Me, Lee and "That's the Way It's Gonna Be"

My experience with Lee Mallory and his first great record, by E. Alan (Eric) Meece

LINKS and information on his music



The first week of September, 1966, just when I was going back to school for the year, I first heard That's the Way It's Gonna Be by Lee Mallory. In my notes on Top 40 surveys I was taking, I called it a "wild, wonderful gooddie." Two weeks later it was #3 on my current favorites list. I was especially struck by the innovative sounds of the record, the neat melody and words, the great singing; just about everything. There were brilliant, eerie and haunting vocals, and then the melody was played by guitars recorded backwards. The feelings were compelling, and it seemed ahead of its time. It was a trend setter, a pioneer of the psychedelic sound, much like the Beatles "Revolver" album that had also just come out the previous month. It represented that moment in 1966 when the folk, rock and psychedelic genres came together in fruitful combination. My friend Ed, though, thought it was "shitty." My brother liked it, but thought the record was wobbly, making it sound out of tune. When I told him that was the way it was supposed to sound, he decided he didn't like it.

It failed to make the charts on KYA, the San Francisco Top 40 station, and dissappeared after a few weeks; but our local station KLIV was still playing it. So after a one week absence, I brought it back to my favorites list, and put it as #1. I sooooooo looked forward to hearing it come on; I would turn down the lights and trip out. But it didn't make the charts in San Jose either. I guess it was too far ahead of its time, or too weird and experimental for most people. My memory of buying it is clearer than for any other record I ever bought. That day in October 1966 I asked the record store owner, Mr. Scarpelli, whether it was really true that this record is not selling. "It's selling," he said. "Hell, it's better than half the records that ARE on the survey." "It's better than all of them," I said.

In late October I used it as the basis of a spooky Halloween tape I spent hours making to play for local trick-or-treaters. There were quite a few of them walking the streets on Halloween night in those days. I think they enjoyed my tape. The song does have a spooky sound, with lyrics about coming through stormy darkness with courage. "Though you say, that all the good times are gone; though you say, this rain will keep raining on. I'll walk along with my head held high, I'll find a song and I'll sing it to the sky; I may be wrong, but I'll live until I die." It seems to me now that Lee Mallory was born to sing this song; no one else could have done it with such appropriate conviction and style. It's too bad the song and its singer has yet to receive the recognition it deserves, though it is getting some attention now in Japan and Europe and is featured on a psychedelic oldies CD "Nuggets from the WB vaults."

The original song was written and sung in the early 1960s by Phil Ochs (famous for his anti-war anthems), based on a melody by Bob Gibson (who also wrote the famous folk song There is a Meetin' Here Tonight). It appeared on a couple of Phil Ochs albums, and is said there to be one of his best songs. Lee Mallory gave it a unique shape and power. I noticed that it was on the same label, Valiant, as the #1 record of the same year 1966, "Cherish," by the Los Angeles singing group The Association, and also the label of their previous hit "Along Comes Mary," which Leonard Bernstein made the centerpiece of his nationally-televised program on the rock revolution in music, aired in early 1967. I barely noticed that the producer's name was "C. Boettcher for Our Productions." Somehow the red and black color of the label, and the "Valiant" name, with the coat of arms logo, seemed to fit the valiant sentiments of "That's the Way It's Gonna Be." Certainly the sound of The Association and Lee Mallory was very similar, and I thought there must be a connection, with some of the same musicians involved. But all this was a mystery to me.

As time passed, "That's the Way It's Gonna Be" occupied a permanent place on my turntable. As I observed and felt all the energy of the sixties' spiritual and cultural awakening sprouting up around me-- the liberated expression, the adventures, the movements, the communal feelings and ideals which you could feel in the air, the psychedelic happenings, the new interest in the occult, and all the political and social passions of the time-- this record as much as any other would always bring them to life for me. I could put it on, and instantly remember what my life was all about. It was the soundtrack for the times, and for my life; and still is. And when I was down and lonely, which was often in those days, I would remember the words too. "(Something) is coming for me 'round the bend... I've got a will and a thousand ways, I've got a dream of a thousand better days, and I've got a smile that just stays and stays..."

