Essra Mohawk an obscure gem similar to Laura Nyro

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geoff85
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Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 11:55 pm

Essra Mohawk an obscure gem similar to Laura Nyro

Postby geoff85 » Wed Sep 28, 2016 2:33 pm

Its interesting that the world still has such obscure gems buried so deep. I discovered her name in the credits of Shangr-Las Ill never learn which i found to be very catchy and modern for a early 70s song. Lo and behold Essra turns out to have some serious songwriting chops and her artistic choices are rare and very special. I find her brilliance to harken to that of Laura Nyro's. Compare thunder in the morning to laura nyro midnight blue.

Any of you brill building gangstas know of her? Thoughts?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1qw0N0lAzg(at 1:20 reminds me eerily of how Laura Nyro makes shrill notes ethereal without sounding sharp)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ouLf1Z6LRw

Bruce Bernard Williams
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Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 12:37 pm
Location: Tulsa

Re: Essra Mohawk an obscure gem similar to Laura Nyro

Postby Bruce Bernard Williams » Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:00 pm

Hi geoff85, I bought a CD of Essra's several years ago on a whim simply because it featured one of my all-time favorite singers—Bonnie Bramlett. I had never heard of Essra until I visited Bonnie's site and was reading the list of recordings that she appeared on. When I listened to the CD, I was pleasantly surprised of how tight the whole thing sounded! I hope that everyone who reads this thread will check out Essra and also Bonnie. Haven't heard much from either in years. Btw, Bonnie put out a gospel lp in the 90's [“Step by Step"] which was sensational. I'm gonna dig and find the Essra CD and start listening to her again. I am always on the hunt for obscure yet great sounding vocalists. I can sit here and rattle off a whole slew of just such artists. Thanks geoff for exposing Essra to the forum.

geoff85
Posts: 237
Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 11:55 pm

Re: Essra Mohawk an obscure gem similar to Laura Nyro

Postby geoff85 » Thu Sep 29, 2016 12:59 am

Because of the generation I was born into I have to do alot of my own digging and unearthing of these gems so that is commonplace for me but to know that Essra is obscure to the aficianados of her own generation is mind blowing( Laura as well). I will look into Bonnie and welcome any other references.

Blair N. Cummings
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Joined: Fri Jun 11, 2004 4:14 pm

Re: Essra Mohawk an obscure gem similar to Laura Nyro

Postby Blair N. Cummings » Thu Sep 29, 2016 2:56 pm

I`ll be honest: Essra Mohawk went right past me. This is the first I`ve ever heard of her. But the early `70s were awash in "singer-songwriters". I liked Claire Hammill (SP?) and Wendy Waldman`s first album. Laurie Styvers was another unknown you should hear. Her case ended tragically. After being signed by Warners, she made an album called Spilt Milk that received zero promotion; and her second album wasn`t even released in the US. She ended up drinking herself to death.
Laura Nyro never had the prominence of Joni Mitchell but was hardly obscure. Her second and third albums sold impressively. Unfortunately, after her early `70s sabbatical, she returned as a ruralized earth mother writing lame, eco-feminist greeting cards disguised as songs. The melodies were lovely and her voice had lost what some might, uncharitably, have called its stridency. But nothing was the same.

JohnnyD
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Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:30 pm

Re: Essra Mohawk an obscure gem similar to Laura Nyro

Postby JohnnyD » Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:03 pm

I'm familiar with Essra Mohawk. Born Sandra Hurvitz, she recorded at least one single in Philadelphia in the mid 1960s using the name Jamie Carter. Then she moved to New York and met Frank Zappa, and recorded an album as Sandy Hurvitz. Then she moved to California and married Barry Friedman, who was using the name Frazier Mohawk. I wouldn't put her in the same league as Laura Nyro, but she has written and recorded some good things.


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