Posts by Jonathan Dann

    From my notes for Ant's Harvest of the Heart release:


    With these preparations completed, the recording of the album commenced at Polar Studios in Stockholm, with David Hentschel undertaking both production and engineering duties, assisted by David Bascombe. The choice of Noel McCalla as lead vocalist for the album had yet to be made so during the sessions at Polar the tracks for the album were only recorded in instrumental form. In order to ensure that the singer would have a point of reference when recording the lead vocals, it was decided that Mike would put down some rough guide vocals for most of the tracks. With Ant and Mike knowing each other very well and both possessing a similar sense of humour, it was almost predictable that this would be the source of some amusing moments in the studio. Almost inevitably, as Mike sang the first line of Between The Tick & The Tock (“It’s so very dark in here”) the studio lights were promptly switched off....

    Ok, here's the next question. When Genesis played at Oxford Town Hall in 1972, Richard Macphail inadvertently left something belonging to a band member behind when they were packing up after the gig. What were the item(s) in question?

    One of the people in question would be Paul Samwell-Smith formerly of The Yardbirds who produced the Genesis Plays Jackson demos.


    The other would be Mike Pinder of The Moody Blues, who arranged for Genesis to record a demo of Looking For Someone when there was the possibility of Genesis being signed to the Moody Blues label Threshold Records. The production on that recording was done by the Moody Blues producer Tony Clarke.

    I believe that the N.O.R. / S.O.R. reference for the two sides of the vinyl release of Back To The Pavilion is indeed a joke based on AOR - this being so that Side One is the Northern Orientated Rock side, to tie in with Scottish Suite.


    In a similar vein, there are other references to the different sides of vinyl releases on Ant's albums in a sporting context with the 'First Half' and 'Second Half' used on the UK vinyl release of Sides and the Home / Away sides on the first Private Parts and Pieces album.

    The sessions section of Ant's discography only includes those tracks where he is officially credited as having played on and/or produced one or more of the tracks and where they were actually issued on a commercially released LP, CD or download. I'm afraid that the Swinging Blue Jeans session does not count in this respect for a number of reasons.


    Whilst there is no doubt that Ant and Rivers attended the Swinging Blue Jeans session at Abbey Road - Ant still has the photo that the band members signed for him that day - and got to do the handclaps on a recording of the song, there is no definite proof that the take(s) of the song on which they clapped was actually released on record.


    As Ant mentions in the video, the Swinging Blue Jeans were performing later the same day at the NME Poll Winners Concert, which took place at the Empire Pool Wembley. That would date the session at Abbey Road to a Sunday in April 1964 - but Hippy Hippy Shake was released as a single (and became a chart hit) in the UK in December 1963 and there are no handclaps to be heard on it.


    Given this, it seems likely that the version of Hippy Hippy Shake recorded at the session that Ant and Rivers attended was a re-recording, which if it did see the light of day came out on a 1964 release. There was a 7" EP ('Shake with the Swinging Blue Jeans') which includes the song and seems to match in terms of the date it was released and there appears to be a different recording of the song (with a count-in at the start) which if you listen closely does appear to have some handclaps on it at one point - but all of this is too tenuous in my view to include it as an actual session appearance. It's a great story though!

    The reason why Something Blue wasn't recorded for Invisible Men is because it was only written after the recording of Invisible Men had been completed in December 1982. Ant and Richard Scott began writing some new songs in the spring of 1983 and recorded demos of them (including the version of Something Blue which is included on the 2 CD reissue of Invisible Men) in April of that year.


    Whilst these new songs (which also included The Ballad of Penlee, Alien and Refugee From Love) could have potentially been included on a follow-up release to Invisible Men, they were primarily written as songs for other artists to record as cover versions. Which is ultimately what has happened with Something Blue with the version on the Rocking Horse Music Club album - it's just taken 36 years for it to happen!

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    BTW, the credits say the backing vocals are by "Uti Koofreh", but I'm pretty sure they're sped-up vocals from Richard. We all know how Ant's credits are sometimes!)

    In this instance this is a genuine credit - Uti Koofreh is a real person and is not Richard Scott at the wrong speed.


    The lyrics for Ballad of Penlee were taken from the original Virgin CD booklet, where the name of the lighthouse is written as Tatterdoo. It should actually be Tater Dhu - this was amended in the booklet for the 1996 Blueprint release, although it's not actually written correctly there. I typed out all the lyrics using the Virgin CD booklet as my source and didn't spot that variation between editions, so I guess that makes it my 'frankly dumb' mistake :) In any case, the transcript of the lyrics used on the Virgin release was supplied by Ant so he is equally to blame for the original error!


    I did however correct the name of the Solomon Browne, which was missing the 'e' on the previous editions.


    Perhaps I should mention that the sleeve notes, credits and lyrics for Invisible Men came to a total of 6500 words - I would hope that one misspelt name amongst all of that does not really detract from the CD as a whole.

    Although The Burnt Out Cattle Truck was indeed found on the same tape as the Slow Dance single demo, and logically it may sound from the information in the booklet for Archive Collection as if both tracks were from the same time, the dates of recording are actually at least six months apart.


    Slow Dance as an album was completed by the end of March 1989. After Ant signed the deal with Virgin Records in the spring of 1990, he returned to the idea of having a single based on themes from the album and recorded the Slow Dance single demo in the late spring or early summer of 1990 - just over a year after the album itself had been completed.


    With access to all of the original tapes and the accompanying documentation - which was not possible at the time Archive Collection was compiled - we now know that The Burnt Out Cattle Truck Hits The Road was actually recorded in January 1991.


    Too complicated? Now you have an idea of what I have to work out when putting the extra tracks together for Ant's re-issues :)

    That's an interesting review. Some small points I'd mention:


    Throughout the review reference is made to Lenta Chorus - the title is actually Lenta Chorum. Keen students of Latin will spot the reference.


    Most of the album was actually recorded with a click track.


    The Burnt Out Cattle Truck Hits The Road is not a Slow Dance out-take - it was recorded almost two years after the album was completed.

    Tears On the Ballroom Floor was one of a number of songs that Ant co-wrote with Roy Hill in the mid-eighties. Another song that they co-wrote called Distant Heart was due to be recorded by Roger Daltrey but the recording of the album that it was potentially to be included on was cancelled.


    Incidentally, keen-eyed viewers of the Cry No More video for the song may spot Nick Magnus on keyboards.

    Terry Medford is the name of the character played by Terry Scott in the UK sitcom Terry & June :) Terry Medhurst on the other hand was a sound engineer who worked with Ant on a couple of projects and was responsible for the set up of the microphones that gave the vocal and guitar sound used on She'll Be Waiting.


    On the original release of the album, Ant credited this as "Vocal & guitar sound on She'll Be Waiting: Terry Medhurst". As there was some confusion over whether this was a credit for the vocals on the track, the subsequent releases of the album have the amended credit "Recorded vocal and guitar sound used on track 8 created by Terry Medhurst"