Vincent Crane (feat Arthur Brown) – Taro Rota (1997)

frontcover1Properly termed a Vincent Crane solo album, but so dominated by Arthur Brown’s preternatural vocals that the billing has been totally flipped, the oft misspelled Taro Rota album was originally conceived around 1975, when Crane and wife-to be Jeannie Crane found their shared interest in Tarot cards spilling over into their songwriting. (The pair used to offer Tarot readings at fetes and fairs.) A 22-minute opus arranged for orchestra and more, Taro it was a fascinating piece of work, but far too ambitious to ever be realized. Even Crane’s otherwise-enthusiastic publishers were willing only to fund a ten-minute demo, which was recorded later in 1975 with Arthur Brown and a full band — it is this piece which leads off the 1997 Voiceprint CD, alongside Crane’s own piano demo of the full work. The original Taro Rota did not remain entirely unheard. Atomic Rooster’s valedictory Headline News album lifted elements for the songs “Time” and “Machine,” although little more than the melody will prepare the listener for the full Taro Rota experience. Nor, of course, does the music presented here. Despite a spellbinding Brown recital, the band performance is just a shade too clunky to capture the full dynamic of the Cranes’ vision, while the piano rendition is by necessity too Spartan. But both allow one to dream of what could have been — and it is a wonderful dream. (by Dave Thompson)

vincentjeannie

Vincent + Jeannie Crane, April 15th, 1977 
Vincent and I composed this piece way back in 1976, especially for Arthur Brown. There is a ten minute demo with Arthur on vocals, but unfortunately, due to contractual reasons, at the last minute it couldn’t be included on the CD. At the moment the Taro Rota Suite is an impressive 23 minutes of Vincent doing the whole thing! Hopefully this will be amended later this year!
Taro RotaOne day a charity bazaar was held in the grounds of a very large and beautiful house and Vincent and I went along to do Tarot Readings.Inside the conservatory, surrounded by lush hangings of grape vine, we spread the cards time and time again. We told story after story for an endless queue of people but the day was just was not long enough to be with everyone. So, when everyone else had left, the remaining books had been packed, the paintings put away and the money counted, we lay out a spread of cards for all the people we didn’t see. It told us your story and it told you ours. We called it Taro Rota. (Jeannie Crane, 1997)
alternatefrontcover
Incorrectly and repeatedly billed as a joint effort with Arthur Brown. Whilst that was the original plan, this is ostensibly a solo effort by Vincent Crane. The shorter Part two is Crane with a band doing a re-visit of Atomic Rooster’s biggest hit, “Tomorrow Night”.
Overall this is a very good album. Many have panned it but I will take anything by the late great, and much lamented, keyboard maestro. The two long songs do drag ever so slightly, in that their is little variation and much repetition. What there is does highlight Crane’s virtuosity as a piano player and I will always wish that circumstances had prevailed to give him more success, especially within the Atomic Rooster framework. He remains one of my few heroes and this album only serves to prolong and enhance his stature with me. His suicide is still a matter of supreme sadness and he left the world with a huge dose of “what could and, indeed, what should have been”. (by Crazyworldof)
Vincent Crane  of Atomic Rooster,Copenhagen 1972

Personnel:
Vincent Crane piano, organ, vocals)
+
unknown studio musicians on 02.
+
no Arthur Brown !

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Tracklist:
01. Part 1 22.30
02. Part 2 (“Tomorrow Night”) 3:21
03. Part 3 22:29 01.

