by Robert Bell
BREWER AND SHIPLEY
5 p.m. Basin Spring Park, Eureka Springs. Free.
To be real candid about it, my mom is not exactly the most hip musical connoisseur. Back in 1970 or so, about the time The Stooges were recording "Fun House" and Black Sabbath's "Paranoid" was just hitting the shelves, my mom was a sophomore in high school. She was definitely not listening to either of those records, but one day, she heard this song on the radio that she really dug. It had a great rhythm and nice harmonies and it was called "One Toke Over the Line." It mentioned Jesus, so how could it not be wholesome, right? A duo called Dale and Gail even sang a version of it on the Lawrence Welk Show (seriously — this actually happened).
So she went to Walmart and bought the 45 for $0.77. Well, it'd be another several, several years before my mom learned what a "toke" was, and another many years before I'd find that record, along with the only other single she had ever purchased — "Close to You" by The Carpenters. After my grandmother died, we were cleaning out her house, and those two 45s had been stuck in a chest of drawers.
I've got them both, and I listened to "One Toke Over the Line" and you know what? It's a great song. But you know what else? Brewer and Shipley had a bunch of great songs, released on several albums. If you dig folky country rock in the vein of "Workingman's Dead" or CSNY, definitely check out "Weeds" and "Tarkio Road." Tom Shipley and Mike Brewer have been keeping on keeping on after all these years. This show is free and it's from 5-7 p.m. and I don't think there's any opening band, which in my opinion is how every single concert should be.