Saturday, July 4, 2015

In Memory 2010: Mike Edwards from ELO


Mike Edwards born in 1948, was one of the early members of the group ELO that's the Electric Light Orchestra was killed in a car accident this week at the age of 63. He was with this hits of the 70s  group from 1972 to 1975. Mike was a cellist with the band during their early time, and performed with the group in Reading. When he left the group in 1975 he became a Buddhist, and his death was caused by a hay bale falling as he was driving.

ELO in the top twenty in 1973

Saturday, June 27, 2015

In Memory 2010: Bobby Hebb

Not a name that means too much to most people about the hits of the 70s music, he was born in 1938 in Nashville, who later had the nickname given to him "Song A Day A Man". After the assassination of J F K and the murder of his dad he wrote the classic "Sunny", which has been recorded bu so many people, here is the classic 70s version as sung by Boney M. 


The song originated from 1966 when it appeared on a Beatles album.

Another 70s music hit penned by Bobby Hebb came for the singer Lou Rawls with "A Natural Man".


Died August 3rd 2010

Saturday, June 20, 2015

In Memory 2010: Teddy Pendergrass



We lost Teddy in 2010 at the age of 59 from respiratory failure and colon cancer, he was a big part of  70s, music ,especially with the group Harold Melvin and The Blue Notes, and as a solo singer too. He was a drummer before he joined The Blue Notes, and the story goes that one day he ran to the Mic and sang, and that was it, the hits rolled in after they signed to the Philadelphia label.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

70s Artist Watch:Tom Jones


The legend that is Tom Jones, the Welsh global superstar, started life as just plain old Thomas Woodward in 1940, his prime time for hits was the swinging 60s with hits like “What’s New Pussycat”,”Delilah” and “Its Not Unusual”, which you hear still in almost every karaoke bar in the world.

He met Elvis, he met Sinatra, he is a regular at Las Vegas, and even in the 80s he was having big hits, and even in 2010 he still makes albums and TV appearances..

But what about the 1970s?


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Seventies Music Charts: Top Ten Hits from March 1977

Here are the pop charts of the week ending 4th March 1977 (UK).

1.Chanson D'Amour by Manhattan Transfer

This was a number one in UK but did not chart in the US, the group came from New York, and were named  after a 1925 book called "Manhattan Transfer".

Chanson D'Amour was originally a hit in 1958 and 1966 by various artists, but this is the one version that made it a 70s number 1.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Remembering George David Weiss

George David Weiss has died in the US at the age of 89 in 2010.

His career was huge in the 60s, but some of the songs that he wrote spilled over and were released in the 70s, and as our tribute to the songwriter, here are some examples of the mans work, Enjoy these hits of the 70s.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Eurovision Song Contest 1978/79

Paris holds the competition this year, but it was Israel that took the crown this year with a really uptempo song called A-Ba-Ni-Bi, sung by Izhar Cohen and Alphabeta.

Politics being politics meant that many countries not sympathetic to Israel cut away from their performance, and some countries dropped the broadcast when it was clear Israel were going to win.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

70s Artist Watch: Paul McCartney



Paul McCartney and the Beatles split up in 1970, after making the world a richer place and making tunes that never die, but the legal ramifications took years before The Beatles were legally split in 1975.

The last Beatles album "Let It Be" in 1970, included the tracks "Get Back" and the "Long and Winding Road

All the Beatles had hits after the group was dissolved, but McCartney was the one that seemed to have no problem with the hits continuing. The Beatles still had Greatest Hits out through the 1970s, and it therefore, kept Paul further in the public view, and maybe everyone was still hoping that The Beatles would get together, but as we know it never happened.



Monday, May 11, 2015

70s Artist Watch: Cliff Richard


Cliff entered the 1970s music scene,with a huge back catalogue from his huge stardom in the 50s and 60s, and of course his ongoing association with the Shadows.
The Shadows also entered the 1970s music scene and charted in the 1970s with three hits including the Theme from the Deer Hunter.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

In The 1970s Hot Chocolate




UPDATE

Errol Brown died in May 2015 in Barbados at the age of only 71from liver cancer and was originally from Jamaica. He was also an MBE.

