Month: March 2019

ARTICLE ABOUT Tommy Aldridge (Black Oak Arkansas) FROM SOUNDS, September 28, 1974

I imagine that this must be one of the earliest interviews ever done with this excellent drummer. The way that Mr. Makowski singles him out of the line-up of the band shows you that he had enough musical clue to know who`s good and who`s not. No wonder Mr. Makowski have done so many great contributions to the music press.
Enjoy this article with a man who have played with artists like Pat Travers Band, Gary Moore, Ozzy Osbourne, Yngwie Malmsteen, Patrick Rondat, Motörhead, Whitesnake, Thin Lizzy, Ted Nugent, Vinnie Moore and more…

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`If I wasn`t doing this, I`d probably be a mass murderer or something like that.`
Tommy Aldridge. Drummer, Black Oak Arkansas.

`Oh, um, must rush now Tommy, I`ve just remembered – I`ve got to get some new bicycle clips.`
Pete Makowski. Reporter, Sounds.

Now I`m not going to claim to be one of Black Oak Arkansas biggest fans, and it wasn`t Jim Dandy`s cavortings that attracted me to the band, oh no squire, to tell you the truth I found the band to be slightly… er uninteresting until Tommy “Dork” Aldridge went into his drum solo, and Christ, what a solo!
Y`see until then I found solo`s to be a good excuse to go out for a quick pint, with a few rare exceptions, but the `dork` showed me what solo`s are supposed to be like.
Not being musical technicians, most of us don`t know a twin flick underarm paradiddle when it`s staring us in the face. Of course, the skill of percussionists like Ian Paice and Billy Cobham is a different matter, but the usual solo consists of the regular stuff culminating with more of the regular stuff – a bit boring.
Aldridge managed to combine his skill with one of the most potent visual acts I`ve seen in years and for an unknown quantity he seemed quite capable of stirring up plenty of dust.
The band arrived last week to play a couple of concerts, giving me the opportunity to speak to this regular four star laid back Southerner. Away from the Blitz Krieg of dork type rock and roll, Tommy is a quiet composed character who spends most of his time taking photographs, with the help of an impressive collection of photographical implements lying in the corner of his room.
Tommy is the band`s most recent acquisition and began his career playing in local bands. “Ah always played down South, Georgia, jamming around jest lookin` fer a gig. I really like Buddy Rich he kinda inspired me, I don`t play anything like him, but I like the way he plays.”

Aldridge kept moving around playing with bands long enough to earn a crust until around three years ago. “I had a friend who was in the sound system business, in Memphis Tennessee, and he was doing the sound with Black Oak, he was an old, old friend of mine from way back. And he told me the band were looking for a drummer, and I did an audition with them in Memphis.”
What was his first impression of the band?
“When I got into the band it was on a different level. They weren`t making much money but still it was the best thing I`d been in. It was still at the foundation level.”
Were the band just as visual in their early years?
“Well I don`t know, I guess we`ve got a little crazier in the last few years. We`ve always been known as a visual band, not so much a theatrical band, but more of a visual band than say a record group.”
Would the band like to broaden their hemisphere musically speaking?
“On stage it`s kinda hard for us to do anything rather than what we do `cause… well here it`s different. In America people expect certain things from us, so we have to more or less stay within those limits. But over here people don`t know what to expect from us `cause they don`t know us that well. So we`re not really restricted to a certain thing here.
The band made quite an impression (almost literally) on the British audiences when they did a support tour with Sabbath earlier this year, were they pleased with the results?
“We thought it was okay, it`s not near the response we get back home, but we wouldn`t expect that. At first it was kinda weird cause the audiences were really quiet, checking us out more or less and we didn`t know what it was going to be like, but after the first couple of gigs it was alright.”

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I asked Tommy what he credited the band`s success to. “I guess most of our success is down to consistency, we`re on stage a lot. We didn`t have all the hype and the push of the AM airplays, the recognition and momentum you get being constantly exposed on the radio. We had to do it manually. We had to go out and be in front of people physically and God, did it take us a long time.
“We spend a lot of time on the road and give the people a little something to look at, it`s not really theatrical, it`s all basic, we`re just a showband.”
What kind of music do you like listening to back home?
“I like kinda laid back things, I like Joni Mitchell a helluva lot. I like rock and roll too, but I`m surrounded by it so much and I play it so much.
“We all kinda let loose on stage. `Cause living in these lil ol` hotels and eating all this bogus food, and generally living on the road, makes you get kinda cynical if you don`t watch yourself. We`ve been able to release all that by playing on stage `cause that`s all we really do.
“We don`t have much of a personal life, we can`t go out gallavanting on the town `cause we don`t know nobody and we don`t stay around long enough to make many friends, so you gotta get the tensions out some way. If I wasn`t doing this, maybe I`d be a mass murder or something like that.”
The band have never really come out with anything substantial on record and their performance seems to rely on atmosphere. This is lacking on record and Aldridge is aware of this.
“We haven`t really concentrated on the records, playing live is where our strength lies, our strength hasn`t been in the records, we do okay but we have to stay out on the road to do what we wanna do. But this new album we`re working on has got the feel we`ve been after. We`ve already laid down three tracks and we`re production it ourselves.
“The last album we did was with Tom Dowd, whose a genius without a doubt. It`s just that it was a kind of formal atmosphere when we were in the studio and we`re very informal.
“We`ve been trying to figure out why we don`t come across so well on record as we do live. We recorded our recent material at Isaac Hayes` Buttered Soul studios and that was great, it`s captured our feel.”

