The Family Tree

From: San Francisco, CA, USA

Often thought to be from Canada, The Family Tree actually formed in San Francisco. The band was formed by California native Bob Segarini (guitar, vocals, keyboards) and ex-Brogues member Bill Whittington (bass, guitar) in late 1965. Other original members included Mike Olsen (keyboards) and Newman Davis (drums).

The Family Tree signed to Mira records in 1966 and released a debut single (“Prince Of Dreams”/”Live Your Own Life”) which became a regional hit in early 1967. The band recorded seven other tracks for Mira with plans of releasing an album, but this never materialized. However, the modest success of their debut single helped the band land a contract with the major label RCA. Olsen and Davis left The Family Tree at this time and were replaced by Mike Dure (guitar) and Van Slatter (drums). Mike Olsen went on to change his name to Lee Michaels and released several solo LPs.

The band released their second single (“Do You Have The Time?”/”Keepin’ A Secret”) while working on a debut LP. During this time, Whittington left the band and was replaced by Bill “Kootch” Troachim (bass). Jim Decocq (keyboards) was also added to the band’s lineup.

In 1968, The Family Tree released their debut album, the excellent ‘Miss Butters’. The album was written mainly by Segarini, and is a concept LP that, at the time, was still a novel idea. Strong Beatles influences can be heard throughout with imaginative orchestration arrangements by George Tipton. Unfortunately, the album was not a commercial success, despite the quality of the music. A non-LP single (“She Had To Fly”/”He Spins Around”) was released shortly after and also made little impact. This prompted RCA to drop the band in 1969. The group released on final single (“Electric Kangaroo”/”Terry Tommy”) on the Paula label in 1970 and broke up soon after. Segarini moved to Canada and became a popular musician and DJ

Artist Info: Fuzz, Acid, and Flowers Revisited’ by Vernon Joynson.

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Tracks played on Psychedelicized…

From the 1968 album Miss Butters

  • Any Other Baby
  • Birthday Dirgeday^Melancholy Vaudeville Man
  • Butters Lament
  • Lesson Book Life
  • Miss Butters
  • Mrs. McPheeny (Has Flu In Her Chest And Has Needed A Rest For So Long)
  • Nine To Three
  • Sideshow
  • Slippin’ Thru My Fingers

From the 1968 single RCA Victor 47-9671

  • He Spins Around