He may have taken the Seventies music world by storm, but Brown was an accidental musician and only got caught up in hitmaker Mickie Most’s pop production line through a friend, Hot Chocolate co-founder Tony Wilson.
“Tony had been a songwriter for 10 years, but I used to get these melodies coming into my head,” he says. “I never grew up wanting to be a pop star, I never grew up interested in performing music at all.”
A statement from Brown's manager .
"Errol Brown MBE passed away in The Bahamas this morning with his wife Ginette and daughters Colette and Leonie by his side of liver cancer," he said.
"Errol was a lover of life and obviously 'music!' I never went into his home, car or a hotel room without music playing.
"Errol was a 'Gentle Man' and was a personal friend of mine who will be sadly missed by everyone who knew him," Phil Dale continued.
"His greatest legacy is that his music will live on!"
Fellow artists including Chic's Nile Rodgers have paid tribute on Twitter.
Rodgers wrote: "We had some good times back in the day. #ErrolBrown RIP".
Singer Beverley Knight tweeted: "I am so gutted. Errol Brown was such a charismatic performer."


These boys were so successful it is easy, therefore to forget that they were a British group. Hot Chocolate  were once named Hot Chocolate Band but pop guru Mickie Most took the word "band" off. In 1970 the voice of Errol Brown began to be heard in the charts.

Errol Brown was born in Jamaica in 1948 and is now an MBE and an Ivor Novello winner too and who sang lead on the first top ten single Love Is Life .on the RAK label. In 1971 two more hits arrived, the first being You Could Have Been A Lady which just missed the top twenty, the second was I Believe (In Love) which made No. 8 in the UK BBC charts.

1972 the group went off the boil with no top twenty hits, but in 1973 they had a huge hit with Brother Louie which was bout racial love and even the word "spooks" is used in the lyrics. The song had a real American feel about it and some of the spoken words were narrated by Alexis Corner the white blues musician and Radio One presenter who died in 1984.

The song was a hit six months later in the U.S. by another group.



    


1974 and a change of direction with a beautiful ballad song called Emma which went to No.3 and went silver in the UK. The song tell the story of a girl from five to seventeen and her eventual suicide.



 



Now the year is 1975 and in the 70s disco music is making its way through the charts. So of course it would only be proper that the group have their disco hit with Disco Queen . The follow up was A Child's Prayer, which had no sign of disco whatsoever.

But it was 1976 when the group came up with that song. The song was like most other Hot Chocolate songs and was written by Errol Brown himself and was originally only a B side. The song of course was You Sexy Thing. Lead singer Errol Brown wrote this about his wife Ginette.



  

1976 and a No. 11 hit with Don't Stop It Now followed by Man To Man.

1977 the group had their first No. 1 with So You Win Again written by Russ Ballard of Argent fame and achieved  Silver in sales in the UK.
Just to admit one mistake
That can be hard to take
I know we've made them fall
But only fools come back for more

Being the fool I am
I figured in all your plans, darling
Your perfumed letters didn't say
That you'd be leaving any day

   

 This was followed by a great song to along the same lines as the previous single. Put Your Love In Me was a beautiful song for the group and went silver.

1978 and the group had their first gold single with a song that only got to No. 12 in the UK charts.The song was Every 1s A Winner and Errol Brown told the Mail On Sunday January 25, 2009 that the band's producer Mickie Most suggested the song's title. He added: "I was getting nowhere with it when I heard my eldest daughter crying in a particular rhythm and used that for the melody."

The last top twenty hit in the 1970s for the group came wit the next single which reached No. 13. The song was I'll Put You Together Again.




The group still continued to have big hits in the 1980s and in total scored 22 top twenty hits up to the year 2000.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

1970s Minor Hits: Part One

Here is an occasional series of old vinyl records that upon listening again I have never recalled hearing the records before. So here is today missing hits of the 70s, do you remember them?

Friday, May 1, 2015

70s Artist Watch: Rod Stewart



Seventies music artist Rod Stewart entered the 1970s from The Jeff Beck group, the group also featured greats like Ronnie Wood and Jeff Beck himself , with the vocals provided by Rod Stewart, who was in-fact born as Roderick, but it was back in the 1960s that Stewart was first busking in London, singing Sam Cooke numbers, which was a long way from his mega success that would come in the 1970s, in-fact he was also no stranger to TV in the 1960s when he was in the documentary "An Easter with Rod" for Rediffusion TV London.

The Small Faces added Stewart to their line up in 1969, and changed their name to The Faces., and released their first album in 1970 called “First Step”, Stewart’s own album “Gasoline Alley” was also released, and as Python Lee Jackson(originally an Australian group) he released a single called "In a Broken Dream", made in 1969, and was partly produced by Radio 1 DJ John Peel, who died in 2004, and re-released in 1972, and again a hit in 1977, however Rod is alleged to have got no payment for that hit, even though it was a world wide hit. The song rarely appears against Rod’s catalogue, but there is no doubt that its a Rod Stewart classic.