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I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Ron Wood, The Sharks, John Cale, Michael Fennelly, John Sebastian, Sparks, John Entwistle, Maggie Bell, CSNY, Scott English, Tom Scott, John Grimaldi, Brian Robertson, Steve Howe, Lorraine Ellison, Tony Visconti.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

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ARTICLE ABOUT Tony Visconti FROM SOUNDS, September 28, 1974

This one should also be of interest to fans of T. Rex and David Bowie as they are heavily featured in this article. I really like to read articles that involves the great record producers as they have “been there and done that” to a whole legion of different artist. They are the people that really have stories to tell and many of them were sober enough to tell them correctly. Mr. Visconti is 75 years old on April 24th this year and is still active in his trade.

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The spider who nearly got to mars

By Geoff Barton

The name Tony Visconti pops up with fair frequency at the bottom of record labels. The man is a record producer, as you probably know. He has been involved with Bolan, Bowie, Cocker, Procol, etcetera, ad infinitum.
But to look at him you wouldn`t believe he`d been anywhere remotely near such people. When you meet him the impression you get is of a clean-cut American – why, he even looks like one of the Osmonds. This time, however, you can throw your first impression to the wind. He`s been around, has Tony.
Tony comes from Brooklyn, New York, and has been a professional musician since he was 15 – he`s 30 now. He grew up with the likes of Fats Domino, Little Richard and Alan Freed. He studied classical guitar for three years, played bass and tried to be a jazz musician. “I did everything,” he says. “I was into every musical involvement in New York City.”
When he was 22 he was trying desperately to break into recording. He had visions of being a singer, a guitar player or a songwriter, or maybe all three. Instead, he was offered a job as record producer.
“My publisher was impressed by some home demos I`d made, and he reckoned I had a talent as a record producer. But I didn`t even know what a record producer was. The few times I`d been in the studio I`d only noticed the engineer and not the other guy – in those days he was called an A and R man.
“But I said I`d have a go. I did it for about a month, and then I met Denny Cordell, who had come over from England. He was looking for an American producer to bring back to England with him and introduce an American sound in Britain. He said he`d consider me.
“He failed to bring back Phil Spector so I got the job.”
Visconti spent his first six months over here as assistant to Cordell. He sat in on a lot of the early Move and Procol Harum sessions, and co-produced a few of the tracks on “Shine On Brightly”.

Then he met Marc Bolan in the UFO club, and watched what was then Tyrannosaurus Rex`s third gig.
“Tyrannosaurus Rex were the first group I discovered,” he says. “I went out and found them all on my own.”
So he came to produce “Prophets, Seers And Sages”, the first Tyrannosaurus Rex album, on a really low budget. “That was very sad. We made it in about four sessions, and it sounds drastically different from the ones that followed. `Prophets`, the next album, we got on a higher budget. But I think it really happened on `Unicorn`, when we had total control and I had started to develop lots of technical tricks. We were making guitars sound like violins and pianos like brass sections. We had a ball.”
Much of “Unicorn`s” individual, distinctive sound, he told me, is due to the fact that a large part of it was recorded in the gent`s loo at Trident Studios – which, as you might guess, had acoustic properties all of its own.
“Marc and I both had a passion for Phil Spector in those days, and we were into our Spector thing on the `Unicorn` album. Of course, it turned out completely freaky because Marc Bolan and Spector just don`t mix.”
And then, Marc went electric.
“Well, that was just a slow development. Marc got himself a little Strat, and that was it. Although he`d always wanted to play electric, Steve Took was more into electric music at the time. He was dying to pick up a guitar and play. He was writing loads and loads of songs around the time of `Unicorn`, but as we all know Marc isn`t about to share billing with anybody. They broke up about that, really.
“Steve was very frustrated, he wanted to play electric but it just didn`t happen. Had Marc allowed him to write I think that Tyrannosaurus Rex would have developed into a very different thing today.”
Do you approve of the “thing” T. Rex has now become?
“No. Quite honestly, no. I think Marc had something extremely unique in those days. I was really surprised that he switched, and tried to appeal to the mass market. You shouldn`t make hits for the public`s way of of thinking. You can`t live to please the public – there`s too many of them and they have too many different ideas. You have to be true to yourself.

