This disc contains all known recordings of infectious Middle Eastern inflected rock/beat from the Cedars (or Sea-Ders), Lebanon’s top musical export to the world. Eight dynamic tracks, with driving rhythms, blazing electric bouzouki (or oud?), recorded between 1966-1968. Fantastic!
Starting in 1965, many groups began to borrow elements of Eastern music to add a little mystery and exotica to their sound. Some prominent examples of this trend include the Kinks’ ‘See My Friends,’ the Beatles’ ‘Norwegian Wood,’ and the Byrds’ ‘Eight Miles High’; less well-known than the aforementioned acts, but considered masters of the form by those in the know, were the Sea-Ders. For them it wasn’t a case of flirting with foreign culture—they tapped right into the source, there in their own backyard! Decca Records contacted the group and offered them a record deal in the UK. The Sea-ders relocated to London, and in 1967 Decca released ‘Thanks A Lot’ b/w ‘Undecidedly.’ The record got some airplay on the pirate stations, but failed to break into the charts. Nevertheless, Decca went ahead with an EP release, featuring three tracks along with the fine ‘Cause I Do Care.’ Apparently the record had a very limited pressing as it’s now very rare, despite being one of the most exciting releases of the era. Booklet contains liner notes by Mike Stax (Ugly Things Magazine), printed on FSC recycled, chlorine-free, 100% post-consumer fiber paper manufactured using biogas energy.