1. BRINGING IT ALL ON MY OWN HEAD Colton/Smith (p) 1995 4.40 2. AIN'T GONNA LET IT GET ME DOWN Colton/Smith (p) 1995 2.37 3. HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE RIGHT ALL THE TIME Colton/Smith (p) 1995 4.13 4. ACHMED Colton/Smith/Donaldson (p) 1995 2.22 5. PRECIOUS STONE Colton/Smith (p) 1995 4.15 6. FRIEND OF A FRIEND Colton/Smith (p) 1995 2.02 7. WINDY & WARM Colton/Smith/Donaldson (p) 1995 4.25 8. WHO TURNED OFF THE DARK Colton/Smith (p) 1995 3.40 9. CAN YOU SEE ME Colton/Smith/Donaldson (p) 1995 3.22 10.HOME FROM HOME Colton/Smith (p) 1995 5.41 11.MAKE ME FEEL MUCH BETTER Colton/Smith (p) 1995 1.32
Tony Colton - lead vocals
Albert Lee - Gtrs, vocals
Pat Donaldson - Bass gtr., vocals
Ray Smith - Gtrs, vocals
Pete Gavin - Drums, vocals
Mike O'Neill - Keyboards, vocals
B.J. Cole- Steel gtr.
Jerry Donahue - Gtr., vocals
Speedy Aquaye - Percussion
The Bond Street Midnight Choir
Engineered by Eddie Offord
Produced by Tony Colton
The sessions for Head, Hands and Feet's Home From Home album took place under extraordinary circumstances between the months of October and December 1968.
At the time I was busy producing a new band from Ireland called Taste, featuring Rory Gallagher, Albert Lee was juggling session work with the likes of Joe Cocker and a string of gigs with both Chris Farlowe and his own band Country Fever, Pat Donaldson was dividing his time between Dantalions Chariot and session work, Pete Gavin was on the road with Jody Grind, Mike O'Neil was holding two gigs down, one with The John Barry Seven and the other with Ivy League, and Ray Smith was managing Lew Davis guitar shop with his two assistants, John McGlaughlin, and Paul Kossof.
Midnight would chime on Bond Street outside of the original Advision studios and the guard would change. As the last member of Taste left the studio, Eddie Offord, the engineer to whom I later passed on the gig as Yes Producer, would change tape reels, off would come Taste and on would go the "Pirate sessions" as they had become known to the members who would later become Head, Hands And Feet, and Eddie and I would sit and wait for their arrival.
From locations all over they would arrive some from as far as the Midlands where they had been gigging with whoever, some from as close as the local Pub, and the sessions would start, and continue until the unseen Sun arose in the sky outside and we would all, like a handful of Vampires disappear before the arrival of the cleaning ladies, leaving no trace of our presence.
As the album progressed the ideas grew grander and the cast swelled to keep pace. Jerry Donahue who played guitar on his first London sessions on these dates displayed here For the first time also his genius for arranging vocal harmony. His voicings called For bodies and the night was many times peppered with calls as we scoured the various watering holes for talent to fill the needs of our ever growing choir.
From the neon shadows of the Bag of Nails, The Speakeasy, The Marquee bar and a dozen others, we dragged them away from the clutches of Tequila, Cognac and Groupies, gave them a part to sing and hit the red light. It was a touch that somehow suited the tone of the occasion.
Some came as a favour, some came for the money but they all came in the spirit that pervaded the sixties, no time, day or night was too late to sing and play and almost any reason was good enough, among those I can remember and thank all over again are:
John Anderson, Zoot Money, Andy Somers, Madeline Bell, Linda Lewis, B.J. Cole, Speedy Aquaye, David Foster, Ray Osborne, Jamba, Leslie Duncan, Tony Ashton.
The end result is I believe the best album Head; Hands And Feet ever cut, and in retrospect I can now see that it was a mistake not to include it in our initial deal with Capitol records that came almost a year later.
To his credit, Danny Secunda, our Manager at the time, was probably the only one who saw it for what it truly was and tried to convince me to include it as part of the package and have Capitol release it as our first album, but by the time we signed the deal the band was slightly different, Chas Hodges had replaced Pat Donaldson and in a fit of misplaced idealism I felt that the first album should be true to the new line up.....Ah the follies of youth.
It did however have one day in the Sun. On Thursday, June 5th, 1969, we performed sections of the album live at the Albert Hall with a thirty six piece orchestra conducted by Johnny Harris and a fifteen strong choir featuring most of the names already mentioned, on a bill we shared with Ritchie Havens.
Here twenty six years later it seems it is time For the Sun to shine once again on a fine album that has always been dear to the hearts of all who sailed in her. Enjoy the trip.
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