Tarkio (1970), the third album released by Brewer & Shipley, was their most popular recording yielding two hit songs: "One Toke Over the Line" and "Tarkio Road".
The title came about when they left California in 1969 returning to the Midwest, this time to Kansas City, Missouri, where they played college towns in Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri and Kansas. One regular gig was Tarkio College in the small town of Tarkio, Missouri and being long-hairs at that time in that place it was essential not to stop in the small towns on the way back home. They found they could just make it from Tarkio to Saint Joseph, Missouri on a single tank of gas and took to calling the route "Tarkio Road".
The catchy single, "One Toke Over the Line", peaked at #10, garnering notice from Spiro Agnew for what he saw as its subversiveness. Ironically, the song was performed (by Gail Farrell and Dick Dale) on The Lawrence Welk Show, which billed it a "modern spiritual". The song is notably mentioned in the opening of Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.
Jerry Garcia contributed a distinctive steel guitar intro to the track "Oh Mommy" which was purportedly a plea to throw Richard Nixon out of office. The album also features John Kahn and Bill Vitt on bass guitar and drums, respectively; regulars of The Jerry Garcia Band.
A CD reissue in 1996 added the following tracks