Friday, April 24, 2015

70s Artist Watch: Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel


Steve's first hit was "Sebastian " in 1973,but the bigger hit "Judy Teen" was to come in 1974.
Judy Teen lyrics
Steve Harley: "When the first album came out, the record company said, 'We don't have a single.' And I said very arrogantly, 'I'll write one, I know how to do it.' That's exactly what I said and exactly what I did. Now I think - what an arrogant young man, fearless! Judy Teen was a boy/girl story, a teenage romance, a bit of sex in there, interesting drum rhythm, hooks all over the place - lo and behold big hit!



Friday, April 17, 2015

70s Artist Watch:David Soul






David Soul, born as David Richard Solberg in 1943, from the hugely successful 70’s TV series Starsky and Hutch, the detective show featuring David and Paul Michael Glazer. The series put these guys into the heart throb worldwide mode, so it was inevitable that David, who had a small career before in singing, would put a record out. What none of us new was how good he was, and he certainly was in the best of the 70s.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

70s Artist Watch; Gary Numan




Gary Webb born in 1958, he became Gary Numan just from picking his name from the phone book and made his impact late in the 1970s with "Are Friends Electric?", which he performed with his group Tubeway Army. The song was classified New Wave and it was something new for sure. I do not recall anything like it before and not much after either and that sound of synthesizers will always be associated with Gary Numan and New Wave and the best of the 70s.



Friday, March 27, 2015

70s Artist Watch: Alice Cooper





Long before we entered the sensational 1970s, Vincent Furnier joined a group called Earwigs, a Beatles type group, and after a few name changes to the group, Vincent was inspired to call the group a name ”Alice Cooper”, who was Alice a person or a band?. The demon style dress was inspired by witches, Barbarella the film with Jane Fonda, also a bit of Emma Peel from the cult British TV programme "The Avengers" which was a huge hit in the US, and was part of that decades "British Invasion”, following on the tail end of the 1960s Beatles, Rolling stones and others.



Saturday, March 21, 2015

In The 1970s Free


Free formed in 1968 in the UK when they were all in their teenage years. Paul Rodgers was also in Bad Company in the 1970s and was the vocalist on Free's iconic singe All Right Now. Paul Kossoff another band member was the son of actor David Kossoff. Tragically  Paul died in 1976 following a drug overdose in the states.

UPDATE
Andy Fraser died in March 2015 from a heart attack.
 In October 2006 a BMI London Million-Air Award was given to Rodgers and Fraser to mark over 3 million radio and television plays of "All Right Now".] Simon Kirke later recalled: “All Right Now was created after a bad gig in Durham. We finished our show and walked off the stage to the sound of our own footsteps. The applause had died before I had even left the drum riser. It was obvious that we needed a rocker to close our shows. All of a sudden the inspiration struck Fraser and he started bopping around singing All Right Now. He sat down and wrote it right there in the dressing room. It couldn’t have taken more than ten minutes.

Band member Andy Fraser produced and co-wrote All Right Now for the band. Drummer Simon Kirke also went on to join Bad Company in the 1970s. It was in 1970 that the group had their biggest hit with All Right Now. This song really took off after Free's performance at the Isle of Wight Festival on August 31,1970 at the East Aftom Farm, Aftom Down, where over 600,000 people attended the festival. Los Angeles disc jockey Joe Benson told Paul Rodgers during an on air interview that "All Right Now" is playing over the airwaves somewhere around the world once every 45 seconds.

The second hit came in 1971 with My Brother Jake, which was the same year the group split up. 1972 Free still had a hit in the charts with A Little Bit Of Love from the album Free At Last recorded in 1970.

In 1973 All Right Now charted in the Top Twenty again along with a new single called Wishing Well from the album Heartbreaker.

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Friday, March 20, 2015

70s Music Artist Watch: Judy Collins







This lady is pure music, she has been involved in so many types of music in her career, that its hard to put a label on her, so I wont. Suffice to say she seems at home in pop,classical music,folk and seems to have been influenced by everyone who is everyone during the 1960s, including Pete Seeger, Dylan,Joni Mitchell and on and on it goes.

After some albums in the 1960s, she moved effortlessly into the hits of 70s and appeared on the Muppet show too, singing "I know An Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly", along too with appearances on the children's TV programme "Sesame Street".



The Muppet Show appearance.


A former big smoker and a sufferer of Bulimea, and two marriages, Judy was and is a lady that really gets into life, especially during the 60s when she was an activist in many organisations.

Her album in 1971 was "Living" which had a song by Stacy Keach an actor who appeared in many films including "Jesus of Nazareth". Judy was having an affair with him at the time of making the album.

Another album in 1972 that included "Both Sides Now" and "Amazing Grace" which also appeared as her first hit single in the 1970 , and also from the album 1970 " Whales and Nightingales" with contributions from writers like Joan Baez and Pete Seeger and the one and only Bob Dylan.

Other hits in 1971 "Open the Door" and "Cook with Honey" in 1973, written by Valerie Carter and came from here album "True Stories and Other Dreams", another hit of the 70s.

But the biggest hit around the world in 1975 and in some regions 1977 was the "Send in the Clowns" from the album "Judith"The song from the 1973 musical "A Little Night Music" and was written by the great Stephen Sondheim and was also recorded by the man himself Frank Sinatra. Her version of the song was Song of the Year at the Grammy awards.

Incidentally the record of the year at that Grammy awards was "Love Will Keep Us Together" by Captain and Tenille. See video.

"Send in the Clowns", according to Sondheim, was really just about fools, and not directly related to Clowns, however when it appeared on the BBC Top of The Pops, the producers must have misread the title, as it was introduced with smoke, pretending to be "Clouds", so some people believed it was called "Send in the Clouds".

In fact one drunken night in the late 70s I remember phoning up a radio station with my friend Debbie, to ask the DJ what the title was. We did not get to air, but he did confirm on air it was "Clowns".

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Part of the lyrics
Isn't it rich?
Are we a pair?
Me here at last on the ground,
You in mid-air.
Send in the clowns.
Isn't it bliss?
Don't you approve?
One who keeps tearing around,
One who can't move.
Where are the clowns?
Send in the clowns.
Just when I'd stopped opening doors,
Finally knowing the one that I wanted was yours,
Making my entrance again with my usual flair,
Sure of my lines,
No one is there.

1977 Judy released her album "So Early in the Spring" which included many of songs penned by herself, with help again from some famous friends like Tom Paxton and Leonard Cohen.

Judy Collins talks to Larry King on CNN

Top Twenty featuring Judy Collins from 1970



                Judy Collins 



Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Seventies Music Charts: Top Ten Hits from Jan 1975


Here are the pop charts of the week ending 4th January 1975
1 Lonely This Christmas by Mud

Article about Mud

The 1970s culture of glam rock, had one of its biggest groups in the band MUD, who had a huge hit with this song, it has entered the British charts numerous times and is played as a Christmas classic.

Written and produced by Chapman and Chinn, it certainly has the Elvis style of singing from the lead singer Les Gray (died in in 2004 at the age of 57) and drummer Dave Mount killed himself in 2006.



Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Seventies Music: Football-Related Songs


1970


Back Home by the England football team
On the 16th May 1970 the "football song" was born with this sing along record from the England football team. I remember as a boy scout in Wales singing this with all my heart. Needless to say my singing did not help, as England in no way repeated the 1966 win.
But football music, amazingly had a hold on the British charts through the music of 1970s.




Saturday, February 7, 2015

Thursday, January 29, 2015

70s Music Artist watch: Queen

Back in 1971 a group was formed, the group was called "Queen", who would have thought they would have  now survived the 70s, 80s, and 90s, and were the kings of global stadium rock band? Their 70s music  hits laid the paving stones for the group, and Brian May C.B.E.( who is now married to ex British soap star Anita Dobson), and Roger Taylor already had a group called "Smile".

With Farrokh Bulsara a songwriter, they joined a group called "Queen", along with a few others, who came and went, they settled with John Deacon the guitarist, and the 70s music magic was born. Who was Farrokh?, well he became Freddie Mercury the writer and lead singer of the group.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

1970s Music Part One




Test your memory in this 70s music compilation, and just see how many you can remember. 
 
Take a look at the Top Twenty January 1979



Monday, January 26, 2015

In Memory Demis Roussos


Demis Roussos died in January 2015 in Athens, Greece. Demis was born in 1946 in Egypt and has sold over 60 million records as solo and in groups. In the lates 1960s he joined the group Aphrodite's Child which was formed by Vangelis.

They had a few small singles
1970"It's Five O'Clock"


1970"Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall"


1971"Such a Funny Night"


1972"Break"


Roussos started a solo career in the early 1970s and had several Top Twenty UK singles.



