Tag Archives: The Faces

(1974 Album) Eric Clapton – Rainbow Concert

Eric Clapton is considered by many people as one of the best guitarists in the world.

I am not one of those people.

Instead I think he is personally responsible for the pretentious habit most other guitarists have for ‘grimacing intently’ when squeezing out a high note, almost as if they are simultaneously squeezing out something particularly spiky from between their arse cheeks.

This album is a hybrid recording of the two “all-star” shows performed at London’s Rainbow Theatre in January 1973. Shows put together by The Who’s Pete Townshend to help out Clapton who was allegedly in the midst of his big heroin addiction.

Townshend persuaded Clapton ex-bandmates (Steve Winwood & Rick Grech from Blind Faith) and other rock luminaries of the time (Ronnie Wood from The Faces, Jimmy Karstein from J.J. Cale’s band plus Jim Capaldi and Rebop from Winwood’s band Traffic) to perform.

They played a set list which included old blues numbers, stuff from Clapton’s work with Cream and Blind Faith, JJ Cale’s “After Midnight”  and, of course, the ubiquitous “Layla“.

The pedigree is therefore good.

But, as far as I am concerned, it’s all mutt.

Yet another album which, given hindsight, I have NO idea why I owned. None at all.

Trivia note: These concerts are said to have reignited Clapton’s interest in music, which in turn led to “461 Ocean Boulevard“, “Slowhand“, “August” and a whole slew of other distinctively average recordings. Not to mention “Tears in Heaven” and “Wonderful Tonight“. Pete Townshend’s certainly got a lot to answer for.

1 Comment

Filed under 1974 Diary Entries

Number Ones of 1972 (Part 3)

… [continued from Part 2]

“…… and they called it Puppy Luuuuuuuuuuuurve” was a Number One call to arms for fresh-faced Mormon superstar teenager Donny Osmond.

1972 really was the year of Osmond-mania in the UK, when the family troupe, The Osmonds (put together as a “white” answer to the Jackson 5)  – especially photogenic teen idol Donny – created abject hysteria amongst young impressionable girls wherever they went. Think “The Jonas Brothers on steroids” and you might get an idea of the screamy-girly public craziness?

Puppy Love” was written in 1960 by Paul Anka for Annette Funicello, an actress/singer he was having an affair with. His own version went to Number 2 in the USA, but it has since been totally eclipsed by Donny’s more populist version.

His plea of “someone help mehelp meplease” was always a moment of cringe-worthiness whenever I heard it. Little did I know then that my future wife was squealing with joy at precisely the same line!

The follow-up Number 1 to Donny was the anarchic School’s Out by Alice Cooper, a song already discussed at some depth (here and here) within this blog.

My good friend Simes, a.k.a “Rockin”, remains a huge fan of Alice Cooper to this day, going to see him live in concert whenever he’s appearing within driving distance of the South of England.

Sometimes Rockin’ takes his eldest daughter with him. Her name is… Alice.

I wonder if the pair of them have ever seen this version of School’s Out with The Muppets? (I wonder also if that clip makes more sense on drugs?)

Taken from his second solo album “Never a Dull MomentRod Stewart‘s “You Wear it Well” was, perhaps, one of the year’s more über-credible Number 1’s.

Most people forget that in the early 70’s Rod Stewart had two musical careers running simultaneously. Not only was he  solo artist in his own right, he was also lead singer for The Faces.

Whilst The Faces material was, by and large, “sloppy rock and roll” (magnificently done I might add), Rod’s own material was carefully crafted, produced and recorded. However, “You Wear it Well” appears to straddle both sensibilities, the keyboards and Rod’s careful lyrics noisily overwhelmed by Ronnie Wood’s fabulous guitar licks.

Rod, by himself, and with the Faces would continue to record and tour until 1975 when the band, citing the time-honoured tradition of “musical differences”, split up and everyone went separate ways. I think it was common knowledge that most members of the Faces held deep resentment for how Rod concentrated on his solo work.

Of all my minor musical “heroes” of the 70’s, Rod is the one who has really let me down the most. Whilst his whole ‘celebrity fixation” era – when he was with Britt Ekland and recorded things like “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy?“- merely amused me, I feel he eventually started to waste that great gritty voice he possesses, none moreso than with the recent ” Great American Songbook” series of albums.

Slade had a second 1972 Number 1 single with “Mama Weer All Crazee Now“, taken from their album “Slayed?“, often considered their greatest studio album.

Since 1972 this screamy rocker has been covered by such diverse acts as Quiet Riot, The Runaways and….. The James Last Orchestra!

Last covered it along with “Silver Machine“, “School’s Out“, “(The Theme from) Shaft” and Gary Glitter’s “Rock & Roll, Part 2” on his 1973 album “Non Stop Dancing ’73” which must’ve been the soundtrack to THE worst swinging party EVER?!

… [continued in Part 4]

1 Comment

Filed under 1972 Diary Entries, an aside, Asides on the 1970's, nostalgic ramblings