Sunday, 22 November 2009

The Les Intrigantes Collection

Some time in the happening year of 1964, four girls from Quebec came together (Carole, Claire, Ginette and Diane) with the goal to form a band. Adpoting the moniker of Les Intrigantes they practised hard, eventually gainging a contract in Drummonville and eventually Saint-Hyacinthe under the management of one Roger Beaudet to play at youth venues. Next came a chance to record their first record in 1965, the release "Faut Savoir/Sans Toi on the Jeunesse Franco label. Both sides were written by Beaudet. This release was the first and only time the girls were featured playing their instruments on a recording. Sadly despite the quality of the recording it sank without a trace! However come Autumn they were playing at the Hotel Club YeYe. Their next release came the following year, another Beaudet composition, "Mets Chinois" and cover of Simon and Garfunkel's "Sound of Silence" (La Seul Du Soleil) - again the record failed to garner much attention, allthough the group did get the chance to film a perfomance of the song for a Tv show. 1967 proved a fruitfull year for live perfomance,
including a tour with groups and artists such as Les Lutins, Les Merseys, Chantal Pary, Karo and Oliver Despax. Come December not one but two singles were released by the group for the masses to enjoy. The first on the A1 label was a cover of Jefferson Airplane's White Rabbit (La Justice), adapted by member Carole, while the flip was a cover of The Mamas and Papa's "Creeque Alley", translated into French as "Nous Voci" by manager, Beaudet. It similarly tells the tale of the groups unique formation! But however for some reasons unbenownest to moi, the group did not like the finished recording and the record was subsequently withdrawn from circulation. Luckily success did emerge with their other single released that month on the Jupiter label, a fantastic rendition of the Beatle's "Hello Goodbye" along with a similarly brill version of Frankie Valli and the 4 Seasons "C'mon Marianne" (Je N'aimais Pas Marianne). The popularity of the record let to more touring and another release on Jupiter, a cover of Boyce and Heart's "Goodbye Baby" with "Les Enfants De La Plage" (a version of Peggy Lee's "Til There Was You"). The reocord acheived some success too, proving especially popular on some radio stations. Sadly despite having their most successful year to date, the group had disbanded by the end of 1968. However their legacy has not been forgotten, and I can present to you the entire recorded output of these lovely pioneering ladies from the land of Quebec! Also posted below this here text is a video, lovingly made by some I assume is known to the group, featuring live footage and photographic images of the group to their biggest hit, Hello Goodbye.

Right to sum up included in the download are.......!

Faut Savoir / Sans Toi (JF 4044)
Mets Chinois / Le Seuil du Soleil (CN 9013)
La justice / Nous Voici (A1 813)
Hello Goodbye / Je n'aimais pas Marianne (JP 1118)
Les enfants de la plage / Goodbye Baby (JP 1141)

Friday, 9 October 2009

Gunilla Thorn - Sweden's Dark Bombshell

I've been meaning to post this for a while, but as always there's not time like the present! Here we have the wonderful Gunilla Thorn, Joe Meek protogé and bee-hive sporting Swede that would certainly give any Ronette, (or Winehouse for that matter), a run for their monies! I was very lucky to be able to speak to the lady herself within the last year and found out many fascinating fact-ettes about her life and recording career. What a joy! Here's a brief outline of what I have gathered! Gunilla was born on the 14th May in 1944 in Malmö, Sweden. Her first foray into recording was initiated by photographer and fellow Swede Jan Olofsson, who took her to London where she introduced and worked with the legendary Joe Meek in 1963. Here she recorded the single "Go On Then/Merry-go-round" as well as (excitingly revealed) the unreleased "He's Mine" and "We're Chasing Something In Another Way" (I wonder if these were in the "Tea Chest Tapes"?). As expected of his character, Joe was quite an eccentric character for Gunilla to work with, including speeding up her recordings so much it destroyed some of them. Quite cooly too is the before he Deep Purple days, Richie Blackmore was a session guitarist for Meek in The Tornadoes, and plays on the recording Go On Then! Her time in London seems like a great experience, especially since she hob-nobbed with people such as The Searchers, Screaming Lord Sutch and later on Jimi Hendrix!

After her work with Joe Meek and The Tornadoes in England, Gunilla released a cover of Johnny Cash's Walk the Line in 1965 with Danish group The Defenders, and then another single in 1966 with another Danish group, The Beethovens. This recording (Our Love/Jealous Woman) was Gunilla's finest recording moment, really showcasing her raw, ballsy vocals - defintely one of the best female garage releases from the sixties! During this time she toured extensively, taking in such countries such as Switzerland, England, Germany, Australia, America, Korea and the Netherlands - phew! This also included a stay in Vietnam in 1967-68 where she entertained the American troups, performing under the name Nilla. Please check out this website - which has some amazing photos of Gunilla during her visit to Vietnam and more recent pic too! Another bout of touring, Gunilla revealed, included performing on a cruise ship to millionaries! The ship left Rotterdam and took in stops such as the Isle of Wight and more exoticly Bermuda and New York! After a brief partnership with Sonny Guerrero of folkgroup The Immigrants, Gunilla left the music biz in the 70's to begin her own business.

