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Sunday, 29 January 2017

40 Years of Punk & New Wave 1977: Spiral Scratch EP - Buzzcocks

Spiral Scratch - Buzzcocks
New Hormones
Produced by Martin Zero (Hannett)
Released 29th January 1977




Side One

Side Two

To celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the release of Spiral Scratch, Domino released on Friday (27th January 2017) a very Limited Edition Reissue - only 300 copies! (Go Here To See If You Can Get One)

If you are out of luck with the Limited Edition Reissue EP you could always try and get hold of another Limited Edition because it's also contained within, this time it's Buzzcocks Mk.1 Vinyl Box Set that is due for release in March.
Limited to 1000 copies globally, each Buzzcocks Mk.1 is hand numbered and housed in a rigid outer box with lift off lid. It will be released on 10th March 2017. For the cost of £50 you get all of this:
Contents

  Spiral Scratch 7" (Standard Edition) Vinyl, CD
    Time's Up! Heavyweight 12" Vinyl, CD
    Download Card with audio for Spiral Scratch and Time's Up 
plus bonus 'Breakdown' video download (live from Lesser Free Trade Hall, Manchester)
    Shy Talk Fanzine No.4 featuring contributions from (ex-manager) Richard Boon, (sleeve designer) Malcolm Garrett, (photographer) Kevin Cummins, (author) Clinton Heylin and (Manchester punk icon) Denise Shaw
    Buzzcocks Chronology (1976-77) A4 Booklet
    A print of the original Spiral Scratch Recording Tape Box
    Postcard Flyers (7)
    Photo Prints (5)
    Pin Badges (3)
    Posters (2)
If you should fail to secure a copy of the Boxset, the Time's Up! album will be available on Vinyl and CD from 10th March 2017.


Featuring the original line-up of Howard Devoto (vocals and songwriter), Pete Shelley (guitar and songwriter), Steve Diggle (bass guitar) and John Maher (drums), Time’s Up was recorded at Revolution Studios, Bramhall Lane Stockport on the 18th of October 1976. The session, recording Buzzcocks’ live set at the time, cost £45 and was engineered by Andy MacPherson

Time's Up first appeared as a Bootleg and has since 1978 been released on various formats and by different companies in various Countries (mainly the UK but also Venezuela, Australia, USA, Belguim and Brazil) officially and unofficially. 

Spiral Scratch EP has also been reissued a number of times down through the years on different labels.



As I have previously written about the release of Spiral Scratch in December 2015, as part of my 45RPM Series, I thought instead of repeating myself I decided that you can go and check that out for yourselves:


Saturday, 28 January 2017

40 Years of Punk & New Wave: Ronnie Gets A Grip!

I mentioned in the previous post that I had asked my friend Ronnie Carnwath for his thoughts on (Get A) Grip (On Yourself) and that I thought his response was so good that it deserved a post of its own, well here it is. 

Welcome to Ronnie, Guest Blogger on Soundtrack4Life. (and in the words of Mr Adam Ant, "And keep your feet off the upholstery Ronnie!" 😎)

There's a bunch of Links included below so click on them to enjoy further musical ditties. Signed picture sleeves are from Ronnie's own collection.

I was aware of The Stranglers’ music from “No More Heroes” onwards, but I didn’t get into music properly until Pink Floyd and The Pretenders both topped the chart at the end of 1979. By then I was suckered in by this music lark. Not just any old music either - it had to have attitude - if it seemed out of place on Top of the Pops, I was interested. Later in ’82, they released “The Collection 1977-82” as a contract filler and I snapped it up - every single track was an absolute killer, so I picked up a copy of “Black & White” for “Nice ’n’ Sleazy” and the entire album was just breathtaking - it was punk in attitude, but had a dark psychedelic heart and I savoured every note. I trawled every record shop I could find for Stranglers records until I had collected them all. Nothing passed me by - coloured vinyl, picture disc, foreign pressings, alternative sleeve - I was in! If I came across one of their records, I would check to see if there was anything different, and if there was, I grabbed it. On one occasion I entered the hallowed portals of the now defunct Good Vibrations in Belfast and came across a second copy of “Black & White” and flipped it around to look at the back and noticed the different font, then the A&M logo at the bottom - it’s a US pressing, I thought. Then I looked inside and discovered it was on grey marbled vinyl! I could hardly contain my excitement at the £3.99 price tag (surprising as this was 1998!)

