KEXP Documentaries: Psychedelics – The Byrds

The Byrds

Greetings KEXPers, Michele Myers here. I create KEXP Documentaries for the station. We bring you a musical subject in the time it takes to play just one song.

Our new series, Psychedelics, starts in the year 1966 with episodes on the The Byrds, The Velvet Underground, The Beatles and Jefferson Airplane. We’ll explore the British psych scene with Pink Floyd in 68 and then roll around in the mud at Woodstock in 69 with Sly and the Family Stone. In the 80’s we’ll enter the surreal world of The Flaming Lips then bliss out to house music with The Orb. The series ends with today’s new breed of psychedelic bands: Spiritualized and Animal Collective.

We’re just getting started though, and this first episode is on the group that pioneered the psychedelic guitar sound. Commercial folk musicians gone counterculture: Los Angeles band The Byrds.

Listen to the documentary:

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KEXP Documentaries air every Thursday at 3pm on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole and Saturdays at 2pm on Stevie Zoom’s show. You can hear all our KEXP Docs in the On Demand section of

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  1. Posted June 17, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    Hey all fans of The Byrds, you should check out Gram Parsons facebook page for exclusive video and info.

  2. william c.
    Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    Mr.Tamborine Man was not a psychedelic song at all. The song was Folk-Rock which brought the mix of Bob Dylan’s folk song (Mr.Tamborine Man) and the Beatles British Rock style to form Folk-Rock not psychedelic music at all.

    8 Miles High by the Byrds was considered to be the first psychedelic song (1966) and actually influenced by two jazz compositions India and Afro-Blue performed by John Coltrane and various compositions by famous Indian Sitar player Ravi Shankar.

    8 Miles High was written by the late Gene Clark with one lyric by David Crosby and music developed by Roger McGuinn, David Crosby, Chris Hillman and the late Michael Clarke.
    Although McGuinn often states he composed the song only after Gene Clark passed away in 1991.

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