Screaming Lord Sutch – Rock And Horror (1982)

FrontCover1David Edward Sutch (10 November 1940 – 16 June 1999), also known as 3rd Earl of Harrow, or Screaming Lord Sutch, was an English musician and serial parliamentary candidate. He was the founder of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party and served as its leader from 1983 to 1999, during which time he stood in numerous parliamentary elections. He holds the record for losing more than 40 elections in which he stood from 1963 to 1997. As a singer he variously worked with Keith Moon, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Ritchie Blackmore, Charlie Watts and Nicky Hopkins.

Sutch was born at New End Hospital, Hampstead, London. In the 1960s, inspired by Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, he changed his stage name to “Screaming Lord Sutch, 3rd Earl of Harrow”, despite having no connection with the peerage. His legal name remained David Edward Sutch.

After his career as an early 1960s rock and roll attraction, it became customary for the UK press to refer to him as “Screaming Lord Sutch”, or simply “Lord Sutch”. Early works included recordings produced by audio pioneer Joe Meek.

During the 1960s Screaming Lord Sutch was known for his horror-themed stage show, dressing as Jack the Ripper, pre-dating the shock rock antics of Alice Cooper. Accompanied by his band, the Savages, he started by coming out of a black coffin (once being trapped inside of it, an incident parodied in the film Slade in Flame). Other props included knives and daggers, skulls and “bodies”. Sutch booked themed tours, such as ‘Sutch and the Roman Empire’, where Sutch and the band members would be dressed up as Roman soldiers.

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Despite a self-confessed lack of vocal talent, he released horror-themed singles during the early to mid 1960s, the most popular “Jack the Ripper”, covered live and on record by garage rock bands including the White Stripes, the Gruesomes, the Black Lips and the Horrors, the latter for their debut album.

In 1963 Sutch and his manager, Reginald Calvert, took over Shivering Sands Army Fort, a Maunsell Fort off Southend, and in 1964 started Radio Sutch, intending to compete with other pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline. Broadcasts consisted of music and Mandy Rice-Davies reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover. Sutch tired of the station, and sold it to Calvert, after which it was renamed Radio City, and lasted until 1967. In 1966 Calvert was shot dead by Oliver Smedley over a financial dispute. Smedley was acquitted on grounds of self-defence. About this time Ritchie Blackmore left the band. Roger Warwick left to set up an R&B big band for Freddie Mack.

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Sutch’s album Lord Sutch and Heavy Friends was named in a 1998 BBC poll as the worst album of all time, a status it also held in Colin Larkin’s book The Top 1000 Albums of All Time,[citation needed] despite the fact that Jimmy Page, John Bonham, Jeff Beck, Noel Redding and Nicky Hopkins performed on it and helped write it. On the other hand, for fans of the musicians involved, their work is considered well-worth listening to the album, and especially for the recently formed New Yardbirds/Led Zeppelin, offers a first take of the rolling funk-blues riffs and grooves that would define the classic Led Zeppelin sound.

For his follow-up, Hands of Jack the Ripper, Sutch assembled British rock celebrities for a concert at the Carshalton Park Rock ‘n’ Roll Festival. The show was recorded (though only Sutch knew), and it was released to the surprise of the musicians. Musicians on the record included Ritchie Blackmore (guitar); Matthew Fisher (keyboard); Carlo Little (drums); Keith Moon (drums); Noel Redding (bass) and Nick Simper (bass).

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In 2017 his song “Flashing Lights” was featured in Logan Lucky, directed by Steven Soderbergh.

In the 1960s Sutch stood in parliamentary elections, often as representative of the National Teenage Party. His first was in 1963, when he contested the by-election in Stratford-upon-Avon caused by the resignation of John Profumo. He gained 208 votes. His next was at the 1966 general election when he stood in Harold Wilson’s Huyton constituency. Here he received 585 votes.

He founded the Official Monster Raving Loony Party in 1983 and fought the Bermondsey by-election. In his career he contested over 40 elections. He was recognisable at election counts by his flamboyant clothes and top hat. In 1968 he officially added “lord” to his name by deed poll.[4] In the mid 1980s, the deposit paid by candidates was raised from £150 to £500. This did little to deter Sutch, who increased the number of concerts he performed to pay for campaigns. He achieved his highest poll and vote share at Rotherham in 1994 with 1,114 votes and a 4.2 per cent vote share.