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“When we went over to electric I still tried to innovate new sound techniques, but one thing I had no control over was the quality of the songs.
“When I look back on it I think the most important thing to Marc Bolan was to be successful. He really wanted to be successful, and that lead to our break up.”
At the same time Visconti was producing Bolan he was also producing Bowie. And, conversely, he`s really pleased with the way Bowie has evolved.
“On one hand I had Marc Bolan, an aggressive little go-getter who really wanted to get somewhere, and on the other I had David Bowie who, at the time, was the laziest, most untogether person in the world.”
So, he split with Bolan and continued with Bowie. Well, for the time being at least.
“When I was involved with Bowie originally, he was trying desperately to become a pop artist. He didn`t want to be underground. I was producing him when he had his hit with `Space Oddity`.”
But, strangely enough, Visconti didn`t produce that single. Apparently he considered it to be a rip off, a “nick” as he calls it, of a number of other records including “Sounds Of Silence”. So, he didn`t want to know. Gus Dudgeon eventually produced the single, but Bowie came back to Visconti for the album of the same name.
“He must have respected me for not wanting to produce the single and we did both the `Space Oddity` and the `Man Who Sold The World` albums together. That last one was particularly gratifying because I got to play bass on it. I would have been a Spider From Mars if David and I hadn`t fallen out over domestic matters.
“Recently we`ve got together again, though. Bowie said to me: `the best time I ever had was making “Man Who Sold The World”. Can we do it all over again?` So, we did.”

Result: what Visconti calls Bowie`s “black album”. Like “Ziggy”, it`s another identity album, and it`s due to be released early next year. It was recorded in studios in Philadelphia, the centre of America`s black music industry, and is apparently unmistakably Bowie but with some “black treatment” – whatever that is.
Then, of course, there`s the Bowie live double album, mixed in quad, that was recorded over two nights in Philly, once again. They both should be interesting to hear.
Visconti has produced hundreds of albums, but I wondered if there were any he thought should have received greater acclaim.
“Yes. Two albums, in fact. The first one is an album I produced with my wife (Mary Hopkin) called `Earth Song, Ocean Song`. Mary has always been a folk singer, but when she won `Opportunity Knocks` she was taken into the glamour of it all, and it took her a long time to recover.
“She had been trying for years to do a folk album, and when I was first approached to produce it, I turned it down, saying `Mary Hopkin isn`t capable of doing a folk album`. The second time I was approached I actually met her, and we hit it off great. I found she knew her folk music very well. I ended up producing her, and the end result was a beautiful album.”
Mary was anxious to lose the image of the “Knock Knock, Who`s There” girl, but she couldn`t promote the album because she had to do a Summer season in Margate as the “old” Mary Hopkin. That finished her, and by the end of the Summer she had lost all her nerve. Tony hinted that she could now be on her way back, though.
The other album Visconti thinks should be better known is Carmen`s first album. That, he feels, was a victim of the energy crisis – the band couldn`t go on the road to promote it because of lack of petrol at the time.
Now, he`s making his own records as well.
Isn`t that just a bit of an ego trip?
“No. I`ve been writing songs for years, and I`ve always been an active musician.”

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I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Ron Wood, The Sharks, John Cale, Michael Fennelly, John Sebastian, Sparks, John Entwistle, Maggie Bell, CSNY, Scott English, Tommy Aldridge, Tom Scott, John Grimaldi, Brian Robertson, Steve Howe, Lorraine Ellison.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Sparks FROM SOUNDS, September 28, 1974

Another article with those loveable brothers in Sparks. He sure knew a good band when he saw them, Mr. Makowski, which is why he is regarded as one of the legends of British music press.

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Suicidal propaganda

Interview: Pete Makowski

The lightning fast rise to fame for Sparks has been quite an enigma. I mean their debut hit single wasn`t instantly appealing in a commercial sense and their excellent “Kimono My House” album has been riding high in the charts since its release, which means they are no one hit wonders.
The Mael brothers are a commercial success, something they undoubtedly deserve, leaving a lot of bewildered critics puzzled. The band have stayed in the background since their sellout tour, and the brothers have been travelling around the world promoting themselves.
Now they are back with a new album, single and tour which leaves an everyday journalist like myself with many questions to ask them.
I spoke to the brothers at Island`s Basing Street Offices where they were listening, with keen interest, to the `B` side of their new single with their fan club secretary Joseph Fleury. Ron and Russ were as per usual impeccably dressed and generally seemed to be in good mood.
If a commercially orientated swine were in Sparks` shoes he would probably release many singles in the same vein of “This Town” which leads me on to tell you that the band`s new single “Don`t Turn Your Back On Mother Earth” is totally diverse to what you`ve heard before, making it completely original and jolly good – which is something that has been Sparks` trait.
The band have recently lost the services of guitarist Adrian Fisher. So what happened Russ?
“We let Adrian have his release from the band, to put it mildly we kicked Adrian out of the band. We`re just at the point in our careers, we`re not exactly sure whether we`re going to carry on as a five piece. We may add a guitarist but we`re not sure what we`re going to do. If we`re going to have an extra guitar player he`s going to be one contributing something more in the vein of Sparks as opposed to a more traditional style of a guitar player, and we just thought this was the time to make a bit of a change.”

