The music of The Turtles is the most delicious Bubblegum Pop in the history of dry land. The vocal harmonies of duel vocalists Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman are perhaps only second to The Beach Boys at their finest, and arguably, The Cowsills. We all know and love "Happy Together," but The Turtles were by no means a one-hit-wonder by any stretch of the imagination, heavens no. Between the years of 1965 thru 1970, The Turtles had puttin' near ten Top Ten hits, how 'bout that, huh? Better than anything you could do, wise guy! Other classic gems include "You Baby" and the Howard Kaylan penned "Eleanor." The very best record by The Turtles is in fact their final, and it's an awesome gem of the Psychedelic Pop genre that was produced by none other than Ray Davies of The Kinks! The record in question is entitled "Turtle Soup," and do try your best to find the original vinyl LP because the sound is absolutely delish!
Another little interesting curiosity in The Turtles catalogue is their 1968 epic concept record called "The Turtles Present The Battle of The Bands." This record kicks genuine goose nards all night long and then some, my sweet, sweet treasure. On each cut The Turtles play the role of a fictional band, and on one tune they pretend to be Acid Rockers with a little jam called "Atomic Enchilada." You really ought to give these guys a shot, because The Turtles are Bubblegum Pop with a wee bit of Sophistication, because we're not talking about The Ohio Express here, ladies and gentle bears! So don't even front with that noise, because daddy likes to boogie. And so, there you have The Turtles. Although, the journey does not end there, because in the next paragraph I will introduce you to the post-Turtles career of The Fluorescent Leech & Eddie.
Hello, and welcome to the next paragraph! (They sure don't get this irreverent over at Mark Prindle Dot Com, do they, tough guy?) Now then, The Turtles got their collective buttocks into a legal scrap with their label to where they no longer owned The Turtles trademark, but it was Frank Zappa to the rescue, and the second Mothers of Invention were then birthed real horrorshow. Things got really strange with Howard and Mark around this time, as they now advertised themselves as Flo & Eddie respectively. Just watch Frank Zappa's 200 Motels to get a vague idea, in short, a lot of drugs, mate...quite a lot. Flo & Eddie are the chubby duo that gave the amazing backing vocal performances for Zappa in the early '70's and in 200 Motels they take a little trip to Centerville (A nice place to raise your kids!). Indeed, The Turtles were given a bit of street cred at this time, and celebrated by opening gigs for the original Alice Cooper group in '73 that was on "The Billion Dollar Babies" tour at that time.
Once ultimately parting ways with Zappa then, Flo & Eddie released a handful of Comedy Rock albums throughout the majority of the '70's and into the '80's. That's right, Ween wasn't the first duo to get genuinely wacky with massive drug use and the weird music that came out of it. And being such quality and diverse Pop music vocalists, The Turtles offered their services to a great many artist of Rock Royalty, such as John Lennon, and most notably with Marc Bolan and his T-Rex Glam Rock outfit, as it is Flo & Eddie you hear screaming the high-pitched backing vocals on Mark's smash hit "Bang A Gong (Get It On)." In fact, they are all over T-rex's "Electric Warrior" and "The Slider." These days, The Turtles have long since settled their legal jargon and now own their rightful name, but unfortunately, they've been pretty much on the Oldies circuit since 1985. However, dig in and investigate the music of The Turtles and Flo & Eddie, because I think you are going to find something substantial buried underneath the surface. Are they in fact underrated? Oh, yes, indeed they are, my friend. Indeed they are...
And here they are getting weird on the old Mike Douglas show:
It was just drugs and fun back in those days, mate.