 19 song vinyl LP, 1998
Psych-Out Records, Italy

Merkinmania! 19 song CD, 2005
Dionysus Records, USA

Lost In Tyme Magazine (compilation CD), 2007, Greece
"She's Coming Home"

Rumble Skunk Magazine (compilation CD), 2008, Greece
"Ain't Got Enough"
___________________________________________________________________________