Poe through the Glass Prism

Quoth the Raven, "Oh my God!"

Here's another one of those "concept albums" that people used to do back in the 70's before musicians realized that it was a bad bet to expect people to have any interest in actual artistry. This one has the bold idea of recording a series of rock tunes set to the poetry of Edgar Allen Poe. All in all, it's not a bad idea, and one that must have been largely lost on the dope-smoking rock-n-roll record buyers of the era.

The music on this album is really pretty cool. Check out "The Raven", which I understand hit the charts for at least a little while in 1974. Its wailing Hammond organ sounds and monotone vocal delivery are pretty catchy. I also enjoy the way the band combines early-Beatles haircuts with late-Beatles costuming. Who can possibly resist a band with a velvet jacket and a giant black bird? Not me!

Poe through the Glass Prism
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The Raven (MP3) Once upon a midnight dreary...

See Also: The National Gallery

Your Comments:

Jack Flash says:
This song hits on all cylinders: Great song, melody, arrangement, vocal, musicianship and of course it's easy to dance to. Way to go guys. Nice job. (04-04-2004)

Dragon Lady says:
This song the Raven is really good. I like everything about it. The singer has the perfect voice. I just love the melody and the music sounds like it was made for the words of POE. He would be very pleased with The Glass Prisms interpretation. (04-03-2004)

Spencer says:
Didn't these guys used to be called the El Caminoes? That was a great band. (04-03-2004)

Allbright says:
The Raven is the only song that I know of that was actually written by artists from the northeast that actually got onto a major record company and made it on the charts for any length of time. I also think the Glass Prism was the first rock group from the northeast to sign a major record contract. That says alot about these guys. Now to see all of these wonderful comments is so nice. The legend still lives on. (03-31-2004)

DEANNA says:

PeterFernandez says:
Did somebody say "cool"? (03-30-2004)

Jay M says:
Great vocals on this. I love the keyboards and the interaction with the organ, piano and bass. It's really pretty unique for the time. It's nice the way the drummer did not get in the way of all of the other little things going on musically. That's the sign of a good musician. Actually, it seems they are all pretty good musicians and someone is an outstanding arranger.
In case you haven't noticed, this simple little song is a hit. The Glass Prism has truely captured the essance of Poe's words, or in this case his lirics. Think about it. EAP writting lirics for a rock band. Now that's cool. Rock on Edgar. Rock on Glass Prism. They say the fifth Beatle was George Martin. Well, the fifth Glass Prism was Edgar Allen Poe. Top that, mop tops. (03-30-2004)

June Bird says:
What's the buzz? Tell me what's happening.
I just love this song. (03-30-2004)

Michael Lister says:
I saw the Shenandosn version of these guys in my home town of Chambersburg, PA a few times. They were well liked. I recognized two of the guys in the photo. I had heard about The Glass Prism and knew the song that was on the radio called The Raven. The guy who use to hire them told us about the albums but they never had to play those songs because their new material was even better. Anyway the memories I have were that they were a powerful group, better than the other bands from our area and the others that came to town. I remember the guitar player being fast and always moving. He sang alot of powerful rock songs. The bass player was also fast. Played the bass more like a guitar and sang high and strong. Healso did some songs on keyboards. The drummer was the best also and he sang lead like the other lead singers. He could have fronted any band around. Their harmonies were great cause they were great vocalists and just had a beautiful blend. Powerful music, great vocals, who could ask for anything more. These guys have a great history. You can add me to the list of fans. (03-30-2004)

Renee says:
Do you guys realize we're talking about a group that was popular in the 60's and 70's? This is amazing. I hope they are all well and that they would consider a reunion. I'm sure many old and new fans would love that. All you have to do is listen to The Raven once or twice and you're hooked. It is a great song. We love The Glass Prism and the music they made for us. (03-30-2004)

Sonny says:
You know I heard that all four of these guys sang lead. I would say for the time that had to be unusual. I know the drummer sings some of the songs on the album. I really like his voice on Eldorado and Hymn. It must have been amazing to see these guys live. The harmonies are really nice.
I was young at the time but I heard that not only could the drummer sing but his playing was great. He was one of the only guys who could really use two bass drums, play and sing with the best. This must have been a great group. I heard that the trio called Shenandoah included Rick and Tom of the Glass Prism and Louie Cossa. I heard these three were the best trio ever. I would love to hear their recordings. I have both Glass Prism albums and I think they are really cool. Where can one find the Shenandoah album? (03-30-2004)

chris fidler ( says:
Sounds like Lou Reed ripped this idea off for his Raven album from 2003. (03-30-2004)

Lacy says:
I just looked through some 60's and 70's album covers and the Glass Prism are better looking than everyone. Then I listened to the Raven and realized the song is better than most of the hits of the day. What happened? This should have been one of the premier bands of their time. I think many others agree. I would love to know the mystery. (03-29-2004)

Mars says:
I love this. Does anybody know who produced this? I'm a producer and I would love to talk about the experiences of the era. (03-28-2004)

Keith ( says:
LP is from 1969, not 1974. Perhaps the Raven you are thinking about that actually hit the charts was by the Alan Parsons Project. Their version of the Raven hit in 1975. I used to own this LP... ah, the days back when... Perhaps I'll add it to some day. (03-27-2004)

Sammy says:
This is the Shizzneese I love it, its the same era as Mot the Hoople (03-25-2004)

Bryan D says:
Trivia Question:
I'm Baack.
Question #3 is still unanswered.
Question #4:
The single and album version of The Raven is 4 verses. When The Glass Prism did this live it was longer. How many verses did they do live? (03-24-2004)

Dedra says:
This is just so great. I really love this song, this group and this wonderful idea. They hit it just right. (03-24-2004)

Sal says:
Hello Frank. I missed that animation. Can you do it again? I really think it's neat the way all these fans really love this group. Me too. (03-21-2004)

Rick says:
Thank you Paul. (03-20-2004)

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