Music Vincent Crane
Lyrics Vincent Crane + Jeannie Crane

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I don’t really know what I’m doing,
I don’t really care what you say.
Following the signs of illusion,
Dancing in the sun on my way.
See a light burn in the darkness,
Quicksilver sky, clouds of fire.
Hear a door close in the silence,
Echoes of dreams and desire.
Mountains of stone turn to ashes,
Ribbons of gold turn to clay,
River of life overflowing
Trapped in the dreams of today.
I don’t really know what I’m doing,
I don’t really care what you say.
Following the signs of illusion,
Dancing in the sun on my way.
I don’t know what’s wrong,
With reality.
I don’t know what’s wrong,
Is it only me?
Time to get over this feeling again.
Life is stealing away.
I keep on feeling life stealing away,
Stealing away while I dream of today.
Time to break out of it,
Must get away.
Get away!
See a light burn in the darkness,
Quicksilver sky, clouds of fire.
Hear a door close in the silence,
Echoes of dreams and desire.
Mountains of stone turn to ashes,
Ribbons of gold turn to clay,
River of life overflowing
Trapped in the dreams of today.
I don’t really know what I’m doing,
I don’t really care what you say.
Following the signs of illusion,
Dancing in the sun on my way.
Magician or fool!
Taro Rota, Arot Taro,
Taro Rota, Arot Taro,
Taro Rota, Arot Taro,
Taro Rota, Arot Taro,
Taro Rota, Arot Taro,
Taro Rota, Arot Taro.
I’m walking in a dream,
Places where I’ve been fade away,
Floating from rhyme or reason,
Future will unfold flowers of gold.
I see the world below, I know that it is turning,
But circles of the wheel turn slowly,
And nothing is explained just light forever burning
And time is going by, so slowly.
Fly in the sky on wings that are so weary,
‘Til the eagle’s nest comes in sight.
Time in a word and that word simply nothing,
Watch the water flow, silent snow.
I see the world below, I know that it is turning,
But circles of the wheel turn slowly,
And nothing is explained just light forever burning
And time is going by, so slowly.
Time for the reason, I feel free.
I’m just the last one to find I’m me.
Veils of illusion set me free.
My eyes are open and I can see.
Time for the reason, I feel free.
I’m just the last one to find I’m me.
Veils of illusion set me free.
My eyes are open and I can see.
Stealing over me,
Sleeping endlessly,
River flow to the sea,
Time is free.
Stealing over me,
Sleeping endlessly,
River flow to the sea,
Let me dream.
Let me dream….
Hell train,
See the demons dance.
Hell train,
See the demons dance.
Hell train,
See the demons dance.
Hell train,
See the demons dance.
In your mind,
Mirrors of your mind.
In your mind,
Mirrors of your mind.
Taro Rota, Arot Taro,
Taro, Rota, Arot Taro……..
You have summoned me,
But I am not in your control.
I will eat your mind
And then destroy your very soul
Though you stand within
The circle I won’t stay my hand,
For the very stones
You stand on are at my command.
‘Cos you’re mine!
Yes, you’re mine!
You have summoned up
A power that is beyond your will.
You have brought to life
A force that death itself can’t kill.
See your useless symbols
Turn to dust before your eyes,
Feel my power engulf you,
Laughter drown your helpless cries.
‘Cos you’re mine!
Yes, you’re mine!
You are a ma-chine,
You are a ma-chine,
You are a ma-chine………..
You’re dreaming,
Is this real?
Illusion,
Confuse your mind.
Hold fast now,
Thoughts shifting patterns.
Hold fast now
And then let go.
Stare into the sun,
Become one incandescent ray of your creation.
Watch the water flow
And sink below a single drop in one vast ocean.
Fly into the air,
Ensnare your mind upon a pin of concentration,
Deep inside the earth,
Rebirth, the rotten coffin breaks the maggots welcome.
You’re dreaming,
Is this real?
Illusion,
Confuse your mind.
Hold fast now,
Thoughts’ shifting patterns.
Hold fast now,
And then let go…………..
Time is going through the motion,
Drowning tears in one vast ocean,
Rivers flee from valley fire,
Can the mountains climb no higher?
Frozen in a sea of sorrow,
Dream away forget tomorrow,
Words will always be unspoken,
Promises will soon be broken.
Driving down the endless highway,
Time is starting to go my way.
Find the people who will know why,
Love will lose and time will go by.
Circling in an endless season,
Stop and ask yourself the reason.
Time marches on!
Life’s illusions melting away,
Now is the time for change,
Changing,
Everything remains the same,
You will find,
Though the stars lose their brightness
One by one.
Come!
Fly, Fly away!!!

