It's Shocking That Shocking Blue Have Been Left Out of the Classic Rock Canon

Krist Novoselic's column on music and politics runs every Tuesday on Reverb. Check back on Friday when he writes about what he's been listening to.
Why do great bands like the Shocking Blue get overlooked or even forgotten? The band had a #1 single in 1970 with the tune "Venus," and I'm sure the rock historians write the band off as a one hit wonder, but they've got plenty of great songs.

Needless to say, reaching the top slot on the Billboard chart helps sell a lot of records. This means the band's eponymous LP wasn't too hard to find - I recall copies would frequently turn up in the used bins back in the mid 1980s. This is one of those records that's a delight to listen to from start to finish. It's got great production with horns and even plenty of coral sitar. Good mix of sounds but ultimately there are nice hooks and fun grooves.

The LP got heavy rotation back in the early days of Nirvana. So much that the riff to the tune "Love Buzz" got busted out at a band practice. We ran with it and came up with a version of the song and recorded it as our first 7" single.

The Shocking Blue hailed from Holland and the force behind the band was guitarist / songwriter Robbie Van Leeuwen. Klaasje van der Wal is a bass player god! The late Mariska Veres is a great vocalist too. Cor van der Beek did the drum duties.

If you want to hear more influences, check out the their song "Send Me A Postcard" and then listen to the bass line to Nirvana's "Lounge Act".

I also recommend their singles, "Hello Darkness" and "Deamon Lover" - but if you can find it, listen to that whole Shocking Blue LP.

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