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Thursday, July 7, 2011

The V.I.P's - Beat Crazy (1966 uk, great garage beat with pre-Art/pre-Spooky Tooth members and other important musicians, 2004 remaster extra tracks edition)

This mid-sixties four-piece from Carlisle, England, also included Keith Emerson for a few weeks before he formed The Nice. Initially an R 'n' B outfit, they formed in 1963 and recorded the first two of three reputedly fine singles. In addition to the tracks included here, they also recorded a one-sided acetate for the Surrey-based Oak label, How Many, and a couple of other acetates on EMI-Disc.

In December 1966 Kenyon (later of Junkyard Angels, Mike Harrison’s band after Spooky Tooth’s first breakup), Johnstone and Henshaw all left and a new line-up recorded the final 45 for Island and a US-only 45, Mercy, Mercy, before Emerson departed to form The Nice. By the time of the final single, Straight Down To The Bottom, both Mike Kelly (Kellie) and Luther Grosvenor had joined, it is Luther’s guitar work that can be heard on this track.

They changed their name to Art in 1967, recording one album for Island Records, and later became Spooky Tooth with the addition of Gary Wright on keyboards. They never released an album, but this collection gathers most of their recordings in a very economical package. Greg Ridley later joined up with Steve Marriot and Peter Frampton in Humble Pie.

This Australian edition issued in 2004. A previously issued vinyl release included the first 14 tracks, this edition adds seven tracks from The Twen Radio Show from 1966.

1. Don't Keep Shouting at Me - 2:20
 2. She's So Good  - 2:17
 3. Wintertime - 2:07
 4. Anyone - 2:15
 5. Straight Down to the Earth - 2:07
 6. In a Dream - 2:21
 7. Back Intro My Life Again - 2:36
 8. Every Girl I See - 2:57
 9. Don't Let It Go - 2:35
 10.Stagger Lee - 3:18
 11.Rosemarie - 3:23
 12.Late Night Blues - 5:43
 13.I Wanna Be Free - 3:13
 14.Smokestack Lightning - 6:42
 15. You Don't Know Like I Know (live) - 2:32
 16. Stagger Lee (live) - 3:27
 17. I Wanna B e Free (live) - 3:12
 18. Fannie Mae (live) - 3:36
 19. Talk About Me , Babe (live) - 3:41
 20. Grapes and Wrath (live) - 3:11
 21. I Got a Woman (live) - 6:36
Tracks 15-21 bonus live recordings from the Twen Radio Show 1966

The V.I.P's
*James Henshaw - Lead Guitar
*Mike Harrison - Lead Vocals
*Walter Johnstone - Drums
*Greg Ridley - Bass Guitar
*Frank Kenyan - Rhythm Guitar
*Luther Grosvenor - Lead Guitar (1967)
*Mike Kelly -  Drums (1967)
*Keith Emerson - Electric Organ (1966-1967)

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