Steve Marriott – Marriott (1976)

frontcover1In 1975, Humble Pie came sputtering to a halt after a series of less than inspiring albums. Surprisingly, frontman Steve Marriott’s first solo album after the split, 1976’s Marriott, is a sprightly, rollicking affair that is light on the blues-rock of Humble Pie and heavy on soul, funk, and hard-charging rock & roll. The album is divided into a British side (recorded by Marriott’s band that included ex-T. Rex guitarist Mickey Finn) and an American side (with backing by a raft of West Coast session players including Michael Nesmith sidekick Red Rhodes on pedal steel). The British side is a rocked-out blast of noise with Marriott’s wailing vocals sounding rejuvenated and his live-wire guitar playing fully to the front. Tracks like “East Side Struttin’,” “Lookin’ for a Love,” a fully fleshed-out version of a Small Faces track, “Wam Bam Thank You Ma’am,” and “Midnight Rollin'” equal the best moments of Humble Pie, and only the blues ballad “Help Me Through the Day” lets the side down. The American side is unsurprisingly a much slicker proposition, relying on backing vocalists and synths to flesh out the sound. Marriott’s ragged soul shines through, however, on rollicking tracks like “Star in My Life,” the disco-fied “Late Night Lady,” and a slinky cover of Freddie Scott’s “Are You Lonely for Me Baby.” Again, the ballad drags things down as the cheesy arrangement of “You Don’t Know Me” shows that maybe Marriott should have steered clear of the ballads — the cheesy arrangement is pure supper club, and Marriott sounds very out of place. Batting .800 is nothing to look sideways at, though, and Marriott is a stunning return to form and a powerful two-finger salute to anyone who had written the lad off as washed up. He’s dirty as ever and on top of his game, and the album flat out rocks. ( by Tim Sendra)

steve-marriott
Personnel:
Ben Benay (guitar on 06. – 10.)
Alan Estes (percussion on 06. – 10.)
Mickey Finn (guitar on 01. – 05.)
David Foster (keyboards on 06. – 10.)
Dennis Kovarik (bass on 06. – 10.)
Steve Marriott (guitar, vocals)
Greg Ridley (bass, background vocals on 01. – 05.)
Red Rhodes (guitar, pedal steel-guitar on 06. – 10.)
David Spinozza (guitar on 10.)
Ian Wallace (drums, Percussion on 01. – 05.)
Ernie Watts (Saxophone on 06. – 10.)
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background vocals:
Carlena Williams – Greg Ridley – Maxayn Lewis – Venetta Fields
backcover1

Tracklist:

British Side:
01  East Side Struttin’ (Finn/Marriott) 4.55
02. Lookin’ For A Love (Alexander/Samuels) 3.51
03. Help Me Through The Day (Russell) 6.01
04. Midnight Rollin’ (Stephens/Marriott) 3.36
05. Wam Bam Thank You Ma’am (Lane/Marriott) 4.03

 American Side:
06. Star In My Life (Wallace/Marriott) 3.37
07. Are You Lonely For Me Baby (Burns) 3.58
08. You Don’t Know Me (Walker/Arnold) 5.03
09. Late Night Lady (Ridley/Marriott/Hinkley) 3.07
10. Early Evening Light (Marriott) 4.08

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Man – The Welsh Connection (1976)

frontcover1The Welsh Connection (stylized on the cover as Welsh-Connection) is the eleventh album by the Welsh psychedelic/progressive rock band Man and was released on the MCA Records label 1976. It was their first MCA release, and the first after a change of line-up that saw John McKenzie take over on bass from Martin Ace, and Phil Ryan rejoin. Ryan had worked with Pete Brown in the interim, and arranged for Brown to play on two tracks.

The track “Something is Happening” was sampled on “Break the Bank” a 2014 single by rapper Schoolboy Q.(by wikipedia)

“A new record company and another new line up. The March 1976 release of Welsh Connection saw the return of Phil Ryan on keyboards, with John McKenzie replacing the departing Martin Ace on bass. Writing and rehearsals (including auditioning the new bass player) took place at The Grange in Headley Down, Hampshire during November and December 1975 and the album was recorded at Olympic Studios in Barnes during December, January and February. As usual the band only sprang into life once the deadline was upon them.

Deke Leonard explains; “Three days before the deadline expired, we got down to work. Two days before, we were quietly confident. On the last day, we realised we were in the shit. We phoned Barry and said we, er, wouldn’t make the deadline.

“How many songs do you need?” he asked.
“Seven or eight” we said.
“And how many have you got?”
“Er, two-and-a-half. Ish.”
“Well, it’s alright,” he said, with a whiff of superiority. “I’ve already booked you in for another ten days, I did it about three weeks ago.”

Well that we said must have been the problem. We knew in our water it wasn’t a bona fide deadline – it never really felt like one……The next day, faced with a real deadline, we panicked.”

The new line up resulted in yet another radical change to the group’s sound. The combination of McKenzie, a more than usually lyrical bassist, and Ryan, whose performances are always cultured, worked very well. Together they turned out a pretty funky blend, especially when Phil got warmed up on the title track. As Deke commented later; “Phil is a bit of a funky player, while Micky and I don’t have a funky bone in our bodies. John tended to play with Phil.” McKenzie himself remembers most of the songs as being ready before he auditioned; “Pretty much people had their material written. Obviously arrangements were changed but it was pretty much nailed already.”

promotionposters
Promotion posters

Although critical reaction was generally good, an occasionally less positive note was struck. It was felt in some quarters that perhaps too many of Man’s rough edges had been smoothed off. Charles Shaar Murray, writing in the New Musical Express weighed in with the headline; “Man cracks four songs in under twenty minutes barrier”. Johnny Walker made “Out Of Your Head” his record of the week, and things were looking decidedly commercial. The band split up before another studio album could be recorded.

‘I’m a Lovetaker’ which was released as a B side to the ‘Out Of Your Head’ single, and is included as a bonus track on the Eagle Records and Esoteric CD release of ‘Welsh Connection’ is a Deke Leonard song, written and recorded during the sessions for his second solo album, ‘Kamikaze’. It’s not really a Man song at all and also features Brian Breeze on guitar, and Dave Charles on drums.” (by manband-archive.com)

mickyjones

Micky Jones

Personnel:
Micky Jones (vocals, guitar)
Deke Leonard (guitar, vocals)
John McKenzie (bass, vocals)
Phil Ryan (keyboards, vocals)
Terry Williams (drums, vocals)
+
Brian Breeze (guitar on 08.)
Nigel Brooke-Heart (vocals on 06.)
Pete Brown (african talking drums on 04. + 05.)
Dave Charles (drums on 08.)
Caromay Dixon (vocals on 05.)
Jeffrey Hooper (vocals on 02.)
Anton Matthews (vocals on 02.)

backcover1

Tracklist:
01. The Ride And The View (Leonard) 5.01
02. Out Of Your Head (Leonard) 4.04
03. Love Can Find A Way (McKenzie) 5.13
04. The Welsh Connection (Ryan/Jones) 7.18
05. Something Is Happening (Ryan) 6.21
06. Car Toon (Leonard/Ryan) 6.01
07. Born With A Future (Jones/Leonard/Ryan) 7.07
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08. (I’m A) Love-Taker” (B-side “Out of Your Head” single) (Leonard) 2.47

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The Runaways – Same (1976)

FrontCover1The Runaways is the debut album by the American all-female rock band The Runaways, released in 1976.

Website AllMusic has praised the record (especially band members Cherie Currie, Joan Jett and Lita Ford), comparing the band’s music to material by Led Zeppelin and The Stooges.

According to multiple sources including Cherie Currie (in her memoir Neon Angel), the liner notes of the Raven Records release of The Runaways, and Jackie Fox herself, bassist Nigel Harrison played bass on the first album, due to manager Kim Fowley refusing to let Fox play on the record.

The documentary film Edgeplay: A Film About the Runaways states that the album’s first track “Cherry Bomb” was written ad hoc during the audition of lead singer Cherie Currie and the title is a play on the pronunciation of Currie’s first name. Currie was told to prepare a Suzi Quatro song for the audition; she picked “Fever”, a song the band did not know how to play. Instead, Joan Jett and Kim Fowley came up with the song and had Currie sing it for her audition.

In 2009, “Cherry Bomb” was named the 52nd-best hard rock song of all time by VH1.[5] A cover of “Cherry Bomb” is featured in the music video game Rock Band as a downloadable single track. The song also featured in the movies Dazed and Confused, RV, Cherrybomb, The Runaways, and Guardians of the Galaxy, and is played in the opening scene of Margaret Cho’s stand-up comedy DVD “I’m the One That I Want”.