My first Stranglers gig was in 1989 at Mandela Hall, Belfast. Afterwards, my mates and I decided to go for a walk around the back of the building where we chanced upon the band’s tour bus. A short time later they appeared and signed almost everything we had - 7”s, 12”s, LPs - even drawings I’d done of them a couple of years previously! Upon seeing a Japanese “Sleazy”, Spanish “Spain” and a John Peel Session bootleg 7”, Jet Black quipped: “Jesus Christ - I’ve never seen half this stuff before!” Some of them even managed to sign sleeves front and back - the only one who was a bit off was Burnel, who only signed one single - his 1979 “Freddie Laker (Concorde and Eurobus)” single. Maybe the tension was brewing? This was 1989 and a year later, following the release of their tenth studio album 10 (I guess they ran out of inspiration on that one?), Cornwell would quit the band, citing personality clashes with Burnel, and the feeling that the band had taken things as far as they could musically.





Taken separately, “Grip” was a mid-paced rocking tune with Cornwell’s matter-of-fact almost rap delivery, describing a struggling musician’s lot with strangely muted trebly guitars, chugging bass and Greenfield’s five-note keyboard motif throughout. Welsh coal-miner Eric Clark provides the saxophone in the chorus. The following year “Hey (Rise Of The Robots)” off “Black & White” would also feature a saxophone - this time played by ex-X-Ray Spex (phew!) tooter Laura Logic. They would later feature a full brass section augmenting their live sound in the late 80s - one of whom, sax player Alex Gifford would later go on to form Propellerheads.




“London Lady” was a much faster track, sung by Burnel, and featuring hardly any keyboards. The lyrics appear to be about a groupie (“London Lady, why did you lay me? Your head is crowded with the names you’ve hounded”) but although the lyrics initially seem bleak, the humour is never far away (“Making love to The Mersey Tunnel with a sausage have you ever been to Liverpool?”)
After the first verse they unintentionally channel Roxy Music’s “Re-make/Re-model”, where the music stops and they introduce the vocals (“Aaaaaaah”), followed by the keyboards, bass and drums.

As an opening salvo, “Grip” and “London Lady” (both songs were given equal billing as Side A - the first of many singles by the band to be labelled so) had everything we would learn to expect from The Stranglers at the time - snarling punky attitude with a psychedelic keyboards. I first became aware of “Grip” from a 1982 compilation called “Burning Ambitions - A History Of Punk”, and while my mate was getting a hard-on for the likes of The Exploited (bleh!) I was instantly grabbed by Dave Greenfield’s Manzarekesque keyboard fills, which would add melody where Hugh Cornwell (“Grip”) and Jean-Jacques Burnel (“London Lady”) would thrash and shout their way through the songs - however they were all superb musicians, having honed their craft in the pubs of Guildford and London as contemporaries of Dr. Feelgood and Ducks Deluxe (the band were later keen to point out that members of The Clash and the Sex Pistols used to come and watch them play in the three years preceding the punk explosion).

Practically every one of the other bands in the so-called punk ‘movement’ dismissed them as not being real punks, because of their age (Cornwell and Greenfield were 27, Burnel was 24, and Black, drummer extraordinaire was a whopping 38!) and because of their technical abilities. Of course they weren’t - they were far too musically adventurous and The Stranglers showed them all by outlasting nearly every one of them, with the same line-up lasting 15 years until Cornwell’s departure in 1990.

The single stalled at a not-unimpressive #44 in the chart, amid allegations by the band of chart rigging, where some of the sales were allegedly attributed to a safer record by an anonymous disco act. They would later go on to much greater successes, musically and commercially, culminating in the UK #2 single “Golden Brown” (which was only held off the top spot by The Jam’s “Town Called Malice” / “Precious” double-A side.). 




“Grip” was reissued in 1989 to promote another compilation album (entitled “Singles”) in a remixed version, with more distorted guitars brought to the fore and slightly different bass. This time it peaked inside the top 40 (#33 to be precise). On the b-side was “Waltzinblack”, chosen on this occasion because TV chef Keith Floyd used it as his theme tune!

The band continue to this day, with only Burnel and Greenfield still there from the original line-up, along with Northumberland-born Baz Warren (formerly of Toy Dolls and Smalltown Heroes) taking over Cornwell’s vocal-guitar duties) and the band’s former drum technician Jim Macauley took over over on drums, after failing health forced the now 78-year-old Jet Black to stop performing. (Check out the band playing the Black & White album in sequence on tour last year from Newcastle. Ed)

Hugh Cornwell maintains a moderately successful solo career and recently released an album of pre-rock ’n’ roll covers, “This Time, It’s Personal” with the surprising vocals of punk poet John Cooper-Clarke.


