Pearls Before Swine

Pearls Before Swine was an American folk-psych band from Melbourne, Fla., that released the 1967/68 albums One Nation Underground and Balaklava on the jazz label ESP, followed by the 1969–71 albums These Things Too, The Use of Ashes, and City of Gold on Reprise. Frontman Tom Rapp issued a solo album, Familiar Songs, then led a new Pearls on the 1972/73 albums Stardancer and Sunforest on Blue Thumb.

Members: Tom Rapp (guitar, vocals), Wayne Harley (autoharp, banjo, mandolin, vibraphone, oscillator, 1965-69), Lane Lederer (bass, guitar, English horn, horn, vocals, 1965-68), Roger Crissinger (organ, harpsichord, synthesizer, 1965-67), Jim Bohannon (organ, piano, clavinet, marimba, 1968), Jim Fairs (guitar, celeste, 1969) Elisabeth Rapp (vocals, 1969-72), Mike Krawitz (piano, 1971), Gordon Hayes (bass, 1971), Jon Tooker (guitar, 1971), Morrie Brown (bass, 1971), Robbie Merkin (1971), David Wolfert (1971), Art Ellis (flute, 1971-74), Bill Rollins (bass, cello, 1971-1974), Harry Orlove (guitar, banjo, 1971-74)

Pearls Before Swine formed in Melbourne on Florida’s Atlantic coast in 1965 when Tom Rapp, an aspiring songwriter originally from Bottineau, North Dakota, assembled three musical high school friends: Wayne Harley (banjo, mandolin), Lane Lederer (bass, guitar), and Roger Crissinger (piano, organ).

Rapp demoed his Fugs-inspired originals and sent the tape to the New York avant-garde label ESP Disk, which signed the band. They took their name from a biblical passage: “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine ….” (Mat. 7:6, KJV).


  • One Nation Underground (1967)
  • Balaklava (1968)
  • These Things Too (1969)
  • The Use of Ashes (1970)
  • City of Gold (1971)
  • Beautiful Lies You Could Live In (1971)
  • Stardancer (1972 • Tom Rapp / Pearls Before Swine)
  • Sunforest (1973 • Tom Rapp / Pearls Before Swine)


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