“You Drive Me Wild” is featured in the 2010 film about the band. Actress Dakota Fanning covers “Cherry Bomb” as well as “Dead End Justice” with Kristen Stewart, as they portray Cherie Currie and Joan Jett respectively. (by wikipedia)

TheRunawaysLive
When the Runaways debuted in 1976 with this self-titled LP, aggressive female rockers were the exception instead of the rule. Women had no problem becoming folk-rockers, singer/songwriters or Top 40 icons, but female artists who had more in common with Led Zeppelin and Aerosmith than Joni Mitchell were hardly the norm. With this album, the Runaways made it crystal clear that women (or specifically, adolescent girls) were more than capable of playing intense, forceful hard rock that went directly for the jugular. Lusty classics like “Cherry Bomb” and “You Drive Me Wild” made no attempt to conceal the fact that teenage girls could be every bit as sexual as the guys — a message that both men and women found intimidating. And on “Is It Day or Night,” Cherie Currie sings about life in the fast lane with every bit as much conviction as Axl Rose would 11 years later. Currie and Joan Jett are equally riveting, and a 17-year-old Lita Ford was already an impressive guitarist. This LP was far from a commercial hit in the U.S., where timid rock radio programmers simply didn’t know what to make of the Runaways. But interestingly, it did earn the band a strong following in the major rock market of Japan. (by Alex Henderson)

TheRunawaysLive2

Personnel:
Cherie Currie (vocals, keyboard on 07.)
Lita Ford (guitar, background vocals)
Jackie Fox (bass)
Joan Jett (guitar, vocals)
Sandy West (drums, background vocals)
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Nigel Harrison (bass)

BackCover
Tracklist:
01. Cherry Bomb (Jett/Fowley/Currie) 2.18
02. You Drive Me Wild  (Jett) 3.22
03. Is It Day Or Night? (Fowley/Currie) 2.45
04. Thunder (Anthony/Krome/Currie) 2.31
05. Rock & Roll (Reed/Jett) 3.17
06. Lovers (Jett/Fowley) 2.09
07. American Nights (Anthony/Fowley/Currie) 3.15
08. Blackmail (Jett/Fowley) 2.41
09. Secrets (Currie/Fowley/Krome/West/Currie) 2.43
10. Dead End Justice (Anderson/Currie/Fowley/Jett) 7.01

Label1*
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Bomp
 

Joe Cocker – Stingray (1976)

FrontCover1Stingray is the sixth studio album by Joe Cocker, released in 1976 (see 1976 in music).

“Stingray” is Joe Cocker’s seventh and arguably his best album.

Recorded in Jamaica with the aid of crack producer Rob Fraboni, and a tightly sprung soul band, “Stingray” moves with an understated forcefulness that simultaneously generates both moonlit loveliness and churning dramatic tension.

A new album of such power and beauty it affirms, once again, why Joe Cocker has a special place in American music.

Cocker’s entire range of vocal expression – from his fragile whisper to his desperate scream – comes across with breathtaking urgency.

Joe Cocker has reached another artistic pinnacle with more than a little help from his friends” (A&M promotional ad)

“Stingray”  is Joe Cocker’s  6th studio album, released in 1976 and ranks as a favorite among his musical peers. Joe turns in some unbelievable vocal performances on such tunes as “The Jealous Kind”, “A Song For You”, “She is My Lady” and “The Worrier” (which features Eric Clapton on guitar).

The soulful rhythm section is anchored by Joe’s then backup band ‘Stuff’ with lead guitarist Eric Gale providing flawless guitar solo’s throughout. Great backup vocals are provided by Patti Austin, Deniece Williams and Bonnie Bramlet.

Without question it ranks alongside the best rock albums ever made. Cocker’s singing has enourmous emotional power and range and the song selection is exquisite.(by Anthony)

Joe Cocker’s album “Stingray”, 1976, is a favorite of mine. Its flavor is so similar to Joe’s 1974 album, “I Can Stand A Little Rain” they could have been a double album.
I purchased the vinyl album of this and played it until the needle wore the record down. Once, after a show that I opened for Joe, I was privileged to meet Pam Cocker. I told her that Stingray was a favorite of mine and she said it was a favorite of hers too. I told her that I had found and purchased just about all of Joe’s albums on CD but Stingray had not been released on CD yet and I wondered why. I constantly was searching for it and when I finally found it available, I rushed to order it. When it arrived, I sat down, with headphones on, and marveled at the songs that I hadn’t heard in decades.

