Bivens: shot to stardom with We Five in
1965. The liner note bios of You Were On My Mind reads that "Bev's
unusual brilliance and vocal range is the basis of our sound." That statement
still rings loudly almost 40 years later. Her voice continues to provide the
soundtrack to countless people's lives hundreds of times a day across the country.
Think of all the times you have turned on the car radio to hear the trademark drum intro followed by Bev's voice singing "when I woke up this mornin'..." It is instantly recognizable; and, just as powerful today as it was the first time it aired.
Beverly began singing with Michael and Jerry as a member of The Ridgerunners / Michael Stewart Quintet in 1964. It wasn't long after joining the band that Frank Werber booked them to play the Hungry i in San Francisco. That night the band's name was changed to We Five, and the rest is rock and roll history.
When the original group disbanded in 1967, rumors began to circulate that Beverly had been killed in a car crash... or something to that degree. Fortunately, these rumors are not true.
Actually, Beverly turned her back on stardom to marry jazz musician Fred Marshall (who knew the band by his association with San Francisco pianist Vince Guaraldi), explore experimental music, and become a mom.
For a while she sang with Fred's band Light Sound Dimension creating improvised vocal sounds years before it was "popularized" by the likes of Yoko Ono.
Although she no longer pursues a singing career, her legacy lives on. Her son Joshi is a skilled musician in his own right; and, we are happily reminded by the first two We Five albums of the splendid three years she spent with the band.