Archive for rock

Book review – Let The Good Times Roll: My Life in Small Faces, Faces and The Who by Kenney Jones

Posted in Authors, Books, Pop rock, rock with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 25, 2018 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

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Blink Publishing [Publication date 31.05.18]

Drummer Kenney Jones has penned an entertaining memoir, that covers his time in the Small Faces right up to the present with the Jones Gang, a collection of seasoned musicians who do the occasional gig, often for charity. He has a light touch, only really getting serious when discussing his two brushes with cancer and how important it is for men to get checked for possible prostrate cancer.

As the sole surviving member of the Small Faces he continues his lifelong quest to get the rights back to their songs, as like many bands back in the day they made great music but were very naive on the business side of things and often got royally screwed by managers and record labels.

The Small Faces parts of the book will be of interest to their fans, although the Faces period is run through quite quickly. The chapter where he deals with the passing of his band mates is sobering, especially as he remained very close to Ronnie Lane after the Small Faces/Faces disbanded. Keeping it in the musical family Kenney Jones has taken Steve Marriott’s daughter Mollie under his wing and she is now making a name for herself in the musical world.

Of his days in the Who he mentions the ongoing issues with Roger Daltrey, which eventually led to him leaving the band. The main problem seemed to be he was replacing the irreplaceable in Keith Moon.

Also a brief mention about the Law, the one-off album he recorded with Paul Rodgers (an album well worth tracking down).

Outside of music his passion for horses and polo gets a mention. He runs his own polo club in Surrey, which has been used by Prince Charles in the past, although in-keeping with his east End of London upbringing the polo club is all inclusive and encourages people of all ages and walks of life to give it a go.

An enjoyable read as Kenney Jones gives an insight into the world of rock ‘n’ roll from the view of the drum stool. It doesn’t dish the dirt, but then he has no real axe to grind bar getting the rights back to the Small Faces music.

 

 

WIN JOAN BAEZ & MICHAEL SCHENKER CD’s

Posted in Classic rock, Competitions, Folk, News, rock with tags , , , , , , on March 11, 2018 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

Your chance to win a copy of the new CDs from Joan Baez and Michael Schenker – part of a series of competitions over the coming year to celebrate this blog’s tenth birthday.

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For a chance to win a copy of Joan Baez’s new album ‘Whistle Down The Wind’ simply answer the following question –

What year did she release her debut album?

a) 1960

b) 1961

c) 1962

Email your answer to papa_bear70@hotmail.com and the winner will be chosen at random. Entries welcome worldwide and the closing date is April 8th. Good luck!

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For a chance to win a copy of Michael Schenker’s new bets of double album ‘A Decade of the Mad Axeman’ simply answer the following question –

Who HAS NOT sung on a Michael Schenker album?

a) Doogie White

b) Gary Barden

c) Steve Overland

Email your answer to papa_bear70@hotmail.com and the winner will be chosen at random. Entries welcome worldwide and the closing date is April 8th. Good luck!

‘So Here It Is’ by Dave Hill

Posted in Authors, Books, Classic albums, Classic rock, rock n roll with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 18, 2017 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

 

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Unbound Books [Published date 16.11.17]

Noddy Holder has written a couple of books and drummer Don Powell has published his memoir, now it is the turn of guitarist Dave Hill.

Dave Hill was born in a castle in Devon, the son of a mechanic, and moved back with his parents to Wolverhampton when he was a year old. Much of the book involves his family and the facts he uncovered including that his parents weren’t married for their early years and how his mum’s depression impacted on the family. He touches upon this throughout the book, including how he didn’t cry when his mum died, and is very open and honest about how his mum affected and shaped his life. His wife Jan, who he married in 1973, remained his rock throughout the trails of life, be it with Slade or more personal aspects of his life.

