P.F. Sloan – Eve of Destruction

Dennis Elsas and P.F. Sloan

Dennis Elsas and P.F. Sloan

When I spoke with PF Sloan in the summer of 2006 he had just released Sailover his first new album in more than thirty years. There had always been an air of mystery surrounding his life and career and so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from our conversation. I was very intrigued to meet the man who wrote “Eve of Destruction”, one of the biggest hits of 1965 and still one of the defining protest songs of the era. He was also the co-writer with Steve Bari of some of my favorite pop songs of the 60’s including “You Baby” for the Turtles, “A Must to Avoid” by Herman’s Hermits and “Secret Agent Man” recorded by Johnny Rivers.

We talked about the new album and some of the guests that appeared on it including Lucinda Williams, Buddy Miller, and Frank Black. He was candid but cautious in providing the stories behind the songs both old and new, just adding a bit more to the mystery of his legacy. Bringing along his guitar he played a few songs from the new album and treated us to a wonderful live version of “Secret Agent Man.”

In the early 70’s Jimmy Webb wrote and the Association recorded the song “PF Sloan” which wondered aloud where had he gone. PF must have wondered also, since he was never able to find further fame and recognition within the emerging singer-songwriter scene. I was very sad to learn of his death from pancreatic cancer on November 15, 2015 at the age of 70.

Click here to listen to the full interview.