When LSD and DMT were legal and mescaline grew freely in the form of peyote all over Texas, in the years after Kennedy's assassination in Dallas, then the pioneers of the drug culture would inevitably find musicians to reflect these experiences. This laid the foundation in 65 directly for Janis & Big Brother, whose style unashamedly copies the Elevators.
Repressed by the McCartheyist authorities and suppressed by inept management they were the headline band in Frisco in 66, the year before it all happened, supported by Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Quicksilver Messenger Service et al. They went back to Texas that winter and, due to bail restrictions. could not return West after their busts.
Your not paranoid when the system really is after you and they were after Roky & the Elevators big time. It didn't help that Tommy was half protecting and half oppressively controlling Roky with his incessant "let's drop acid and do music" dogma.
Their management failed to do justice to their innovative musical creations with poorly produced lo-fi recordings. You can get an idea of what they were doing but it hardly does them justice. This is the story of what could have been but for conspiracies, halucinogens, psychotic episodes, busts, repression, ineptitude, poor timing and apathy. This was the seed and root of Frisco music which emerged and blossomed on the more liberal West Coast. Without the Elevators it wouldn't have happened and this story tells you of the embryonic evolution and how it impacted by osmosis on the bands they touched and sold their drug doctrine to.
Read this book. It is probably a better guide than their CDs to just how huge an influence they were and how to snatch failure from the jaws of success. Had they been based in England or LA they would have bee enormous but then, where would they have found all that peyote?