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Ivory: Ivory

[cover art]

1973 album with a rare cover of The Band's "Where Do We Go from here".

Ivory was formed in early 1972 as a backup band for the lead singer, Grant Gullickson. However, Grant was somewhat uncomfortable with being the star, and wanted more of a "band" concept. Grant had been in a very successful band while he was in college, called the Canoise. Grant's friend and producer, Tim Alvarado, had the idea to create an all-keyboard band, with no electric guitarist at all. Originally, it was going to consist of three keyboardists and a drummer, but it was soon clear that with the superb musicians Paul Bass on Hammond organ, and Brian Whitcomb on piano, the sound was full and complex. Jim Divisek brought a strong rock feel on drums, but also a focus on eastern rhythms and electronic music acquired during his studies at Cal Arts. Steve Pinkston joined the group after their first bass player did not work out. Later, Grant's brother Lance Gullickson joined the group, and brought expanded vocal harmonies and songwriting skills to the mix.

Ivory has generally been described as a progressive or "prog-rock" band. Certainly, one could hear echoes of Yes, King Crimson, and Procol Harum in their music. But there was also a bit of a jazz influence at work. Live, the group would often do instrumental sets of jazz standards like "Summertime" or "Milestones". Grant's singing onstage was vastly more dynamic than was ever captured in a recording studio, and the live interplay between the musicians was very intense.

Ivory recorded just one album, a self-titled effort on Playboy Records (#PB115), produced by Tim Alvarado. Most of the album was recorded at the legendary Record Plant in Los Angeles. Two different versions were released. On the second version, a Robbie Robertson tune replaced a Kin Vassey tune, in order to qualify as "Canadian content" under that country's airplay rules.

--from the Gibraltar Encyclopedia of Progressive Rock


Side A

  1. Morning Song
  2. Prime Example
  3. Take It Easy
  4. "Where Do We Go from here"
  5. Arrow Beach
  6. Bringing Me Down

Side A

  1. Bear Phaze
  2. Theme For An Imaginary Western
  3. I Want To Tell You
  4. Time After Time

Ivory - Ivory - 1973 - Playboy Records PB 115

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