The best part of the whole record was the end. The vocal part was just "Bapita-bah-bah, bapita-bah," also heard following the song's theme earlier, representing bouncy confidence. What a perfect and dramatic juxtaposition it is too. But wow, what a sonic rush at the end, and what a great drone sound underlying it. The haunting guitar phrase just before the vocals come in is so special too. It's hard to describe what makes the end of the record so unique. This ending is like being propelled into the "sky" to which we were just singing the song ("I'll find a song and I'll sing it to the sky"). It's an energetic conclusion that gets us going. Sometimes I wish it would just go on for another minute or so. But I guess they couldn't make even this record THAT experimental! In any case, it was the forerunner of so much of the kind of music that I would love in all the following years. Whenever I played the record for people in the 1970s and 80s, they instantly liked it. It was no longer so far ahead of its time, I guess.

A few months later I saw "Take My Hand," another new record by Lee Mallory, at Campi's record store. It had not gotten any local airplay, but I played it at the store. It was OK, but I didn't feel it had quite the quality and mystique that his first single had for me, so I didn't pick it up. I never saw any of his music again in the stores and, to my knowledge at least, never heard his music on the air again. But I never stopped playing the record myself. By the mid-1970s I had listed "That's the Way It's Gonna Be" as the 45 RPM record I had played more often than any other in my lifetime. Until The Who and Bach came along in my listening life, it had been the most-often played by me among ANY of my records.

In 1980 I took the Lifespring personal growth program. Its trials and processes were challenging. The highlight was in the advanced course, when we were asked to "be 1000% creative" and write a skit on a theme the leader gave us, and present it to the group. I was assigned the role of boxer Mohammed Ali. So I wrote and acted out the part of the confident poet-fighter who never gives up. At the end I was supposed to do a "victory dance" and choose some music for it. Naturally, I thought of "That's the Way it's Gonna Be," and brought my by-then scratchy old 45-RPM single to the seminar where seventy or so people would hear it. I did a great dance, but people were more impressed with the improvisational movements I did to a 70s pop ballad they played afterward called something like "I Always Knew I Had it in Me." I was supposedly liberated during the seminar from my fears; but not quite, it turned out. In any case, what was interesting, is that there was a lyric in "That's the Way it's Gonna Be" that, despite my having played it hundreds of thousands of times, I never quite heard straight. These were the words that follow "something is coming for me 'round the bend." Often it is hard to make out just what these rock singers are saying. I found out later, from Lee himself, that the correct words were, "I won't stay down for the count of ten." Without knowing it, I had chosen the perfect song for my skit and my victory dance.

Meanwhile, by about 1969 or so, I was turning the record over more and more often. The flip side, "Many Are The Times," was written by Lee Mallory himself. At first I thought the melody was kind of stiff and lack-lustre. But the more I played it, the more beautiful the song sounded. I also discovered the same kind of wonderous vocal arrangements by Lee and his crew that I heard on the A side; in fact, the vocal and instrumental sounds are perhaps even more heavenly, soulful and ethereal than they are on That's the Way It's Gonna Be. Lee's words render the cosmic sounds into English: "When the time comes for us to laugh and sing to the heavens..." Even compared to today's new age music, Many Are The Times by Lee Mallory is a landmark of ambient sound. The instrumental and vocal arrangements and the performances by Lee and his associates are miraculous, and have never been duplicated. I still knew nothing about who these people were, other than "Lee Mallory" and "produced by C. Boettcher for Our Productions," and I never heard anything about any of these people again, until just before the Millennium turned. Meanwhile, it so happened that another song that struck and haunted my imagination in 1968 and 1969 was also about time, "Another Time" by "Sagittarius," which was a hit on Bay Area radio stations, even making the Top 100 for the year in 1968. I didn't buy the record though. I always thought "Sagittarius" referred to the astrology sign of the singer, and that he must have been a Sagittarian. But he didn't sound like one; too soft and mellow for that sign.

Meanwhile, though, the words to Many Are the Times came to mean as much to me as those to That's the Way it's Gonna Be. If the A side represented courage and a sudden, feisty and decisive awakening and coming to life, with bizarre and lightning-like special effects, the B song represented a more gentle side of Lee; a gradual awakening, a love that grows over time, in spite of blocks and deceptions, and which we "know someday" we will find; a promise that somehow never goes away. My discovery of the B side over time (as opposed to my instant love for the A side) was kind of the same process represented by the song itself. Meanwhile, in those years I was learning astrology, knowing as I did what the sign Sagittarius represented; and it wasn't long before I wrote in pencil the symbol for Uranus on the A side, and the symbol for Neptune on the B side. I came to feel that the words from the song, "I was crying too, but the tears only blinded my eyes," revealed the cause of the problems and inhibitions I was struggling with in those days.

