Ian has a long meeting with brother Bill to try and make some sense of
Polydor's rejection of his Photography and Comfortable Life masters.
Bill is very adamant that Comfortable Life at least should be allowed
to see the light of day and Ian agrees.
News arrives of arrangements for another demo session next week. This
time in Liverpool at Amazon studios which Hugh Jones has apparently
recommended. Polydor's Billy spends about an hour on the phone doing a
morale boosting job, and there is a hint that Hugh might get involved
at some point in helping with these demos.
An ideas day at Ian Booth's studio. The band are obviously keen to go
into Amazon prepared. New song ideas are structured. By the end of the
day they have a song called Blue Emotion which Steve and David have
worked up and another funky one which Ian has been at the forefront of
called Private Parties.
First day at Amazon studios, Liverpool, which from the outside looks
like a nuclear bunker in on the outskirts of a very dodgy housing
estate. Arrive at 1030. Band immediately get on with their engineer
who is called Geoff Higgins. We are in the little 16 track studio.
There is also a very posh 24 track facility down the corridor. China
Crisis are apparently regular users and another Steve Wright recorded
the Brookside theme here. Got the basis of Blue Emotion down then a
fraction of Private Parties. Geoff takes us to a local pub for an
evening snack and drink then the band returns. Steve has half an idea
for another song and while Ian continues with Private Parties,
David and Steve get into a huddle and emerge with a complete tune with
the working title of Diary. Finish at 10pm and check into the
appropriately named Rockfield hotel in nearby Hutton.
Amazon Studios. Back at 10am for more demos. Continued work on Private
Parties. Mixed Blue Emotion then onto the new song for which there is
plenty of excitement: Diary. Hugh Jones arrives at 9pm and helps out
on the later. Chris Carr and Billy Keane ring with news that we can
get more time here with Hugh tomorrow.
Amazon Studios. Demos. Hugh has all our 16 track work transferred to
24 track, and then we are in the big studio for the day with Hugh at
the controls. Complete Diary. Then Hugh does rough mixes of this and
Private Parties. Hugh leaves at 7pm and we are off back to Yorkshire
once tape copying has finished. A very satisfactory demo session.
Everyone is well pleased. Lets hope Polydor approve of this one!
To London to deliver the Amazon demo tapes. Get to Chris Carr's office
by 3pm and play tape to him, then onto Polydor. Most people are
involved in a Barclay James Harvest boat trip, so instead we meet A&R
head Alan Sizer at the relatively quiet Grosvenor Hotel. Visit Steve's
dad's pub for some food then head back to check into The Columbia
Hotel, but we don't seem to have the expected bookings. We have a
daft conversation with the receptionist which is a bit like the Monty
Python cheese shop sketch: "Fiat Lux?" "No!", "What about Polydor?"
"nothing in that name sir" "Billy Keane?" " No". etc. In the end we
all have to share a quad room which is the only thing left.
Ian and David to Polydor to negotiate the purchase of equipment. Most
notably a Jupiter 8 and Memory Moog keyboard. They meet the rest of
us at The Hog and The Pound off Carnaby Street for lunch with lawyer
James Wylie. Back to Polydor for a bit of hanging about then check in
and out of the Lancaster Gate Hotel. On a revised plan the band and
Chris and his wife recant to Steve's Dad's pub where the Wakefield
contingent stay for the night. Much chat about band direction.
Steve, David and Ian try to meet Billy at The Grosvenor for lunch but
some jobsworth doorman refuses them entry. I visit Performing Rights
Society H.Q to get the band signed up as members. All back to Polydor.
A deal is brokered by Polydor for the keyboard purchasing and we go to
a warehouse in Putney to collect the gear before travelling back to
Janice Long Saturday afternoon show plays "Winter" as a "one that got
Band take train to London. Meeting with photographer Richard Houghton
at his Baker Street flat. Chris Carr has a heavy discussion about
image later on the back of this visit.
Ian and David oversee purchasing of a new sax and a couple of JC120
amplifiers. Then a meeting about sleeve design for (as yet to be
satisfactorily recorded) "Photography" single with designer Al.
Everyone then returns to photographer Richard's flat and Chris makes
arrangements for a photo session to be done with him in Yorkshire.
Band take train home in evening.
Band on a pre-photo session clothes hunt in Leeds, and hair cuts all
round at Vidal Sasoon.
Pick up Richard Houghton from Wakefield train station. Band take hire
car to Sheffield to get final items for photo shoot and arrive at my
office to collect Richard. Look for locations with him. Visit Bretton
Hall, where the boiler room has potential. Then on to Heath Common on
the outskirts of Wakefield.
Still not satisfied on the clothing front. There is another trip to
Leeds. This time we hire costumes from Homburgs. The guys choose three
loud striped suits. First photo location is back at the boilers at
Bretton Hall. Evening meal for all at The Raj Poot in Wakefield.
Up early and back to Bretton for some more photographs. Outdoor
locations around the lake are used, including a Greek style Folly,
where the boys throw leaves in the air to make what might be a good
shot. Afterwards drive Richard Houghton to Doncaster to get a direct
train back to London. Band go on to Ian's house where his wife Mary
makes a slap up dinner for them.
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