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Brewer & Shipley

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Biography

Kansas City MO, United States

Brewer & Shipley were a folk rock duo of the late 1960s through 1970s, consisting of singer-songwriters Mike Brewer and Tom Shipley. They were known for their intricate guitar work, vocal harmonies and socially conscious lyrics, which reflected the concerns of their generation — especially the Vietnam War, and the struggles for personal and political freedom. Their biggest hit was the song “One Toke Over The Line” from their 1970 album Tarkio. They also had two other singles which made the Billboard charts: “Tarkio Road” (1970) and “Shake Off The Demon” (1971). They continue to perform, both separately and together, usually in the Midwest.

The two Midwestern natives crossed paths numerous times at various coffeehouse gigs before settling in Los Angeles to write music together, producing their first two albums Down In L.A. and Weeds. Even though mutual friends in bands such as The Association and Buffalo Springfield also lived in Los Angeles, they left California in 1969, returning to Kansas City, where they made a meager living through playing in college towns. They derived the name of their next album, Tarkio, from a regular gig they played in Tarkio, Missouri. This album was their most commercially successful, featuring the hit “One Toke Over the Line”, which they wrote as a joke while preparing backstage for a performance.

Following airplay of the single, President Richard Nixon labeled Brewer & Shipley public miscreants. In retaliation, they referred to Nixon by name in their song, “Oh Mommy,” (from Tarkio).

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  • antix91

    One toke man, Sweet Sweet Mary, Sweet Sweet Mary

    14 Jan 12:04am Reply
  • anthonycarew

    i pulled out the ol' b&s lp for the first time in a long-time recently, and i forgot that there was a time when i got completely obsessed with 'witchi-tai-to' and played it over and over. it's still #1 in my heart.

    7 Jun 2012 Reply
  • BreezinAlong

    sounds so nice to hear them again

    5 Feb 2012 Reply
  • melkmeintogepi

    rock me on the water! [294011]

    31 Aug 2011 Reply
  • IamFlood

    Blame it on their inclusion on the Fear & Loathing soundtrack. I picked up a 2 LP best of and I'm enjoying it. Good version of Rock Me On the Water.

    1 Mar 2011 Reply
  • sunsign902

    Debbie Reynolds is similar to Brewer & Shipley???

    23 Jan 2011 Reply
  • jory93

    Dreamin' in The Shade!! What a marvelous song, just can't get enough of it !!

    2 Dec 2010 Reply
  • IamFlood

    Found a best of on vinyl last week. I now declare them the best band ever.

    24 Jun 2010 Reply
  • mynameisjoehann

    one toke over the line

    21 Jan 2010 Reply
  • Lord_Krichian

    old and good

    11 Sep 2009 Reply
  • CopperKettle

    Witchi-Tai-To's not that bad either. (0:

    15 Jul 2009 Reply
  • SaltyMcSushi

    Very good musicians, why are none of their albums listed on last.fm?

    21 Jan 2009 Reply
  • DerClon

    one toke over the line sweet jesus... : )

    28 Dec 2008 Reply
  • explosiona

    One toke over the line ^__^ Just perfect!

    11 Nov 2008 Reply
  • alimager

    Love this song!!! Used it as background music for talk show I produced. Big Al

    25 Sep 2008 Reply
  • athaiya

    they are great!

    25 Sep 2008 Reply
  • RileyRenner

    WAHHH! You guys cause my feet to tap.

    16 Aug 2008 Reply
  • pit523

    huhhh.. this is bat country. ; )

    11 Apr 2008 Reply
  • Wiolant

    Sittin' downtown in a railway station One toke over the line

    6 Oct 2007 Reply
  • like_a_spatula

    One tok over the line, indeed.

    12 Nov 2006 Reply
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