40 Years of Punk & New Wave: 1977 - (Get A) Grip (On Yourself) / London Lady - The Stranglers

Grip / London Lady
United Artists
Produced by Martin Rushent
Released 28th January 1977
UK Chart #44
New Zealand Chart #35


A-Side


A-Side



****************
The Stranglers
Left To Right: Jet Black, Hugh Cornwell, Jean Jaques Burnell and Dave Greenfield

One of the most striking things about The Stranglers back at the start of their recording career in January 1977 was how old they all looked! In comparison to many of the young bands that were continually cropping up and aligning themselves with the whole Punk and New Wave Scene, The Stranglers looked like dinosaurs!...at least to the 13 year old kid I was back then when if you were over 25 you were old!

But what they maybe didn't have in looks they certainly made up for in attitude! They were brimming over with more hostile emotion and pent up aggression than a festival full of young upstarts!

Of course, The Stranglers were never really a Punk band as such but the attitude and swagger that came through their songs attracted many a young punk toward them, including myself. They found themselves as part of movement by association as they had opened for both the Ramones and Patti Smith in 1976 and played live at many of the venues that were known for their promotion of the early Punk scene like The Nashville and the Hope and Anchor in Islington.

Whilst often viewed with suspicion by some quarters of the music press on account of their age and their obvious actual musical ability, Burnel was quoted saying, "I thought of myself as part of punk at the time because we were inhabiting the same flora and fauna ... I would like to think The Stranglers were more punk plus and then some." Their manager Ian Grant once said, "In one way they were the true punks because they didn't give a hoot who they offended...JJ and Hugh were always obnoxious because they thought they should be. It was mischef, but it wasn't malice".

As I said one of the things that stood out with them was their musical ability, they were way more gifted and experienced than many of the youngsters who had only just picked up an instrument to play. Jett Black had been a Jazz drummer, Hugh Cornwell had been a blues musician (even at one point been involved with Richard Thompson!), Jean Jaques Burnell was a classically trained guitarist who had performed with Symphony Orchestras! Dave Greenfield had played on Military bases and also in a prog-rock band!

1977 was to be a good year for The Stranglers and the debut single, a Double A-Side was one of the first major Punk and New Wave releases of the year. Their Debut Album would arrive in April and three Top Ten singles would follow along with their second album in September.

(Get A) Grip (On Yourself) featured coal miner Eric Clark on Saxophone and contains a couple of my favourite lines in a song by The Stranglers:

 "Committed for insanity and crimes against the soul
The worst crime that I ever did was play some rock 'n roll"


"Stranger from another planet welcome to our hole
Just strap on your guitar and we'll play some rock 'n roll"


London Lady, the other A-Side sees Jean Jaques take the lead vocal and offering up a daft tale of a groupie!

My friend Brian McGill, who is a huge fan of The Stranglers said, "If I'm to be honest I wasn't a major fan of Grip!!! I preferred London Lady with it's immortal " with a sausage have you ever been to Liverpool " line!!
Of course I love it now,  especially live. I even love the fairly recent rerecording with Simple Minds"
.


I'd asked another friend, Ronnie Carnwath (and no stranger to this blog) for his thoughts on it and his response was so good I'm going to post it as a stand alone piece that will follow this one (Check out Ronnie's Post here).


Liberty 
UK Charts #33
Cover Versions of Grip



Friday, 27 January 2017

Rewind: Christine McVie - Christine McVie (1984)

Christine McVie - Christine McVie
Warner Bros Records
Produced by Russ Titelman
Released 27th January 1984
US Chart #26
UK Chart #58


Tracklist & Writers
A1 Love Will Show Us How (Christine McVie & Todd Sharp)  
A2 The Challenge (Christine McVie & Todd Sharp)      
A3 So Excited (Christine McVie, Billy Burnette & Todd Sharp)      
A4 One In A Million (Christine McVie & Todd Sharp)      
A5 Ask Anybody (Christine McVie & Steve Winwood)      
B1 Got A Hold On Me (Christine McVie & Todd Sharp)      
B2 Who's Dreaming This Dream (Todd Sharp & Daniel Douma)      
B3 I'm The One (Todd Sharp)   
B4 Keeping Secrets (Todd Sharp & Alan Pasqua)   
B5 The Smile I Live For (Christine McVie)

Personnel
    Christine McVie - vocals, keyboards, percussion
    Todd Sharp - guitar, background vocals
    George Hawkins - bass guitar, background vocals
    Steve Ferrone - drums, percussion


