Blue Cheer

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Blue Cheer
From left to right: Dickie Peterson, Randy Holden, and Paul Whaley in 1968
From left to right: Dickie Peterson, Randy Holden, and Paul Whaley in 1968
Background information
OriginSan Francisco, California, U.S.
Years active1966–2009
Past membersSee members section

Blue Cheer was an American rock band that initially performed and recorded in the late 1960s and early 1970s and was sporadically active until 2009. Based in San Francisco, Blue Cheer played in a psychedelic blues rock or acid rock style.[8] They are also credited as being some of the earliest pioneers of heavy metal, with their cover of "Summertime Blues" sometimes cited as the first in the genre.[9] They have also been noted as influential in the development of genres as disparate as punk rock,[10] stoner rock,[11][12] doom metal,[12] experimental rock,[13] and grunge.[14]


Main career (1966–1971)[edit]

Blue Cheer were formed in 1966 by Dickie Peterson. Peterson had previously been with the Davis-based band the Oxford Circle along with future Blue Cheer members Paul Whaley and Gary Lee Yoder. The original Blue Cheer personnel were singer/bassist Peterson, guitarist Leigh Stephens and Eric Albronda as drummer. Albronda was later replaced by Whaley, who was joined by Peterson's brother Jerre (guitar), Vale Hamanaka (keyboards), and Jere Whiting (vocals, harmonica). Albronda continued his association with Blue Cheer as a member of Blue Cheer management, as well as being the producer or co-producer of five Blue Cheer albums.[15]

The band was managed by Allen "Gut" Terk, a former member of the Hells Angels.[9] Early on, it was decided that the line-up should be trimmed down. It has been said that Blue Cheer decided to adopt a power trio configuration after seeing Jimi Hendrix perform at the Monterey Pop Festival.[16] Hamanaka and Whiting were asked to leave. Jerre Peterson did not want to remain in the group without them, so he departed as well, leaving Peterson, Stephens and Whaley as a trio.

Their first hit was a cover version of Eddie Cochran's "Summertime Blues" from their debut album Vincebus Eruptum (1968).[17] The single peaked at No. 14 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, their only such hit, and the album peaked at No. 11 on the Billboard 200 chart. In Canada, the song peaked at No. 3 on the RPM Magazine chart.

The "Summertime Blues" single was backed with Dickie Peterson's original song "Out Of Focus". Peterson also contributed to the album the eight-minute "Doctor Please" and "Second Time Around", which features Paul Whaley's frantic drum solo. Filling out the record, the band cranked out blues covers "Rock Me Baby" (by B.B. King) and "Parchman Farm" (Mose Allison, but retitled "Parchment Farm").[17]

Billboard advertisement, June 15, 1968

The group underwent several personnel changes, the first occurring after the 1968 release of Outsideinside after Leigh Stephens – who never used drugs – was asked to leave the band after criticizing his bandmates' behaviour.[18] He was replaced by Randy Holden, formerly of Los Angeles garage rock band the Other Half.[17] On 1969's New! Improved! there were different guitarists on side 1 and side 2 (Randy Holden and Bruce Stephens) due to Holden's unanticipated departure from the band. Following Holden's departure the band's line-up initially consisted of Dickie Peterson (bass), Tom Weisser (guitar), and Mitch Mitchell (drums), before Whaley returned and Bruce Stephens joined the band. Later, Ralph Burns Kellogg joined the band on keyboards.[19] Blue Cheer's style now changed to a more commercial hard rock sound à la Steppenwolf or Iron Butterfly. By the fourth album, Blue Cheer,[17] Paul Whaley had left the band and had been replaced by Norman Mayell, and following the release of the fourth album Bruce Stephens also left the band[20] and was succeeded by Gary Lee Yoder who helped complete the album.

