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Though once believed to have been lost or to only exist in theory, the lone recording by The Schwartz-Fox Blues Crusade featuring Mr. Stress – consisting of Cleveland legends Glenn Schwartz (guitar/vocals), Jimmy Fox (drums), Bill "Mr. Stress" Miller (vocals/harmonica), Tom Kriss (bass), Rich Kriss (guitar/vocals), and Mike Sands (piano) – is finally being released for music fans to savor and enjoy.
Taped one Sunday morning in the Spring of 1967, this is a piece of true Cleveland folklore that grew out of the Sunday jam sessions at the east side's The Coffeehouse. This recording could be considered a soundtrack for the University Circle district (a then gathering place for motorcycle gangs, beatniks, hippies, counter-culture personalities) as it became the center of Cleveland's underground from roughly 1965 through 1968.
Glenn Schwartz, Jimmy Fox, and Tom Kriss were three of the then five members of the James Gang who respectively played lead guitar, drums, and bass. By the spring of 1967 the James Gang were quickly becoming one of the most beloved bands in Cleveland and the surrounding areas. When Schwartz left the James Gang suddenly in late 1967 to eventually join Pacific Gas & Electric in California, his guitar pupil, Joe Walsh (The Eagles), took over for him and soon led the James Gang to international success.
Guitarist Rich Kriss was between being a member of Chuck Bates & The Barons (whose drummer, Steve Nemeth, would go on to local fame as progressive Cleveland radio DJ Doc Nemo) and The Joyful Wisdom, led by the late Dave Griggs who, next to Schwartz and Robert Jr. Lockwood, was considered one of the finest blues guitarists in Cleveland.
Blues harpist and vocalist Bill "Mr. Stress" Miller and pianist Mike Sands were members of an up and coming hard Chicago-style blues group called The Mr. Stress Blues Band. Formed in the late summer of 1966, the group would soon become a long running Cleveland institution through which such luminaries as Chrissie Hynde, Peter Laughner (Pere Ubu/Rocket From The Tombs), and Anton Fier (Feelies/Lounge Lizards/X__X) would pass through.
This fine piece of living, breathing Cleveland audio history is much more than just another blues jam session, and is the first entry of Smog Veil's continuing Platters du Cuyahoga series 2. Nine studio tracks of pure post-teen garage rock blues are accompanied by extensive liners and and never before published photos. Colored vinyl, free download code, limited to 1500 copies.