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At the Bootle by-election in May 1990, he secured more votes than the candidate of the Continuing Social Democratic Party (SDP), led by former Foreign Secretary David Owen. Within days the SDP dissolved itself. In 1993, when the British National Party gained its first local councillor, Derek Beackon, Sutch pointed out that the Official Monster Raving Loony Party already had six. He holds the record for losing more than 40 elections in which he stood.

He appeared as himself in the first episode of ITV comedy The New Statesman, coming second ahead of the Labour and SDP, in the 1987 election which saw Alan B’Stard elected to Parliament.

Adverts in the 1990s for Heineken Pilsener boasted that “Only Heineken can do this”. One had Sutch at 10 Downing Street after becoming Prime Minister.

In 1999 Sutch starred in a Coco Pops advert as a returning officer announcing the results of its renaming competition.

Sutch was friends with, and at one time lived at the house of, Cynthia Payne.

Screaming Lord Sutch,Cynthia Payne & Jayne County.The Plough Kenton UK. 20/10/89:
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He had a history of depression, and killed himself by hanging on 16 June 1999, at his mother’s house. At the inquest, his fiancée Yvonne Elwood said he had “manic depression”.

Sutch is buried beside his mother, who died on 30 April 1997, in the cemetery in Pinner, Middlesex. He was survived by a son, Tristan Lord Gwynne Sutch, born in 1975 to American model Thann Rendessy.

In 1991 his autobiography, Life as Sutch: The Official Autobiography of a Raving Loony (written with Peter Chippindale), was published. In 2005 Graham Sharpe, who had known him since the late 1960s, wrote the first biography, The Man Who Was Screaming Lord Sutch. (by wikipedia)

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Taking a break from electioneering, his Screaming Lordship, or Dave to his friends, let loose on these early 80s recordings in his own genteel style. A who’s who of the UK rockin’ scene from the 60s back up Sutch on this ghoulish goulash of hair raising monster rockers, like ‘Screem, Screem’, ‘Murder In The Graveyard’, ‘Loonabilly’ and the inevitable ‘Jack The Ripper’. The leopardskin-clad Sutch recorded with the legendary cult producer of the 60s, Joe Meek and is the UK’s most eccentric rocker, king of bad taste and horror. He regrettably never realised his ambition to be prime minister with his Monster Raving Loony Party as he took his own life in 1999 – a great eccentric that will be gravely missed. (Promo text)

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I’m not sure if this is the definitive Sutch CD, but it will certainly tell you what he was all about ! I gave it four stars because it really is a lot of fun to listen to–although I’m not sure if all the laughs are intentional !
First, the problem–sorry, but as a vocalist, Sutch was pretty bad–studio tricks and good musicians can’t hide the fact that this guy was no singer.
On the other hand, his energy and enthusiasm won me over. I bet if you had a party–and waited until everyone was “feeling no pain”–playing this disc at full volume would be a blast !
There are twelve tracks–the first six have a horror theme with “Jack the Ripper” and “Murder in the Graveyard” delivering the goods–the remaining songs are more conventional rockers, taken at a frantic pace. Warning–if you like deep, meaningful lyrics, forget about it ! This is not Bob Dylan !
Lord Sutch is no longer with us. Apparently, he was a great showman, and many big UK musicians got their start as one of his “Savages”. People who saw him in concert say that the world became a duller place when he left.
Dear Reader–I don’t know if you will like this CD, or hate it, but one thing for sure–like Sutch himself, it is not dull ! ! (by peterfromkanata)

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Personnel:
Anji Antanori (guitar on 07., 10.)
Rod de’Ath (drums on 02., 03.
Bob Burgos (drums on 01., 04. – 06., 08., 09.,11., 12.)
Terry Clempson (guitar on 02., 03.
Tony Dangerfield (bass on 07., 10.)
Keith Evans (bass on 02., 03.)
Matthew Fisher (piano on 12.)
Tony Hall (saxophone on 02., 03., 07., 10.
Richard Hogan (piano on 08., 09., 11.
Brian Juniper (saxophone on 02., 03.
Darnell Kellerman (saxophone on 08., 09., 11.
Freddie “Fingers” Lee (piano on 01., 04.. 06.
Lou Martin (piano on 02., 03.
Rob Murly (bass on 01., 04., 05., 08., 09., 11., 12.)
Ray Neale (guitar on 01., 04. – 06., 08., 09., 11., 12.)
Sid Phillips (saxophone on 02., 03., 07.
Mac Poole (drums on 07., 10.)
Screaming Lord Sutch (vocals)
Ian Terry (leadguitar on 01., 04. – 06., 12.
Pete Thomas (saxophone on 01., 04. – 06.