According to Peterson, the group's lifestyle during this period caused problems with the music industry and press. Peterson said the group was outraged by the Vietnam War and society in general.[21]

The new line-up of Peterson, Kellogg, Mayell and Yoder in 1970 saw the release of The Original Human Being, followed by 1971's Oh! Pleasant Hope.[17] When the latter album failed to dent the sales charts, Blue Cheer temporarily split up in 1971.[17]

1974–1975 and 1978–1979 reunions[edit]

In 1974, Blue Cheer reformed under the name “Peterbilt,” with Dickie Peterson and brother Jerre Peterson as founding members and three guitars in the band's lineup. Peterbilt played club appearances in Sacramento January 10–12.[22] By May of that year, they had switched the name back to "Blue Cheer" and the Petersons were co-writing new songs and slowly attracting more bookings.[23] The band played an outdoor festival in San Juan Capistrano July 5.[24]

In December 1974, Blue Cheer played a Christmas festival at The Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on December 22 alongside Van Halen, Judee Sill, The Coasters and Art Laboe's Band,[25] followed by a three-night run of appearances at The Whisky a Go Go from December 23 to December 25.[26]

In 1975, Kim Fowley produced an album for Blue Cheer,[27] with sometime Steppenwolf member Nick St. Nicholas co-producing. The lineup included the Peterson brothers on bass and guitar, along with ex-Hollywood Stars members Ruben De Fuentes on guitar[28] and Terry Rae on drums.[29] Although the album was never released,[27] six tracks from this period were released on the Captain Trip Records album Live and Unreleased '68/'74 (1996).[30]

Dickie Peterson left the band in 1975 with Nick St. Nicholas replacing him on bass/vocals, leaving the band with no original members for some shows.[31][32] The band played Laguna Beach Winter Festival February 15 of that year.[33]

In 1978, Dickie Peterson began rehearsing with Davis-based guitarist Tony Rainier, a younger brother of Peterson's high school friend (and sometime Blue Cheer soundman and bodyguard) Larry Rainier. Michael Fleck was auditioned as drummer. The reformed Blue Cheer recorded an album with Jim Keylor at Army Street Studios.[34] The album was initially unreleased,[35] but received an official release in 2012 by ShroomAngel Records as Blue Cheer 7.[34] The band embarked on a US tour in 1978–1979 with setlists that featured tracks from the first two Blue Cheer albums, and then returned to a period of inactivity after the tour completed.[32]

Further reconfigurations, relocation to Germany, second and third extended hiatus (1980s–1998)[edit]

Blue Cheer was once again inactive in the early 1980s. There was another attempt to reunite in 1983, but that fell through. In 1984, Peterson had better luck when he returned with Whaley and Rainier as Blue Cheer and a brand new album The Beast Is Back, which was released on the New York label Megaforce Records.[17] Whaley left again in 1985 as drummer Brent Harknett took over, only to be succeeded by Billy Carmassi in 1987. That same year, Dickie led yet another new lineup of the Cheer that had Ruben De Fuentes back on guitar and Eric Davis on drums. In 1988, the line-up changed once again, being now composed of Dickie Peterson (bass), with Andrew "Duck" MacDonald (guitar) and Dave Salce (drums).

From 1989 to 1993, Blue Cheer toured mainly in Europe. During this time, they played with classic rock acts as well as then-up-and-coming bands: Mountain, Outlaws, Thunder, The Groundhogs, Ten Years After, Mucky Pup, Biohazard and others.

1989 saw the release of Blue Cheer's first official live album, Blitzkrieg over Nüremberg. This album was recorded during Blue Cheer's first European tour in decades.

1990 saw the release of the Highlights and Lowlives studio album,[17] composed of blues-based heavy metal and one ballad. The album was co-produced by notable grunge producer Jack Endino and producer Roland Hofmann. The line-up was Peterson, Whaley on drums and MacDonald on guitars.[36]

Blue Cheer followed up Highlights and Lowlives with the much heavier Dining with the Sharks. Duck MacDonald was replaced by German ex-Monsters[37] guitar player Dieter Saller in 1990. Also featured is a special guest appearance by Groundhogs guitarist Tony McPhee. The album was co-produced by Roland Hofmann and Blue Cheer.[38] Gary Holland (ex-Dokken/Great White/Britton replaced Whaley on drums in 1993.

In the early 1990s, Peterson and Whaley re-located to Germany. In 1992, Peterson recorded his first solo album, Child of the Darkness, in Cologne with a band named "The Scrap Yard". The album appeared five years later in Japan on Captain Trip Records. After Peterson came back to the U.S. in 1994, Blue Cheer was dormant from 1994 to 1999.

The return of Blue Cheer (1999–2009)[edit]

In 1999, Peterson and Whaley got together with guitarist MacDonald to resume touring as Blue Cheer. This band configuration remained largely constant from 1999 until Peterson's death in 2009.

