Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Various Artsists - Fab Gear The British Beat Explosion And Its Aftershocks (1963-67 uk, beat soul and harmony bleed into psychedelia, six pack disc 2018 release)


“Yesterday’s Gone”: the song by folk-pop duo Chad and Jeremy opens the first of the six discs comprising Cherry Red and RPM’s new box set Fab Gear: The British Beat Explosion and Its Aftershocks 1961967.  It’s a most appropriate opener, as yesterday really was gone for an entire generation of artists swiftly rendered obsolete by the emergence of The Beatles.  As the box eloquently explains, the Fab Four “in name, song, band structure, image, defined this new Beat music…Until 1967, when The Beatles reinvented pop again with Sgt. Pepper’s, Beat music – in the broadest sense – was the basic template for aspiring young (mainly male) teenagers forming a band.”  This CD box collects 180 tracks chronicling this fertile period in British (and by extension) global music history, with an emphasis on new-to-CD cuts and the catalogue of Pye Records.  Why Pye?  Castle Music’s Beat Beat Beat series dug into the Pye vaults but was aborted before its intended conclusion; this box picks up where that series left off.  The sixth disc here is even more collector-oriented, focusing on tracks that initially weren’t released.

As expected for such a large collection, there’s a blend of the famous and the not-so-famous.  In the former category are lesser-known tracks from household names like The Kinks, David Bowie (with his early band The Lower Third), The Moody Blues, and The Searchers.  Among the latter type are little-known bands whose personnel would become future members of Yes, Fleetwood Mac, Manfred Mann, Traffic, The Move, and Deep Purple, just to name a few.  There are plenty of “A-ha!” moments and fascinating discoveries across these six discs.  Connections abound between artists, bands, songwriters, and producers on this potpourri of Beat subgenres including rock-and-roll, pop, RAndB, folk, and soul.  The chronological approach works well, allowing listeners to trace the development of production styles as well as the growing confidence of bandmates to write their own songs rather than tap established songwriters.

Though The Beatles are naturally absent from this survey, there are Fab connections, such as Marilyn Powell’s groovy, spirited cover of “All My Loving,” one of the first Beatle covers by a female artist; The Tremeloes’ bright take on “Good Day Sunshine;” and The Hi-Fi’s “Baby’s in Black.”  Though The Kinks do appear on Fab Gear with “Who’ll Be the Next in Line,” the band is also represented via numerous covers including one from The Doc Thomas Group.  Their RAndB-meets-country cover of “Just Can’t Go to Sleep” features none other than a pre-Mott the Hoople Ian Hunter.  Ray Davies’ songs were so popular, and so evocative of their period, that this set also features interpretations from the Davies songbook by The Fingers (“I Go to Sleep”), The Thoughts (“All Night Stand”), Gates of Eden (“Too Much on My Mind”), The Attraction (“Party Line”), and Five’s Company (“Session Man”).

America happily adopted the British sound in the 1960s, but Britain enjoyed a cultural exchange too as American RAndB and pop inspired countless U.K. artists.  America’s answer to Denmark Street, The Brill Building, is represented by tunes here like Billie Davis’ “That Boy John” (penned by Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry), Felders Orioles’ “Down Home Girl” (Jerry Leiber and Artie Butler), The Alan Price Set’s “Any Day Now” (Burt Bacharach and Bob Hilliard), The Syndicats’ “On the Horizon” (Leiber and Mike Stoller), and The Knack’s “Take Your Love” (Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil).  “Love Potion No. 9” was a particular Brill-born favorite.  The tale of Madame Rue and her amour-inducing concoction is heard here in versions by Tony Jackson with The Vibrations, as well as The Baskervilles, though the U.S. hit by Liverpool’s The Searchers is absent.