Booklet

Tracklist:

Horror Side:
01. Screem & Screem (Sutch) 1.54
02. All Black & Hairy (Sutch) 2.32
03. Jack The Ripper (Stacey/Simmonds/Haggin) 3.11
04. Monster Rock (Sutch) 2.24
05. Rock & Shock (Sutch) 2.01
06. Murder In The Graveyard (Surtch) 3.01

Rock Side:
07. London Rocker (Sutch) 2.16
08. Penny Penny (Sutch) 3.04
09. Rockabilly Madman (Sutch) 3.32
10. Oh Well (Sutch) 1.55
11. Loonabilly (Burgos/Neal/Sutch) 1.51
12. Go-Berry-Go (Sutch) 2.32

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David Edward Sutch (10 November 1940 – 16 June 1999)

Mose Allison – Lessons In Living (1983)

FrontCover1Mose John Allison Jr. (November 11, 1927 – November 15, 2016) was an American jazz and blues pianist, singer, and songwriter. He became notable for playing a unique mix of blues and modern jazz, both singing and playing piano. After moving to New York in 1956, he worked primarily in jazz settings, playing with jazz musicians like Stan Getz, Al Cohn, and Zoot Sims, along with producing numerous recordings.

He is described as having been “one of the finest songwriters in 20th-century blues.” His songs were strongly dependent on evoking moods, with his individualistic, “quirky”, and subtle ironic humor. His writing influence on R&B had well-known fans recording his songs, among them Pete Townshend, who recorded his “Young Man Blues” for the Who’s Live At Leeds album in 1970. John Mayall was one of dozens who recorded his classic, “Parchman Farm”, and Georgie Fame used many of Allison’s songs. Others who recorded his songs included Leon Russell (“I’m Smashed”) and Bonnie Raitt (“Everybody’s Crying’ Mercy”).

The 1980s saw an increase in his popularity with new fans drawn to his unique blend of modern jazz. In the 1990s he began recording more consistently. Van Morrison, Georgie Fame and Ben Sidran collaborated with him on a tribute album, Tell Me Something: The Songs of Mose Allison. The Pixies wrote the song “Allison” as a tribute.

Allison’s music had an important influence on other artists, such as Jimi Hendrix, J. J. Cale, the Yardbirds, the Rolling Stones, Tom Waits, and Pete Townshend. He was inducted into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in 2006. (by wikipedia)

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Though ever-busy as a live performer, Mose Allison rarely ventured into the recording studio during the late ’70s and early ’80s, making this fine concert set all the more valuable. LESSONS IN LIVING was cut at the Montreux Jazz Festival with a stellar backing band including Jack Bruce (bass), Billy Cobham (drums), Eric Gale (guitar) and Lou Donaldson (saxophone), all of whom get a chance to shine on these nine tracks. Allison’s voice and piano playing are in peak form as well, and the man’s understated cool comes through perfectly on a mix of classics (“Your Mind Is On Vacation”), recent songs (“Middle Class White Boy”) and re-imagined standards (“You Are My Sunshine”). LESSONS IN LIVING now celebrates its 35th anniversary, and it still qualifies as a master class in blues-oriented jazz. (Press release)

Recorded in a live setting in 1982 – the same year as his Middle Class White Boy album – Lessons in Living is a mixed bag. The material is terrific, and Mose Allison is in typically fine form. The issue lies more with the “all-star” band assembled for the date: bassist Jack Bruce, drummer Billy Cobham, and soloists Eric Gale (guitarist) and Lou Donaldson ( alto saxophonist). For starters, Allison didn’t need a large band –or any band, really – to shine. Though he had been absent from the recording scene for six years until that point, he had continued to perform live and his chops as both a pianist and a singer are stellar.

