. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – Erma Franklin with Mike Bloomfield’s Electric Flag – Carousel Ballroom, San Francisco – April 21, 1968.
Something special and historic this week. A concert from the Carousel Ballroom in San Francisco, recorded on (or around) April 21, 1968 featuring the amazing Erma Franklin, backed up by Mike Bloomfield‘s Electric Flag.
Sadly, Erma Franklin has been overshadowed and overlooked by the career of her younger sister Aretha. But that’s not to say Erma was untalented – not by a long shot. Listening to Erma Franklin you start to realize vocal talent and range fairly galloped through that family (their father L.C. Franklin was no slouch in the vocal department either, as was other little sister Carolyn). Erma was the one who originally gave us Piece Of My Heart, the song later associated with Janis Joplin – but it was Erma’s version from a year earlier that established her as a singer to be noticed. But through a series of terrible contracts and bad career moves, Erma left the music business in the mid 1970s, only to occasionally surface as backup singer to her little sister. She passed away in 2002 after a battle with throat Cancer.
So this concert is something of a rarity – as far as I know, it hasn’t been issued by anyone. It’s from a longer set by The Electric Flag which featured Buddy Miles on vocals – but it’s about Erma this weekend.
So crank it up and give it a listen – and if you aren’t familiar with this wonderful and gifted talent, here’s your chance.