Despite taking its title from one of the band’s songs about loss, a theme destined to haunt them, there’s a feel-good factor to this documentary about the success, decline and disputes of American country folk group The Holy Modal Rounders. This is the tale of the infamous badboys of perky, toe-tapping American folk. Badboys? Well, their first album (1963) was the first album anywhere to use the word ‘psychedelic’ and that kind of set the tone for their lifestyle, man.
Humorous, radical and political, who else would take LSD as a remedy for toothache? Never heard of them? They appeared on Rowan and Martin’s Laugh In and had a track in Easy Rider. You remember them now.
Not another ‘tired out, drugged out old men who were something in the Sixties’ movie, but a strumming, humming, catgut scraping trip through the sounds and sights, humiliation and fun of the struggle to survive among American musicians. And let’s face it, they have to be the only people ever to be busted for rustling dildos.
Quite the most interesting scene is where one of the band accuses another on camera of stealing his songs. And it’s nice to see a new generation of young people bouncing to the music at the band’s re-unions. Timeless! CZ