The brothers recently made a return to their homeland – the USA. How was their arrival taken? “Oh, it was really incredible, well it was really a shock, the news had filtered about what was going on with the band in England, so everyone in the States was aware of that,” said Russ, “when we left Los Angeles we were just some local LA band who played the Whisky A Go Go. We went back and we`re this regular band who… er y`know made it big in England. It was funny because we were treated differently than when we had lived there.” The brothers have also visited other countries where they had a certain amount of notoriety before they broke over here. “It`s just been amplified to like ten times of what it was before,” said Russ.
Ron: “All those countries look to England for their spiritual guidance.”
Russ: “They need to know what to be aware of then they pick up on it.”
Ron: “Is Dacht groovy? Ya das i`cht groovey.”
The band`s new single is very different to the other two releases, is this intentional?
Ron: “It`s just played at the wrong speed.”
Russ: “It wasn`t done intentionally as a single, the same goes for the other two. This one wasn`t done as a single, it was just done as another song. There were a lot of possibilities on the new LP that could have been the next single and that we did think about. It wasn`t the thought like `let`s do something different from the other two singles`. It was just one of the songs and everyone said it was a single and we were keen on the idea. We really like the element of surprise.”
Ron: “The element of committing suicide.”
I asked the brothers how they felt about the new album.
“On the other album we just went in and layed down the basic tracks so it would sound good with the band,” said Russ, “on this LP we didn`t approach it at all like that.”

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The album, titled “Propaganda”, comes at a tender stage of their careers. Now that they`ve reached a certain peak of success they`ve got to sustain it and establish themselves. Did they bear this in mind when they recorded it. “One thing that was really an aid to the whole thing was that it was our third album, because I think we would have been quite inhibited on our next one which is our fourth. It`s the fourth as in the second, if you can see my meaning. We weren`t worried about this album because we were so involved in it. I think if we stopped to think about it we might have got a bit nervous, but as it turned out we just did it and we`re really pleased with it.
“We`ve never been especially goal orientated `cause we just can`t operate that way, it`s just sort of do your stuff and hope for the best.”
I wondered if the brothers listened to their old material.
Ron: “It tends to make you too self conscious of your career. In ten years` time I`m going to get all of our albums and listen to them and have a real wild time.”
Russ: “A lot of people who have heard the new album have said it really sounds like a combination of our first three LPs. It`s got the hardness of “Kimono” album but then has a bit of the… whatever the elements were in the first two albums, a bit of that flavour but more aggressive. A lot of people say that.”
I asked Russ how he felt about the hysterical reaction he received. He paused for a moment, giving Ron an opportunity to step in.
Ron: “Admit it, you had the time of your life.”
Russ: “I enjoyed it. The only other approach we might take as opposed to having me outfront is to have, that`s  if we do decide to get another person, is possibly have a third person who is as strong. A sort of personality so there can be more conflict on stage. To add a third person makes it more aggressive visually.”

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I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Ron Wood, The Sharks, John Cale, Michael Fennelly, John Sebastian, Tony Visconti, John Entwistle, Maggie Bell, CSNY, Scott English, Tommy Aldridge, Tom Scott, John Grimaldi, Brian Robertson, Steve Howe, Lorraine Ellison.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT 10cc FROM SOUNDS, September 21, 1974

Funny to read these interviews where the subjects speculate if they`ll be active and on the touring circuit in the future. 10cc wondered if they would be touring in 10 years time in this one, thinking they might not last until the mid-80s. Well, someone called 10cc recently toured my home town in 2018, and I dont believe they were a cover band…
Great band worthy of your attention.

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Hang on friends! There`s a lot more goodies in the pipeline

So say 10cc in their song “Oh Effendi”. And it`s true. Leastways that`s what Bill Henderson thinks. So does Graham Gouldman – and he should know. Or, a tale of a recherche rock group, Friday 13, a Rainbow concert and an interview with a bass guitarist.

The capacity crowd is restless. Slow handclaps ebb and flow. The auditorium and stage are dark. Then ears are filled with peals of thunder and the voice of God. We greet “the fabulous, far-out, funky, freaky, hippy, happy, zippy, zany, wicky, wacky… 10cc”. The Rainbow last Friday evening. And a house in Victoria last Friday afternoon.
First off is “Silly Love”, the current single and a good example of the multilevel 10cc song, working with three separate interior logics. The sound is loud but the vocals are mixed up high and clear over the instruments. As it needs to be with songs where the lyrical content is of a greater importance than that normally found in rock or pop.
“We`ll always write these kind of songs but there`s nothing to stop us writing, say, a straight love song. It would have to be a great song but it would be a regular love type of lyric. That`s something we`ve never done till now. Eric and Lol started “Silly Love” as a love song and then of course it couldn`t be done. But Eric and I have written one.”
“As far as `Silly Love` is concerned, the only thing we were worried about – as we were worried by `The Dean And I` was the fact that it was another track off the album. But we had to take other things into consideration, which were: we had to keep the momentum of the group going till the next single, which obviously will be completely new, it will definitely not be off the album; and it (`Silly Love`) will also help to sell the album which is obviously very important to us. And balancing those two things against not putting it out because it is yet another cut off the album, we decided to put it out and I think it`s been the right decision. As it was the right decision to put `The Dean And I` out as well. Although we were worried about it, because we understand that it is… it`s slightly unfair. We do honestly realise that but we have to weigh up both things.

