“Only Colombe”: No Longer Unreleased

I stumbled upon a Gene Clark “never released” 45 that had finally been issued in 2008 — 40 years after its original recording date — by those fine folks at Sundazed.

Artist:  Gene Clark
Producer:  Gary Usher
A-Side:  “Only Colombe”
B-Side:  “The French Girl”
Recorded:  April 24, 1967
Released:  May 27, 2008

This item appeared in the 45Cat database, interestingly enough, when I used the search term, “Boettcher.”   As it turns out, Curt Boettcher would appear on this recording as a guest vocalist.  Gary Usher, in fact, would use Boettcher’s backing band, The Ballroom, for support, as well as vocal assistance from future Together recording label artists, Michele O’Malley and Sandy Salisbury.

Sundazed’s Scott Schinder tells how this came to be:

“[Gene Clark’s] reticence to tour outside California, combined with the fact that [his debut LP] was released virtually simultaneously with The Byrds’ Younger Than Yesterday all but guaranteed that Clark’s solo debut would fail to find a wide audience.

“That April (1967), in the wake of the album’s disappointing reception, Clark cut a pair of new tracks – the brooding original composition “Only Colombe” and a haunting reading of Ian and Sylvia’s “The French Girl” for release as a prospective single …

“‘Only Colombe’ and ‘The French Girl’ would go unheard by Clark’s admirers until 1991, [with Sony CD, Echoes] the same year that the artist died at the age of 46.  This release marks the first time that these historic tracks have been issued in their original mono mixes.”

Gene Clark 45