Additional musicians
    Eric Clapton - guitar
    Lindsey Buckingham - guitar, background vocals
    Mick Fleetwood - drums
    Steve Winwood - piano, synthesizers, lead and background vocals
    Ray Cooper - percussion

    Eddy Quintela - additional keyboards

Singles on Christine McVie


Released January 25th 1984
US Chart #10

B-Side: The Challenge

Released April 1984
US Chart #30

**********************

You couldn't accuse Christine McVie of being prolific when it comes to releasing Solo albums. She released her Debut Solo Album, Christine Perfect, in 1970 not long after she had departed Chicken Shack (1968-69) and not too long before she joined Fleetwood Mac in late 1970 (her first album with the Mac as a member was Future Games in 1971). The Debut had featured husband at the time John McVie and Danny Kirwan (both of whom were also members of Fleetwood Mac with whom Christine had already contributed her keyboard, vocal talent and artistic skills to).

Twenty four years later came her second, which is the focus of attention today simply called Christine McVie. And her third solo release wouldn't appear for another 20 years (In The Meantime - 2004).

Up until the release of this Solo Album there had only been song contributions on these Fleetwood Mac albums:

1971 - Future Games: Morning Rain & Show Me A Smile.
1972 - Bare Trees: Homeward Bound & Spare Me A Little of Your Love*.
1973 - Penguin: Remember Me*, Dissatisfied & Did You Ever Love Me* (a co-write with Bob Welch).
1973 - Mystery To Me: Believe Me, Just Crazy Love, The Way I Feel & Why.
1974 - Heroes Are Hard To Find: Heroes Are Hard To Find*, Come A Little Bit Closer, Bad Loser & Prove Your Love.
1975 - Fleetwood Mac: Warm Ways*, Over My Head*, Say You Love Me* & Sugar Daddy.
1977 - Rumours: Don't Stop*, Songbird, You Make Loving Fun* & Oh Daddy. The Chain was written by all band members.
1979 - Tusk: Over & Over, Think About Me*, Brown Eyes, Never Make Me Cry, Honey Hi & Never Forget.
1980 - Live: featured four previously released songs and a brand new song One More Night.
1982 - Mirage: Only Over You, and three co-writes - Love In Store* (with Jim Recor), Hold Me* (with Robbie Patton) & Wish You Were Here (with Colin Allen).


(* Denotes tracks that were released as Singles, only a few of which didn't chart)

Apart from a few exceptions where Lindsey Buckingham joined her for vocals most of the songs she wrote she also sang lead vocal for.

So now, with this Solo album, all bar two songs McVie contributed to (the last track, The Smile I Live For, is the only solo credit), it was interesting to see if she could pull it off. Not that I remember any of the reviews but I did see it mentioned that people were quite mixed with their views on it with a number basically saying that her songs "lacked in variety to be completely effective outside the confines of a Fleetwood Mac album". I think that sounds a bit harsh but in a way I do understand a little of what they were getting at.

Whilst Christine McVie is maybe not as flamboyant as Stevie Nicks, I think that ordinariness (is that a word?) actually makes her stands out a little more I think. I don't know if you noticed that she rarely takes centre stage, even when she's singing lead (Check out Everywhere from The Dance Concert and also the show below).

The album saw a Solo Top Ten hit with Hot A Hold On Me, and Love Will Show Us How stalled at #30 (the promo video is an absolute hoot 😁).

 Live at The Country Club
Los Angeles
16th December 1983

Setlist
Love Will Show Us How
Keeping Secrets
The Challenge
Who's Dreaming This Dream
I'm The One
So Excited
Don't Stop
Got A Hold On Me/Band Intros
One In A Million
You Make Lovin Fun
World Turning
Songbird
Say You Love Me*
Over My Head*


* Not included in the concert video


Thursday, 26 January 2017

Rewind: Maniacal Laughter - Bouncing Souls (1996)

Maniacal Laughter - Bouncing Souls
Chunksaah Records
Produced by Thom Wilson
Released 26th January 1996
Did Not Chart

Tracklist
1 Lamar Vannoy    
2 No Rules    
3 The Freaks, Nerds & Romantics    
4 Argyle    
5 All Of This And Nothing    
6 The BMX Song    
7 Quick Chek Girl    
8 Headlights... Ditch!    
9 Here We Go    
10 Born To Lose    
11 Moon Over Asbury    
12 The Ballad Of Johnny X

Personnel
    Greg Attonito – vocals
    Pete Steinkopf – guitar
    Bryan Keinlen – bass
    Shal Khichi – drums
    Johnny X – guitar and vocals on "The Ballad of Johnny X"

EP on Maniacal Laughter
 Released on Better Youth Organization (BYO 036) and Chunksaah Records

That Side: The Ballad of Johnny X


This Side: Here We Go /Headlights... Ditch!