For years afterward I looked in old record bins in the vain hope that a copy of the record would turn up, so I could replace the one I had worn out with so many playings. But I never ran across either the record or any information on what had happened to such a promising talent. I hoped and prayed that one day I might meet him. Finally, the time came when the mysteries of the record and its artist began to be solved. First, in about 1998 I noticed that the single and its flip side were listed in an oldies catalogue I found at the library. That was the first time I had seen any written reference to the record since 1966. It so happens that the editor of this oldies book had also written in it two tributes to record producers from the late 1960s, and one of them was the late Gary Usher. He was involved with the Beach Boys, and with other groups from southern California. The article also said he was the producer for a group called The Millennium, of which Lee Mallory had been a member and songwriter. This was the first information I had on the artistic activities of Lee after recording That's the Way It's Gonna Be. The fact that the editor of this book had featured Gary Usher, probably explains why the single by Lee Mallory was listed in his book too.

Meanwhile, since 1986 I had been the host of a radio program in Silicon Valley, at an independent and all-volunteer community radio station, which broadcast over much of central California. It was on Friday afternoons starting at Noon, and I called it Mystic Music. Each Halloween I would play "That's the Way It's Gonna Be" as an example of Bewitched Music, a term I had coined back in 1983. After the world wide web came into existence in the mid-1990s, the station had its own web site, and the webmaster offered me a page for my show. One of the things I did was to reveal my list of all-time Top 400 rock'n'roll oldies which I had developed over the years, long before I had my program, which I posted to the web site. Of course, That's the Way It's Gonna Be had a prominent place on my list at #7, and both Many Are the Times and Another Time were also on my list. I also made up a page for the Bewitched Genre of music. One day someone from back east wrote me and asked if I would send him a copy of the song. I made a tape and sent it to him, even though I had told him up front that my record was in poor condition. But this was not the only time someone contacted me about the song's place on my list.

One day in 1999 another guy called me, said he was a friend of Lee's, and that he was pleased I had put his record on my list. I gave him my phone number; and then soon afterward, out of the blue, Lee Mallory himself called me on the phone! This was an incredible bolt out of the blue for me. It is almost as if Bob Dylan or John Lennon had called me; even though Lee enjoyed that kind of status with me, but not many other people. He seemed cool, as I had imagined him to be, but his voice was not quite the same as on the record. We began corresponding, and he sent me a copy, made just for me, of "That's the Way It's Gonna Be" along with other material he had recorded with The Millennium. Also included were the 2 songs on the single I had passed up buying back in 1967, as well as many others; all engaging, and some very good; but none quite as good as his first great release.

One of the first things I found out was who Sagittarius was. It was not the lead singer on "Another Time;" it was Gary Usher, who was in fact a Sagittarian, and who was the one who had put the group Sagittarius together in his studio. He also wrote an album of 12 songs based on each sign of the zodiac. The lead singer on Another Time (and its composer) was none other than Curt Boettcher, producer of That's the Way it's Gonna Be. Not only did this "boy genius" have a mesmerizing, mellow, haunting voice, but he was the wizard who had created all the special effects and vocal harmonies on Lee Mallory's record, and was one of the haunting, ethereal voices on both sides of the single. He had apparently attained a measure of fame in 1966, because he was principally responsible along with The Association itself for the success of their huge hits on the Valiant label, Cherish and Along Comes Mary. It was his production company, Our Productions, that had provided the musical backing for those records. And since Lee was part of this production team, he had also been singing and/or playing guitar on some of the Association's records, as well as on "Another Time" and other songs by Sagittarius. It also happened that Curt was the co-composer of Along Comes Mary, the song celebrated by Leonard Bernstein on his TV special; but the label dropped any reference to him as co-writer on the single; and in 1967 The Association decided to drop him too in order to produce their own records.