In 2000, Blue Cheer was the subject of a tribute album, Blue Explosion – A Tribute to Blue Cheer, featuring such bands as Pentagram, Internal Void, Hogwash and Thumlock.

Peterson and Leigh Stephens were together once again in Blue Cheer with drummer Prairie Prince at the Chet Helms Memorial Tribal Stomp in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park on October 29, 2005, and their lively performance drew old rockers like Paul Kantner and others from backstage to observe. They did some recordings in Virginia in Winter 2005 with Joe Hasselvander of Raven and Pentagram on drums, due to Paul Whaley choosing to remain in Germany. While Hasselvander played on the entire album, his contribution was reduced to drums on five songs, with Paul Whaley re-recording the drum parts on the balance of the album. This was because Whaley was set to rejoin the band and it was felt that he should contribute to the album, prior to touring. The resulting CD, What Doesn't Kill You..., released in 2007, features contributions from both Whaley and Hasselvander as a consequence.[39]

Blue Cheer's video for "Summertime Blues" made an appearance in 2005 documentary Metal: A Headbanger's Journey, where Geddy Lee of Rush referred to the group as one of the first heavy metal bands.

Death of Peterson and disbandment (2009)[edit]

Peterson died on October 12, 2009, in Germany from prostate cancer.[40] Peterson was actually 63 at the time of his death despite some initial confusion, as exemplified here, immediately following the announcement of his death.[21] After Peterson's death, long-time Blue Cheer guitarist Andrew MacDonald wrote on the group's website that "Blue Cheer is done. Out of respect for Dickie, Blue Cheer [will] never become a viable touring band again." Drummer Paul Whaley died of heart failure in January 2019.[41]

Dispute over ownership of band name[edit]

In recent years, a dispute has arisen as to ownership of the Blue Cheer band name. It was reported that, as of the early 2000s (decade), former Blue Cheer guitarist Randy Holden, assisted by Randy Pratt of The Lizards band, had trademarked the Blue Cheer band name. Holden's association with Blue Cheer was quite brief; his only recorded output with the band is three tracks on New! Improved! from 1969.[42] The matter had upset Dickie Peterson, given his position as a co-founder of the band and the only continuing member since its inception, but does not appear to have been resolved.[43]

According to Randy Pratt, this report is not entirely accurate. Pratt provides uncited commentary[44] as follows:

The Blue Cheer band name was trademarked in 2000 by fan and professional musician Randy Pratt. Pratt put the trademark in former Blue Cheer guitarist Randy Holden's possession after Dickie Peterson said he was finished with Blue Cheer and wanted nothing to do with it ever again, with his sole future interest in his new band, 'Mother Ocean.[45][46]


Blue Cheer is often credited as one of the very earliest pioneers of heavy metal and their version of "Summertime Blues" has been cited as the first heavy metal song.[9] According to Tim Hills in his book, The Many Lives of the Crystal Ballroom,[47] "Blue Cheer was the epitome of San Francisco psychedelia." Jim Morrison of The Doors characterized the group as "the single most powerful band I've ever seen"[48] and Eric Clapton defined them as "probably the originators of heavy metal".[49] Blue Cheer influenced such late 1970s bands as East-European psychedelic hardcore band Galloping Coroners.[50]

Blue Cheer was also widely recognized as the loudest band ever at the time when they emerged.[51][52][53][54][55] Billy Altman reported that at a 1968 concert the band was "So loud, in fact, that within just a few songs, much of the crowd in the front orchestra section was fleeing."[55]

Various artists in the grunge movement have paid homage to Blue Cheer, including Melvins vocalist Buzz Osborne[56] and Mudhoney vocalist Mark Arm, who said; "Hearing Blue Cheer [while in college] was almost as important to me as hearing the Stooges for the first time the year before. When Mudhoney started up, Blue Cheer was definitely part of our blueprint.”[57]

"Blue Cheer" was the name of a variety of LSD made by chemist and Grateful Dead patron Owsley Stanley[58] and the band was probably named after that, although the name existed earlier, as the name of a laundry detergent[59] after which the LSD variety itself was named.