“We shouldn`t have to make decisions like that `cause ideally we should have had some completely fresh material ready but we were just taken by surprise, y`know. But I don`t think this situation will happen again. It`s a matter of time, though.”
“Silly Love”, with Eric displaying a raunchiness on guitar not commonly expected from 10cc, finished to collossal cheers. And was followed by “Baron Samedi”, a song from “Sheet Music” written by Gouldman and Stewart. But whereas “Wall Street Shuffle” by the same team is brilliant, “Samedi” seemed a rather uninventive song to me on record. As a straight rocker on stage it works fine though.. A new feature of the stage act is displayed during “Samedi” – five mini-arches wity multi-coloured fairground lights that flash during the short solo (or rather duo) by the twin drummers, Kevin Godley and Paul Burgess.
It`s followed immediately by “Old Wild Men”, which from the start is spoiled by crackles and hums from the PA. The band are visibly upset but do a great job in holding the song together through to the end.
“It always comes up, both with Eric and me, about the past. Things which aren`t to be knocked or anything but I tend to think now that what 10cc is doing is gonna be more important than anything Eric did with the Mindbenders or I did as far as being a writer`s concerned. `Cause now I`m not a writer on my own anymore, I`m in a partnership and now I`m a partner in a group as well, so it`s a different thing for me now. I`d rather not talk about that type of thing `cause it`s all been said before, right from the beginning. Although it`s interesting to think about how we could approach our old numbers, I`d like to do other people`s songs as well.
“I dunno, I just like not to put any limits on what we could do. I wouldn`t discount the idea because we`re a group that writes all our own material. But at the moment we`ve got to make it as 10cc – the songwriting/production team, unit that we are.

“The only thing about doing “Groovy Kind Of Love” and “Bus Stop”, say, is that they might be a bit trite, y`know. Those were songs that were right for the time and that`s what pop music is about. Y`know, it writes about the time, about what`s happening today and I mean, I know that there have been hits of revamped songs and somehow Bryan Ferry puts a new slant on a song by merely singing it, it doesn`t have to change at all – just his voice makes it his. I suppose we could do the same in a way but at the moment I don`t think we could do it.”
It`s now about eight or nine years since those songs were hits. Do you feel old, Mr. Gouldman?
“I`m rather pleased actually. It means that you can still do it, that I`ll still be doing it hopefully in ten years` time from now – in one way or the other. I doubt if I`ll be on the road in ten years` time. Mind you, there are people on the road more than ten years older than me, aren`t there?”
`Old men of rock and
roll
Came bearing music.
Where are they now?
They are over the hills
and far away
But they`re still gonna
play guitars.
(`Old Wild Men`)
“Old Wild Men” featured Lol on Gismo and Graham on sixstring but it limped. Through no fault of the band`s. A pity.
Kevin, looking cool in white suit, long scarf and freakier fuzzed hair than before, stepped from behind his drums to sing lead on “Fresh Air For My Mama”.

Eric Stewart, after the concert: “Kevin`s the only one who`s getting the image thing together. We went up the King`s Road and to Kensington this afternoon looking for something to wear. We ended up wearing the things we brought in our cases.”
Sartorial stakes: Lol Creme – teeshirt, jeans; Eric Stewart – shirt, jeans; Paul Burgess – teeshirt, jeans; Graham Gouldman – patterned shirt, smartly creased trousers, shined shoes…
`Cause I`ve never been
freaky
Or funky or laid back`
(“Sacro-iliac”)
“I`ve always been a stage musician but never looked like one. I`ve always liked playing on stage. That`s how I started, with little groups, just from a desire to play on stage. But I`ve never been a `stage personality`”.
The clear, ringing soulful voice of Kevin Godley. The end of “Mama”, followed by “one that we like, sing along with this one”, “Donna”. Lol hitting the high notes that I`ve heard him strain for before. Then another swop round: Graham on acoustic sixstring and Lol on Rickenbacker bass almost as big as he is: “The Sacro-iliac”. A song about a dance that involves doing nothing. Not one of my favourites on record but on stage it`s one of the best yet of the evening.
“We`re going to make a new tape for the start and we`ve put three new songs in, “Hollywood”, “Sacro-iliac” and “Worst Band”. I think you`ll see the direction that we`re moving towards. It`s more of an act as opposed to going on and doing all your numbers. Playing regularly improves your playing no end. You can play without thinking what you`re playing and just concentrate on feel and projection – to as much an extent that we can do anyway – or I can do. Because at one time we were just like a semipro group only playing Saturday nights, that type of thing, which isn`t any good.”

“Sacro-iliac” was a new writing combination for 10cc – Godley and Gouldman.
“It was an experiment really. We`d never written in those combinations before (“Oh Effendi” was Godley/Stewart) and it did come out that it added a different colour. I don`t necessarily agree with you that the songs aren`t as good as the others. I think they`re different. And I think it`s quite refreshing as well.”
“Ships Don`t Disappear” features Eric on slide and the powerhouse pair on percussion. Lol announces it: “the words are meaningless but the lyrics are very important.”
“We haven`t been doing any recording but a helluva lot of writing – I`d say about half the material ready for the next album. And what we`re doing this time, instead of writing a song and recording it and writing another song and… we`re writing a load of songs first. We might even record more than we need and then sling out what we don`t think is up to par.
“Kevin and I started a song some time ago that we`re going to finish. But Eric and I have written three songs and Kev and Lol are working on quite a long thing at the moment. I`m not going to say what it is till it`s done but it`s very interesting.
Next is “Somewhere In Hollywood”, another track with intricate arrangements. A roadie brings on a snare drum and temple blocks to the accompaniment of syrupy, cinema interval music and does a totally naff card trick. Kevin again steps forward to sing lead. But like “Old Wild Men”, “Hollywood” is all but ruined by cracklings and buzzes.
Eric: “It was caused by a lighting man putting on a certain bank of lights which were causing interference. We told him five times not to put them on but he kept doing it and eventually we had to send someone up there to threaten him. He stopped. But before he did the buzz was ten times as loud when I kicked the pedal for phase guitar on “Hollywood” so I couldn`t do the effects properly.