 7" Record
Released 1995

********************

The original four members of the Bouncing Souls all hailed from Basking Ridge, New Jersey but set up shop in New Brunswick, NJ in 1989. Although New Brunswick was a college town (it is home to Rutgers University) the band had actually made the decision to forgo further education in the classroom for life education in the sphere of Rock and Roll!


Their first recorded output came in the form of the Cassette EP in 1989 which was basically four demo tracks. It's a little different in sound to what they would become known for as it's almost like a Punk/Funk/Rap crossover!

Over the course of the next couple of years they released a few EP's that were brought together to form their Debut Album The Good, The Bad and The Argyle released on their own label Chunksaah Records in 1994.

Maniacl Laughter, released two years later included all the songs released on the The Ballad of Johnny X EP from 1995. What you get is 12 songs in 23 minutes and 44 seconds - just like a proper Punk Rock album used to be!

A good chuck of the album was written and recorded within the space of a week and within the month it was released! A tour with the band L.A. Punk band Youth Brigade (who had just released their album To Sell The Truth) brought them to the attention of Epitath Records with whom they would sign in 1997.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Pick A Dub - Keith Hudson (2016 Reissue)

 Pick A Dub - Keith Hudson & Family Man
Mamba Records
Produced by Keith Hudson
Released 1974




Side One
Side Two

Pick A Dub has been released on a number of different labels. In 1975 it was was released on Atra, Rockers Unversite in the UK. In 1981on Jah Lives in France. In 1994 it was released on CD for the first time on Blood and Fire in the UK (and also on Vinyl). Simply Vinyl reissued it in 2001. Jusic International released it on Vinyl in 2013 but under the banner of King Tubby & The Barrett Brothers.

The album was reissued in December 2016 on 17 North Parade/VP Records in the UK and US as a Double album.

The second album was called Pick A Vocal and includes 8 extra tracks
Tracklist
A1 Be Still - Keith Hudson

*******************

It's not often that I get excited about Reissues and I have to say I was actually unaware this one had come back out until I saw it in the Reissues section in the latest edition of MOJO.

Pick A Dub was originally released in 1974 on Keith Hudson's own label Mamba (it was a very short lived label that released only a couple of albums and singles in a period of two years).

It was one of the first Dub albums I ever heard if I remember correctly and that was a couple of years after it first came out.

For those who know nothing about Keith Hudson let me just fill in a little of background that led up to this album.

Hudson was born in Kingston, Jamaica and as a schoolboy had arranged concerts with schoolmates who included Delroy Wilson, Bob Marley and Ken Boothe - oh to go back in a time machine to witness that little gathering!

He was a follower of Coxsone Dodd's Downbeat Sound System and begun hanging out with the likes of Don Drummond at around aged 14 and by 16 (1960) he had produced his first track Shades of Hudson that didn't actually get released until the late 60s. In order to raise money for recording sessions Hudson went to serve an apprenticeship in Dentistry. By 1968 he had his own label and the first hit came from the first recording session - Old Fashioned Way - Ken Boothe.

The list of folks who he has worked with is very impressive: Delroy Wilson, Alton Ellis, U Roy, Big Youth, Dennis Alcapone, John Holt, Bunny Gale, to name but a few. 

Pick A Dub was I think one of the first Dub albums to get a release in the UK I believe. He was living in London at the time and also released another album Flesh of My Skin, Blood of My Blood that has been hailed as a masterpiece.

He moved to New York in 1976 and his career took a bit of a downer and although he continued to release albums all the way up until 1982 he was seen as one out of step with the current trends in Reggae.

In August 1984 he was diagnosed with lung cancer and seemed to respond well to treatment but just a few months later on 14th November he took unwell and sadly passed away.

In 2004 there was a great compiltation released called The Hudson Affair on Trojan/Earmark. This is quite an amazing collection of his various collaborations over the years. Well worth a listen.

 

40 Years of Punk & New Wave: 1977 - The Clash Sign To CBS and the World Didn't End!

With Major Labels knocking on the doors to sign a Punk band of their own The Clash were in the fortunate position of actually having two interested in them - Polydor and CBS.