  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals (1967–1972, 1974–1975, 1978–1979, 1984–1994, 1999–2009; died 2009)
  • Leigh Stephens – guitar (1967–1968, 2005)
  • Paul Whaley – drums (1967–1969, 1969, 1984–1985, 1990–1993, 1999–2004, 2005–2009; died 2019)
  • Eric Albronda – drums (1967)
  • Jerre Peterson – guitar (1967, 1974–1975; died 2002)
  • Vale Hamanaka – keyboards (1967)
  • Jere Whiting – vocals, harmonica (1967)
  • Randy Holden – guitar (1968–1969)
  • Mitch Mitchell – drums (1969; died 2008)
  • Tom Weisser – guitar (1969)
  • Bruce Stephens – guitar, vocals (1969; died 2012)
  • Ralph Burns Kellogg – keyboards, bass (1969–1972; died 2003)
  • Norman Mayell – drums, guitar (1969–1972)
  • Gary Lee Yoder – guitar, vocals (1969–1972; died 2021)
  • Troy Spence Jr. – guitar (1972–1974)
  • James L. Curry – drums (1972–1974)
  • Ruben De Fuentes – guitar (1974–1975, 1987–1988)
  • Terry Rae – drums (1974–1975)
  • Nick St. Nicholas – bass, vocals (1975)
  • Tony Rainier – guitar (1978–1979, 1984–1987)
  • Mike Fleck – drums (1978–1979)
  • Brent Harknett – drums (1985–1987)
  • Billy Carmassi – drums (1987)
  • Eric Davis – drums (1987–1988)
  • Andrew "Duck" MacDonald – guitar (1988–1990, 1999–2005, 2005–2009)
  • David Salce – drums (1988–1990)
  • Dieter Saller – guitar (1990–1994)
  • Gary Holland – drums (1993–1994)
  • Prairie Prince – drums (2005)
  • Joe Hasselvander – drums (2004–2005, 2009)


1967 1967 1967–1968 1968–1969
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Leigh Stephens – guitar
  • Vale Hamanaka – keyboards
  • Jerre Peterson – guitar
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Jere Whiting – vocals, harmonica
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Leigh Stephens – guitar
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Randy Holden – guitar
1969 1969 1969 1969–1970
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Mitch Mitchell – drums
  • Tom Weisser – guitar
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Bruce Stephens – guitar, vocals
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Bruce Stephens – guitar, vocals
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Ralph Burns Kellogg – keyboards, bass
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Bruce Stephens – guitar, vocals
  • Ralph Burns Kellogg – keyboards, bass
  • Norman Mayell – drums, guitar
1970–1972 1972–1974 1974–1975 1975
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Ralph Burns Kellogg – keyboards, bass
  • Norman Mayell – drums, guitar
  • Gary Lee Yoder – guitar, vocals
  • Dickie Peterson – bass
  • Jerre Peterson – guitar
  • Troy Spence Jr. – guitar
  • James L. Curry – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Ruben De Fuentes – guitar
  • Jerre Peterson – guitar
  • Terry Rae – drums
  • Ruben De Fuentes – guitar
  • Jerre Peterson – guitar
  • Terry Rae – drums
  • Nick St. Nicholas – bass, vocals
1975–1978 1978–1979 1979–1984 1984–1985


  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Mike Fleck – drums
  • Tony Rainier – guitar


  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Tony Rainier – guitar
  • Paul Whaley – drums
1985–1987 1987 1987–1988 1988–1990
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Tony Rainier – guitar
  • Brent Harknett – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Tony Rainier – guitar
  • Billy Carmassi – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Eric Davis – drums
  • Ruben De Fuentes – guitar
1990 1990–1993 1993–1994 1994–1999
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Andrew "Duck" MacDonald – guitar
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Dieter Saller – guitar
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Dieter Saller – guitar
  • Gary Holland – drums


1999–2005 2005 2005 2005–2009
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Andrew "Duck" MacDonald – guitar
  • Paul Whaley – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Leigh Stephens – guitar
  • Prairie Prince – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Andrew "Duck" MacDonald – guitar
  • Joe Hasselvander – drums
  • Dickie Peterson – bass, vocals
  • Andrew "Duck" MacDonald – guitar
  • Paul Whaley – drums



Studio albums[edit]

Title Year US Top 200
Vincebus Eruptum 1968 11
Outsideinside 90
New! Improved! 1969 84
Blue Cheer
The Original Human Being 1970 188
Oh! Pleasant Hope 1971
The Beast Is Back 1984
Highlights and Lowlives 1990
Dining with the Sharks 1991
What Doesn't Kill You... 2007


