50 years ago today. (Part 2)

Continuing the discussion from 50 years ago today. (Part 1) - #106.

Previous discussions:

1 Like

It works. :slight_smile:


Woohoo :slight_smile:


What a diverse collection of sound worlds! I thoroughly enjoyed a session of compare and contrast, with so many memories surfacing around the music. As you might expect I particularly liked the Genesis, if only because of all your featured tracks, Musical Box really exercised my analytical skills. That was a time of musical ferment, both in Prog and Jazz, I doubt we will see the like again - at my age I suppose that I certainly won’t!

So much music, so little time…


This is more my pace these days…



1 Like

Now I missed this album off November but there was a program about one of the main characters of the band, Alan Hull, on BBC4 the other week. I find it slightly worrying that I had completely forgotten about Lindisfarne which is odd considering how big a band they were in the heyday. November 1971 saw folk rock group Lindisfarne release Fog On The Tyne. This propelled them to major act and previous singles were re-released and re-charted. “Meet me on the corner” was hugely popular in early 1972 as well as “Fog on the Tyne”. As pointed out in the BBC4 program, the lyrics to it contain some wonderful word play. viz. “Sitting in a sleazy snack-bar sucking sickly sausage rolls”. I find it hard that it had slipped my mind till watching the program. Any not only was there a tape of Fragile By Yes that my sister listened to whilst doing homework, but also there were tapes of a Gentle Giant album which I didn’t like and Fog on The Tyne, the rockier upbeat songs appealed to me more than the ballads and I loved the Geordie accents. Listening again now there are some belting songs.


The December release of note is Hunky Dory by David Bowie. I’m not a Bowie fan. No not at all. Someone asked me to copy 5 Bowie albums to tape when I was a student. A 12in LP lasted about 40mins on average and that was the longest 3.5 hours in my life as I hated the songs. However, the earlier stuff such as Hunky Dory and Ziggy Stardust do feature some excellent music even though I don’t like Bowie. You have to acknowledge excellence when you hear it.

So here are some of my favourites from there (featuring Rick Wakeman on piano)


“Oh you pretty things”

“Life on Mars”

And so all good things come to end. I started this completely off topic thread Dec 4th 2020 as Wishbone Ash were playing on Spotify and I wondered when the album came out and it was 50 years to the day. As I looked at the albums released in 1971 I had to do a double take as there were so many landmark albums that came out the year. It seemed there was something very special about 1971 and I was old enough at the time to remember the year quite clearly. I’m still listening to many of these songs 50 years later and in many cases get transported back to my childhood every time I hear them.

Someone else can consider doing 1972… I had a rummage and there are some classics. But I still think there was something very special about what was happening in 1971. And you know what is scary, it seems like those 50 years have passed in the blink of an eye.

1 Like

The late 60’s and early 70’s were a time of musical ferment, not just in pop but in folk, jazz and (for want of a better word) art music. Academics can chew over the reason why, but those of us that lived it just got on with it! As I remember it, there was the feeling that we could take the tools of the various genres and do more with them, just like the idea of taking the tools of weaponry and going to the moon with them. A time of expansion in ideas which sadly ran out of steam though it never quite shut down.

As for “Fog on the Tyne”, I used to go to folk clubs nearly as often as jazz clubs (probably because my sister was in a locally popular folk band and ran a club that needed support!) and that dam’ song popped up every night, often seriously mangled by the “finger in the ear” brigade! :smiley: I was experimenting with a folk jazz fusion and inflicted it on the club occasionally, I often wondered what the folkies really thought of it. :wink:


I’ll forever be grateful to Ray Laidlaw the original drummer of Lindisfarne for giving me and a friend a lift. We were heading for a sailing from Newcastle to Bergen (Norway), having set out from Nottingham on a 250cc AJS, but the bike broke down just north of Doncaster. Several lifts got us within striking distance of the port, but we were running late. He picked us up and even though it was out of his way, he took us to the port, gettjng permission to drive right down to the dock where the ship was moored. What a guy! :grinning:


Today (and yesterday and tomorrow) are landmark days and worthy of reviving this thread.

Rock group Deep Purple played two concerts in Osaka on the 15th and 16th August and one in Tokyo on the 17th August 1972. All the concerts were recorded and the best tracks released as the double live album Made In Japan in December 1972. The album is as it happened with no overdubs correcting errors and improving things. A perfect snapshot of what the group sounded like live. It has the reputation for being the best live album ever.

Since it’s original release there have been CD releases, vinyl re-releases, anniversary mixes, un-released track specials totalling 6 different releases of the same recordings.

I’d been introduced to artists like Rory Gallagher and Lynyrd Skynyrd by a good friend’s older brother. This time I was introduced to Deep Purple (and Santana and many others) by some old boys in my school’s radio/electronics club. The teacher who ran it used to be bemused and perplexed that we would be listening to “long haired idiots” whilst effortlessly tuning in a RTTY signal and getting TANJUG or TASS to print out on a Teletype 15.

When I was a kid, my father’s cars only had radios, no tape players. I longed for the ability to listen to my kind of music such as this album when mobile. I made sure cassette tape was a feature of cars as soon as I bought my own car. Then CD players. But it was only around 2013 that I remember putting the Made in Japan CDs in my then car and listening to it when driving.

We do like it in the FMF household. I have a 1973 double vinyl copy, Mrs. FMF has a 1970s double vinyl copy. I have the original single CD issue and the 25th Anniversary double CD issue.

Tomorrow, the 17th is when Ian Gillan gave his memorable request halfway through side 2 at the start of “The Mule” when he said to the sound men “Can we have everything louder than everything else?”

Here you go, the whole shebang!

Can’t be 50 years ago can it?


50 years ago Don Mclean’s Mr American Pie ?? - reminds me of warm sunny days, cheep beer, wine & spirts and operating ship/shore radio at Gibraltar Royal Naval comms centre / GYU (But not at the same time).


Alice cooper was at number 1 in the uk charts with Schools Out.

Never one of my favourites but saw him live and he did a great show.

I only went to the gig since Ronnie James Dio was the support. One of the best (if not the best) rock vocalist of all time ( in no particular order Dio, Dickinson, Gillan)

Wee Ronnie did have a great voice. I have watching a live Alice concert on my bucket list. His syndicated rock show is most entertaining… “I’m not worthy!”

American Pie actually was a 1971 song David. I remember it clearly as a kid and I thought it was a tedious horn dirge. Well that’s harsh, it’s an all right song that was just played so much at the time and seemed to go on forever. Much like Bohemian Rhapsody another endless horror that’s much more annoying. American Pie was barely understandable by a 10 year old English kid. What the hell is a Chevvy or levee? Well of course maturity means I know that a Chevvy is where you find a 454 LS6 with 4 on the floor with 450hp (Chevelle SS 454) which would be nice to have, though they do like a good drink. And a levee is of course a dyke. Actually both American Pie and School’s Out only made #2 in the UK and I thought both were #1 songs. Vincent was Don MacLean’s song that got to #1


All in all it was a fabulous year, for jazz, too, with albums by Herbie Hancock, Ornette Coleman, Charles Mingus, Miles Davis, McCoy Tyner, Chick Corea…and the album that I most grudgingly liked, Santana “Caravanserai”. My favourite prog rock album came later in the year, I shall say more in October…

If you’d asked me to put money down I would have bet you a pint that was a 1973 album and it was Santana (Santana III) that was their 1972 album. And you’d have won… must buy you one next time to pay my virtual debt! I missed Santana III off my 1971 list. I knew nobody who had that album so never heard it till I saw it on offer on CD with a bonus live CD recorded at the Filmore West in 1971. Wow! I’d missed years of listening to tracks like No One To Depend On or Toussaint L’Overture. The live recording was sat on by Columbia for years and years because the audio is not perfect (noisy amps and crackly leads). Of course a recording when they were at their initial Latin/Blues/Rock 1st incarnation was what fans wanted to hear.

Having heard Caravanserai it’s significantly different than the first three albums.“Really the same group?” is what I asked when I first heard it.


A good album but half a minute of bugs chirruping and then a pedal note while the band waits for something to happen rather tried my patience!

I would be about 22 then. I can’t say I knew the meaning of many of the words in the song then either, or of the phrase, “Mr American Pie”. Perhaps it stayed in my mind because, as you say, it seemed to be played so much. It just reminds me of Gibraltar!!


Appearing at the Sage Newcastle 24th Sept. I am going.


Wakeman’s piano on “Life On Mars” is one of the most beautiful arrangements in Rock music.
Also the mellotron in ¨Space Oddity¨ is amazing.
Another interesting COLLABORATION of Wakeman is on the album ¨Sabbath Bloody Sabbath¨ by Black Sabbath, where he played keyboards on ¨Sabbra Cadabra¨

Rick Wakeman plays the notes your not expecting, you expect him to play lower and he plays higher. That’s one reason why the piano on “Life on Mars” is so haunting/lovely/moving. I don’t like the majority of Bowie’s songs. Life on Mars is one of the exceptions.


He’s not expecting to play that note either. Usually because he’s hit the wrong key. Used to be notoriously bad live back in the day but i have to admit hes a lot better now. Probably got a clearer head :grinning: