Saturday, May 11, 2024

Hallelujah - Hallelujah Babe! (1971 germany / uk, fantastic heavy jam psych prog rock, 2003 extra track remaster)

Well, back then (1969/70) I was on tour with the band “Missus Beastly”. This may mean next to nothing to you. "Missus Beastly" was a totally weird group that improvised psychedelic rock for hours when there was always enough of the stuff in the medicine cabinet. And we weren't just a sensation in Westphalia! We gave it to our fans every night - we didn't know what would happen and we didn't know that one of our friends would jump out of the window because he thought he could really fly. But that's a different film.

So, now I was standing in some dim city hall, only the lighting and sound crew were there and a funny drummer from England who was setting up his drum kit with dedication. He was part of "Amon Düül II", who had been headlining this small tour through small towns in southern Germany for over a week. Please don't ask me what city it was in, what time of day, or what time of year. I think it was spring 1970.

My buddies in the dressing room had just finished their blotting paper, so it was time for me to do my own private sound check all by myself. I rammed my Gibson into the Fender Showman and let it howl to celebrate the day, then transitioned elegantly into Jeff Beck's "Rock My Plimsoul." Then Keith Forsey, the English drummer for “Amon Düül II”, set up the eavesdroppers and simply joined in. The group's second English loanee, Dave Anderson, also picked up his bass and didn't let us down. An outsider would certainly have had the feeling that the three of us were having fun with music for the first time in weeks. And we had that.

At some point the two of us, Keith Forsey and me, Paul Vincent, decided to forget all the psychedelic Krautrock shit and do our own British thing. A mixture of Jeff Beck Group, Led Zeppelin, Beatles, Cream and everything... That was our world.

Back then, I lived in Munich in my old rusty house, the VW Bully with the “Star Club” logo on it, somewhere on a quarry lake. In any case not far from Klara, Keith's Munich girlfriend from Hasenbergl. We always went to Klara's secretly to shower, my friend Woldy Fette, who had accompanied me from Lippe-Detmold to Munich, Keith, who had long since started working with Klara, and me.

Ambassador Music, our London producer, got us two really great musicians, keyboardist Pete Wood and bassist Rick Kemp, to record our songs with Keith on drums and me on guitar. By the way, Pete Wood had a small global career with Al Stewart ("Year Of The Cat") in the following years. And the good Rick Kemp also achieved some respect, at least in the British Isles, with his group “Steeleye Span”. The sound engineer who recorded the four of us in a small but nice backyard studio in London's Dalston district was a certain Robin Sylvester. I later found his name on a number of “Jethro Tull” records, well the world is that small...

Our LP was mixed in one of the finest London establishments, the Trident Studio, where such illustrious people as George Harrison came and went at that time. Imagine accidentally opening a studio door and accidentally finding yourself face to face with Marc Bolan, one of the gods you've always wanted to meet: "Oh sorry, wrong door!" "No problem!" And everything is completely normal. At the front counter you drink your cola with the top-class musicians, as if they were the nice guys from the parallel class. And your English is so good that no one thinks you're a Kraut, thank God, but rather an Australian or South African. Bingo. No more stupid Nazi jokes, just: The cigar goes around and it's just "Peace and Power to the Monkeys". And then, a few weeks later, we finally had the mixed tapes and had to go back to Germania.

The record company Metronome in Hamburg liked our band, turned out to be a generous association and promised us all kinds of support for the live promo, i.e. our band gigs. However, they first had to transfer all the money to Ambassador Music in London, because they were the official contractual partners.

When, during the disco fever, we the Munich musicians had the opportunity to go to L.A. in the wake of Giorgio Moroder, Keith went crazy and actually made a full career in America. He stopped playing drums, which is a sin, co-wrote the lyrics to "Flashdance/What A Feeling" with Irene Cara, produced Billy Idol, Icehouse and also did a few tracks with the guys from Simple Minds. But at some point his tracks were lost in the snow of Los Angeles and New York.

But I didn't like disco too much and preferred to stay in Munich with my wife and children, started writing chamber music on the side and recorded a few well-conceived LPs as a soloist, including one with German lyrics. 1973 "Makin' Our Own Sweet Music",  1975 "Vincent's Flying Rock & Roll Circus", 1981 "Sternreiter"

I played, arranged and co-produced several albums and tours for Udo Lindenberg from 1975 to 1980, which I thought was really great at the beginning, finally big halls, long tours, endless recording sessions, but towards the end it was easy couldn't stand it anymore.

For 28 years (from 1975 to 2003) I composed, produced and played for and with the Swabian blues bard Wolle Kriwanek and put together a band for him that could be seen and heard throughout Germany. Unfortunately, my friend Wolle died unexpectedly at Easter 2003. I've been writing film music since 1979 and have had great success with it: I won the German Film Prize in 2001 in the film music category!
by Paul Vincent, Mai 2003
1. Hallelujah / Signs Of Strange (Paul Vincent Gunia, Keith Forsay, Wolfgang Fette) - 7:48
2. Z.I.P. (Paul Vincent Gunia, Keith Forsay) - 4:33
3. The Winter Song (Paul Vincent Gunia, Keith Forsay) - 6:28
4. English Rain (Paul Vincent Gunia) - 2:18
5. Mini Funk (Paul Vincent Gunia) - 0:47
6. Waterloo (Paul Vincent Gunia, Keith Forsay) - 4:11
7. Friend (Paul Vincent Gunia, Keith Forsay) - 6:46
8. Ode To A Little Knight (Paul Vincent Gunia, Keith Forsay, Wolfgang Fette) - 5:43
9. Jam And Toast (Paul Vincent Gunia) - 2:23

*Paul Vincent Gunia - Guitars, Vocals
*Keith Forsay - Drums, Vocals
*Pete "Funk" Wood - Keyboards
*Rick Kemp - Bass

Related Acts