Thursday, July 7, 2016

Graham Bond - 2015 - Live at the BBC and Other Stories

Graham Bond 
Live at the BBC and Other Stories

Graham Bond Quartet with Bobby Breen
BBC Jazz Club, 25th April, 1963
101. Bluesology
102. I'm Gonna Move To The Outskirts Of Town
103. Hello Little Girl
104. Spanish Blues
105. Wade In The Water
106. Hallelujah I Love Her So
107. Every Day I Have The Blues

Graham Bond: vocals & Hammond organ
John McLaughlin: guitar
Jack Bruce: double bass
Ginger Baker: drums
Bobby Breen: vocals

Duffy Power with the Graham Bond Quartet, 1963
108. I Saw Her Standing There
109. I Got A Woman
110. Summertime
111. Hallelujah I Love Her So

Graham Bond: Hammond organ
John McLaughlin: guitar
Jack Bruce: bass
Ginger Baker: drums
Duffy Power: vocals

Don Rendell Quintet with guest Dick Heckstall-Smith
‘Jazz Session’, 19th September, 1962
112. Things Are Getting Better
113. Elsie And Ena
114. Richmond Festival
115. Kelly Blue
116. Troika
117. Kazeef
118. Persian Party

Don Rendell: tenor & soprano saxophones
Graham Bond: alto saxophone
Dick Heckstall-Smith: tenor saxophone
Johnny Burch: piano
Tony Archer: bass
Ted Pope: drums

Graham Bond Organization
‘Jazz Beat’, 22nd January, 1966
201. Wade In The Water
202. Only 16
203. When Johnny Comes Marching Home

Graham Bond: Hammond organ & vocals
Dick Heckstall-Smith: saxophones
Mike Falana: trumpet
Ginger Baker: drums

Bond and Brown
BBC Radio Birmingham, 23rd March, 1972
204. Macumbe
205. Milk Is Turning Sour In My Shoes
206. Beak Suite

Graham Bond: vocals, Hammond & electric piano
Pete Brown: vocals & percussion
Diane Stewart: vocals & percussion
Delisle Harper: bass
Ed Spevock: drums

Graham Bond and Dick Heckstall-Smith, home tape, 1962
207. Improvisation

Graham Bond: alto saxophone
Dick Heckstall-Smith: tenor saxophone

Dick Heckstall-Smith Band, demo recording, 1972
208. Moses In The Bullrushhourses

Graham Bond: Hammond & vocals
Dick Heckstall-Smith: saxophones
Others unknown

Graham Bond Organization, live recording, 1966-67
209. What'd I Say?

Graham Bond: Hammond & vocals
Dick Heckstall-Smith: saxophones
Jon Hiseman: drums

Graham Bond Initiation, live recording, 1969-70
210. Wade In The Water

Graham Bond: Hammond organ, alto saxophone & vocals
Keith Bailey: drums

Graham Bond Initiation 
BBC ‘Top Gear’, Maida Vale, 31st January, 1970
301. Walkin' In The Park/ I Want You (Segue)
302. Wade In The Water
303. Love Is The Law

Graham Bond: Hammond organ & vocals
Diane Stewart: congas & vocals
Dave Usher: flute, tenor saxophone & guitar
Nigel Taylor: bass
Keith Bailey: drums

Graham Bond Initiation
BBC John Peel Sunday show, Paris Theatre, London, 22nd March, 1970
304. Love Is The Law
305. Magic Mojo Blues
306. The World Will Soon Be Free
307. Wade In The Water

Graham Bond: Hammond & vocals
Dave Usher: flute & tenor saxophone
Nigel Taylor: bass
Keith Bailey: drums
Kevin Stacey: guitar

Graham Bond Quartet, from the EP ‘Jazz with a Twist’, 1962
401. Things Are Getting Better

Graham Bond: alto saxophone
Brian Dee: piano
Malcolm Cecil: bass (possibly)
Tony Mann: drums (possibly)

Graham Bond, out-take from album ‘Love is the Law’, USA, 1967
402. Blew Through

Graham Bond: keyboards & saxophone
Hal Blaine: drums

Graham Bond with Ken Wray and the Joe Palin Trio, rehearsal/jam session,
Manchester Club 43, 1962
403. Sack O' Woe
404. Mack The Knife
405. Work Song
406. Oleo
407. Things Are Getting Better

Graham Bond: alto saxophone
Ken Wray: valve trombone
Joe Palin: piano
Bill Brown: bass
Dave Edwards: drums

Many of the articles that have recently appeared around this four CD compilation of Graham Bond’s BBC sessions tend to assume that the reader will be aware of who Bond was. Unfortunately this is not the case. While talking to an acquaintance of similar vintage as myself a few weeks ago, I mentioned this latest box set from Repertoire. “Graham Bond, I don’t recall him…” resulted in disappointment more than surprise from my side. So, for those who were there but find that almost daily our memories are fading, but more importantly for those who weren’t around in the sixties here’s a few facts.

Graham Bond was an important (and imposing) figure in British music in the sixties and seventies. Bond was an innovator, on a par as those more celebrated British musicians such as Alexis Korner and John Mayall, who also served as a training ground for many musicians who are still rightly regarded highly half a century after they first took to a stage. Bond was initially known for playing alto saxophone while trying to scrape a living as a jazz musician on his chosen instrument. After a stint with Alexis Korner’s Blues Inc., Bond teamed up with fellow Korner members, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker, and with guitarist John McLaughlin formed the Graham Bond Quartet before morphing into the Graham Bond Organization, dropping McLaughlin in favour of Dick-Heckstall-Smith on tenor sax while Bond played keyboards, heavily featuring the Hammond organ.

It was during this time that Bond, while never forsaking his jazz leanings, introduced the rhythm and blues stylings that were so popular in the mid-sixties into his music and in doing so built up a sizable following. But, even with two albums released in 1965, ‘The Sound Of ‘65’ and ‘There’s a Bond Between Us’, and a dedicated fan base that attended his live shows, although he gained the respect, he never achieved the glory that many of his fellow band-mates did. It’s felt that Bond was under-appreciated then and even though his albums have been available through the digital age he’s still not recognized as the innovator he truly was. Bond was, and still is, one of the most important figures in British R'n'B.

For Bond’s full and fascinating story there’s a book, ‘Graham Bond: The Mighty Shadow’ which was published in 1992 and is still available from the author, Harry Shapiro, which details the rise and fall of Bond’s life and music, and is simply one of the most compelling books about a musician ever written. It’s a must-have for any music fan.

Of course, Bond’s life was complicated and there was a darker side to him, not helped by his drug addiction and his obsession with the occult, but one thing is certain; his death, which many to believe to be suicide, at the age of thirty-six robbed the music scene of an immense talent.

Bond went through a succession of bands, all of which are covered in Shapiro’s book, and while his time on this earth was short he influenced and introduced the world to many fine musicians. Although some of his more popular albums have hardly been put of print, during the last few years Repertoire Records have finally given part of Bond’s body of work the respect it’s due.

In 2012 the label released ‘Wade In The Water’, a four CD box set lovingly put together by poet/lyricist Pete Brown, who is possibly best known for his work with Cream and another underrated artist who also provided the foreword for Shapiro’s book as well as actually working with and releasing music with Bond. That lovingly compiled box set covered all that was really required from Bond’s early years, remastered with his usual skill by Jon Astley. Now Repertoire have gone the extra mile and issued another four CD box set covering Bond’s live work at the BBC and a little more.

While not as elaborately presented as ‘Wade In The Water’ - the book-sized box has been abandoned for a couple of double standard CD jewel cases - the fact that this music is now available at all is a blessing. Pete Brown again supplies liner notes and Astley once again has remastered the set. There have been many negative comments about the quality of some of these sessions and it’s true that some tracks do suffer from imperfections, but rather that than never having the opportunity to hear or relive them. With Astley in charge of the sound, you can be certain that they’ll never be improved upon anyway.

‘Live at the BBC’ covers more ground than it’s (mainly) studio counterpart. There is a handful of tracks from the Bond and Brown period. Bond’s Initiation era is featured and, of course, both Bond’s Quartet and Organization work is covered. The earliest recordings are from 1962 and the latest from 1972. There are sessions from BBC’s Jazz Club with Bobby Breen, the Quartet backing Duffy Power, Bond backing the Brian Dee Trio and so much more.

It’s not just fascinating for Bond devotees; anyone who has an interest in or is discovering British R&B for the first time will find plenty to enjoy here. While some of the tracks do show their age and sound a little dated, there are those such as the Bond and Brown ‘Sounds of the Seventies’ sessions that still sound as fresh as the day they were recorded. It’s also good to hear Diane (Bond’s wife) singing on a couple of those songs. While for the most part it’s fascinating to hear the various DJs introducing the songs, Pete Drummond sounds like he’s just woken when presenting these particular cuts, but hearing John Peel, Steve Race and George Melly is a joy.

While the quality of the four songs taken from a bootleg of the BBC ‘Pop Goes the Beatles’ recorded at Aeolian Hall, London in 1963 is one of the sections that has been singled out for criticism due to the audio imperfections, for some it will be a highlight. With Duffy Power on vocals, McLaughlin on guitar, Jack Bruce playing the double bass, Ginger Baker on drums and Bond’s Hammond driving the songs along, it’s not only a collector's dream come true but a piece of history many thought was lost forever.

All those connected with this set, especially Repertoire Records, should be commended for making this music available and at a reasonable price. The amount of love, care and passion that has gone into both of Repertoire’s Bond box sets is a lesson as to how it should be done to much bigger labels. Now all we need is some young, hip artist to check out Bond’s not inconsiderable body of work and maybe he’ll finally receive the acclaim he so rightly deserves.
by Malcolm Carter



  2. Wow! Great tunes and post thanks.

  3. Hey Mr. Archer: you got to be kidding with a single file on this 700 megabites. I can't download this on that crappy filefactory site. Did you ever here of zippy share?

    Thanks for nothing.

    1. dick. hope happiness appears in your life a couple times before the end

  4. Thanks for everything! FileFactory works fine for me......

  5. You have a great blog, my friend.

  6. zippyshare won't hold over 200MB so what Mr. Archer is using works much better