“That Upstream Sound” of Old Bear Records (Batavia, NY) is less about one unifying genre and more about shared passion and values. The belief in honesty, community and creativity drives their vision and has resulted in increasingly eclectic releases spanning and blending the Gospel, Folk, Rock, Jazz, and Avant Garde genres. But once the honesty has been caught on tape, the commitment to live out their often faith based and socially conscious message keeps this tribe of artists moving forward.
In addition to Old Bear’s recording studio and stable of artists, the collective has begun reissuing some deserving albums that have influenced its founders over the years. This year, Old Bear Reissue will be partnering with The releasing classic LPs from The All Saved Freak Band, The Trees Community, Twin Sister, and All the Bright Lights. With many more to follow!
“In the fall of 1968, a small radio station in Ashtabula, Ohio unleashed a whole new genre of music upon their listeners when they aired the All Saved Freak Band’s first recorded songs. It was the very first time ANYONE had heard the idiom of rock music being used to convey the message of the gospel (This was pre- Larry Norman and a full 5 years prior to the term Contemporary Christian Music being coined!)
The All Saved Freak Band’s unique sound stemmed from its ensemble of 12 members skilled in rock, folk, blues, psychedelia, and classical music. ASFB blended those genres and sounds together to deliver straight, unvarnished, lyrical truth which countered the hedonism purveyed by much of rock n roll.
What makes their work so worthy of reissue is the bold experimentation and superior musicianship on display – qualities critics often find lacking in the very Contemporary Christian genre they were pioneering.
Their bold sound and stellar chops inspired and influenced a cult following among vinyl heads and musicians alike, being name-dropped particularly by artists like Dan Auerbach (of the Black Keys) and Damien Jurado.
We’ll be reissuing multiple records from ASFB, the first such release being the 1976 LP ‘Brainwashed’ . We hope you enjoy discovering and sharing this unique piece of music history as much as we have.”