Not too far from the Brill Building, Bob Gaudio and Bob Crewe were plying their song trade for Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, among others.  The duo’s “She Lied” got the beat ballad treatment from The Buckinghams (of London, not the U.S. group of “Don’t You Care” and “Kind of a Drag” fame).  The California sound crossed oceans, too, as evidenced by Tony Rivers And The Castaways’ credible take on The Beach Boys’ driving “Girl Don’t Tell Me.”  The Spectrum made David Gates’ Monkees hit “Saturday’s Child” their own, and The Montanas went freakbeat on “That’s When Happiness Began” from the California-by-way-of-Massachusetts songwriting team The Addrisi Brothers.  Some of The Montanas’ most enduring A-sides were penned, in part, by Pye’s songwriter-producer-arranger-AAndR man Tony Hatch.  His compositions are among the most egregious omissions on this box, although that’s perhaps because his output is so well-represented elsewhere on CD.  (Hatch’s behind-the-scenes influence is felt here, however.)  Other top-tier U.K. writers are here, though, including Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway, John Carter and Ken Lewis, and even the future Sir Tim Rice.

For those wishing to dig deeper, a number of the artists here have had full anthologies released on Cherry Red including The Bo Street Runners (“Bo Street Runner”), The Mike Cotton Sound (“Round and Round”), The Artwoods (“If I Ever Get My Hands on You”), Philip Goodhand-Tait and The Stormsville Shakers (“I’m Gonna Put Some Hurt on You”), The Spectrum (“Saturday’s Child”), and Katch 22 (“Makin’ My Mind Up’).

Fab Gear is a beautifully-designed set.  It’s packaged in the style of a hardcover book, with each disc slotted in a page of its own.  A 5page, full-color booklet of liner notes from Nick Warburton and Bruce Welsh is worth the price of admission, with track-by-track annotations filling in the blanks on many of the artists who’ve fallen through the cracks over the years.  It’s also copiously illustrated with records, sleeves, and artist photos.  Simon Murphy has remastered, and the sound is strong throughout.

A treasure trove of enjoyable pop, Fab Gear is a testament to the endurance of the beat boom, not to mention its direct antecedents in rock-and-roll and rhythm-and-blues.  Yeah, yeah, yeah!
by Joe Marchese, June 26, 2018
Artists - Tracks - Composer
Disc 1
1. Chad Stuart And Jeremy Clyde - Yesterday's Gone (Wendy Kidd, Chad Stuart) - 2:31
2. Carter-Lewis And The Southerners - Somebody Told My Girl (Kenneth Hawker, John Shakespeare) - 2:39
3. The Nomads - My Whole Life Through (Stuart Slater) - 2:57
4. Billie Davis - That Boy John (Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich) - 2:31
5. Marilyn Powell - All My Loving (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 2:23
6. The Regents - Bye Bye Johnny (Chuck Berry) - 2:17
7. A Band Of Angels - Me (Mickey Baker, Mike D'Abo) - 2:03
8. Ray Singer - Tell Me Now (Ray Singer) - 2:44
9. Mickey Finn And The Blue Men - Reelin' And A Rockin' (Chuck Berry) - 2:22
