Then signed as a singer-songwriter type solo act to Lou Adler's Dunhill Records label in the mid-'60s, Sloan recorded a couple of fine Bob Dylan-inspired albums which went largely unnoticed at the time in spite of the wealth of top quality material contained there within. The controversial "Sins of a Family" (1965) became a minor U.K. hit for him.
Around this time Sloan was first institutionalised for mental health issues and had started dabbling in hard-core drugs, to which he eventually became seriously addicted. He lost the plot, so to speak...
Problems of contractual and financial nature (i.e. he wasn't getting paid and they wouldn't let him go) with Dunhill ensued. Consequently Sloan entered his "Lost Weekend" - which lasted for nearly three decades.
To find out more about all this and more, one can pick up P.F. Sloan's new autobiography "What's Exactly the Matter With Me?" (With S.E. Feinberg, Jawbone Press, England, 2014) - it's well worth it. A fascinating journey through a remarkable life. Yes, it's bizarre at times and often you're not quite sure exactly what to believe.
In some aspects one can't help but to draw parallels between the lives of P.F. Sloan and Brian Wilson; two tremendously talented young men struggling to retain their sanity in a world diluted with fame, drugs and unscrupulous characters of questionable morals and integrity. Both, inevitably, couldn't stand the heat and became victims of a notoriously inhumane industry. But instead of being guided and helped in their times of trouble, they were just continually used and abused - even by those nearest and dearest to them. What a shame, and what a bloody waste. Thankfully though, scarred and burnt, both eventually made it back from the darkness and are at long last doing what they should have been doing all along - making music.
The Turtles recorded several Sloan (& Barri) tunes, among them the original version of what is arguably P.F. Sloan's best-known song, "Eve of Destruction". However, "Is it Any Wonder" is a hidden gem.
And The Association recorded the positively gorgeous "On a Quiet Night", one of my favourite P.F. Sloan tunes back in 1967...
....And then in 1971 they took a crack at "P.F. Sloan", written by Sloan's old friend Jimmy Webb, reportedly without even knowing there was such a person as "P.F. Sloan"!
P.F. Sloan, recommended listening:
P.F. Sloan/"Here's Where I Belong; The Best of the Dunhill Years, 1965 - 1967" (CDWIKD 277, Big Beat/Ace Records, U.K., 2008)
Various Artists/"You Baby; Words and Music by P.F. Sloan and Steve Barri" (CDTOP 1264, Ace Records, U.K., 2010)
P.F. Sloan and S.E. Feinberg/"What's Exactly the Matter With Me?" (Jawbone Press, 2014)