Year Title Peak chart positions Album
1968 "Summertime Blues" b/w "Out of Focus" 3 14 Vincebus Eruptum
"Just a Little Bit" b/w "Gypsy Ball"" 69 92 Outsideinside
"Feathers from Your Tree" b/w "Sun Cycle"
1969 "The Hunter" b/w "Come and Get It[62]"
"West Coast Child of Sunshine" b/w "When It All Gets Old" New! Improved!
"All Night Long" b/w "Fortunes" non-album tracks*
1970 "Hello L.A., Bye-Bye Birmingham" b/w "Natural Man" Blue Cheer*
"Fool" b/w "Ain't That the Way"
"Pilot" b/w "Babaji (Twilight Raga)" The Original Human Being
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

* The 2007 Japanese mini-LP sleeve reissue of Blue Cheer contains the mono non-LP single "All Night Long" b/w "Fortunes" along with the single versions of "Fool" and "Ain't That The Way" as bonus tracks.


  • Blitzkrieg Over Nüremberg (1989; Thunderbolt/Nibelung Records)
  • Live & Unreleased, Vol. 1: '68/'74 (1996; Captain Trip Records)
  • Live & Unreleased, Vol. 2: Live at San Jose Civic Centre, 1968 & More (1998; Captain Trip Records)
  • Hello Tokyo, Bye Bye Osaka – Live in Japan 1999 (1999)
  • Rocks Europe CD/DVD, 2009; Rainman/Captain Trip Records)
  • Live at Anti Waa Festival 1989 CD/DVD, (2014; Nibelung Records)
  • Party Hard at the Underground Cologne (online only, 2017; Nibelung Records)
  • Three Giants, One Tour - Live in Germany in 1992 (online only, 2022; Nibelung Records)
  • Live Bootleg: London – Hamburg (official bootleg, 2005; Rockview Records)

Other releases[edit]

  • The Best Of Blue Cheer (1970; Philips)
  • Motive (1982; Philips)
  • Louder Than God: The Best Of Blue Cheer (1986; Rhino Records)
  • The History Of Blue Cheer – Good Times Are So Hard To Find (1988; Mercury)
  • Summertime Blues (compilation, 1990; PolyGram Special Products)
  • Vincebus Eruptum + Outsideinside (2003; Track Record)
  • Records Of Yesteryear (online only, 2005; Mercury)
  • Blue Cheer Rollin' Dem Bones (EP, 2008; Rainman)
  • 7 (2012; ShroomAngel Records)
  • Beginnings (online only, 2017)
  • The '67 Demos (demo, 2018; BeatRocket)

See also[edit]

Book references[edit]

  • Hughes, Tom (2006). Dimery, Robert (ed.). 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. Quintet Publishing Limited. ISBN 0-7893-1371-5.
  • Buckley, Peter (2003). The Rough Guide to Rock. London: Rough Guides. ISBN 1-85828-201-2.

Other references[edit]