10.Le Group 5 - Baby What You Want Me To Do (Jimmy Reed) - 4:09
11.The Bo Street Runners - Bo Street Runner (John Dominic) - 2:11
12.Mike Sarne And The Leroys - Love Me Please (Kenny Lynch, Mike Sarne, Clive Westlake) - 2:36
13.The Moody Blues - Lose Your Money (But Don't Lose Your Mind) (Denny Laine, Michael Pinder) - 1:58
14.The Mike Cotton Sound - Round And Round (The Mike Cotton Sound) - 2:36
15.The Others - I'm Taking Her Home (Ian McLintock, Paul Stewart) - 2:17
16.The Artwoods - If I Ever Get My Hands On You (Kenneth Hawker, John Shakespeare) - 2:03
17.Mal Ryder And The Spirits - Your Friend (Marty Wilde) - 2:38
18.Jimmy Royal And The Hawks - I'm Leaving You (T. Delaney, P. Delaney, B. Delaney) - 2:07
19.The Wild Oats - You Can't Judge A Book By Its Cover (Willie Dixon) - 2:27
20.Four And One - Don't Lie To Me (Chuck Berry) - 1:53
21.Tommy Bruce And The Bruisers - Boom Boom (John Lee Hooker) - 2:42
22.Grant Tracy - Never Let It Be Said (Roger Cook) - 2:05
23.Angelina - Wishing My Life Away (Del Murray) - 2:10
24.Peter Jay And The Jaywalkers - What's Easy For Two Is Hard For One (Smokey Robinson) - 2:46
25.Migil 5 - Seven Lonely Days (Kim Brown, Alden Shuman, Earl Shuman) - 2:26
26.The Wackers - You're Forgetting (Vaughan, Clark) - 2:09
27.Twinkle - Ain't Nobody Home But Me (Ronnie Scott) - 2:46
28.The Clique - She Ain't No Good (Robert Rowbottom) - 2:20
29.The Hi-Fis - Baby's In Black (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 2:23
30.The Sheffields - Plenty of Love (Brian Alexander) - 2:22
31.Four Just Men - Don't Come Any Closer (Demetrius Christopholus) - 2:17
32.Robb Storme And The Whispers - Love Is Strange (Mickey Baker, Ellas McDaniel, Sylvia Robinson) - 2:39
Disc 2
1. Tony Jackson And The Vibrations - Love Potion No. 9 (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller) - 2:05
2. The Midnights - Only Two Can Play (Paul 'Mitch' Mitchell, Rick Robbins) - 2:04
3. Bobby Rio And The Revelles - Don't Break My Heart And Run Away (Joe Meek, Jimmy O'Neill) - 2:26
4. The Beatmen - Please Believe (Bill Moseley) - 1:45
5. The Blue Aces Showband - You Don't Believe (Phelan Kane) - 2:10
6. The Chapters - Dance Little Lady (M.Novac, M.Jordan) - 2:45
7. The First Impressions - Looking For Her (Peter Watkinson) - 2:02
8. The Kinks - Who'll Be The Next In Line (Ray Davies) - 2:02
9. The Limeys - Don't Cry (My Love) (Raymond Benoit, Greg Dempsey) - 2:22
10.The Pros And Cons - Whirlybird (Part One) (Joe Fenegan) - 2:49
11.Carl Wayne And The Vikings - This Is Love (Danny King) - 1:58
12.The Epics - My Little Girl (Stuart Tann) - 2:30
13.The Lemmings - My Little Girl (Del Murray) - 2:49
14.The Monotones - Somethings Hurtin' Me (Brian Alexander, Peter Stanley) - 2:31
15.The Rockin' Berries - Follow Me (Kenneth Hawker, John Schroeder) - 2:09
16.The Couriers - Take Away (Harry Middlebrooks) - 2:21
17.Dickie Rock, Miami And Strings - Rock And Roll Music (Chuck Berry) - 2:32
18.The Buckinghams - She Lied (Bob Crewe, Bob Gaudio) - 2:08
19.The Eccentrics - Fe Fi Fo Fum (Spiro) - 2:36
