Shadrack Chameleon was not so much a band as it was a collective of musicians from a couple popular late-'60s Iowa rock bands. Steve Fox and Randy Berka were close friends growing up in Fort Dodge, Iowa in the early '60s where they were inspired to pick up guitars after hearing the Beatles. Fox's family moved to Illinois in 1964 but returned three years later to Humboldt, near Fort Dodge. By this time, Berka had started a band with organist Jon Porter, drummer Tom Northup, and guitarist John Callahan, which evolved into Lazy River. With Artie Strutzenberg taking over drum chores from Northup and with the addition of Mark Flanagan on bass, Lazy River became a popular band, playing gigs throughout the region. Steve Fox started his own band, Crosstown Traffic, with mates Dan Dodgen (drums), John Brandsgard (guitar), and Doug Sandvig (bass). By the outset of the '70s, internal conflicts ran high in both bands, and Callahan, Strutzenberg, and Flanagan formed Goo, taking Brandsgard with them. Berka and Porter asked Fox to join them, and Shadrack was born. In the summer of 1972, the owners of IGL Records in Iowa had heard Shadrack play and were impressed enough to record a single with the band, but by 1973, Shadrack was all but over, with members going off to college and other pursuits. At the end of 1973, various personnel from Lazy Smoke, Crosstown Traffic, and Shadrack (with Steve Fox the constant) recorded Shadrack Chameleon on a reel-to-reel tape machine in a studio they had built from an old storage shed. Only 300 LPs were released by IGL under the name Shadrack Chameleon, the "Chameleon" added as an afterthought.
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