Mountain is one of those rare bands in
the past thirty years that can be credited with forging a style and
sound that would for ever change the face of Rock music. The innovative
studio and live music of Leslie West, Felix Pappalardi, Corky Laing
and Steve Knight, Mountain, is one of those elite examples.The
combination of Leslie's unique tone and feel, Felix's studio production
skills,Corky's powerful double bass drumming and Steve's keyboard textures,
produced someof the best and memorable rock tunes ever, Mississippi
Queen, Nantucket Sleighride, Theme From an Imaginary Western, Yasgur's
Farm, Never In My Life, Blood of the Sun, Dreams of Milk and Honey,
all stand the test of time and are forever etched in rock history. These
songs came from the classic rock albums, Leslie West-Mountain, Mountain-Climbing!
and Nantucket Sleighride.Mountain only lasted two and half years but
that's all it took to create their permanent legacy ...
Mountain was born out of the sixties music
explosion. Leslie came from The Vagrants,an East Coast power house band
that was making a name for themselves.Corky came from the band Energy
that was produced by Felix Pappalardi. Felix had extensive producing
credits before Mountain formed in 1969.He was a classically trained
musician who studied conducting and music arranging in college. His skills
eventually lead him to Mountain. He produced Cream's Disreali Gears and
worked with many other prominent artists from the Greenwich Village
folk scene. Steve Knight was brought in by Felix because of prior musical
affliations. Eventually this small web of the music scene brought these
four guys together. They debuted at the Fillmore in 1969 and went on
to play at the granddaddy of all music festivals Woodstock. They established
themselves as one of the premiere rock bands of their time. The band
eventualy called it quits in 1972.
Mountain was one of those magical music collaborations that can't
be duplicated. Just like Cream, the Beatles, Led Zepplin, The Who, The
Jimi Hendrix Experience,The Rolling Stones,or any great band it's a
once in a lifetime twist of fate that brings individuals together to
make their mark on history of music. In their short musical life they
produced three gold albums and created one of the most recognized rock
tunes "Mississippi Queen". The most enduring legacy any band
can hope to achieve is to have others generations of musicians aspire
to copy them. Leslie West's guitar playing did that for many guitarists.
He had that rare gift to have his own tone and touch that helped define
the Mountain sound. Whether you love or hate them ,you can't
deny them their place in rock music.