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These players, fine as they are, don’t seem to understand the subtler kind of magic that Allison puts across in a club setting, and don’t know how to lay back enough – this is particularly the case with Cobham, who is overly busy throughout the date, double-timing already fast tunes like “Wild Man in the Street.” Bruce, playing electric bass, has a wonderful facility to move and shift gears with the pianist, but still feels a shade behind Cobham’s fast and furious beat – the overdriven “Your Mind Is on Vacation” is a case in point. That said, Allison feels like he is having the time of his life. Donaldson’s solo on “You Are My Sunshine” is stirring and raw, something that feels jarring at first with the wonderfully relaxed groove of Allison’s arrangement, but fits like a glove after a chorus. The stomping pace of Willie Dixon’s “Seventh Son” is a highlight on the set with Cobham lightening his touch a bit and Allison’s vocal is swaggering and tough. The laid-back blues of “Everybody Is Crying Mercy” is another gem, with the band holding Allison’s blues loose and easy. Lessons in Living is basically for Allison devotees, but it has fantastic moments. Ironically, Allison didn’t return to recording again for another three years in 1986 after this set was issued. (unknown author)

What a line-up !

Recorded live at the Montreux Jazz Festival, July 1982

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Personnel:
Mose Allison (piano, vocals)
Jack Bruce (bass)
Billy Cobham (drums)
Lou Donaldson (saxophone)
Eric Gale (guitar)

FestivalPosterTracklist:
01. Lost Mind (Mayfield) 2.49
02. Wild Man On The Loose (Allison) 2.23
03. Your Mind Is On Vacation (Allison) 3.16
04. You Are My Sunshine (Mitchell/Davis) 4.54
05. Seventh Son (Dixon) 4.48
06. Everybody Is Cryin’ Mercy (Allison) 3.18
07. Middle Class White Boy (Allison) 3.48
08. I Don’t Worry About A Thing (Allison) 5.52
09. Night Club (Allison) 6.18

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Philip Catherine – End Of August (1982)

FrontCover1Philip Catherine (born 27 October 1942) is a Belgian jazz guitarist.

Philip Catherine was born in London to an English mother and Belgian father and was raised in Brussels. His grandfather played violin in the London Symphony Orchestra. Catherine started on guitar in his teens, and by seventeen he was performing professionally at local venues.

He released his debut album, Stream, in 1972. During the next few years, he studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston and with Mick Goodrick and George Russell. In 1976, he and guitarist Larry Coryell recorded and toured as an acoustic duo. The following year he recorded with Charles Mingus, who dubbed him “Young Django”. In the early 1980s, he toured briefly with Benny Goodman. He was in PhilipCatherine01trio with Didier Lockwood and Christian Escoudé, then in a trio with Chet Baker. During the 1990s, he recorded three albums with trumpeter Tom Harrell.

Catherine has also worked with Lou Bennett, Kenny Drew, Dexter Gordon, Stéphane Grappelli, Karin Krog, Paul Kuhn, Sylvain Luc, Michael Mantler, Charlie Mariano, Palle Mikkelborg, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, Enrico Rava, Toots Thielemans, and Miroslav Vitous. (by wikipedia)

“He is one of the most accomplished and rewarding guitarists now playing jazz. (Downbeat)

“Philip Catherine is one of the last ‘romantics’ in jazz. Philip Catherine doesn’t play music: he ís music. A lyricism that hits the unconscience. Music, music, sometimes with an air of simplicity that makes you believe nothing is easier than observe a photon in it’s course. Great art.” (Francis Marmande. Le Monde)

Listen to this album and you´ll know why he is one the most important jezz guitar player from Europe.

On this album you an also hear another giant of Jazz … Charlie Mariano on saxophone !

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Personnel:
Philip Catherine (guitar)
Nicolas Fiszman (guitar, bass)
Trilok Gurtu (percussion, cymbals, tabla)
Charlie Mariano (saxophone, bamboo flute)
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Toots Thielemans (harmonica on 05. + 08.)

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Tracklist:
01. Petit Nicolas (Catherine) 5.08
02. Grand Nicolas (Catherine) 5.06
03. Janet (Catherine) 9.17
04. September Start (Catherine) 6.14
05. Goodbye (Jenkins) 4.52
06. Birth Of August (Catherine) 2.47
07. End Of August (Catherine) 3.11
08. Presque (Thielemans/Catherine) 0.47

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Larry Davis – Funny Stuff (1982)

FrontCover1.jpgLarry Davis (December 4, 1936 – April 19, 1994) was an American electric Texas blues and soul blues musician. He is best known for co-writing the song “Texas Flood”, later recorded to greater commercial success by Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Davis was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and was raised in England, Arkansas, and Little Rock, Arkansas. He swapped playing the drums to learn to play the bass guitar. In the mid-1950s, he had a working partnership with Fenton Robinson, and following the recommendation of Bobby Bland was given a recording contract by Duke Records. Davis had three singles released, which included “Texas Flood” and “Angels in Houston”. Thereafter, he had limited opportunity in the recording studio. He resided in St. Louis, Missouri, for a while, and played bass in Albert King’s group. He also learned to play the guitar at this time; the guitar on Davis’s recording of “Texas Flood” was by played by Robinson.

