Cars – Gary Numan – 1979

May 16, 2018

Cars GAry Numan 1979Considered an epitome of the 70’s – 80’s new wave genre – Gary Numan’s 1979 #1 hit, Cars.

gary numan fax

  • Born in West London, England, Gary Anthony James Webb was 15 years old when his father bought him a Gibson Les Paul – which he still regards as his most treasured possession.
  • Gary played in various bands, before forming Tubeway Army with his uncle.
  • Gary’s first pseudonym was Valerian – it’s assumed it was a reference to the hero in French science fiction comic series Valérian and Laureline. His choice of adoptive surname is a little less artistic; he choose the surname Numan after seeing a Yellow Pages ad for a plumber whose surname was Neumann.
  • Tubeway Army produced a couple of albums and three or four singles; none of which charted until the single Are ‘Friends’ Electric? Released in May 1979, it took seven weeks to reach #1 on the UK charts.
  • It was only a few months later that Gary released Cars, using his name rather than the band’s.
  • Cars was from the album, The Pleasure Principle, which reached #1 in the UK. A feature of the album was that no guitars were used – instead synthesisers fed through guitar effects pedals to achieve a similar tone.
  • Gary has released 24 albums, the last released in 2017 – Savage (Songs from a Broken World). It peaked at #2 in the UK.
  • Gary is still involved in making music and now lives in California.

cars fax

  • Cars was written by Gary Numan – his debut single as a solo album.
  • Cars was the first single from Gary’s debut solo album, The Pleasure Principle.
  • Released on 21 August 1979, Cars hit the #1 spot in the UK and peaked at #9 on the US singles charts (his only song to make the US top 100, though he had other hits in the UK).
  • In 1999, US heavy metal band, Fear Factory, began to perform Cars as an encore at their concerts. Gary eventually provided the vocals for Fear Factory’s recorded version of the song.  This version peaked at #57 on the UK charts and #16 on the US Rock chart.
  • Other artists to cover the song include: Frank Zappa, using his own lyrics (1980), Nine Inch Nails (2009), and Daft Punk (2011).
  • Cars lyrics.

cars – gary numan – 1979 – video

Sometimes the YouTube links dropout – if this link doesn’t work, please go to YouTube and search for the song – it will be worth it!

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Spill the Wine – Eric Burdon and War – 1970

February 5, 2018

Spill the wineWhile taking a break in San Fran, back in 1969, Eric Burdon of The Animals fame, joined up with the Californian band, War – Spill the Wine was one of a couple of resulting hits.

eric burdon and war fax

  • Eric Burdon was born in the UK and is best known for being the lead vocalist of The Animals with whom he had hits like, The House of the Rising Sun, Boom Boom, Don’t Let me be Misunderstood, We Gotta Get Out of this Place, It’s My Life, and San Franciscan Nights.
  • In 1969, while living in San Francisco, Eric joined Californian band War.
  • A few months later, in April 1970, the album Eric Burdon Declares War was released. It produced two singles, Spill the Wine and Tobacco Road.
  • Later in 1970, a double album, The Black-Man’s Burdon, was released, with the singles, Paint It Black (first recorded by the Rolling Stones) and They Can’t Take Away Our Music.
  • While touring to promote the album, Eric collapsed on the stage due to an asthma attack. War continued touring without him and he commenced his solo career.
  • War’s genesis was in Long Beach, California back in 1962, in a band named The Creators. They then became Nightshift, before morphing into War.
  • War had a number of hit records including, Spill the Wine, The Cisco Kid, Why Can’t We Be Friends?, and Low Rider.
  • Both The Animals and War continue to perform today, though with radically different line-ups than back in the 60’s and 70’s.

spill the wine fax

  • Spill the Wine was written by members of the US band, War – apparently inspired by an accident in which keyboardist Lonnie Jordan spilled wine on a mixing board.
  • It appeared on the album Eric Burdon Declares War and was released as a single in May 1970.
  • The original recording features a flute solo with a woman speaking Spanish in the background. This was omitted from the final radio version.
  • Spill the Wine was War’s first hit, peaking at #3 in the US. It didn’t make the UK charts.
  • Spill the Wine has featured in the movies, Boogie Nights (1997), Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo (1999), and Remember the Titans (2000); and the television shows, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Dexter and Shameless.
  • The song has been covered by The Isley Brothers and Michael Hutchence; and was used by Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street band when they opened their 2014 concert in the Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia.
  • Spill the Wine lyrics.

spill the wine – eric burdon and war – 1970 – video

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Merry Xmas (War is Over) – John Lennon and Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band – 1972

December 16, 2017

Merry Xmas War is overWar is over… if you want it!

Merry Christmas Seventies Music Fans

A year which we began with Al Stewart’s, Year of the Cat, ends with John and Yoko, on the day Paul Macca is playing in my lovely city.

A year where seventiesmusic said farewell and paid tribute to Glen Campbell, Walter Becker, Tom Petty, Malcolm Young and David Cassidy.

A year where seventiesmusic passed the half a million visitors mark – we’re now at 547,167 visitors.

A year when the three most visited pages were – wait for it (drum roll)…

  1. Fooled Around and Fell in Love – Elvin Bishop
  2. Groovin’ with Mr Bloe – Mr Bloe
  3. Margaritaville – Jimmy Buffet

A year where the three most searched artists bringinpeople to these pages were:

  1. Joan Baez
  2. Hot Chocolate
  3. The Rubettes

A year where visitors came from – the top ten countries in order:

  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Germany
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • France
  • New Zealand
  • Netherlands
  • Spain
  • Italy

merry xmas (war is over) – john lennon and yoko ono/plastic ono band – 1972 – video


Woodstock – Matthews Southern Comfort -1970

October 8, 2017

matthews-southern-comfort-woodstock-1970A great song recorded by a number of 70s artists – this the ’70 version of Woodstock by English band, Matthews Southern Comfort.

matthews southern comfort fax

  • Iain Matthews was a singer with Fairport Convention before forming his own band, Matthews Southern Comfort.
  • Influenced by both rock and roll and folk music, Iain Matthews performed mainly as a solo act, although he was a member of Fairport Convention during the early period when they were heavily influenced by American folk rock.
  • Iain led the bands Plainsong, Hi-Fi, No Grey Faith, More Than a Song, and Matthews Southern Comfort.
  • The latter were one-hit-wonders with the 1970 hit, Woodstock.

woodstock fax

  • Woodstock was written by Joni Mitchell and included on her 1970 album Ladies of the Canyon.
  • Woodstock has been covered by both Matthews Southern Comfort and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.
  • The song was first released by Joni as a B-side to her hit, Big Yellow Taxi. Joni said she wrote the song from what she had heard from then-boyfriend, Graham Nash, about the Woodstock Music and Art Festival. She had not been there herself, since she was told by a manager that it would be more advantageous for her to appear on The Dick Cavett Show.
  • A month before Joni’s folky version, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young released a rocker version as the lead single from their 1970 Déjà Vu album.
  • About three months after the two US releases of Woodstock, the song became an international hit thanks to Matthews Southern Comfort who performed to song on the Live in Concert programme broadcast live by BBC Radio 1 on June 28, 1970. Iain Matthews tells the story of how his band required an additional song for their set on the scheduled radio session.  Woodstock was his suggestion – Iain had purchased Ladies of the Canyon album earlier that week.
  • Matthews Southern Comfort’s version was received so well that the BBC contacted Matthews’ label Uni Records. The label suggested they add the song to the newly recorded Matthews Southern Comfort album, Later That Same Year.  Iain declined to mess with the completed album, but agreed to have them release the song as a single.
  • The Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young version of Woodstock peaked at #11 on the US charts. The Matthews Southern Comfort version peaked at #23 in the US but spent three weeks at #1 in the UK.
  • Woodstock lyrics.

woodstock – matthews southern comfort – 1970 – video

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Couldn’t Get It Right – Climax Blues Band – 1976

September 28, 2017

Couldn't Get it Right - Climax Blues Band - 1976From a band celebrating its 50th year in the business; Couldn’t Get It Right, Climax Blues Band’s 1976 hit.

climax blues band fax

The Climax Blues Band (originally known as the Climax Chicago Blues Band) have nothing to do with Chicago! They are a British blues rock band formed in Stafford, England, in 1967 and still active today – thought with none of the original line-up.

The original line-up was: vocals and harmonica Colin Cooper (1939–2008), guitar and vocals Pete Haycock (1951–2013), guitar Derek Holt (b. 1949), bass and keyboards Richard Jones (b. 1949), drummer George Newsome (b. 1947), and keyboardist Arthur Wood (1929–2005).

The band became the Climax Blues Band in 1972, apparently after some pressure from the American band Chicago.

Climax Blues Band released at least 17 albums but only two singles making it into the top 20 in either the US or UK.

couldn’t get it right fax

  • When the Climax Blues Band were told by their record label that their 1976 album Gold Plated lacked a standout track, the boys wrote, Couldn’t Get It Right.
  • Released in the UK in October 1976 and the US in February 1977, the song became the band’s greatest hit; peaking at #10 in the UK and #3 in the US.
  • In an obituary for band member Pete Haycock, the Independent wrote of the song:

[Couldn’t Get It Right] transcended the clichés of the road-song genre and incorporated several of their trademarks, including the vocal harmonies of Haycock and Holt behind Cooper’s lead, and Haycock’s guitar being played in unison with Cooper’s saxophone, to create a concise gem of a single equal to the best work of the Doobie Brothers or Ace.

  • Bands to record cover versions of Couldn’t Get It Right include, Fun Lovin’ Criminals on their 1999 album, Mimosa; and Stockholm Syndrome on their 2004 album, Holy Happy Hour.
  • Couldn’t Get It Right lyrics.

couldn’t get it right – climax blues band – 1976 – video

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Stay With Me – Faces – 1971

September 21, 2017

Stay with Me - Faces - 1971A supergroup made up of super-musicians at the beginning of lifelong stardom – The Faces and their 1971 hit, Stay with Me.

faces fax

  • In 1969, when Small Faces lead singer/guitarist Steve Marriott left to form Humble Pie, the remaining band members – Ian McLagan (keyboards), Ronnie Lane (bass guitar), and Kenney Jones (drums and percussion) – added Ronnie Wood (guitar) and Rod Stewart (lead vocals) to their ranks and renamed themselves Faces. Ronnie and Rod had come from Jeff Beck Group.
  • The new name wasn’t universally accepted; hoping to capitalise on the Small Faces’ earlier success, their record company urged the band to keep their old name. The band declined.  They argued that the personnel changes meant they were now a group very different from the Small Faces.  As a compromise, the band’s debut US album was credited to the Small Faces, while subsequent albums appeared under their new name – Faces.
  • In its first phase, the band was together from 1969 – 1975. They recorded four albums, the latter two being the most popular; A Nod is as Good as a Wink… to a Blind Horse (#2 in the UK and #6 in the US), and Ooh La La (#1 in the UK and #21 in the US).  They released 11 singles with varying success.  The most popular being, Stay with Me.
  • Faces have had more than one reunion, the latest being in the middle of the 2010s, with Mick Hucknall filling in on lead vocals in Rod’s absence.
  • Post-Faces, the band members have had varied successes: we know what’s happened to Rod; Ronnie Wood too – he joined the Rolling Stones; Ronnie Lane had a modest solo career that ended prematurely when he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (he died in 1997); Kenney Jones joined The Who after the death of Keith Moon.

stay with me fax

  • Stay with Me was written by Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood and was recorded by their band Faces for the 1971 album A Nod Is As Good As a Wink… to a Blind Horse.
  • Stay with Me has also appeared on various Faces compilation albums and on albums by both songwriters.
  • Stay with Me peaked at #6 on the UK singles chart and #10 on the US singles chart.
  • Stay with Me lyrics.

stay with me – faces – 1971 video

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Blinded by the Light – Manfred Mann’s Earth Band – 1976

May 18, 2017

manfred-manns-earth-band-blinded-by-the-light-cover 1976From a track on Bruce Springsteen’s 1973 debut album, to a 1976 #1 hit for English Band, Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, Blinded by the Light must be one of the great tracks of the 70s.

manfred mann’s earth band fax

  • Manfred Mann is 76 years old now – born in South Africa, he began working as a jazz pianist and recording music when he was just 19 years old. His first band was The Vikings, rumoured to be South Africa’s first rock ‘n’ roll band.
  • Unable to stomach the apartheid of his homeland, Manfred moved to the UK in 1961, where he joined forces with keyboard player Mike Hugg to form a large blues-jazz band called, The Mann-Hugg Blues Brothers. They signed to EMI who suggested a name change to Manfred Mann.  From 1964 – 1969, the band had a number of hits including: Do Wah Diddy Diddy, Pretty Flamingo and Mighty Quinn.
  • Manfred Mann split in 1969 and Mike and Manfred formed a new band; Manfred Mann Chapter Three. Two albums later they split also.
  • In 1971, Manfred had another go, forming Manfred Mann’s Earth Band which still records and performs to this day.

blinded by the light fax

  • Blinded by the Light is a song written and recorded by Bruce Springsteen. It first appeared on his 1973 debut album Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.
  • Bruce wrote Blinded by the Light because his record company president, Clive Davis, felt the album lacked a potential single. Blinded by the Light and Spirit in the Night were written in response.
  • Blinded by the Light was Bruce’s first single – it did not appear on the charts anywhere!
  • Manfred Mann’s Earth Band covered the song in 1976. It hit #1 in the US and #6 in the UK.
  • Manfred Mann’s Earth Band’s version of Blinded by the Light changes the lyrics. The most prominent change is in the chorus, where Bruce’s “cut loose like a deuce” is replaced with “revved up like a deuce.”
  • Blinded by the Light is used in the movies, Blow and Running with Scissors.
  • Blinded by the Light lyrics.

blinded by the light – manfred mann’s earth band – 1976 – video

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