Before firmly establishing himself as a major singer/songwriter with his 1965 solo debut album Bleecker and MacDougal, Fred Neil was briefly in a duo with folk singer Vince Martin. Martin had met Neil around 1960, although the two didn't team up until 1964. The pair recorded one rare LP, Tear Down the Walls, before Neil went solo. The record is far more notable for the contributions of Neil (who wrote about half the songs, the others being largely comprised of folk standards) than the far more ordinary-sounding Martin. There's a bit of a schizophrenic feel to the album -- coffeehouse-styled folk on the one hand, and bluesy, more idiosyncratic stuff on Neil's tunes -- and Neil's original songs would have been far more suited to solo delivery than the duet arrangements which made their way onto the release. Still, it's a nice-enough sounding collectable, and also notable for foreshadowing folk-rock in its use of Felix Pappalardi (later to produce Cream) and a pre-Lovin' Spoonful John Sebastian (harmonica) as session musicians. ~ Richie UnterbergerPortions of Content Provided by Rovi Corporation.
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