The Tribes Gather


On this day in 1967 the In Crowd, soon to be the more psychedelic Tomorrow were at the Birdcage, the Rolling Stones released the LP Between the Buttons, Jimi Hendrix was in the charts with “Hey Joe”, Pink Floyd having played UFO last night, set off on a tour around the country, while this week’s Melody Maker was asking “How psychedelic is your pop?”.

Meanwhile on the Saturday, San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park witnessed one of the major Hippie events ‘The Human Be-In’ or ‘Gathering of the Tribes’. My Resident Astrologer is delighted to know that they tried to organise this in December 1966 but met problems, so they consulted a local astrologer who checked out his stuff and advised them to choose this winter’s day. They were rewarded with very fine weather and a pleasant afternoon all-round

While UK psychedelia was still very embryonic it was already full-on in San Francisco with kids arriving in Haight Ashbury and the ‘Trips Festivals’ underway, but there were already some tensions between various factions or ‘Tribes’ such as the ‘laid-back’ hippies of the Haight, the more political people in Berkeley, the local Digger activists etc and so, to bring these groups together, they organised the Human Be-In.

The ‘big’ names were there; Timothy Leary, Allen Ginsberg etc plus (as advertised) “all the San Francisco rock bands” which meant the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Country Joe & the Fish, Big Brother & the Holding Company, the Loading Zone and Sir Douglas Quintet (Texas?). It all went rather well.


Author: pompeypop

University lecturer, longtime local musician and recently historian of popular music - especially in and around Portsmouth. My blog is entirely about that topic

2 thoughts on “The Tribes Gather

  1. Cheers JR – nice home movie but not the best soundtrack – two years later and an English pop hit – all a bit obvious. Maybe (if there has to be a message) “Get Together” by the Youngbloods?

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