GANDALF - Capitol Records 1969
Cover Design: Lockart
GANDALF 2 - Sundazed Records 2007
Cover Design: Eric Schou / Line Art: Blossom
Note: This New York based 60's group should not be confused with the artist "Gandalf" from Austria who did the soundtrack for "Labrinth" in the '80's, or the more recent GANDALF metal band from Finland.
Peter Sando (Guitar)
Bob Muller (Bass)
Frank Hubach (Keyboards)
Dave Bauer (Drums)
GANDALF, formerly the RAHGOOS prior to their LP release, appeared at various New York clubs throughout the '60's; such as "The Phone Booth", Scott Muni's "Rolling Stone", "The Electric Circus", Murray the K's "World", and the legendary "Night Owl Cafe" in Greenwich Village. It was there that the RAHGOOS met songwriters Garry Bonner and Alan Gordon who brought the band to the attention of record producers Koppelman & Rubin. K&R signed the band and immediately started work on an album for their newly formed "Hot Biscuit Disc Company" label which was distributed through Capitol. K&R suggested various name changes which did not sit well with the group. However, they ultimately decided to forfeit their name and local fan recognition to appease K&R. During a gig at the "Rolling Stone", drummer Davey Bauer was passing the time reading Tolkien's "The Hobbit" while the rest of the band went through the ritual of brainstorming a band name. Davey chimed in, "How about "GANDALF AND THE WIZARDS". That name stuck. The project was delayed after the deal with Capitol fell apart. In the interim, the band lost faith and also dissolved. Subsequently, K&R & Capitol parted ways with the agreement that two more LP's would be released on the Capitol label, and GANDALF was one of them. It was finally released in early 1969, with no band to back it and little promotion. Two songs were penned by guitarist Peter Sando and one, "Can You Travel in the Dark Alone", received a flurry of FM play. The late Allison Steele, "The Nightbird", on WNEW-FM New York, would introduce the song with a lengthy dose of her inimitable psychedelic poetry.
The album has been bootlegged several times on vinyl, and finally legitimately re-released on CD by the UK based See For Miles label in 1997 and now, back in the USA on SUNDAZED in 2002. The single, "Golden Earrings", also appears on the UK Temple Records compilation disc "Psychedelic Frequencies" (TMPCD027). "Hang On To A Dream" is included in "Hippy Dip" on EMI (CDEM 1623).
GANDALF 2, a fabulous stash of spellbinding demos, live tapes, and acetates from Sando's vault, unheard for decades, has been released in 2007 bt the folks at SUNDAZED.