Danny Ben-Israel


[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=njOC9qVJu7g&w=300&h=183]

Danny Ben Israel had a couple of hits with The Northern Command Troupe (among the IDF draftees, some of those with any talent got assigned to one of the many entertainment units.) After getting discharged, he attended the Festival of the Isle of Wight and discovered the correct usage of sex and drugs while travelling Europe. Eventually, he came back to Israel and (in 1970) created one of the greatest psychedelic masterpieces ever – that was “Bullshit 3 1/4”. I had remembered him fondly from my teenage years when my voice was squeaky and clean just like his and I used to love to sing his stuff. So, when I found this LP in a cut-out bin I bought it. I didn’t quite know what to make of it at the time, but happily I did not dispose of it. Over the years I came to realize that I had stumbled upon a very rare and amazing psychedelic gem. It turns out that around that time he also recorded enough material for a second album that was unheard of until 2003 when a little outfit named Merry Records got hold of the masters and issued for the first time anywhere, a collection of recordings titled “The Kathmandu.Sessions.” I only got hold of it in December, 2005 and it is truly a masterpiece and a must for any scholar of pshychedelia and/or pot head. Anyway, it seems there isn’t any more of this anywhere and so that it doesn’t end there, I will try to create some tunes to celebrate my find. Hope at least some of you will enjoy them.
My idea was to somehow mirror the original and name it ‘Whatever Happened to Danny Ben-Israel?’ – my working titles were as follows (original title in parantheses:)

1.Introduction (Introduction)
2.Brattleboro (Katmandu)
3.Bus Trip (Bad Trip)
4.I Believe in Fairytales (Do You Believe in Fairytales?)
5.Gibsons (Seagulls)
6.Stand there and Let Me Look (Can’t Stand You)
7.The Assholes of Today are the Hippies of Yesterday (The Hippies of Today are the Assholes of Tomorrow)

For many years Danny was not heard of and he just disappeared from the music scene. In the last 5 or so however, he’s made some kind of comeback and he is putting on shows now and then covering his bigger radio hits. His 7th prophesy on the Katmandu Sessions apparently was referring to his future self. Too bad.

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2 Responses to Danny Ben-Israel

  1. Ernie S Llime says:

    Sometimes, I tend to blend my things with their original influences, so this is perhaps a little bit more than a review. I wrote this sometime in 2003, but I just ran across it and I felt that it belongs here.

  2. A Haggard Reader says:

    Yes Mr. Llime, Kathmandu is great! Wish you finished yours As of now we can just ask: Whatever happened to Mr. Llime’s ‘Whatever Happened to Danny Ben-Israel’?

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