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The last time a buzz like that happened was in Los Angeles on the last American tour. That time I touched the mike and was knocked out cold for five minutes, so I was very tense tonight. It was really odd on stage – if one of us had smiled it would have been OK but… “We played a two hour rehearsal in the afternoon and everything was perfect. We came back at night and everything had changed. Before the show we were going around saying we weren`t superstitious or anything like that, afterwards it was `well, it`s Friday 13th, isn`t it?”
And unfortunately the two songs where the sound had to be perfect to succeed were the two most affected by the interference. But no way was the set a disaster. The strain was showing however as Kevin sang flat through a part of “Hollywood.”
Then there was “Speed Kills”, a simple song by 10cc standards, basically built round a simple riff with minimal lyrics, among them.
`One finds / It`s so
hard / To make it
It`s gotta be the right
time`
“But what`s been fantastic about this tour is that they`re pretty well all sold out. Like the Free Trade Hall has always been the best place to play in Manchester. All the best bands have played there. We`ve all been to millions of concerts there to see the best people in the world. To actually play in it and it`s sold out is great.”
Eric: “We`ve never been that popular in Manchester funnily enough. I think London is more our audience. But we`ve had sell-outs since we came back from America. We`re finding the audience that we`ve always been looking for.”

Graham: “That`s the proof of the pud to me. It doesn`t matter, as far as being on the road`s concerned, you can have twenty hits, well, not twenty but let me say… I don`t think a group like Mud would necessarily sell-out the Rainbow.”
`All because of circum-
stances way beyond
control,
We became the dar-
lings of this thing
called rock and roll`
(The Worst Band In The World`.)
I think they did actually.
“Maybe they`re a bad example. How about Suzi Quatro?”
I`ve a sneaking suspicion she would too.
“Oh. Anyway, it`s been different for us. For being, in inverted commas, a no-image band, it`s been harder and it`s taken longer but it`s more solid, y`know. There`s less chance of us disappearing from sight if the next record isn`t a hit or the next two records aren`t hits. We`ll still be there `cause I think we`re pretty solid now.”
And although it was not by design, 10cc have built up gradually and apparently logically over the months.
“Yeah, well you see, a lot of groups like… two prime examples are probably Cockney Rebel and Sparks, where there`s such a strong image on one record that they`re stars overnight. It took us five hit records in eighteen months and we`re just getting to that stage now. So it`s all down to image, I think, the non-image. But it`s good that we`re finally coming through.”
Eric: “It`s getting better all the time.”
Then “Oh Effendi” and the last number “Wall Street Shuffle”. The crowd won`t let them go and they do a surprising encore, their `flop` (as Lol calls it), “Worst Band In The World”. “Worst Band” was just a little too unconventional for the record buying public, or rather the BBC that didn`t play it. But 10cc are different.

“We are a very good rock band but we don`t do rock as such because other people are doing it. If we did it we`d just be like fifty per cent of the other groups. There`s no point in doing it. I`d rather that everybody liked us but it can`t be unless you`re someone of the status of the Beatles, say. You can`t please all the people all the time, as someone once said. But unless you`ve got an appeal that gets to everybody then it`s better to be sort of hated and loved rather than being liked by everybody, y`know. Because if someone does hate you then that means that somebody loves you as well. I think `Neanderthal Man` was a good example of that. It was either loved or it was absolutely despised by people – and it was a smash. So I suppose there`s something there.
“There`s always going to be, particularly with a group like us, a sort of criticism said about you if you`re trying to do something a bit different. I think it takes people some time to get used to something a bit fresher.
“Cause I used to be very conservative about music – when the Shadows did a track with strings I hated it. I remember that, I thought `they`ve blown it for me`. And it was progression really – but I couldn`t stand the thought of that `cause they were, like, tainted. But when the Beatles did it, that was great `cause of course they used strings like no one else had used them.”
But “Worst Band” with its backing tapes was rather scrappy. By this time it didn`t matter. And finally, what  else. “Rubber Bullets”. R8ot at sell-out sign? Not quite but almost. “Up, up, get up,” said Lol, “we`re not doing it till you`re all up.” So everyone got up and bopped. And the evening ended in a barrage of thrashboogie that would have put Status Quo to shame.
The end.

