Carlson And Gailmor: Reunited (And It Sounds So Good!)

For anyone living in Westport in the early 1970s — or a music coffeehouse fan in New England and nearby — Carlson and Gailmor were close to gods.

Rob Carlson and Jon Gailmor were classmates (and fellow Orphenians) in Staples High School’s Class of 1966. After college (Brown and Penn, respectively), they formed a folk duo.

Their Polydor debut album — “Peaceable Kingdom” — is remains a classic for who heard it.

But before hitting the big time, the singers went their separate ways.

Carlson headed to the Caribbean, played local spots like Grassroots and the Tin Whistle, ran an independent production company, produced song satires and jingles, formed the Modern Man trio, and reconstituted his old Providence band, Benefit Street.

Gailmor moved to Vermont. Running music-writing workshops in schools, and (of course) performing, he’s became an icon. He was actually named an official “state treasure.”

Seven years ago — at their Staples 45th reunion — they sang together for the first time in decades.

They were on stage again last month, at the Weston Historical Society’s “Life in the ’60s” coffeehouse.

Jon Gailmor (left) and Rob Carlson, last month at the Weston Grange.

The audience loved them. Apparently, they loved it too.

The next day, Gailmor dropped by Carlson’s Fairfield studio. Backed by Paul Payton (keyboard), they laid down vocals on a ’70s song Carlson always thought they’d do well: King Harvest’s “Dancin’ in the Moonlight.”

Carlson later added Westporter Jeff Southworth’s guitar, and his own son Sam’s drums, and did the final mix.

It’s an upbeat, joyful tune — perfect for Carlson and Gailmor’s first studio collaboration in 45 years.

Let’s hope there are many more ahead.

Of course you can hear it! Just click here.

8 responses to “Carlson And Gailmor: Reunited (And It Sounds So Good!)

  1. a great night— these guys are the best!!

  2. That was our 50th reunion…and you’re right, they sound so fresh—like when we were kids.

  3. Laura Appelman

    Wow! Wish I’d been there. They are absolutely terrific! Needed to hear something upbeat amid all that we’re dealing with now and this did it for me…. takes me right back to the day! Thanks, Dan, for the post.

  4. I have great memories of hearing Ron at Grassroots back in the early 80s. What a wonderful update!

  5. Roger Kaufman

    Proud to say…. I helped bring together the “Sam and Dave” (joke) of Westport. In 2009: @ the Georgetown Saloon (the Ice Breaker) our 40th SHS Reunion, 2016 our 50th …. and May 19 at the Weston Historical Society’s “Life in the ’60s” coffeehouse.
    Music is a most wonderful and powerful thing…
    A healer, that is the”dessert” of life..and in this case…
    it can change the course of rivers.
    We shall all do it again!

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