JoeCocker1976Joe Cocker, 1976

The first Track “The Jealous Kind” has a Reggae feel, and keyboardist Richard Tee, really sweetens the sound with his choice of keyboard and deftly played licks. I perform this song, a lot in my “As Joe Cocker” Tribute Shows. Track two, “I Broke Down” is an up tempo tune, with energy suitable for an opening song of a live concert. Track Three, “You Came Along” is a Bobby Charles song that features an echo effect at 36 seconds into the song, on Joe’s voice that is short but I listen for it every time that I listen to this track. Track Four, “Catfish” is a favorite of mine, written by Bob Dylan. It tells the story of Catfish Hunter, the famous baseball pitcher. Catfish is my favorite pitcher in baseball ever. I had never heard Dylan’s version of the song so I found it and gave it a listen. Since I had heard Joe’s version first and loved it, I hated Dylan’s original. Track Five, “Moon Dew” is a vehicle for the dynamics of Joe’s voice.

US InnerSleeves

US inner sleeves

It starts soft and low and builds to a gut felt, sorrowful, voice with an instrumental finish. Track Six, “The Man In Me”, is also a Bob Dylan composition. Joe’s version is a Reggae arranged song that has a happy bounce to it. Track seven, “She Is My Lady”, is a bluesy number with a distinct Gospel feel to it. I was surprised to learn that it was written by George Clinton. Donny Hathaway recorded this song. Joe’s version is so powerfully sang with feeling; I can’t imagine anyone doing a better version of this song than Joe. Track 8, “Worrier”, I love the lyrics to this song. On this call and answer arrangement, the girls really shine. One of the singers has a sound that I can only describe as a “Cockerish” growl. Track 9, “Born Thru Indifference”, features Richard Tee playing a B3 Organ, and the slinky sound of Eric Gale playing his guitar. The last track is “A Song For You” by Leon Russell. This arrangement is really slowed down from Leon’s version, which allows Joe’s heart and soul to stand out in his interpretation of these lyrics. Many Cocker Fans have not heard this album. I recommend it, especially if you heard and liked the “I can Stand A Little Rain” album. (by Alan Kaye)

Indeed: One of the finest albums Joe Cocker ever recorded !

JoeCockerBand

Personnel:
Joe Cocker (vocals)
Cornell Dupree (guitar)
Gordon Edwards (bass)
Steve Gadd (drums, percussion)
Eric Gale (guitar)
Richard Tee (keyboards)
+
Background vocals:
Patti Austin – Bonnie Bramlett – Lani Groves – Gwen Guthrie – Phyllis Lindsay – Brenda White – Maxine Willard – Deniece Williams
+
Eric Clapton (guitar on 08.)
Felix “Flaco” Falcon (percussion)
Albert Lee (guitar on 03.)
Sam Rivers (saxophone)

Booklet1

Tracklist:
01. The Jealous Kind (Charles) 3.51
02. I Broke Down (Moore) 3.29
03. You Came Along (Charles) 3.50
04. Catfish (Dylan/Levy) 5.24
05. Moon Dew (Moore) 5,53
06. The Man In Me (Dylan) 2.43
07. She Is My Lady (Clinton) 4.37
08. Worrier (Moore) 3.16
09. Born Thru Indifference (Cocker/Tee) 6.15
10. A Song For You (Russell) 6.25

LabelB1

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Fairport Convention – Live At The Theatre Royal, London (1976)

FrontCover1 Fairport Convention’s Dave Swarbrick dies at 75

Virtuoso fiddler who found fame as a member of Fairport Convention has died after struggle with emphysema

Folk musician Dave Swarbrick has died at 75, his family have announced. Best known for his work with the hugely influential folk group Fairport Convention, Swarbrick was a virtuosic violin player and one of the most highly regarded musicians of the 1960s folk revival. He also wrote, arranged and sang, and performed on the viola, mandolin and mandola, and guitar.

Swarbrick – known as “Swarb” – began his musical career as a guitarist in a ceilidh band in the late 1950s, before joining the Birmingham-based Ian Campbell Folk Group as a fiddle player. He first worked with Fairport Convention in 1969 as a session musician, subsequently becoming a member of the group, and was the first fiddler on the UK folk scene to electrify the violin. His writing and playing was a key ingredient in the group’s Liege & Lief album, a record that rewrote the folk landscape with its electrified versions of traditional English folksongs.