  1. ^ Bob Leszczak (July 10, 2014). Who Did It First?: Great Rock and Roll Cover Songs and Their Original Artists. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 208. ISBN 978-1-4422-3322-5.
  2. ^ Michael Goddard; Benjamin Halligan; Nicola Spelman (July 18, 2013). Resonances: Noise and Contemporary Music. Bloomsbury Publishing. p. 185. ISBN 978-1-4411-1837-0.
  3. ^ Tim Boomer (June 1, 2013). The Bassist's Bible: How to Play Every Bass Style from Afro-Cuban to Zydeco. See Sharp Press. p. 69. ISBN 978-1-937276-25-6.
  4. ^ Blue Cheer at AllMusic
  5. ^ Eric v.d. Luft (September 21, 2009). Die at the Right Time!: A Subjective Cultural History of the American Sixties. Gegensatz Press. p. 279. ISBN 978-1-933237-39-8.
  6. ^ Fricke, David (September 12, 1985). "Where Are They Now: Blue Cheer". Retrieved July 15, 2021.
  7. ^ McIntyre, Ken (November 4, 2016). "Cult Heroes: Blue Cheer- the band who invented heavy metal". Retrieved May 4, 2022.
  8. ^ January 29, Aidin Vaziri; February 1, 2019Updated (January 29, 2019). "Paul Whaley, drummer who pioneered heavy metal with Blue Cheer, dies at 72". Datebook | San Francisco Arts & Entertainment Guide. Archived from the original on April 25, 2023. Retrieved March 19, 2024.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  9. ^ a b c "Rolling Stone Music | Top Artists, News, Reviews, Photos and Videos". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on December 2, 2008. Retrieved October 21, 2010.
  10. ^ Deming, Mark. "Vincebus Eruptum – Blue Cheer". AllMusic. Retrieved October 21, 2010.
  11. ^ Prato, Greg (August 9, 2005). "Live Bootleg: London – Hamburg – Blue Cheer". AllMusic. Retrieved October 21, 2010.
  12. ^ a b "Music News, Videos, Photos, Artists, Playlists and More". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on May 8, 2009. Retrieved October 21, 2010.
  13. ^ Dimery 2006 pg 140, "paving the way for everything from the Stooges to Zeppelin, from heavy metal to experimental rock."
  14. ^ Phil Alexander. "Blue Cheer – Disc of the day". Mojo. Archived from the original on December 6, 2010. Retrieved October 21, 2010.
  15. ^ Outsideinside, Blue Cheer, The Original Human Being, OH! Pleasant Hope and The Beast Is Back. See Profile of Eric Albronda;
  16. ^ See Portrait of Vale Hamanaka/V. Vale Archived June 7, 2016, at the Wayback Machine;
  17. ^ a b c d e f g h Colin Larkin, ed. (1999). The Virgin Encyclopedia of Heavy Rock (First ed.). Virgin Books. pp. 70/1. ISBN 0-7535-0257-7.
  18. ^ Limnios, Michalis (January 3, 2014). "Veteran guitarist Leigh Stephens talks about Blue Cheer, Rock n' Roll culture and Haight-Ashbury era". Blues.Gr. Retrieved August 28, 2023.
  19. ^ Both Stephens and Kellogg had previously worked together in The Emeralds, a well-known northern California backing band in the 1960s. The Emeralds had also toured with The Coasters, The Olympics, The Larks, Bob & Earl, Chuck Berry, Junior Walker, Ray Peterson, and also opened shows for The Kinks, The Beach Boys, The Animals, Chad & Jeremy and Paul Revere & the Raiders, among others. By the time Stephens and Kellogg were asked to join Blue Cheer, both had co-founded Mint Tattoo, which had recorded one album engineered by Phil Ramone and produced by James William Guercio. While in Mint Tattoo, Stephens and Kellogg had opened shows for Jeff Beck, Eric Clapton, Ten Years After, James Cotton and Janis Joplin. Bruce Stephens later played with Pilot (not the same band that had a hit with "It's Magic"), one of Leigh Stephen's (no relation) post-Blue Cheer projects. One song from this period, "Fillmore Shuffle" was later recorded by Sammy Hagar on his second solo album, Sammy Hagar (1977). See Profile of Bruce Stephens Archived February 5, 2012, at the Wayback Machine;, via
  20. ^ Bruce Stephens continued in music, but with a much lower profile. In early 2009, he released Saturday Freedom (Rear Window Records), being a compilation of his compositions over the past three decades. "Rendezvous", a song co-written by Stephens, was included in The Cage, the 1982 album by Tygers of Pan Tang. Also in 1982, Stephens had released his first solo album, Watch That First Step, which featured supporting performances by Lonnie Turner, B.J. Wilson and Norton Buffalo, among others. Stephens has the distinction of being, at the age of sixteen, the youngest member in the history of the Musicians' Union of Sacramento, California. See Profile of Bruce Stephens Archived February 5, 2012, at the Wayback Machine;, via
  21. ^ a b Dickie Peterson dies at 63; bassist and lead singer for the power trio Blue Cheer Los Angeles Times, October 17, 2009; Los Angeles Times.
