Minor heroes of the East Coast garage-psych boom of the late ’60s, the Druids of Stonehenge were a New York-based band. With an average age of 17, the group formed as the Druids in 1965, and that November a lineup comprised of Budge, guitarists Carl Hauser and Billy Tracy, bassist Tim Workman, and drummer Steve Tindall entered Manhattan’s Nola Studios. This first session produced versions of “Who Do You Love,” “Baby Please Don’t Go,” “Pretty Thing,” and “I Put a Spell on You”; further sessions cut over the next year or so included similarly seething covers of Bo Diddley’s “I (Who Have Nothing)” and “Bald Headed Woman.” These earliest recordings have since been compiled onto a self-titled Sundazed mini-album, selections and performances that place the band firmly in the Rolling Stones/Pretty Things-flavored camp of brutally high-octane R&B.

Creation In 1968, the newly renamed and psychedelically realigned Druids of Stonehenge relocated to the West Coast and, signing to the Uni label, cut the single “A Garden Where Nothing Grows” and the album Creation. Notable for further stylized covers, Dylan’s “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue” and Love’s “Signed D.C.” among them, together with a fiery retread of “I Put a Spell on You,” the album was recorded in two sets of sessions, the bulk at TTG in L.A., the remainder back at Nola in New York. For many years best known only for the two songs later culled for the Baubles, Vol. 1 compilation, “Six Feet Down” and “Pale Dream,” Creation has also since been reissued by Sundazed.

The band appeared on television’s Joe Franklin Show around the time of the album’s release, performing “Paint It Black”; the lineup now included future Seatrain/Randall’s Island alumni Elliott Randall, who replaced Tracy following the California sojourn. However, no further releases were forthcoming and the Druids of Stonehenge broke up in 1969. Occasional partial reunions have taken place in recent years, including a very well-received show in New York in late April 2008.

Tahsin Ünlü

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