Several single releases on the Virgo and Kent labels followed, but in 1972 a motorcycle accident temporarily paralyzed Davis’s left side. He returned a decade later with an album released by Rooster Blues, Funny Stuff, produced by Oliver Sain. He won four W. C. Handy Awards in 1982, but a decade later he was known only to blues specialists.[3] His 1987 Pulsar LP, I Ain’t Beggin’ Nobody, was difficult even for blues enthusiasts to locate.

LarryDavis01In 1992, Bullseye Blues issued another album, Sooner or Later, highlighting his booming vocals and guitar playing influenced by Albert King.

Davis died of cancer in April 1994, at the age of 57. (by wikipedia)

 

Larry Davis didn’t record all that often, but when he did, he certainly made it count. That’s the case with this fine St. Louis recording. Produced by Oliver Sain (who handled all sax work) and featuring Billy Gayles on drums and pianist Johnnie Johnson, the set is a ringing endorsement of Davis’s slashing, tremolo-enriched guitar and booming vocals. (Bill Dahl)

Larry Davis grew up in Arkansas, working with Fenton Robinson in the mid-50s. He started recording for Duke in 1958 with “Texas Flood” (the original version by the way – and likely still the best.) He signed to Duke at the recommendation of Bobby Bland. Larry LarryDavis02recorded sporadically over the years and passed away in 1994.

Davis was an extraordinary talent. He had a tremendous voice, with a soft vibrato. He sang in the B.B. King, Little Joe Blue, Bobby Bland style. His biting single-not guitar work could be placed somewhere between the sounds of B.B. King and Son Seals. He had more edge in his playing than King, but it wasn’t as harsh as Seals. “Funny Stuff” was originally released in 1982, and was re-released on CD by Rooster Blues in 2001. This review is based on the 2001 version of the album. “Funny Stuff” is basically Larry Davis’ St. Louis album. All of the musicians on the album were St. Louis stalwarts. The cast of characters was: Oliver Sain on piano, organ and all saxes; Phil Westmoreland on guitar; Johnnie Johnson on piano; Billy Gayles on drums; Jimmy Hinds on bass and drums; Eugene Johnson on bass; and Don Smith on drums. The album has all the features of the St. Louis blues sounds, with a combination of raw emotion mixed with Uptown sensibilities. (East Side Slim, stlblues.net)

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Personnel:
Larry Davis (guitar, vocals)
Billy Gayles (drums on 03., 05., 09. + 10.)
Jimmy Hint (bass on 03., 05., 08. – 10., drums on 01., 06. – 08.)
Eugene Johnson (bass on 02. + 07.)
Johnnie Johnson (piano on 02., 04., 07. + 10.)
Oliver Sain (saxophone on 02. – 04., 07. – 09., organ, piano)
Don Smith (drums on 02.)
Phil Westmoreland (guitar, bass on 01., 04. + 06.)

on 05:
Johnny Johnson (piano on right channel)
Oliver Sain (piano – left channel)

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Tracklist:
01. Funny Stuff (Sain) 3.40
02. Teardrops (Davis) 6.25
03. Next Time You See Me (Forest/Harvey) 3.36
04. Worried Dream (B.B.King) 5.02
05. Totsy (Davis) 3.07
06. Since I Been Loving You (Sain) 3.40
07. That Will Never Do (Campbell/Lyons) 3.06
08. Walk Out Like A Lady (Smith) 4.01
09. Find ‘Em, Fool ‘Em & Forget ‘Em (Jackson) 4.07
10. Got To Be Some Changes Made (A.King) 4.12

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Jimmy Goings & Santa Esmeralda – Green Talisman (1982)

