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The Ship

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From Todd Bradshaw - former bass player for The Ship, posting on akashaman.blogspot.com commenting on “A Contemporary Folk Music Journey” by The Ship.

“Actually, it came out in 1972. I had just turned 20 years old that May and we spent the following month at Elektra in Los Angeles recording. As I remember, it was released the following fall. There weren’t any folk clubs as such in Champaign, Illinois and the idea of Melshenker and Cowan playing dances is pretty funny. In reality, we were all playing at a coffehouse called “The Red Herring” which sponsored folk festivals. Reinwand and Hamby generally played together as a duet, Melshenker and Cowan usually performed solo and I was mostly playing twelve-string, but was the only person they knew who had previously played bass and I would borrow my roommates Hofner when somebody needed a bass player. Most of the songs at the folk festivals were original and there were some pretty good people in the core group of maybe 25-30 individuals who played in most of them and did weekend sets down in the basement the rest of the year. Notables among the regulars included songwriters Thom Bishop and Fred Koller, singer/songwriter Linn Brown and a young guy named Dan Fogelberg. For a fairly small city in the middle of the Illinois cornfields, it was some pretty high-powered talent. Melshenker and Cowan got together and wrote The Ship and then asked Reinwand, Hamby and me to help arrange and perform it - originally as a one-shot deal consisting of three or four performances at the Red Herring. It did well, so we eventually decided to oficially form a group and take it on the road to other college campuses and a few Chicago nightclubs.

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