Bubble Puppy

Though typically overshadowed by International Artists labelmates the 13th Floor Elevators, Bubble Puppy arguably enjoyed the greatest commercial success of all the Texas psychedelic bands, scoring a Top 20 pop hit with "Hot Smoke & Sassafras." The roots of the group lie in the Corpus Christi-based Bad Seeds, a trio comprising singer/guitarist Rod Prince, bassist Roy Cox, and drummer Clayton Pulley (later replaced by David Fore); with the 1967 addition of guitarist Todd Potter, the foursome changed their name to Willowdale Handcar, finally settling on Bubble Puppy a year later. Their raw, garage-psych sound soon landed the group a deal with the famed Texas label International Artists, which issued Bubble Puppy's debut LP, A Gathering of Promises, in 1969; despite the runaway success of "Hot Smoke & Sassafras," subsequent singles including "If I Had a Reason," "Days of Our Time," and "What Do You See?" stiffed, prompting the quartet to change its name to Demian. A self-titled effort followed in 1971 on ABC/Dunhill, but when the single "Face the Crowd" garnered little attention, the band dissolved. In 1977 Prince and Potter teamed under the name Sirius, recruiting bassist George Rarey and drummer Mark Evans to record 1979's Sirius Rising; in 1987, the original Bubble Puppy lineup reunited, drawing influence from the latter-day Texas rock of ZZ Top for their comeback LP, Wheels Go Round. Cox subsequently fronted the Bluesknights and NYC Outlaws before his death on April 2, 2013. In 2017, Bubble Puppy reunited once again, with Rod Prince and David Fore joined by guitarists Mark Miller and Gregg Stegall and bassist Jimmy Umstattd. The new edition of the band toured through Texas, and released the album Certified Badass in November 2017. ~ Jason Ankeny

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