OriginalFrontCover1The original concept of “Santa Esmeralda” was formed as a production project in 1976 by Jeanne- Manuel de Scarano and Nicholas Skorsky in Paris, France. Santa Esmeralda was inspired by the heroine of the same name from the Victor Hugo Classic “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”. American musician/vocalist Jimmy Goings recorded six of the group’s seven studio albums, permanently replacing American singer/saxophone player Leroy Gomez, who was used as lead vocalist for the first album titled “Santa Esmeralda”. That album featured the projects first international hit “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood”, and the popular ballad, “You’re My Everything”. Creative differences lead to Gomez’s departure in late 1977. Goings joined the project in December of that year, recording lead vocals for the already complete follow up album “The House of the Rising Sun”, which garnered the projects second international hit with the title song. Showcasing a wonderful collaboration of French arranger Jean Claude Petit, brilliant Page 2 of 4 Flamenco/electric guitarist Jose Souc, and French studio guitarist Slim Pezin, the song’s Gypsy infused Flamenco style soon became a Latin disco innovation around the world. Goings was granted the rights to tour the concept and created his first touring band in January of 1978. The group hit the road immediately, touring with disco legend Barry White, and joining the resurgent tour of Carlos Santana. Santa Esmeralda quickly became international headliners, embarking on a world tour that included Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Brazil, Canada, and the United States.

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Goings went on to record two more albums for the Skorksy/de Scarano team: “Another Cha Cha” which was a completely original collection of songs with Goings making his first co-writing contributions on all tracks. The title song went on to become another world wide disco hit. The album also contained the popular songs, “Generation”, “Answer”, and “Back to the Beginning”. The final album recorded with the team was C’est Magnifique” also titled “Don’t Be Shy Tonight”, which contained the follow up hit “C’est Magnifique”, and the radio hit “Don’t Be Shy Tonight”, again with Goings contributing to the song writing, providing the lyrics for five of the albums six tunes. Skorsky and de Scarano spilt up in 1980, and Goings continued his collaboration with Skorsky on the next two albums. The group reprised its original sound, on the cover version of another popular 60’s hit, “Hush”. On this album Goings also collaborated again with Jose Souc on “Welcome to the World” and “What I Wanna Do With Your Love”, and provided original arrangements for the cover songs “No Reply” and “Street Fighting Man” which were then transcribed and orchestrated by Souc. The final album of the collaboration came in 1982 with Jimmy Going and Santa Esmeralda “The Green Talisman”. This collection returned to the concept album genre and produced the striking title tune “The Green Talisman” as well as covers of “Siboney” and “Children of Sanchez”, and the lush ballads “Sweet Fusion” and “Eternal Light”. Goings continued to tour through 1982 and the group disbanded officially in 1983 While many greatest hits compilations followed, Goings put his touring aside to raise his daughter, Genevieve, and son Jesse. He was reunited with his first son Dominic in 1989. He continues working in the entertainment field as a music producer, talent agent, and event coordinator through his entertainment company, GFI ENTERTAINMENT, located in the San Francisco Bay Area. (associatedentertainment.com)

Okay … this is disco music ! Not my kind of music, of course.

And this album was even released in Russia:

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Personnel:
Jimmy Goings (vocals)
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Celmar Engel (synthesizer)
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Unknown Orchestra conducted by Jose Souc (on 02. + 05. + 07.) and Slim Pezin (on 01. + 06.)

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Tracklist:
01. The Green Talisman (Skorsky/Carmone/Goings) 9.41
02. Sweet Fusion (Skorsky/Ellis) 3.45
03. Children Of Sanchez (Mangione) 3.29
04. Siboney (Lecuona) 4,28
05. Fortune Teller (Skorsky/Goings) 3.44
06. Eye Of The Cat (Skorsky/Ellis/Goings) 4.10
07. Eternal Light (Skorsky/Ellis/Goings) 3.56

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Santana – Shango (1982)

FrontCover1.JPGShangó is the thirteenth studio album by Santana. The album reached number twenty two in Billboard 200 album charts. The single “Hold On” from the album reached number fifteen in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and number seventeen on Billboard’s Top Tracks chart. A second single from the album, “Nowhere to Run”, peaked at number sixty six on the Hot 100 chart and number thirteen on the Mainstream Rock chart and a third single reached number thirty four in the Mainstream Rock chart. (by wikipedia)

Carlos Santana once likened his penchant for exploring different musical genres to a mountain climber’s obsession with mountains. So long as part of a mountain range — or the musical equivalent — lies uncharted, there remains a challenge to be met. Over the course of fourteen albums, Santana and the various versions of his band have indeed explored many areas of contemporary music. The music on Shangó, much like the group’s 1981 smash, Zebop!, ranges from Latino chants and instrumentals to near-jazz — here, with a bit more synthesized polish to it — to rock, including an upbeat cover of Junior Walker’s “What Does It Take (to Win Your Love).” As usual, the percussion section churns impeccably and Santana’s guitar-playing shines.