In 1975 he had a hit called Happy To Be An Island In The Sun, followed in 1976 by the groundbreaking Forever And Forever, which actually was an EP with two other songs.

Forever and Ever got to No. 1 and the next single even reached No. 2 with When Forever Has Gone, this made Demis a household name, especially with his great Greek clothing being seen on TV.

Demis interviewed in 1973

Thursday, January 22, 2015

1970s Music: James Bond themes




The first James Bond movie theme in the 1970s started with the original Sean Connery, who in 1971 hit the cinema with "Diamonds Are Forever" sang so dramatically by Shirley Bassey, the welsh songstress who would later become Dame Shirley Bassey. This was Shirley’s 2nd hit f  from a James Bond theme, the first being in 1964 with "Goldfinger". The man behind the song was John Barry who died in 2011 at the age 0f 77, he who was the composer of the actual Bond theme, we all sang that in the school playground, and along with Don Black this must be one of the most powerful Bond themes.


Shirley was to have over 20 single hits in the 1970s, with another james bond movie theme too, "Moonraker".
See the Diamonds are Forever video here

Part of the lyrics

Diamonds are forever,
They are all I need to please me,
They can stimulate and tease me,
They won't leave in the night,
I've no fear that they might desert me.
Diamonds are forever,
Hold one up and then caress it,
Touch it, stroke it and undress it,
I can see every part,
Nothing hides in the heart to hurt me.
I don't need love,

For what good will love do me?
Diamonds never lie to me,
For when love's gone,
They'll lustre on.


70s awards

1972 – Best Female Singer – TV Times
1973 – Best Female Singer – TV Times
1974 – Best Female Entertainer – American Guild of Variety Artists
1976 – Best Female Singer – Music Week
1976 – 22-day British tour to mark twenty years as a recording artist
1976 – EMI Award for twenty years as a recording artist – UK
1977 – Best British Female Solo Artist in the previous 25 years – BRIT Award
1977 – Golden Rose of Montreaux nomination for The Shirley Bassey Show

New Bond in 1973, a Mr Roger Moore, formally "The Saint" from the 1960s TV series. The new film was "Live and Let Die", the soundtrack this time was performed by Paul McCartney and Wings. The song was even Oscar nominated, and it was a mini reunion in the fact that Beatles producer George Martin worked on the single with Paul. This version was not the original to be used, but thanks to Paul’s insistence that only he would do it, it became a Bond anthem, and later covered by 80s group Guns and Roses.


Part of the lyrics
When you were young and your heart was an open book,
You used to say live and let live.
(You know you did, you know you did, you know you did)
But if this ever-changing world in which we live in
Makes you give in and cry,
Say live and let die!
Live and let die,
Live and let die,
Live and let die.

In 1974 John Barry took back the control of the theme, and "The Man With the Golden Gun", this time 60s female singer Lulu, her with the big voice of "Shout" and long term friends to the Beatles. Not much to say about this record, but its still a great pop record.
Alice Cooper had a song of the same name that was to be used, but it was dropped in favour of the Lulu version. 

It was three years later that in 1977, the next Bond film hit the cinemas, this time "The Spy Who Loved Me", was the title, but John Barry brought in Carol Bayer Sager , who had her only 70s hit with "Moving Out Today", she supplied the lyrics to the theme, called "Nobody Does It Better", sang by Carley Simon, her of "You’re So vain " fame. Complicated? Well add this fact too, Marvin Hamlisch had the music score, he of other 1970s hits like "The Sting" and "The Way We Were".


Some of the lyrics
Makes me feel sad for the rest.
Nobody does it half as good as you.
Baby, you're the best.
I wasn't lookin' but somehow you found me.
I tried to hide from your love light,
But like heaven above me the spy who loved me
Is keepin' all my secrets safe tonight.
And nobody does it better
Though sometimes I wish someone could.
Nobody does it quite the way you do.
Did you have to be so good?
The way that you hold me whenever you hold me.
There's some kind of magic inside you
That keeps me from runnin' but just keep it comin'
How'd you learn to do the things you do?


Still with Roger Moore in 1979, and the last film of the 1970s was "Moonraker", again it was sang by Shirley Bassey, after Johnny Mathis turned it down. He went on to have many hits in the 1970s including "Too Much, Too Little, Too Late"."Moonraker" It was not a big hit, and is not that well remembered either.
Bond is still going and the james bond movie hits still flow.