But there are a lot more goodies to come:
“We want to put some numbers into the act that aren`t on record yet as opposed to recording them, then a month later rehearsing them for the road, when we sort of listen to the record and think, `ah, we did this bit`. It`ll be interesting to do it the other way round. But always there`s the time problem involved – we`re in the studio for two or three months and you`re not on the road in that time and record things, then you learn them afterwards.
“We go into the studio next week, then do college dates in October, then November and December in the studio. Which is great `cause we get into a different sort of lifestyle when we`re recording (hipvokke) we go on a whole different plane… man. You do actually, it`s funny. And it`s good because you concentrate every effort. Because we take so much time over recording we`re not the type of band that can go in today and put down a rhythm track and go back to it next week, put on some vocals and do some overdubs the week after. We just concentrate all our energies on one thing at a one time. It`s best that way.
“We`ve got to get into the atmosphere, the mood of recording. Every time we do a new album it`s got to be better than the last one and I think we did that with “Sheet Music” over “10cc” but the next one`s got to be that much better again. It`s quite a hard task and it did hang us up when we started “Sheet Music”.
“But you`ve got to think you can always improve on what you`ve done, always. That`s always been our principle. But it`s a good principle for everything, I suppose.”

IMG_2424

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Adam Faith, T. Rex, David Essex, Nazareth, Gallagher and Lyle, Jackie Lynton, Trapeze, Ben E. King, Chris Wood, John Stewart, Steve Ashley, Isley Brothers.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.

ARTICLE ABOUT Nazareth FROM SOUNDS, September 21, 1974

Great article from a point in this band`s career where things were beginning to really take off for them. What a great band this was. In my opinion, they deserve to be in the rock and roll hall of fame more than almost anyone else that they still haven`t inducted.

IMG_2417

Die-hard Scots and Welshmen keep trucking

Pete Makowski reports from Munich

Well it`s only been two years since Nazareth stepped off the stage of the Marquee and entered the world of concert tours and international success. It seemed to happen so fast, didn`t it? A hit single and a headlining tour seemed to appear from nowhere, but those who solidly supported the band in their early years will realize this was no flash in the pan.
The last time I saw the band was at their first headlining date at the Rainbow, which was a bit of a disaster. You could say they blew it that night, although they had total command in places of the Marquee`s stature and Ally Pally, it seemed that they lacked the requirements at a fully sized concert hall.
The show lacked the strength and quality to qualify their headlining position. Still that was their debut to stardom and the ultra cool surrounds of Finsbury Park was no place to judge an up and coming band, especially when you`ve seen them rip other places apart.

QUALITY

These four Scots lads have carved their way to success with sheer hard work and good solid rock and roll. The band`s touring itinerary is still as full as ever, and they have been touring consistently since the beginning. Their output of records has been as much as three albums per year, which I feel lost out on the quality of the group, especially their last effort “Rampant”, where the lack of ideas was painfully obvious.
Although the musicianship was improving, the material (apart from a couple of tracks) lacked any originality and certainly didn`t match up to the standards of “Razamanaz” and its predecessors.
Still these die hard Scotsmen keep trucking on and this year is bringing them into larger amounts of spandoolicks (readies) as they continue to break into new territory, which should explain how I managed to blag my way to see them in Munich during their first headlining tour of Germany.
This was going to reveal Naz`s new stage act, which was reputedly a scorcher. Now that`s something that should not be missed by any heavy metal damme or herron.
The band were due to play the Circus Krone – a concrete circus which houses some resident tigers of mammoth size – and the circular, dome-shaped hall inside accommodated about 3,000 people.
The Naz lads entered the hall looking fit `n` fine. Dan McCafferty, the man with the granite-like features, strode up confidently to have a chat before the band`s soundcheck.
“Munich is like the London of Germany”, said an exuberant Mr. McCafferty. “I mean, the kids here get 28 good concerts per month, they`re spoiled. That`s why a place like Glasgow Apollo is THE best venue, the kids there sweat their balls off as much as the band.”
The man responsible for the Krone gigs was Karl, a shifty, obese character who spent most of his time eating, and reportedly falls asleep at the side of the stage during gigs. “Tonight`s concert is important”, he explained to Naz`s manager, Bill Feheely – a jovial character. “All of Germany`s Press will be here.” The words came out with awe-struck tones that made you think the Fuhrer himself was about to arrive.
Suddenly familiar Welsh tones were heard from the backstage area. It was the Man band and Co. The band have just begun their tour and they were appearing tonight along with Stan Webb`s new band.

Originally the bill`s line-up was intended to be only Naz and Budgie, but our feathered friends got a touch of the homesick blues and departed, cutting their tour schedule short. Oh vell, das icht Rock en Roll.
Nazareth have recently returned from the States and their progress, reports Dan, is slow but sure. I asked him when we`d be seeing the lads on home territory again. “You`ve probably heard this before from other bands”, he said, “but whenever we tour Britain we lose bread, so do most bands.” But THEY tour in Britain because it`s their country and they love it.
“We`ve got to spend a lot of time touring abroad, to top up the economical side of the business but I should imagine we`ll be touring in Britain early next year, after the next album has been completed.”
The band returned on stage to proceed with the soundcheck. A few bars of “Shanghaid In Shanghai”, “This Flight Tonight” and their rendition of Randy Newman`s “Guilty”, and it was all over. The sound was good and the group seemed happy with it.
We returned to the hotel, sat round in the bar and Dan spoke of the band`s experience in Iceland, where a bottle of scotch cost £10 and tickets for the concert were £7.
Manny entered the lobby of the hotel clutching a copy of Dicky Bett`s new album. Manuel “Manny” Charlton is the quiet one, who bears the features of a Spanish matador, with his continental black moustache. When he talks it`s usually to do with the band, the main subject of the evening being the band`s next album.
Who would be the producer? Would it be a live one? Where would it be recorded? These and many more questions have yet to be answered and as the night progresses the tinge of seriousness started to fade.
“The producer`s got to be called Jock McTavish”, said Dan. “See this segregation”, said Steve, the Cockney lights` manager.
By the time we reached the gig in the evening, Stan Webb`s band had finished boogying and Man were about to get on.
The dressing room was full of booze and food, provided by the promoter. The band made themselves comfortable, Manny disappeared into the next room to tune up his guitar. Darryl Sweet, who by now was wearing his third pair of spectacles, looked thinner and healthier.