During the 1970s, alongside his leading role in Fairport Convention, Swarbrick became a sought-after session musician, working with acts including Richard Thompson, Sandy Denny, Bert Jansch and Martin Carthy. Between 1976 and 2010 he released 12 solo albums, and in 2007 joined the 1969 Fairport Convention lineup (with Chris While standing in for the late Sandy Denny), to perform the Liege & Lief album in full.

FairportConvention1970
Fairport Convention in 1970

Swarbrick suffered from emphysema, underwent three tracheotomies and was on occasion forced to perform with an oxygen canister on stage to help with his breathing. During one of his spells in hospital in 1999, the Daily Telegraph prematurely announced his death and published his obituary. At his next public appearance, he apparently took delight in signing copies of the obit for fans, saying: “It’s not the first time I’ve died in Coventry.”

In 2004 he received a double lung transplant, and in recent years continued to record and perform live; a 2006 collaboration with Martin Carthy produced the critically acclaimed album Straws in the Wind and won the duo a BBC folk award. “I’ve always loved working hard and playing live,” said Swarbrick in a 2004 interview in the Guardian. (by theguardian.com)

Musician Dave Swarbrick, best known for his work with influential folk group Fairport Convention, has died on June 3, 2016. He was 75. Known as “Swarb”, the musician performed mainly on the violin; and wrote and arranged songs for their albums – including on the influential electric folk album Liege & Lief – and performing with them up until they disbanded in 1979. The band posted a tribute on their website which said Swarbrick “had been seriously ill for some time”. He had struggled with health problems after being diagnosed with emphysema in the 1990s. Blur guitarist Graham Coxon was one of a number of musicians to pay tribute to Swarbrick, tweeting early footage of him playing mandolin with Martin Carthy with the message: “Very sad… Bye, Dave and thanks!” (by BBC)

DaveSwarbrick1977

Dave Swarbrick in 1977

Fairport Convention drummer Bruce Rowland died of cancer on June 29, 2015. He was 74. While the group had many members over the years, one of the most prominent was Sandy Denny, who passed away in 1978 at the age of 31.

Thanks to jswetch for sharing the show at The Traders’ Den.

jswetch noted:

Great sounding set from the FC line-up that recorded The Bonny Bunch of Roses and Tippler’s Tales. This features tunes from Bonny Bunch. Some disputes over actual date of this performance according to info on etree site.

FairportConvention

Fairport Convention 1976
(from left to right, Dave Pegg, Bruce Rowland, Dave Swarbrick and Simon Nicol)

Personnel:
Simon Nicol (guitar, vocals)
Dave Pegg (bass, vocals)
Bruce Rowland (drums)
Dave Swarbrick (fiddle, vocals)

DaveSwarbrick1972Dave Swarbrick in 1972

Tracklist:
01. Royal Selection No. 13 (Traditional) 4.40
02. Adieu, Adieu (Traditional) 2.39
03. The Hexamshire Lass (Swarbrick) 2.44
04. The Flowers Of The Forest (Traditional) 5.31
05. Hen’s MarchFour Poster Bed (Tradional) 4.17
06. When I Get To The Border (Thompson) 3.59
07. Jam’s O’Donnell Jig (Pegg) 3.14
08. The Eynsham Poacher (Traditional) 3.13
09. Sir B McKenzie (Swarbrick/Thompson/Nicol/Mattacks)  6.01
10. General Taylor (Traditional) 4.03
11. Dirty Linen (Traditional) 4.14

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David Cyril Eric Swarbrick (5 April 1941 – 3 June 2016)

REST IN PEACE

Count Bishops – Good Gear (1977)

FrontCover1The Count Bishops were a British rock band, formed in 1975 in London and which broke up in 1980. The Count Bishops had limited commercial success, but forged an important stylistic and chronological link between the root rhythm and blues band Dr. Feelgood and the proto punk sound of Eddie and the Hot Rods; together forming the foundation of the pub-rock scene, which influenced the emergence of punk rock. The group made history in England by releasing the first record from independent label Chiswick Records.[1][2][3] They splintered following the death of guitarist Zenon DeFleur on March 18, 1979.

