Remembering Fever Tree's Don Lampton

Besides Michael, Farrah, Ed McMahon and Sky Saxon of the Seeds, last week's bumper crop for the Grim Reaper also claimed Don Lampton, a founding member of '60s local psych-rock band Fever Tree. Lampton, 61, played keyboards and rhythm guitar for the Bostwick Vines, which became Fever Tree after husband-and-wife duo Scott and Vivian Holtzman began managing and writing songs for the band, which released several singles in the Houston area on New York City's Mainstream label.

Lampton's tenure in Fever Tree was short-lived, though. He was replaced by multi-instrumentalist Rob Landes before the group recorded its albums Fever Tree and Another Time, Another Place and grazed the Billboard singles chart with 1968's "San Francisco Girls (Return of the Native)." In later years, Lampton worked at the Ames booking agency - securing Billy Gibbons' pre-ZZ Top band the Moving Sidewalks an opening slot for Jimi Hendrix, among other things - Brook Mays Music and started his own company, Don Lampton Music. He was remembered as a mentor to many in the local scene.

"He helped many more with logistical problems (gear)," Guy Schwartz of the New Jack Hippies posted on his Facebook page last week. "He always loved to play."

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray