♫ Hello again and welcome to another ‘News, Views and Music’. We’ve spun the karmic wheel of life for another week and come up with a solo spin-off album from Lindisfarne, a documentary on The Hollies and gone all sophisticated for a look at art in the world of AAA. Our website counter suddenly leapt from 1180 to 1203 yesterday so thanks to all those who’ve been reading – we reached the last hundred views a lot more quickly than any of the previous 11 so it looks like success might be at hand at last! Either that or the stat counter is on the blink again anyway...
♫ Hollies News: I have to say I was quite impressed by the first of a two-part documentary on the third best-selling act of the 1960s. Despite the horrendous title, ‘They Aren’t Heavy They’re The Hollies’ managed to cover a lot of ground in its first 60 minutes without leaving much out – and without simply playing all the hit singles over and over again. Full marks for persuading drummer Bobby Elliott and bassist Bernie Calvert to speak about the band at length for the first time since the 70s – although it’s a shame the band glossed over Eric Haydock’s role in the band before they ousted him in 1965 (the only Hollies to have died so far, it’s a shame we never heard more of his side of the story – especially given that The Hollies were his band originally!) Even so there’s lots of interview gems we fans had not heard before, including more detail about working with the Everly Brothers for the ‘Two Yanks In England’ project (although the doc glossed over the fact that the Everly siblings came to England expecting The Beatles to drop everything and work for them and The Hollies were actually second choice!) and the early years of the band, with Graham Nash and Allan Clarke as a pair of 14-year olds singing in clubs under the name ‘Rick and Dane’. We also head a rare alternate take of classic B-side ‘So Lonely’ – and I don’t mean the demo on the box set but a fully unheard (to me anyway) version of the song! More of the same in part two please – which will be on Wednesday night June 2nd at 10pm.
♫ Oasis News: Hot on the heels of last week’s Oasis compilation comes news of a new Gallagher project – Liam is recording a new album with fellow Oasis members Gem Archer and Andy Bell under the name ‘Beady Eye’. As yet Liam hasn’t mentioned what his choice of material will be – presumably his own material after his strong run on the last three Oasis albums – or who the drummer is: will it be Ringo’s son Zak Starkey who left midway through sessions of the last Oasis LP ‘Dig Out Your Soul’ or someone else entirely? More news if and when
♫ Pink Floyd News: The band came close to a reunion after the three surviving members of the band – Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Nick Mason – were asked to perform ‘The Wall’ by the owner of the New York ‘Yankee Stadium’. However, guitarist Gilmour has declined, leaving bassist Waters to perform the show with his own touring band. A tour of the album (AAA classic no 76 remember) will follow in Europe in March next year and in North America in September, the first time any of the band will have played ‘The Wall’ in its entirety since Waters played at the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. In his launch for the tour Roger said that he was still up for reforming the band for another one-off gig like ‘Live 8’ a few years ago, but acknowledged that with keyboardist Rick Wright’s death in 2008 the Live 8 shows were a good way for the Floyd to bow out: ‘if that’s the way we draw a line under the band then so be it. I won’t be unhappy about that’.
Happy hopping birthdays to these old friends (June 7th-13th): Clarence White (guitarist with The Byrds 1969-72) who would have been 66 on June 7th and Billy Kreutzmann (drummer with The Grateful Dead 1965-95) who turns 64 on June 7th. Anniversaries of events include: The Rolling Stones release their debut single ‘C’mon’ and make their first British TV appearance on Thank Your Lucky Stars on the same day (June 7th 1963); John and Yoko appear on David Frost’s TV show (June 7th 1969); Brian Jones officially leaves The Rolling Stones less than a month before his death (June 8th 1969); Oz Magazine release their ‘school kids’ magazine and get charged under obscenity laws – John Lennon is among celebrities who help out with the fine (June 8th 1969); The Beatles’ legend reaches a new level when the band play their first post-Hamburg gig in Liverpool – just weeks before the band looked finished with three of the four members deported from Germany (and amazingly John Lennon is the one who stayed legal!; June 9th 1962); The Rolling Stones visit Chess Records where many of their favourite blues records were made – they add to the long list of hits with ‘It’s All Over Now’ (recorded June 10th 1964); The Beatles release a single and an LP with the same name – A Hard Day’s Night – and both make #1 (June 10th 1964); Janis Joplin plays her first gig with Big Brother and the Holding Company (June 10th 1966); The Rolling Stones, taking a break from recording ‘Beggars Banquet’ at London’s Olympic Studios, return to find the building on fire! (June 11th 1968); The Beatles receive their MBEs from the Queen at her ‘keen pad’ Buckingham Palace (June 12th 1965) and finally, Mick Taylor officially joins the Rolling Stones (June 13th 1969).