Slade fans will be interested to read about the band’s origins as Dave Hill originally played with drummer Don Powell in a band called The Vendors, which became the The N’ Betweens. When Jim Lea and singer Noddy Holder later joined, the band renamed itself Slade, after an album came out under the Ambrose Slade name. In the 1970s, Slade were the biggest band in the UK, racking up 23 Top 20 hits, including six number one singles. That is some achievement and of course their Christmas single ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’, still makes the singles charts every Christmas season.

There isn’t much in the way of rock ‘n’ roll tales about other band members as they didn’t seem to socialise much on the road. The Reading comeback is covered, along with their failed attempt to break the US market – something that nearly broke the band. The mid-80’s to early 90’s period doesn’t get covered much, mainly as the band had stopped touring and when Noddy Holder left the band in 1992, Jim Lea also retired from the band. Hill and Powell formed Slade II in 1992, which again isn’t touched upon much in the book, and that band’s current line-up has bene together and touring since 2005. Slade II have released one studio album to date (much of the album was written by Hill and former Wizzard member Bill Hunt).

Recommended read for the band’s many fans as you get to see behind the showmanship, and at times outrageous costumes, of Dave Hill. Frank and honest about his own personal life, plus he still keeps the band’s music alive by still touring today as Slade II with fellow founder member Don Powell.

Albums of the Year 2017

Posted in Albums of the Year, AOR, Folk, Folk rock, hard rock, indie, Melodic rock, metal, pop, Pop rock, Power metal, Power pop, Prog metal, Progressive rock, rock n roll with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 5, 2017 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

1  CATS IN SPACE Scarecrow
Their debut was pretty damn fine, so high expectations and they delivered! A marvellous mix of 70s’ rock, pomp, pop and more melodies than you can shake a stick at.

2  THRESHOLD Legends of the Shires
Returning vocalist Glynn Morgan helps the band to make one of the finest albums to date. A real return to form.

3  LONELY ROBOT The Big Dream
Part two of the trilogy and another fine set of musical adventures. No name guests this time as John Mitchell does it all bar the drums and some backing vocals.

4  BOULEVARD IV
Finally we get a new album from Boulevard. Fantastic tunes and production, deserves a place in every melodic rock/AOR fans collection.

5  THE YOUNG ‘UNS Strangers
Folk acapella from this talented three piece. Each song is based on a true story and the songs are all positive and uplifting.

STEVE WALSH Black Butterfly former Kansas vocalist returns with an album chock full of melodic rock treats.

7 SONS OF APOLLO supergroup featuring Jeff Scott Soto, Mike Portnoy, Derek Sherinan and Billy Sheenhan. Fantastic joining of music talents and the music lives up to expectations.

8 LIONHEART only 20 odd years since their last album…with Lee Small (Shy/Phenomena) on vocals, Lionheart deserve a place in any melodic rock fans collection.

9 IT Home thought provoking and timely progressive rock backed by oodles of melody.

10= H.E.A.T. Into The Great Unknown they have changed their sound a bit which may upset some fans, but for me they are heading onwards and upwards.

10= PUGWASH Silverlake the power pop album of the year. If you like ELO, Duckworth Lewis grab a copy of this.

Honorable mentions…

HAREM SCAREM United they keep on churning out classy melodic hard rock and long may that continue.

THE BITERS plenty of retro on this one, with the T Rex sounding songs

JEFF SCOTT SOTO Retribution not as instant but stick with it

BIGFOOT one of the debuts of the year. Modern hard rock and the singer doesn’t half sound like Tyketto’s Danny Vaughn at times!

THE NIGHTS more classy Scandi melodic rock with hook filled choruses big enough to land a whale.

THE NEW ROSES One More For The Road good time hard rock, no frills and plenty of riffs.

NIGHT RANGER Don’t Let Up they show no sign of letting up quality wise, another ‘must have’ for fans.

DANKO JONES Wild Cat if you like 70’s rock, Thin Lizzy and foot tapping tunes look no further.

THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA Amber Galactic like Brother Firetribe their ‘day bands’ are heavy yet here they show their love of 80’s melodic rock and AOR.