There is a cost to Carlos Santana’s eclecticism, however, and it is evident on Shangó. Precisely because he has chosen no distinct stylistic route for his band, the music often lacks distinction altogether. At times, in fact, the playing seems so formulaic Santana could easily be mistaken for one of the faceless bands that now dominate the airwaves. Santana may be winning new fans and airplay with this sort of musical potpourri, but he’s not reaching any new musical peaks. (by Cabot Brown)

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Shango is notable for featuring the return, in the role of co-producer and co-songwriter, of original Santana keyboardist Greg Rolie. The main producer, however, was Bill Szymczyk (James Gang, Eagles), who gave Santana an unusually sharp rock sound resulting in two more hit singles, “Hold On” (Number 15), and “Nowhere to Run” (Number 66), although the band once again slipped below the Top Ten and gold-selling status, with the album peaking at only Number 22, and even this was the highest Santana would get until Supernatural in 1999. (by William Ruhlmann)

One of the biggest critical complaints I keep hearing about the early 1980’s is that a perceived need to become a pop megastar was causing many legacy artists at that time,including Santana,to make contemporary musical concessions that just didn’t work for them. Luckily with Zebop Carlos Santana proved that his inner creative Miles Davis was working very much to his advantage: he could adapt his music to a new era and everyone involved to still play the way he played. After all his guitar,rather than himself, was the star of the show-leading everyone else to melodically and spiritually uplifting musical heights. Recording with the same lineup as the previous album this album upted the contemporary pop music ante as far as Santana could take it.

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“The Nile” is a strong,bluesy rocker to open the album. “Hold On” is a well crafted and produced post disco funky pop number-reminiscent of Stanley Clarke’s Let Me Know You album of the same year,on which Carlos himself appeared. “Night Hunting Time” is a stark,electric piano led groove-a perfect example of nighttime funk and one of my personal favorites here. “Nowhere To Run” was the hit here,a shuffling synthesized new wave type song with highly spirited craft about it. “Nuava York” maintains that new wave synthesizer element on a classic style Santana band instrumental. “Oxun (Oshun)” is another favorite of mine-a catchy Afro Pop tune with a wonderfully mystical lyric. “Body Surfing” is probably my favorite here-adapting the cleanly played mainstream Promoposter.jpgpop/new wave sound of the Police with its glassy guitars and spirited dance/rock chorus.

On a version of Jr.Walker & The All Stars “What Does It Take”,Baker’s electric pianos play a counter melody that brings out the Hall & Oates style rock n soul side of Santana wonderfully. “Let Me Inside” is a heavy funk groove-maybe heavier then their late 70’s grooves and very naked and stripped down-slower than his but workable for the Prince audience. “Warrior” goes into the classic Santana mode before ending with the brief African styled title song. Very much in the spirit of jazz greats like Duke Ellington, Carlos Santana showcased an ability to update a basic instrumental framework with contemporary musical elements on this album. And its an approach he never abandoned. This would become very significant eighteen years later when his Supernatural album,essentially a late 90’s version of this exact albums ethic,became one of his best known and popular release. To me this album is a huge success for Santana and perhaps more significant to his musical career wise than some might think. (by Andre S. Grindle)

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Personnel:
Richard Baker (keyboards)
Graham Lear (drums)
Alex Ligertwood (vocals, guitar)
David Margen (bass)
Armando Peraza (congas, bongos, vocals)
Raul Rekow (congas, vocals)
Gregg Rolie (organ, vocals)
Carlos Santana (guitar, vocals)
Orestes Vilató (timbales, vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. The Nile (C.Santana/Ligertwood/Rolie) 5.03
02. Hold On (Thomas) 4.29
03. Night Hunting Time (Brady) 4.49
04. Nowhere To Run (Ballard) 4.10
05. Nueva York (Santana/Lear/Rekow/Peraza/Ligertwood/Baker/Margen/Vilató/Rolie) 5.06
06. Oxun (Oshūn) (Santana/Ligertwood/Rolie/Lear/Peraza/Rekow/Vilató) 4.16
07. Body Surfing (C.Santana/Ligertwood) 4.29
08. What Does It Take (To Win Your Love) (Bristol/Bullock/Fuqua) 3.23
09. Let Me Inside (C.Santana/Solberg) 3.34
10. Warrior (Margen/Baker/Ligertwood/C.Santana) + Shangó (Rekow/Vilató/Peraza) 6.09

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Asia – Same (1982)

FRontCover1.JPGAsia are an English progressive rock band formed in London in 1981. The most commercially successful line-up was its original, which was a supergroup of four members of different progressive rock bands of the 1970s: lead vocalist and bassist John Wetton of King Crimson and U.K., guitarist Steve Howe of Yes, keyboardist Geoff Downes of Yes and the Buggles, and drummer Carl Palmer of Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Their debut album, Asia, released in 1982, remains their best selling album and went to number one in several countries.

