Mountain – Climbing! (1970)

1960s: Days of Rage


“A new band named Mountain delivered their debut album on March 7, 1970, then watched the cheekily named Climbing! quickly move into the Billboard Top 20 on the strength of the smash hit single and future classic rock staple, ‘Mississippi Queen.’ Sounds simple, right? The story of Mountain’s quick ascension to mainstream fame is a little more complicated than that. Mountain was actually named after the solo album released by singer and guitarist Leslie West, formerly of the Vagrants, in July 1969. This had been produced by bassist and talented arranger Felix Pappalardi, who had spent the previous years working in close cahoots with the world’s first rock supergroup, Cream. Less than a month later, the newly rechristened group, rounded out by organist Steve Knight and drummer N.D. Smart, found themselves on stage at Woodstock, which immediately transformed these and other relative unknowns into virtual household names…

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