Curt Boettcher

But Curt went on to join Sagittarius, and also The Millennium, which formed around Lee Mallory's own band. Lee and his group had been touring and performing around LA, and also up in Seattle where That's the Way its Gonna Be had cracked the surveys and reached #2. The Millennium was a "supergroup" made up of members of the Lee Mallory Group, Sagittarius, Our Productions, a soft-rock group called Ballroom (all of these groups had some over-lapping membership), the Music Machine (who had the big hit "Talk Talk"), The Poor, and others. Michael Fennelly was perhaps the most talented, besides Curt and Lee, among those who joined this group; he went on to become "Crabby Appleton." The final Millennium lineup for the Begin album was Curt Boettcher, Lee Mallory, Mike Fennelly, Joey Stec, Sandy Salisbury, Doug Rhodes and Ron Edgar. Production expert Keith Olsen from The Music Machine (and later Fleetwood Mac) joined Curt as producers for The Millennium.

Among the songs by The Millennium I especially liked, was one I recognized, but didn't remember why. This was a relaxing, brilliant song called "To Claudia on Thursday," which I later learned the Mamas and Papas had also recorded, and was written by Millennium members Joey Stec and Michael Fennelly. The lyrical highlight of the song mirrored my own experience: "Just take a look, and see all the love in the sky. And when you do, the love will reflect in your eye." Their album, called The Millennium Begin, was filled with kryptic references to metaphysical ideas and visions of a new hippie utopia, and elaborate though not over-bearing special effects recorded by the wizard Curt Boettcher on 16 tracks simultaneously. But the Millennium song I enjoyed the most was a wistful Lee Mallory and Curt Boettcher ballad called "Karmic Dream Sequence," sort of the Millennium's answer to "A Day in the Life," and greater to my ears than the famous Beatle song from Sargeant Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band. They even appended "#1" to the title, but unfortunately there was never a #2. It featured a Japanese koto at the end. Lee's words "you are in everyone I meet... but where are you?" sort of represents what my relationship with Lee had been until I actually found him. Another good Millennium Begin song that had a following was It's You, which seems to be about the ego's self deception. Lee's song Some Sunny Day revealed his utopian vision, and The Know it All shows off Curt's "expensive" musical wizardry.

I also found a bit more about the other artists who participated in creating those amazing sounds on That's the Way It's Gonna Be and its flipside, and on Lee's other early recordings. Among them were Tandem Almer, who played keyboards, and who was the credited composer of Along Comes Mary by The Association, as well as the great Ballroom tune "You Turn Me Around." Mike Deasy was a talented studio guitarist who also played on Classical Gas by Mason Williams. Studio musicians Ben Benay, Toxie French and Jerry Scheff were major parts of the Our Productions crew and the Lee Mallory Group who briefly joined The Millennium at its start. Vocalists Michele O'Malley and Jim Bell (who also played brass and woodwinds) were also part of Ballroom. Vocalist Ruthann Friedman, who with Curt wrote the amazing sunshiny Ballroom song "Spinning Spinning Spinning," later wrote the great Association hit "Windy."

Finally I invited Lee to come down and appear live on my radio show. It turns out he had been living in San Francisco since the 1980s; just 50 miles away from me in San Jose, and had started performing again there live recently; even writing new songs. I offered to drive him down to San Jose, but he volunteered to come down on the train, and I picked him up at the train station. It turns out that he had over-indulged in parties and drinking for a number of years, and probably suffered some depression, and due to failing health he couldn't drive now; although earlier he had been a wiry bike messenger on the streets of San Francisco. He seemed stiff and dazed that day; not the lively guy I had heard on the phone. But he brought his guitar. I interviewed him, and although it was hard dragging words out of him, the interview went fine. I asked him about some of the lyrics to his songs, and he was informative. Elizabeth Gips, the 77-year old former hippie from San Francisco, and also then a programmer and colleague of mine at the radio station, called in and encouraged him pointedly to open up more about his '60s experiences, which included performing as lead guitarist for the road production of the famous musical "Hair." I later discovered, what she had probably forgotten, that Elizabeth herself had purchased (or probably received from another radio station) a copy of The Millennium Begin (the album by Lee's supergroup), and had donated it to the station. It had been sitting there all along in our library, I later discovered.

It felt so good having him on. I played recordings of songs by himself and The Millennium, and then he played That's the Way it's Gonna Be live for us over the air. He sang and played well, although his voice was darker and not so clear and powerful as before. With difficulty, I restrained from joining in the song myself to add the Bapitah-bah-bah, bapitah-bah part, which now I wish I had done. It was on this occasion that Lee clarified the lyrics I could never quite make out on my own, "I won't stay down for the count of 10," which had unbeknownst to me made it such a perfect choice as victory dance music for my Lifespring boxing skit.

