The Electric Prunes
Biography - Part 6


The last recording line-up of the original Electric Prunes

The 'Mass in F Minor' LP seemed to mark the beginning of the end for the original Electric Prunes. The band seemed to be going in a totally different direction to what it originally been set out to do. Hassinger had total control of the band's name and its output. The band members were arguing amongst themselves, frustrated, working all the time and the money seemed to be going to others. A bad time was being had by all! To make matters worse, the band got a call while out on the road that on their return to Los Angeles, they would be performing the 'Mass in F Minor' album live after only one day's rehearsal. The band didn't know the material and the performance turned out to be a total disaster.

James Lowe left the band in the middle of a tour of Texas. The band continued for about two months after he left. Both Mike Gannon and Joe Dooley also left after James Lowe leaving just Mark Tulin and Ken Williams as the original band members. Mark knew a session drummer named John Raines and he joined the band along with pianist Jeromy (then Jerry) Stuart who was introduced to the band by one of Mark's friends. Jeromy in turn invited a talented musician he knew to join the band - Kenny Loggins who later found fame with Jim Messina as Loggins and Messina and for recording the soundtracks to the 80s films 'Footloose' and 'Top Gun'. This line-up undertook one tour.

The Electric Prunes's final tour line-up with Mark & Ken plus Kenny Loggins & Jeremy Stuart

According to Mark Tulin, this was "possibly the worst tour of all time". They played none of the old Prunes songs but all new songs written either by Loggins or Stuart. Unfortunately, none of this material was ever recorded by this line-up of The Electric Prunes. This tour marked the end of the band and all the recognisable Prunes quit at the same time in circa mid 1968.

Ken Williams with Kenny Loggins in the 1968 line-up of The Electric Prunes

An extract of an interview with Kenny Loggins (KL) by Connecting Voices (CV) is as follows :

CV: Did you have a conscious moment when you decided you wanted to be a performer?

KL: I'd say I made the decision as a sophomore in college. I had been getting money for performing, but I never really saw myself as a professional. When I joined the Electric Prunes, I started to see myself as a professional. Before I joined the Electric Prunes, I went out and played a couple gigs alone on my guitar, and I hated that. I really liked having a band. And then when I went out and did the Prunes and got paid to do it, I was hooked.

I always had high school bands and rock bands through my first year of college, but it was when I went on the road with the Prunes that I knew I was going to give it a real shot.

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