The old tale that The Clash were on their way to sign to Polydor for a £40,000 advance only to take a different turn and end up with CBS for a £100,000 has been debunked down through the years with Mick Jones saying that the band and not Bernie Rhodes made the decision.

There had been an assumption on the part of some people (not The Clash themselves) that the band would, or should sign with an indie label or even create their own like the Buzzcocks had done for their up and coming release (Spiral Scratch EP would be released on 29th January 1977). 

Mark Perry of Sniffin' Glue seemed so irritated by their signing to the label that he had uttered those immortal words:

 "Punk died the day The Clash signed to CBS".

A more established journalist, Jon Savage, working for Sounds, sounded a more realistic point of view when he said, "They were a rock and roll band and they wanted to get on the majors. So big F....deal. The Sex Pistols had already shown what you could do when you got on a major by all that fuss with EMI".

Whilst I like old Mark Perry I think I would lean more to Savage's viewpoint. Where some saw it as some kind of betrayal (I notice that they didn't spout the same kind of logic when the Pistols signed for EMI and then A&M) it seemed like a good decision for the band themselves. Okay, for The Clash maybe it was not such a great deal when they read the small print but they made the best of it that they could despite the numerous hassles they endured from the label execs.

There seemed to be a feeling of unease among some at CBS that they were throwing a lot of money at a band who had barely done 30 live shows (few of them as headliner) and that they were quite unskilled musically and surely they couldn't be expected to churn out an album!

Within a month of signing the deal the band had already recorded the debut album and were soon to release their Debut Single White Riot in March.

White Riot

London's Burning

1977

I have sometimes wondered if The Clash would have made the same impact if they had actually signed to an Indie label or created one of their own. I think whilst they might have been well known in the UK I am not so sure their sphere of influence would have spread much further because some of the indie labels at the time would not have had the money or the distribution outlets to make it possible for the band to go to places as far flung as America and even Tokyo (Stiff Records sensing this, had already signed a distribution deal with Island Records).

It is worth pointing out as well that after the rumble of discontent from some quarters in the world of Punk that many bands would go and sign on the dotted line for Major labels:

The Stranglers had already signed to United Artists and were a few days away from releasing their Debut single. UA would also become home for Buzzcocks and 999. Slaughter and the Dogs and Cock Sparrer would sign deals with Decca Records. The Vibrators were added to the Epic roster. The Rezillos to Sire. Generation X to Chrysalis. The Jam and Sham 69 to Polydor. Penetration and XTC (along with the Pistols) signed to Virgin and on and on we could go.

At the same time as those bands were signing with majors there were still labels being created for one off singles and ones that had more of a life like Small Wonder, Beggars Banquet, Step Forward, Deptford Fun City, Zoom and Raw

So Punk didn't really die because The Clash signed with CBS and neither did the world end!


Monday, 23 January 2017

Overend Watts 13th May 1947 - 22nd January 2017 RIP

Last year on 17th January we were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Dale "Buffin" Griffin, drummer of Mott the Hoople and a first rate producer (especially his work on the Peel Sessions). He was 67 years old.

Last night I heard the news that another founding member of Mott The Hoople had passed away. Peter Overend Watts, bassist of the band died yesterday from throat cancer. He was 69 years old.

Besides music Overend was also known for writing and walking! His first book being about a journey along the South West Coast Path National Trail - all 650 miles of it (though 680 for Overend as he got lost a few times!).

Since backpacking the South West Coast Path, Overend has also completed all of the other national trails including The Ridgeway, Offa’s Dyke, The Pembrokeshire Coast Path, The Thames Path, The South Downs Way, Hadrian’s Wall (3 times), The Saint’s Way, The North Downs Way, Peddar’s Way & Norfolk Coast Path, The West Highland Way, The Great Glen Way & The Speyside Way, The York Wolds Way, The Tabular Hills Walk, The Cleveland Way, The Oxford canal, The Southern Upland Way, Glyndwr’s Way, & Wainwright’s Coast to Coast.

In 2008 he completed a marathon 1,250 mile walk from Land’s End to John O’Groats in 63 days - incorporating The Cotswold Way, The Heart Of England Way, Staffordshire Way, Limestone Way, Pennine Way, Cheviots, Grampians and Cairngorms.


Mambo Sons - Overend Watts




Overend was also a Producer and one of my favourite albums both he and Dale "Buffin" Griffin produced together



Side One

Side Two

And not to be forgotten of course is that Overend Watts produced what I think is one of the best live albums ever

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