The band underwent multiple lineup changes before the original four members reunited in 2006. As a result, a band called Asia Featuring John Payne exists as a continuation of John Payne’s career as Asia’s frontman from 1991 until Wetton’s return in 2006.[5] In 2013, the original line-up was broken once again when Howe retired from the band and was replaced by guitarist Sam Coulson. After a few years of inactivity, Billy Sherwood (of Yes and World Trade) replaced an ailing Wetton in Asia for a summer 2017 tour with Journey. Following Wetton’s death the same year, the band went on hiatus again, re-emerging in 2019 with Sherwood permanently replacing Wetton on bass and with Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal replacing both Wetton on vocals and Coulson on guitar.

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Asia is the self-titled debut studio album by English rock band Asia, released in 1982. According to both Billboard and Cashbox, it was the #1 album in the United States for the year 1982. It contains their biggest hit “Heat of the Moment”, which reached #4 in the US on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Asia’s logo and cover artwork were created by Roger Dean, known for his work with Yes (of which guitarist Steve Howe and keyboard player Geoff Downes had previously been members) and Uriah Heep (of which bassist/vocalist John Wetton had previously been a member) which depicts Leviathan gazing into a crystal orb.

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Since its release, Asia has received highly mixed reception, largely due to a more commercial and pop-oriented sound as opposed to progressive rock, given the past of the group’s members. Robert Christgau blasted the album, and particularly its lyrics. He stated that it had been a rare occasion that “a big new group is bad enough to sink your teeth into any more” and called the album “pompous – schlock in the grand manner”.[4] On the other side, in a Billboard review, it was favourably noted that “the caliber of the [band’s] playing is superb and the music sounds fresh and perfect fare for AOR”.

Upon its release in March 1982, Asia reached #1 in the US and spent nine weeks at the top of the Billboard album chart. Asia was certified 4x-platinum in the US by the RIAA on 10 February 1995.

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In the band’s native UK, Asia did not perform as well as in the US, peaking only at #11 and spent a total of 38 weeks in the UK Albums Chart. The record received a gold status in Britain on 18 October 1982. “Heat of the Moment” climbed to No. 46.

Asia’s total worldwide sales are estimated at over ten million copies. (by wikipedia)

This marriage of four players with impressive pedigrees proved to be the success story of 1982 when Asia’s debut lodged itself at the top of the U.S. album charts for two months. The album spawned a massive number four single in “Heat of the Moment,” a follow-up Top 20 hit in the sweeping “Only Time Will Tell,” and a handful of other tracks that received heavy radio play despite going against the grain of the new wave styling of the day.

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Produced by Mike Stone, Asia’s strengths were the powerful vocals of John Wetton, the nimble, classically tinged guitar work of Steve Howe, Geoffrey Downes’ majestic keyboard playing, and anchoring the band, Carl Palmer’s propulsive drumming. The lyrics are overwrought at moments, but there’s no denying the epic grandeur of the music, which provided some much-needed muscle to radio at the time, and did so with style. (by Tom Demalon)

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Personnel:
Geoff Downes (keyboards, vocals)
Steve Howe (guitar, vocals)
Carl Palmer (drums, percussion)
John Wetton (vocals, bass)

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Tracklist:
01. Heat Of The Moment (Wetton/Downes) 3.55
02. Only Time Will Tell (Wetton/Downes) 4.48
03. Sole Survivor (Wetton/Downes) 4.52
04. One Step Closer (Wetton/Howe) 4.18
05. Time Again (Downes/Howe/Palmer/Wetton) 4.49
06. Wildest Dreams (Wetton/Downes) 5.11
07. Without You (Wetton/Howe) 5.08
08. Cutting It Fine (Wetton/Downes/Howe) 5.41
09. Here Comes The Feeling (Wetton/Howe) 5.41

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