But what was most amazing, to me anyway, was just WHEN this interview occured. Not only was it a few days before his birthday, but it was January 7th, 2000. That was just days after the start of the New MILLENNIUM. The supergroup, which after a year's work and much expense, had released their album in 1968, chose the name The Millennium to symbolize their hopes for the future, the new millennium; the ancient symbol of a thousand years of peace to come. They believed, as did so many of us, that our generation would bring it about. Well, the thousand years of peace did not come, but the Millennium came. Just 7 days later, I interviewed the co-creator of the group of that name on my radio show. It so happens, that they were not the only ones who chose the name "Millennium" for an ambitious prophetic work that failed to make it big. I myself had worked on a book about astrology and prophecy ever since 1971, and when it was finally published (but only sold 5000 copies) in 1997, it was called Horoscope for the New Millennium. In a way, at least, the Millennium had come on that day for both of us. And we had also had a Millennium Party on the air to ring in the New Millennium just a few days before, at midnight on Jan.1, 2000. If I remember correctly, I think Lee himself called in during the show.

Though I never had him on my show again, Lee kept supplying me with tapes and CDs of his music, and that of his group The Millennium, which I featured often on my show in the following months and years. I found out that Begin had been hailed by some as an American Sargeant Pepper, which had been the group's aim, and by others as "the first new age rock opera;" and that a cult following had grown up recently around the group. They had a web site too. Using the site, and the recordings Lee gave me, I put together my own compilation CD and liner notes of music by the group and its members, which I called The Millennium Begin-Again, and put it in our station library. One of the articles Lee supplied me, which I included in my compilation, told how the Beach Boys' leader Brian Wilson was stunned when first hearing a recording session for That's the Way It's Gonna Be, and decided then and there he would emulate the same innovative approach; thus helping to spawn his famous late 60s creative period in which he used exotic instruments and harmonies.

What's more important, record labels in Europe, Japan and even America started putting out the music again, and it finally enjoyed some success. A retrospective of Lee's work through the years was also released, first named after his hit single That's the Way It's Gonna Be, and eventually entitled "Many Are the Times" after the B-side, which better fit the retrospective theme. Never again did I have to look for old copies of That's the Way It's Gonna Be and Many Are the Times in old record bins. It was now readily available to me and anyone else. CBS (Columbia) finally re-released Begin in 1990, with two new tracks. Lee's beautiful love song I'm with You from the Begin album, with Curt's great arrangment that sounded a lot as if it were another song by The Association, was also now included in his solo collections. Also released during this latter day revival of the Millennium at the turn of the Millennium were Again, a more acoustic and less-elaborate album with some brilliant songs including Sometime or Another, released by Poptones; a huge compilation called The Millennium Continues, featuring tracks that might have come out on a second or third Millennium album back in the late 1960s; another shorter version of later Millennium tunes called "Pieces;" and a huge collection of Ballroom and Millennium tunes called Magic Time. British companies Sonic Past, Rev-Ola and Sun-Dazed Music, among others, released these and other Millennium albums and made them available to fans, along with a re-release of the Sagittarius album Present Tense (1967), which had featured "Another Time," and which, like the single, was perhaps the only album by the musicians of The Millennium which had enjoyed some profitable sales success back in the 1960s. That's the Way It's Gonna Be also appears on the compilation "Hallucinations: Psychedelic Pop Nuggets" from the Rhino company. It is also available at i-tunes, and elsewhere on-line: CD-Baby, Amazon, Rhapsody, etc..

I saw Lee Mallory again two more times. Several times he called me personally to invite me to his performances with his new group of musicians up at the Hotel Utah, where the folk-singer songwriters of San Francisco would gather on Monday nights to perform for each other and their fans. Although this was not the concert venue I thought he deserved, Lee was often billed as the highlight of the show. When I came, Lee said "welcome to my world." It was a fun experience to hang around the bar with its small performance space full of dedicated artists. Lee was relaxed and performed brilliantly, and both times he and his group performed "That's the Way It's Gonna Be" live, complete with chorus of "bahpitah-bah-bah, bahpitah-bah," as the highlight of the show. What a thrill it was to hear it!