IMG_2419

HARDER

He disappeared and reappeared wearing a silver, blue and white jerkin with trousers to match. You can say that Darryl Sweet burst into the dressing room wearing a suit that matched his drum kit.
I only managed to catch a few brief moments of Man. Suffice to say they are as tasteful as ever, and should undoubtedly do well for themselves, and, as expected, the audience reaction was pretty laid back.
Since the departure of their keyboard player Man music seems to have got much harder, which is inevitable with Deke on the front line. This gig proved to be a good starter for their forthcoming British tour.
Backstage Naz were preparing themselves for the gig. Their attire is not glitter – effective rather than flash, which can also be said for their music. Suddenly out of the blue popped ex-Silverhead guitarist Robbie Blunt, who is currently with Stan Webb.
The band have been going down well. They`ve already got the advantage of Webb`s popularity in Germany, but I`m sure the addition of Blunt plays a big part in it. They`ll also be recording an album and playing in Britain soon.
“I`ll just change into my poofy jacket”, said Dan as he headed for the adjoining room.
The band were about to go on, the lights in the hall were off, and the band could barely be seen walking on stage and plugging in. The audience in the front section got on their feet and began cheering while the kids in the surrounding area sat back and coolly clapped… very similar to a Rainbow crowd.
The band went straight into “Silver Dollar Forger”, the lights went out and a spot was concentrated on a shimmering tambourine which Dan was holding high in the air. This was followed by “Razamanaz”, a hard rocker featuring some cutting guitar from Manny.
The acoustic of the hall gave the PA a muzzy sound, which was balanced out by the third number “Alcatraz”. The audience were beginning to gather enthusiasm and gradually the back row mob began joining in. Naz kept on playing the numbers with high energy and professionalism. Their whole approach and performance has moved into a new dimension.
Some hard rocking with “Turn On Your Receiver” and a superb version of Little Feat`s “Teenage Nervous Breakdown” closely followed by “Bad, Bad Boy”, with Manny playing some fiery slide. “Guilty”, a slow bluesy number, highlighted the vicious vocals of Mr. McCafferty.

AMAZING

“Jet Lag” took on a whole new style with some incredible guitar from Manny with Pete Agnew accompanying him on twelve bars. This featured Dan on the voice box – a gadget which, in conjunction with guitar, produces an amazing moog type sound. The band featured a medley of numbers consisting of “Amazing Grace”, “F.B.I.” and “Smoke On The Water”.
By now the audience were worked up and it was “This Flight Tonight” that brought the whole place to its feet. Tough bass from Agnew and spacey guitar from Charlton, along with McCafferty`s hard vocals, make this one of the finest records they`ve made. The set was completed with a spectacular version of “Shape Of Things To Come”, featuring three mirror balls flashing from the ceiling and strobes.
There was no doubt that the band would have to come back for an encore. They returned to play “Woke Up This Morning”, featuring some powerful slide boogie from Charlton.
I made my way to the back of the stage where one of the promoters was saying that this was the best concert he`s seen here for a year and Karl was moaning that it was the first time kids have stood on the seats.
The band finished the number, but had to return again. “What shall we play?” asked Agnew as he leapt back onto stage. “Mmm let`s do `Morning Dew` said Charlton. The band haven`t played the number for over a year and it made a fine finish to the night.
When the band return to Britain you will see a totally new group. Their act is polished, has the substance, dynamics, excitement and competence to put them in the big league. Oh yes, the lads from the Gangy have come a long way in the last two years, which makes you wonder what we`ll see two years from now.

IMG_2423

I have personally transcribed this from the original paper. Any errors in the text from the original magazine may not have been corrected for the sake of accuracy. If you have a music-related web-page where this fits – please make a link to the article. With credits to the original writer of the article from all of us music fans!

This number of Sounds also contains articles/interviews with these people: Adam Faith, T. Rex, David Essex, Trapeze, Gallagher and Lyle, Jackie Lynton, 10cc, Ben E. King, Chris Wood, John Stewart, Steve Ashley, Isley Brothers.

The original music paper this article came from (pictured at the top) is for sale!

1. Send me an e-mail if you are interested. Send it to: geirmykl@gmail.com
2. The offer should be 20 $ (US Dollars) to be considered. (This includes postage).
3. We conduct the transaction through my verified Paypal account for the safety of both parties.