Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 3.14.41 PMFrom: Sacramento, California

She was one of the few all-female garage psychedelic American bands of the 1960s that played their own instruments and wrote their own material, although their official output was limited to one obscure 1970 independent single. She nonetheless had a lengthy and somewhat complicated history, beginning in the mid-’60s when guitarist and primary songwriter Nancy Ross formed a teen band (with her younger sister Sally on organ) in Sacramento, CA. Originally known as the Id, they changed their name to the Hairem and did attract some label interest. The Hairem did not officially release any material in the ’60s, but five songs that they recorded did come out on the She CD compilation Wants a Piece of You in 1999. These cuts, though not as crude as the Shaggs, were nonetheless quite raw and basic, in the manner of many U.S. garage bands of the period. Indeed, they’re pretty generic, or sub-generic, the chief distinction being that there were extremely few all-female groups playing such music circa 1966, especially with the raunchy attitude evident on cuts such as “Like a Snake.”

The Hairem played in San Francisco and Sacramento, at both clubs and air force bases, and after several personnel changes, they had changed their name to She by the late ’60s. By this point, their music was still not terribly sophisticated, but had nonetheless grown more sophisticated, with a greater emphasis on harmonies and minor-keyed, psychedelic-influenced melodies. They did record an obscure single for Kent in 1970, “Boy Little Boy”/”Outta Reach,” the A-side of which was uncharacteristically soft and poppy, almost bubblegum pop. Other original material written and demoed at this time is on the Wants a Piece of You CD and shows the influence of bands like the Doors and the Jefferson Airplane, although the unschooled raunch is still present. Fact is, though, that while the performances are energetic and the vocals often salacious, the songs aren’t all that clever or memorable. She disbanded in 1971, Nancy Ross and her sister Sally Ross-Moore being the only members to have stayed the course throughout the entire Hairem-She saga. ~ Richie Unterberger, Rovi

Tracks played on Psychedelicized…

From the 1999 album Wants A Piece of You

  • Boy Little Boy
  • Don’t Go Home Tonight
  • Hey You
  • Outta Reach
  • Piece Of You
  • Roll On