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One of the first generation heavy metal bands, Mountain was formed by ex-Vagrants guitarist Leslie West (Leslie Weinstein, 22 October 1945, Forest Hills, New York, USA) and bass player Felix Pappalardi (b. 30 December 1939, the Bronx, New York City, New York, USA, d. 17 April 1983, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA) in New York in July 1969. Pappalardi had produced West’s debut solo album, Mountain, released that summer. Augmented by drummer N.D. Smart (b. Norman Smart) and Steve Knight on keyboards, they played the Woodstock Festival later in the year (although their performance did not appear in the film of the event). Their debut album Climbing! was released the following year, with Corky Laing (b. Laurence Gordon Laing, 26 January 1948, Montreal, Quebec, Canada) replacing Smart. Featuring dense guitar lines from West and the delicate melodies of Pappalardi, Mountain quickly established their own sound, although Cream influences were detectable in...

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