20.The Riot Squad - Not A Great Talker (Anthony Chalk, Gordon Roberts, Raymond Smith) - 2:05
21.Buddy Britten And The Regents - She's A Mover (Doug Sahm) - 2:13
22.Charles Dickens - In The City (B. Potter, G. Dee) - 2:06
23.The Cops ’N Robbers - Just Keep Right On (Raymond Smith) - 2:10
24.The Untamed - I'll Go Crazy (Kim Brown) - 2:13
25.The Quiet Five - Honeysuckle Rose (Andy Razaf, Fats Waller) - 2:10
26.Felder's Orioles () - Down Home Girl (Artie Butler, Jerry Leiber) - 4:00
27.Paddy, Klaus And Gibson - I Wanna Know (Fran├žoise Dorin, Guy Mardel) - 2:16
28.The Legends - I've Found Her (Peter Watkinson) - 2:27
29.The Searchers - He's Got No Love (Chris Curtis, Mike Pender) - 2:36
30.Mike Hurst - Show Me Around (R. Blackwell) - 2:06
31.Major Rowley - Do It The Right Way (John Rowlands, Jason, Burr) - 1:59
32.Kenny Bernard And The Wranglers - You Gotta Give (Tarrus Riley) - 2:28
33.Mal And The Primitives - Pretty Little Face (John E. Soul) - 2:09
Disc 3
1. The Sorrows - Take A Heart (Miki Dallon) - 3:16
2. The Imp-Acts - If I Were The Only One (Lloyd Courtney, Ray Frewin, Howard Morgan, Michael Oldroyd) - 2:08
3. The Alan Price Set - Any Day Now (Burt Bacharach, Bob Hilliard) - 2:58
4. The Washington DC's - Have You Seen My Baby (Robin Shaw) - 2:02
5. The New Faces - Never Gonna Love Again (Tony Mahoney, Barry Pettican) - 2:47
6. Ronnie Jones - I'm So Clean (Norman Oliver) - 2:42
7. Russ Loader With The Ladybirds - Count The Stars (Mark Wirtz) - 3:32
8. The In Crowd - You're On Your Own (Keith Hopkins) - 2:19
9. The Syndicats - On The Horizon (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller) - 2:50
10.The Alan Bown Set - I'm The One (Curtis Mayfield) - 2:14
11.The Chosen Few - Today, Tonight And Tomorrow (Alan Hull) - 2:40
12.The Hellions - Think It Over (Jim Capaldi, Gordon Jackson, Dave Mason, David Meredith) - 2:04
13.The Lancastrians - I Can't Stand The Pain (Terry Benson, John Fleury) - 2:46
14.The Nightshift - That's My Story (Tim Rice) - 2:13
15.The Truth - Come On Home (Jeff Cooper) - 2:26
16.The Tornados - Stingray (Barry Gray) - 2:53
17.The Action - Land Of One Thousand Dances (Chris Kenner) - 2:51
18.The Chantelles - Gonna Give Him Some Love (Alan Tew, Derek Thompson) - 2:38
19.Brian Diamond And The Cutters - Bone Idol (Brian Diamond) - 2:39
20.The Carnaby - My Love Will Stay (Steve Miners) - 2:34
21.The MeddyEvils - Find Somebody To Love (Danny Barbour) - 2:52
22.The Slade Brothers - Don't Be Gone Too Long (Jack Klaeysen) - 2:17
23.The Ugly's - A Friend (Steve Gibbons, Jimmy O'Neill) - 2:14
24.David And Jonathan - Laughing Fit To Cry (Roger Cook, Roger Greenaway) - 2:16
25.The Kirkbys - She'll Get No Loving That Way (Jimmy Campbell) - 2:09
26.The Tomcats - Pena, Penita, Pena (Ruiz Alba, Ruiz Narvaez) - 2:58
27.Shades Of Blue - Where Did All The Good Times Go (John Cassidie) - 2:20
28.Earl Preston's Realms - Nobody But You (Earl Preston, Tony Priestley) - 2:06
29.Michael Allen - I Can't Stand It (Smokey McAllister) - 2:53
30.The Richmond Group - That's Alright (Justin Tubb) - 3:16
Disc 4
