As a pillar of SoCal desert rock, Brant Bjork — the seminal drummer for Kyuss, a propelling force in Fu Manchu, and a solo singer/guitarist — clearly has a rooted history with the fuzzy, dazed, rock & roll sounds of the region, and the subsequent movement that broke out in the early 90s. On his newest album (his 13th!), 2018’s Mankind Woman, he continues to further the reach of that heavy-yet-laid-back vibe in incorporating the groove of blues, funk and jazz with his desert rock foundation. To celebrate this release, we asked him to make us a playlist, and found that when it comes to history, it’s not just his own that Bjork has to boast. Check out his playlist dissecting what was truly heavy in 1968 and see what he had to say about it below.
Explains Bjork: “1968 was ‘the year that shattered America.’ The war in Vietnam had officially become the country’s worst nightmare, The Civil Rights Movement was in full effect after the assassination of both Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy and American women and students had basically lost all faith in the establishment. Music has always been an extension in one way or another of it’s surrounding environment. Music is spiritual and recordings are modern magic capturing the moment. Music heals and it communicates essential ideas and feelings that aren’t always easy to express. Especially in time of crisis. In a catastrophic year like 1968, the music that is left for us to absorb with wonder is a true gift. The courage of these artists and their songs can’t be understated and taken for granted. It’s 2018. the 50 year anniversary of 1968. It’s ‘Pretty Hairy’ to see what we’ve accomplished since…and what we haven’t. Dig this music. Dig deep and imagine carrying this load. 1968 was the birth of ‘Heavy.'”