Lee had become a leading light among the local musicians of San Francisco. He remained dedicated to the end to the 60s ideal of peace and love, and spread some around to everyone he knew. What was most amazing is that, now in his late 50s, he was more prolific than ever in his songwriting. A few years before the Millennium turned he had co-written and recorded "Chill of the Night" which, like Many Are the Times, was a haunting love ballad that I grew to love more each time I heard it. Like the original A-side too, the ending was spectacular; it was hard to believe how many wonderful ways there were to sing "And I am warm, in the chill of the nite." Included on his Many Are the Times CD, his voice sounded almost as resonant as in the old days. Besides a number of other new songs, which even today I am still getting acquainted with, his most special song is "Everything Is All Right Now," which was also included on the Many Are the Times collection. It should be noted that on most versions of this CD, the song is not only inaccurately titled, but the track is switched with Chill of the Night. I first heard it live at the Hotel Utah, before the CD was released, and was very impressed. Written by Lee in 1992, it seemed to sum up what he had gone through over the years, besides being a tightly-composed tune with sharp, fun lyrics. He also did great live performances of many Millennium tunes at Hotel Utah. With help from Alex Muscat, and the blind guitar genius Felix Bannon, Lee released some CDs of his performances with his new groups at the Hotel Utah, including his newer songs. One that has achieved some local notoriety is "The Unicorn Song." It was co-written with a member of The Association back in 1972. "Does anybody really know what lies out there? Out beyond Zebra, there must be a unicorn."

above: Lee Mallory at his last recording session for Last Stop Records

Curt Boettcher (born 1944) had passed away back in 1987, a victim of AIDS. Despite this, Joey and Lee tried to revive the group. But now, though the new millennium continues, the group probably cannot. For just 3 days after finishing his latest recording, Lee too passed away from this earth, on March 21, 2005, of liver cancer. I will miss him and his world. I can only hope that a few more lucky people can appreciate the music which he gave us. He made a truly unique contribution, "with a little help from" his many friends. On his 60th birthday, in January of that year, he invited me again to come to the Hotel Utah for his special birthday concert party, but I didn't make it. But San Francisco paid tribute to his musical leadership of the community by entitling his birthday on January 10th, Lee Mallory Day. How many of us will get to have a great city name a day in our honor? Not many, I reckon. Lee Mallory truly lived until he died, and I was really lucky to be a small part of his life, and just maybe his biggest fan.

-- E. Alan (Eric) Meece, written 2003 through May 2005

LINKS and information on his music


That's the Way it's gonna Be on Grooveshark

Hear original single of "That's the Way It's Gonna Be" on YOU TUBE (an earlier post was deleted due to, of all things, Rhino/Warner Bros. copyright violation! We'll see how long this one "stays and stays")

well, right now the earlier post is back too!

Lee Mallory's My Space page ("Many Are the Times" and "Everything is Alright Now" can be heard there)

That's the Way It's Gonna Be on Last FM (sample and buy links only)

That's the Way it's gonna Be at Pandora (sample and buy links only)

That's the Way It's Gonna Be on Rhapsody Player (rhapsody has a 25-play limit w/out a paid subscription)

Many Are the Times on You Tube

Many Are the Times CD on Rhapsody Player (note that the location of 4 songs on the CD is wrong: #6 and 15 are switched, and #19 and 20)

Redwood River Music publishes Mallory and Nina Jo Smith

Newly released Voices of the Millennium album

Phil Ochs and Bob Gibson sing That's the Way it's Gonna Be

Bob Gibson sings That's the Way It's Gonna Be at Phil Ochs memorial tribute

Joe and Eddie's version of That's the Way It's Gonna Be

I'm with You by Lee Mallory and The Millennium

Along Comes Mary on grooveshark

Along Comes Mary by The Association "machine" on the Smothers Bros. show

Windy by The Association on grooveshark

Another Time by Sagittarius (Curt Boettcher)

Justin Bieber: Never Say Never carries on Lee's spirit for a new generation: "whenever you knock me down, I will not stay on the ground!"


Lee Mallory by Wikipedia article on Lee Mallory

Lee Mallory's My Space page

Many Are the Times CD from CD Baby Note that tracks 6 and 15, and 21/22, are switched in their location on the CD from how they are listed on the CD cover.