1. David Bowie With The Lower Third - And I Say To Myself (David Bowie) - 2:30
2. The Undertakers - Throw Your Love Away Girl (Jackie Lomax) - 2:34
3. Arthur Brown With The Diamonds - You Don't Know (Tim Lee) - 3:35
4. Episode Six - That's All I Want (Roger Glover) - 2:32
5. The Time - Take A Bit Of Notice (Danny Barbour) - 1:59
6. Tony Rivers And The Castaways - Girl Don't Tell Me (Brian Wilson) - 2:44
7. The Boomerangs - Upgraded (Jon Ledingham) - 2:06
8. The Rocking Vickers - Stay By Me (Robin Shaw) - 2:30
9. The Deputies - Given Half A Chance (Pierre Tubbs) - 2:04
10.The Clockwork Oranges - After Tonight (Emma Chelotti, Giuseppe Russo) - 2:22
11.Tony Colton - Have You Lost Your Mind (Tony Colton, Raymond Smith) - 3:36
12.Luvin' Kind - It's A Cruel World (Kevin Hearn) - 2:20
13.The Bats - People Like You (Tony O'Brien) - 2:25
14.The People - I'm With You (Perry Ford, Tony Hiller) - 2:05
15.Phillip Goodhand-Tait And The Stormsville Shakers - I'm Gonna Put Some Hurt On You (Raymond Lewis) - 2:13
16.The Bluechips - I Know A Boy (Hill) - 2:46
17.The Moonlighters - We'll See It Through (Chris Arnold, David Lee Martin, Geoff Morrow) - 2:51
18.The Spartans - Lies (Pete Townshend) - 2:24
19.The Fingers - I Go To Sleep (Ray Davies) - 2:33
20.Chris Curtis - Aggravation (Tommy Roe) - 1:59
21.The Ivy League - One Day (John Carter, Perry Ford, Ken Lewis) - 2:06
22.The Cymbaline - Top Girl (The Cymbaline) - 2:41
23.The Jeeps - The Music Goes Round (Pierre Tubbs) - 2:20
24.Paul's Troubles - You'll Find Out (Geoff Simpson) - 2:28
25.The Bystanders - Have I Offended The Girl (Ronnie Scott, Marty Wilde) - 2:33
26.The Chevlons - It's My Problem (Derek Creigan) - 2:33
27.The Debonaires - A Love Of Our Own (Aiden Magennis, Shay O'Donoghue) - 2:37
28.The Majority - Simplified (Robert Long, Peter Mizen, Ian Sutherland, Barry Wigley) - 2:56
29.The Ministry Of Sound - Back Seat Driver (John Carter, Mickey Keen, Robin Shaw) - 2:26
30.The Appalachians - Look Away (Mike Hurst) - 2:28
31.Hayes* And Wadey - What Does She Want? (Michelle Grainger, Tony Hayes, Steve Wadey) - 2:37
Disc 5
1. The Tremeloes - Good Day Sunshine (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) - 1:58
2. Tuesday's Children - High And Drifting (Phil Cordell) - 2:42
3. The Rogers - Little Girl (Jimmy Henshaw) - 2:12
4. Marmalade - It's All Leading Up To Saturday Night (Geoff Stevens) - 2:20
5. Mick And Malcolm - Little Venice (Clive Westlake) - 2:15
6. The Kytes - I'll Give You A Better Love (Roger Cook, Roger Greenaway) - 2:32
7. Hat And Tie - California Jazz Club U.S.A. (Campbell Lyons, Chris Thomas) - 2:06
8. The Renegades - Walking Down The Street (Kim Brown, Denis Gibson, Graham Johnson, Ian Mallett) - 1:50
9. The Thoughts - All Night Stand (Ray Davies) - 2:28
10.Gates Of Eden - Too Much On My Mind (Ray Davies) - 2:26
11.Sounds Around - Sad Subject (John Pantry) - 1:57
12.The Knack - Take Your Love (Barry Mann, Cynthia Weil) - 2:29
13.The Montanas - That's When Happiness Began (Dick Addrisi, Don Addrisi) - 2:12
14.Gnomes Of Zurich - Please Mr. Sun (Sid Frank, Ray Getzov) - 2:27