It's fair to say Ms Thorn is one of the more provactive female singers, especially from Sweden, and her ballsy vocals more than much up to this image. If only she could have more opporunity to showcase them on record! Netherless Jealous Woman in particular packs a wallop few contempoaries can match - and would send any man fearing for his life on the receiving end of its lyricall tongue! .... So up for grabs is all of the three records she released during her career - six songs in total! These are as follows :

Merry-go-round/Go On Then 1963 (HMV Pop 1239)
I Walk The Line/A Closer Walk With Thee 1965 (Sonet T 7199)
Our Love/Jealous Woman 1966 (EMI X B47C)

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

ZouZou on the box!

Just a quick post to rave about a couple of YouTube delights featuring the ultra fab ZouZou - both with the featuring the French lass performing the song 'Il est parti comme il était venu.' The (above) first is from The Tom Jones Show, and features the afformentioned ZouZou and Mr Jones wigging out to some go-go beats before ZouZou proceedes then to very cooly step over some placards and into her rendition of her recording. The second (below) is again of ZouZou and again in the same frock again coltishly doing what she does best! What is especially wonderous is the chance to actually see what she looks like - as as famous as she there is a severe lack of photoage in internetland! Thank you to the posters!

Thursday, 6 August 2009

The All Girl Chips!

Howdy! Excitingly this update we have some more sixties female rock'n'rollers to add to the rooster! As you can see from the picture sleeve above, The Chips were one with a definete penchant for geometrics! As well as the look, the group also had the crudentials according to the blurb on the back of the sleeve - and it goes something like this.....

"The Chips are destined to be this country's next No.1 all-girl group. They're that good! So good, in fact, that one of their moee recent jobs was touring with the Paul Revere and the Raiders Show. From Chicago the Chips are Daren Pasterik, Sheri Hartman, Aleat Maciejewski, Klayre Hartmann and Charlotte O'Neill. While many all-female acts are thought of as a novelty, the Chips are far from that category. There are many top male groups whose members wish they could play and sing as well.

When your'e finished listening to "Break It Gently," the group's first single for Phillips, we're certain you'll agree that the Chips are one of the top acts in the record business-fellows included!"

While perhaps not fufilling the destiny as heralded by the label, the group did manage to release another single on ABC Paramount and do some extensive touring nationwide. The exact fate of the group is a mystery, but I'm guessing they parted ways at some point along the way! They were hoever formed in Chicago as early as 1966 and lasted till 1968/69, when the singles were released. Chicago itself did seem to produce it's fair share of female groups, most famously The Daughters of Eve and also The Marie-Antoinettes. More importantly how do they sound?????? Well a bit of a mix really! Lead single "Break It Gently" is fair enough, think mid-tempo girl group soul. However the cover of Patty and The Emblems "Mixed Up Shook Up Girl" is much more successful. Their second single for ABC Paramount is a tale of two stories too! "When You Hold Me Baby," written by band member Sheri Hartman, is garage soul crossover with in the lead singer in growling fine form - certainly their best recording. Their flip is more ballad-like and take note of the picture of Mickey Mouse detailed on the sleeve as he reappears lyrically in "Dream With Your Eyes..." - natch!
Here's what's included ::
Break It Gently/Mixed Up Shook Up Girl (Phillips 40521 1968)
When You Hold Me Baby/Dream With Your Eyes Wide Open (ABC Paramount 11158 1968)

Sunday, 19 July 2009

The Veritable Ms Beryl Marsden!

One of the most talented female vocalists to emerge from the United K during the sixties beat boom was one Beryl Marsden. Much has been written on the lass allready so I'll keep it short but sweet! A great place to start is the entry on the amazing ReadySteadyGirls website. Essential reading too is Beryl's own biog at the Merseybeat website - fascinating stuff! I do wonder if she ever did record anything with She Trinty?? I do hopes so! This collection collates some of Beryl's lesser known recordings - which I do hope you enjoy! The full list is as follows:

Who You Gonna Hurt? (Columbia DB 7718 1965)
When The Lovelight Starts Shinin' (Decca F11818 1964)
Music Talk (Columbia DB7797 1965)
Let's Go Somewhere (Columbia DB 7888 1966)
I Only Care About You (Decca F11707 1963)
I Know (You Dont Love Me No More) (Decca F11707 1963)
Gonna Make Him My Baby (Columbia DB 7718 1965)
Everybody Loves a Lover (Live)

Excitingly Beryl is back and recording! Her new website is up and running here and features some great pictures and links to some fab new singles too!

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Mark Radice and the Ten Year Old Blues

Jeezo! Sorry (yet again) for abstaining from posting on this dear blog/graveyard/wasteland......but!....I have returned (for now) and with something I hope you will all enjoy. Continuing with child singing sensations comes the complete pre-puberty releases of the very talented Mark Radice. The son of record producer Gene Radice, Mark shone from a very early age in the studio - writing over 50 of his own compositions by the age of 11. His first release came at the age of 10 with Wooden Girl/Save Your Money in 1967, then Natural Morning/You Took the Words Right Out of My Life in 1968, followed by 10,000 Year Old Blues/Three Cheers (For the Sad Man) in the same year. Finally came Richest Man In the World/Girl By The Meter in '69, which was the last single before his self-titled debut album in 1971. In addition to both singing and writing the releases - he also played a part in producing and arranging the records too - nice! After allowing these recordings flow down your ear canals, I'm sure you'll agree with me on what a superb talent Mark was and indeed still is! Mr Radice grew up to become a successful songwriter (including a variety of numbers for Sesame Street - wahey!) and his official site is here for much more information and a full discog. I've also split it into two parts as my connection aint what it used to be!