That's the Way It's Gonna Be CD from CD Universe

Sonic Past Music, the label produced by Millennium member Joey Stec, and source for Many Are the Times CD by Lee Mallory

Lee Mallory Live At The Hotel Utah

Last Stop Records: most recent work & memorial message board

Bryan Harrison - info & recent photos of Lee

Review and samples from That's the Way It's Gonna Be album

Sunshine Pop, by Ready-Steady-Go

Eric Meece index

Eric Meece personal homepage


From the Sunshine Pop site by RSG, appeared this memorial tribute:

Lee Mallory RIP

Sonic Past Music has recently lost one of its great artists, Lee Mallory. A former member of the 1960s pop group Millennium, Lee released a solo album entitled "Many Are The Times" and an album recorded during a live performance in Japan with fellow Millennium artist, Joey Stec, called "Japan." His recent passing was a tragic loss for the SPM family and for the music world. Always the performer, Lee Mallory continued working on his craft till the last days. He will always be remembered for his superior musical ability and his sensitivity to humanity. In his memory, we have released these three CDs. Millennium, "Pieces": "Pieces" picks up where "Begin" left off, featuring the best of unreleased Millennium material. These songs were either left off their first album or intended for the never-released 1969 follow-up. The album was digitally remastered and includes exclusive liners by Jason Penick. It is essential listening for sunshine and psych-pop fans.

Lee Mallory, "Many Are The Times": This album consists of Lee Mallory's best works. From the 1966 hit produced by Curt Boettcher, "That's The Way It's Gonna Be," to his present day recordings, Lee Mallory continues to display the talent that won him attention as a member of the Millennium. Included in this CD are recordings not found on any other issue.

Lee Mallory and Joey Stec, "Japan": The CD was recorded live at Shibuya Nest in Tokyo, Japan during the summer of 2000. This live performance is probably the only recording of the two Millennium members. Lee Mallory, a legendary vocalist and writer, was one of the first to join Millennium, along with Curt Boettcher. Stec and Mallory had not performed in 25 years together before making this historical appearance.

San Francisco Chronicle obituary tribute:

Lee Mallory -- tireless troubadour

Patricia Yollin, Chronicle Staff Writer

Thursday, March 31, 2005

San Francisco singer-songwriter Lee Mallory is dead at the age of 60 after a lengthy battle with liver cancer.

The Bernal Heights resident died in the emergency room of UCSF Medical Center on March 21.

Born William G. Lee Mallory in Berkeley, he left home when he was 15 to become a musician, and was a founding member of the Millennium and other bands in the 1960s.

In recent years, he frequently performed outdoors at the Cannery on Fisherman's Wharf, wearing a wool sailor's cap with an anchor pin on front and fingerless gloves as he played his 12-string guitar.

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors proclaimed Jan. 10, 2005, as Lee Mallory Day in the city to mark his 60th birthday. He celebrated the occasion with a South of Market performance at the Hotel Utah that evening.

That's also where he met his fiancee, Nina Jo Smith, two years ago, during one of the open-mike nights.

"He was unflappable," Smith said Wednesday, a day after Mr. Mallory was cremated. "You could not get a rise out of him. He was calm and calming to be around."

Smith said Mr. Mallory had made or worked on about 35 albums and written more than 100 songs.

His trademark was "Everything Is All Right Now." His 1966 single, "That's the Way It's Gonna Be," by Phil Ochs and Bob Gibson, reached the top of the charts in Amsterdam.

Assessing Mr. Mallory's 45-minute set in October at Cool Beans coffeehouse in San Francisco, the Blind Luck Review online magazine said: "There is a timeless element to his music, which he delivers in a wise and slightly graveled voice through chord play that hasn't lost a beat in the 40- plus years he's been performing.

"Mallory looks out over his glasses like the wise musical professor he is, and his beautiful old eyes and facial expressions teach as much as his musical message pleases."

He lived in North Beach, in a single-room-occupancy hotel, for about 15 years before moving in with Smith a few months ago.

"One of his friends said, 'You could sit next to Lee and not say anything, but there'd be a lot of communication going on,' " Smith recalled.

Besides Smith, Mr. Mallory is survived by his stepmother, Helen Real Ramsey, of Murphys (Calaveras County) and his brother, Barry Hunter, of White City, Ore.

An open-mike memorial will be held April 18 at the Hotel Utah in San Francisco. Donations can be made to the Sierra Club, World Wildlife Fund or Hepatitis C Awareness Inc.