15.The Attraction - Party Line (Ray Davies) - 2:21
16.Five's Company - Session Man (Ray Davies) - 2:34
17.The Doc Thomas Group - I Just Can't Go To Sleep (Ray Davies) - 2:32
18.The Spectres - Hurdy Gurdy Man (Pat Barlow, Alan Lancaster) - 3:18
19.Steve Hammond - The World Is Wrapped Around My Neck (Steve Hammond) - 3:17
20.The Factotums - I Can't Give You Anything But Love (Dorothy Fields, Jimmy McHugh) - 2:29
21.The Symbols - Canadian Sunset (Eddie Heywood) - 3:08
22.The Secrets - Such A Pity (Clifford T. Ward) - 2:06
23.Marcus Tro - We Can Make It Baby (Graham Reynolds) - 1:55
24.The Athenians - Steppin' Out (Mark Lindsay, Paul Revere) - 2:58
25.The Peenuts - The World's Been Good To Me (Tony Cox, Douglas Macrae-Brown) - 2:40
26.The Exceptions - Girl Trouble (Alan "Bugsy" Eastwood) - 2:19
27.The Spectrum - Saturday's Child (David Gates) - 2:31
28.Bobby Johnson And The Atoms - Do It Again A Little Slower (Wayne Carson) - 2:22
29.Katch 22 - Makin' My Mind Up (Jack Dalton, Gary Montgomery) - 2:34
Disc 6
1. Five's A Crowd - I’m Not Ready For You (Buzz Cason, Paul Hampton) - 2:01
2. The Cherokees - Poison Ivy (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller) - 2:33
3. The Web - I'll Try - 2:09
4. The Changing Times - Louie Louie (Richard Berry) - 3:00
5. The Second Thoughts - Help Me (Sonny Boy Williamson II) - 3:01
6. Count Downe And The Zero's - Always On My Mind (Michael Hartz, Peter Senior) - 1:45
7. The Baskervilles - Love Potion No. 9 (Jerry Leiber, Mike Stoller) - 1:58
8. The Mighty Atoms - Wanderin’ Eye (Stuart Hobday) - 2:38
9. Five Steps Beyond - Heartbreak Love Or Paradise (Roger Winward) - 2:14
10.The Silence - Down Down (Andy Ellison) - 3:00
11.Herbie's People - So Fine (Jim Gribble) - 2:50
12.The Connoisseurs - Make Up Your Mind (Kent) - 3:01
13.The Gremlins - One More Chance (Chris Andrews, Chris Jennings) - 2:27
14.Barney J Barnes And The Intro - It Must Be Love (Perry, Peter Wood) - 2:28
15.Glenda Collins - Run To Me (Unknown) - 2:27
16.The Uprooted - You’re Not There (Ashley-Brown, John Chuter, Denis Gibson, Raymond Smith) - 2:35
17.The Fadin' Colours - You’re No Use (Geoffrey Coppin) - 2:47
18.The Brood - You’re Just Another Girl (Jeff Peters, Ewan Stephens) - 2:27
19.The Flies - Just Won’t Do (Ian Baldwin, Da Costa, Robin Hunt) - 2:00
20.The Trendbender Band - I Can’t Stand The Pain (Barry Brewery) - 2:40
21.Jeff Curtis And The Flames - Everybody Loves A Lover (Richard Adler, Robert Allen) - 2:23
22.Earl Preston And The T.T.'s - Betty Jean (Chuck Berry) - 2:37
23.The Mike Stuart Span - Follow Me (Kenny Lynch, Mort Shuman) - 2:29
24.Outer Limits - Any Day Now (Jeff Christie) - 3:37
25.The Cordes - Carabella (Frank Pingatore) - 3:08
26.The Newtowns - Tomorrow (The Newtowns) - 2:51
27.The Bo-Weevils - I’m A Lover Not A Fighter (J.D. Miller) - 3:03
28.The Xit - Time Will Tell On You (Geoff Simpson) - 2:12
29.Mike Forde And The Fortunes - Sweet Little Rhythm And Blues (Chuck Berry) - 2:25
30.Rory Storm And The Hurricanes - Lend Me Your Comb (Kay Twomey, Ben Weisman, Fred Wise) - 1:49