The Count Bishops formed in spring 1975, when members of the group Chrome joined the American vocalist Mike Spenser. In July of that year, Spenser (née Scolnick) called fellow countryman Johnny Guitar from Paris for five days straight and finally convinced him (guitar) to pack up two Les Pauls and fly to the UK and join up with Spenser and Zenon DeFleur (so named by Johnny after seeing him passed out on the floor at their first recording session). They found Steve Lewins (bass) and Paul Balbi (drums) within a few weeks. The new line-up recorded the next month at Pathway Studios with Barry Farmer at the desk and of these 13 tracks, four became the Speedball EP, the first release of Chiswick Records.

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Shortly before the release (on Dutch label Dynamite) of the single “Taking it Easy” (released in the UK as “Train, Train”), Spenser left the band after an incident involving a glass door and his boot. Johnny and Zen handled lead vocals for the next year, including on the Dutch release “Good Gear” on the Dynamite label. After recording the backing tracks for their first LP on Chiswick, they decided to bring over Dave Tice (formerly of Australian band Buffalo).[4] With this lineup, the group finished recording its debut UK album, and toured heavily making a name for themselves and bringing to a new level their traditional influences of the 1960s: beat music (the Beatles, the Rolling Stones) and garage rock (the Standells, the Strangeloves).

For the rest of 1977, the Count Bishops toured continuously (including the support slot on the first Motorhead tour and John Cale’s tour that year, as well as their own shows) and built a formidable army of fans – despite the fact that they did not fit the mold considered against the backdrop of old-fashioned punk movement. In the spring of 1978, they signed up for a live album with the participation of six groups of the Chiswick Records roster. The project was not fully realised, but the label released it as a mini-album called Live Bishops, reducing the band name to the Bishops. With this material (and a new bass player Pat McMullan, who replaced Steve Lewins) the Count Bishops toured extensively.

In 1978, two singles (“I Take What I Want” and “I Want Candy”) led the Count Bishops to an appearance on the TV show Top of the Pops. A few days after the release of their album Cross Cuts, which had been a year and a half in production, Zenon Hierowski crashed his Aston Martin and died, and instead of the anticipated “breakthrough”, the Bishops were forced to retrench. They toured with Blitz Krieg (of Blast Furnace fame) depping for Zen, and then Paul Balbi (drums) was deported back to Australia after returning from a Spanish festival. The band carried on with Charlie Morgan (Tom Robinson Band, Elton John) on drums and just Johnny on guitar for some months, including a tour of Australia with Balbi, but Zen’s death had taken much of the impetus away and they split up. (by wikipedia)

And here´s the debut album from one of the best bands from that period. And it´s one of my favorite bands …

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Votes from allmusic.com:

“The Count Bishops were a fine, energetic, R&B-based band capable of kicking out a fierce racket of noise that sounded like a grimier version of seminal British R&B revivalists Dr. Feelgood.” (John Dougan)
“The sound of the Bishops in sensitive rockabilly mode has a swirling darkness and a restless rhythm, and it rattles by as hellbound as any classic blues locomotive.” (Dave Thompson)
“This solid, unpretentious debut album belongs in the home of every fan of English R&B from the Yardbirds to the Pretty Things to Dr. Feelgood.” (John Dougan)
“A laconic sneer, a greaseball grind, and one of the hottest guitarists of the age.” (Dave Thompson)

This record was made to be played loud !

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Personnel:
Paul Balbi (drums)
Johnny Guitar (guitar, vocals)
Zen Hierowski (guitar, vocals)
Steve Lewins (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. Don’t Start Cryin’ Now (Moore) 2.04
02. Shake (Cooke) 2.08
03. Walkin’ The Dog (Thomas) 3.38
04. Somebody (Balbi/Guitar/Hierowski/Lewins) 2.50
05. Candy (Berns/Feldman/Goldstein/Gottehrer) 3.23
06. Wang Dang Doodle (Dixon) 5.37
07. Dear Dad (Berry) 1.40
08. Confessin’ The Blues (McShann/Brown) 3.25
09. Little By Little (Phelge/Spector) 2.40
10. Carol (Berry) 2.35
11. Johnny B. Goode (Berry) 2.00
12. Dust My Blues /James) 2.50
13. Shake Your Moneymaker (James) 2.38

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