Fellow GRTR! reviewers choices can be found here

The Darker My Horizon – Acoustic Couch, Bracknell

Posted in gigs, Melodic rock, Stoke City FC with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 27, 2017 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

Second time seeing the Darker My Horizon this year and like February’s gig, again at the Acoustic Couch in Bracknell. Joining the core duo of Paul Stead and guitarist Mark Stephenson are drummer Steve Hauxwell (ex-Marshall Law/Winter In Eden) and bass player Paul Hamilton, who was in a previous line-up of Sacred Heart with Paul and Mark.

A nice, up-tempo and hard rocking set for a Saturday night, with a little acoustic interlude from Paul Stead as the support band never materialised. Plenty of riffs to be had in ‘Perfect’, ‘No Superhero Part 1’ and ‘Closure’, and it is always good to hear ‘Dear Olivia’ played live.

The new boys slotted nicely into the band’s sound, a steady bass from Paul Hamilton and as for drummer Steve Hauxwell, he had the flash and style more associated with American drummers like Eric Singer and Tommy Aldridge. Impressive to watch and a great addition to TDMH.

Two new songs were aired from the band’s new album ‘Seize The Day’ due next year – ‘Carpe Diem’ in acoustic mode and ‘Sleaze’, a nice and loud hard rocking tune. Bryan Adams’s ‘Summer Of 69’ was given an enthusiastic run through and the other cover as Bob Dylan’s ‘Knocking On Heaven’s Door’ (popularised by Guns ‘N’ Roses), which will form part of an EP ‘Phoenix’ due out in January. The other songs on the EP are re-workings of Sacred Herat songs with this new line-up.

Book review: Overkill The Untold Story of Motörhead by Joel McIver

Posted in Books, Get Ready To Rock!, Netgalley, rock n roll with tags , , , , , , , on October 9, 2017 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

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Omnibus Press [Publication date 21.08.17]

The original book was published in 2011, however since Lemmy’s death back in December 2015 the book has been re-issued as an enhanced eBook. Basically it adds a newly written chapter covering Motorhead from 2011 to date, plus you can click on links within the book to Spotify playlists of Motorhead classics and band’s influenced by them. A pretty neat idea, although if reading off a Kindle you’d need Wi-Fi access for Spotify.

The book gives a potted history of Motorhead, covering all their albums – although once you hit the mid-90’s onwards not much is said about the recording process, an album’s reception etc. Joel McIver is a big fan of the band and draws on three of his interviews with main man Lemmy for much of the text, along with fellow writer’s interviews with Lemmy and past and former bandmates including Phil Campbell, Mikkey Dee and Eddie Clarke. There is some repetition of themes, particularly Lemmy’s collection of Nazi war memorabilia and his lifelong hate of heroin. The band’s history is only touched upon briefly in many parts and you do want to read more at some stages, although the band’s interviews give a good idea of what they thought about a particular album and the various record labels the band has been on. Like many 70’s bands Motorhead were royally screwed by record labels in their early days and suffered from endless rehashed live and compilation albums  that often detracted from the band’s newer albums and songs.

For a concise overview of Motorhead this book does the job and do make sure you read Lemmy’s ‘White Line Fever’ as well.

Peter Crouch – the DJ :)

Posted in indie, News, rock n roll, Stoke City FC with tags , , , , , on July 19, 2017 by The Rock 'N' Roll Oatcake

Peter Crouch will be taking over the weeknight Radio X Evening Show between 7pm and 10pm from Monday 24 July for a fortnight. He will also host the listeners’ Sunday afternoons from 1-4pm while regular host Gordon Smart is on holiday.

Crouch told the station’s official website: “I love Radio X and the music the station plays so I’m excited about being in the hot seat. I have a few stories I’m looking forward to sharing, and some visitors I’m looking forward to welcoming to the studio. All will be revealed next week.”