Appaloosa

About Appaloosa

Singer, songwriter, and guitarist John Parker Compton co-founded the acoustic band Appaloosa with violinist Robin Batteau in the late '60s. Both musicians had been heavily influenced by the folk scene in their hometown, Cambridge, MA. Compton got his start singing in a Cambridge church choir before he and Batteau began playing the coffeehouse circuit together. As the 1972 press release for Compton's solo album, To Luna, told it, he showed up at producer Al Kooper's Columbia Records office in late 1968, hoping to show him his songs. Uninterested, Kooper told the kid (Compton was 18) to come back some other time. But a little while later, Kooper came in on Compton and Batteau performing for the office secretaries. Finally won over, Kooper recorded their demo, and within a year the newly signed musicians had released an album, the self-titled debut from their group Appaloosa. Also including bassist David Reiser and cellist Eugene Rosov, Appaloosa was joined in the studios by members of Blood, Sweat & Tears and by Kooper himself. Appaloosa soon gave way to a duo project for Compton & Batteau, before the two musicians went their separate ways. Compton recorded a solo album and resurfaced in the '90s with some new recordings, while Batteau went on to play in a duo with his brother David Batteau, join the late-'70s band Pierce Arrow, and later work as a studio musician. ~ Joslyn Layne

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