  22. ^ "Rock Group Is To Play Dates". Sacramento Bee. 232 (38343). Sacramento, CA: The McClatchy Company: H19. January 9, 1974. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  23. ^ Leon, Vicki (May 5, 1974). "Rock Stars Are Rising Again After Bad Trip With Heroin". Sacramento Bee. 233 (38459). Sacramento, CA: The McClatchy Company: A3. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  24. ^ "SJC Rock Event Draws Thousands". The Daily Sun-Post. 36 (129). San Clemente, CA: Media News Group: 2. July 8, 1974. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  25. ^ "It's Greek Festival". San Pedro News-Pilot. 45 (241). San Pedro, CA: The Copley Press Inc: C10. December 18, 1974. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  26. ^ Cromelin, Richard (December 25, 1974). "Muted Blast From the Musty Past". Los Angeles Times. CXIV. Los Angeles: Part IV, p. 28. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  27. ^ a b Roeser, Steve (November 26, 1993). "Kim Fowley: Living and Dying in L.A." (online). Goldmine. New York: Project M Media. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  28. ^ De Fuentes, Ruben (October 29, 2019). The Hustle, Episode 234 - Ruben De Fuentes of The Hollywood Stars (audio podcast). Jon Lamoreaux. Denver, CO. 42:06–42:34. Retrieved October 3, 2023.
  29. ^ Groovetguy (assumed to be Terry Rae) (March 27, 2020). "Blue Cheer – Live & Unreleased '68/'74". Discogs. Reviews section. Retrieved July 11, 2023. Terry Rae played drums on tracks 4 to 9. Fighting Star & Adventures recorded at Gold Star studios.
  30. ^ Live and Unreleased '68/'74 (compact disc). Blue Cheer. Tokyo: Captain Trip Records. 1996. Tray card. CTCD-023. Retrieved July 11, 2023.{{cite AV media notes}}: CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  31. ^ "Nick St. Nickolas. 1997 Performer – 7th annual LA Music Awards". The New Los Angeles Music Awards. LA Music Awards. 2015. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  32. ^ a b David Slavković (January 8, 2018). "Forgotten Pioneers of Heavy Metal: Blue Cheer". Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  33. ^ "What's Doing in Orange County". Los Angeles Times. CXIV. Los Angeles: Part IV, p. 15. February 14, 1975. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  34. ^ a b Albronda, Eric (2012). Blue Cheer 7 (Vinyl LP). Blue Cheer. Houston: ShroomAngel Records. Inner gatefold. SR-LP0002. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  35. ^ Pete Pardo. Ranking the Studio Albums: Blue Cheer (video). Poughkeepsie, NY: Sea of Tranquility. Event occurs at 14:33–14:57. Retrieved July 11, 2023.
  36. ^ Credits: Highlights and Lowlives;
  37. ^ A band that continues to remain active. See Monsters website Archived December 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  38. ^ Credits: Dining With The Sharks;
  39. ^ Duck MacDonald Autobiography Archived July 25, 2011, at the Wayback Machine at
  40. ^ R.I.P. Richard ‘Dickie’ Peterson (Blue Cheer) (1948–2009) Archived October 15, 2009, at the Wayback Machine;
  41. ^ January 29, Aidin Vaziri; February 1, 2019 Updated. "Paul Whaley, drummer who pioneered heavy metal with Blue Cheer, dies at 72". Datebook | San Francisco Arts & Entertainment Guide. Retrieved February 2, 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  42. ^ Though Paul Whaley played drums on Holden's 1996 release (recorded in 1993), Guitar God. The album was originally on Captain Trip Records Archived October 14, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, a Japanese label which has also released Dickie Peterson's two solo records.
  43. ^ Interview with Dickie Peterson Archived May 15, 2013, at the Wayback Machine by Nightwatcher for Rock N Roll Universe, February 2008.
  44. ^ By way of edits to the Blue Cheer Wikipedia page as "Whistleinthewind".
  45. ^ Dickie Peterson and Mother Ocean, which included former Blue Cheer guitarist Tony Rainier, along with Peterson's brother Jerre, were playing in Germany in 2001 and 2002. See Notice of 2001 performance and Notice of 2002 performance; It is unclear whether this was a side project or principal activity of Peterson, particularly since there were no Blue Cheer recordings released during this period and the extent of Blue Cheer's touring activity is uncertain. The 2002 German performances were in March; Jerre Peterson died in August of that same year. See Blue Cheer News Archived 25 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  46. ^ Neither Pratt nor Holden has given any public commentary as to reasons or motivations for trademarking the band name. Pratt's views have instead been incorporated as edits to the Blue Cheer Wikipedia page, without separate public sourcing of same. No separately sourced comments of Holden have been incorporated.
  47. ^ McMenamins, 1997. McMenamins now owns the Crystal Ballroom.
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External links[edit]