Monday, August 12, 2013

He's Going For Notes That Aren't Even on the Drum Kit!!!!

The Pretty Things on German TV, 1966. Absolutely live.

It is something of a cliche that in terms of image and attitude these guys made The Rolling Stones look like The Budapest String Quartet, but it is nonetheless true, I think. Although their hit singles (in Britain -- they made absolutely no impact in the States, for reasons I've never quite figured out) were as slick as anybody elses at the time, especially when compared to the above performance.

Also, re the drummer:

To paraphrase The Bonzo Dog Band -- wow, that cat is really expressing himself.


mister muleboy said...

Don't I see George Gently lurking in the background. . . ?

I think I saw this performance about 200 times from 1978 to 1984 -- loved it every time. Of course, it involved a different band every night.-----------

Brooklyn Girl said...
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Brooklyn Girl said...

Brooklyn Girl said...

they made absolutely no impact in the States, for reasons I've never quite figured out

They're totally devoid of any style/sex appeal, imho.

However, speaking of hot drummers expressing themselves --- ladies and gentlemen, the Rascals featuring Dino Danelli:

buzzbabyjesus said...

Not to mention "S.F.Sorrow". They were the other Yardbirds.
The Move had no impact in the States either.

FD13NYC said...

Pretty good, but he's no Keith Moon.

Anonymous said...

He's also no Viv Prince. Or Twink. I wonder how long Skip Alan was in the band when this was shot? He is a cutie, but I'm not sure if I like what he's doing. (Brooklyn Girl: I'm with you, a stick twirling Dino Danelli gets five out of five Tiger In My Tank's).

Rosalyn, Don't Bring Me Down, Honey I Need, Come See Me (which was badasss and one I really let loose on) and to a lesser extent, Cry To Me, got significant airplay on KMEN San Bernardino. They never made the Top Ten but I remember their raw deliciousness. KMEN never went beyond a Top Ten. The rest of the songs in the playlist were Honorable K/Mentions. I bought most of the singles.

Phil May had the longest hair ever. I remember them on Shindig and it was kind of shocking for the time. His hair was longer than Dave Davies. But yeah, not much of a focal point in vocalist or players. No strong persona. Wasn't anybody there I fantasized about boning.

I don't need to mention the Downliners Sect, right?

Maybe they didn't have any sex appeal either, but I really loved THEM at the time. The albums were very strong and the music was powerful and sexy. You gotta love the 1997 compilation The Story of Them featuring Van Morrison. All except for one thing. It appears to have every track ever done by the band except Mighty Like a Rose, which first surfaced in the US on the mid 1970's Backtrackin' compilation. I love that song! Why'd they skip it!! Assholes!! Check it out and tell me if it isn't way too cool for you.

Vickie Rock

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Drummer expressing himself? Here you go:

He's going for notes that aren't even in this universe.

steve simels said...

I saw a later incarnation of the Pretties live when they were touring that first album they did for Zeppelins label.

Totally different style, obviously, but quite impressive. May was a great frontman.

steve simels said...

zombie rotten mcdonald:

Words fail me.

And I gotta admit -- back in the day, although I knew that those guys were great, and loved nay lurved their records -- there was a part of me that was a snob about them (and snob is a polite word) because they weren't cool, like the Brits.

I think you know what I'm getting at here.

Anonymous said...

I saw the Pretty Things for the first time at the Whisky a Go Go 1973. It was behind the Freeway Madness album. They were great. I don't think they ever toured the USA in the Sixties, which is another reason they didn't make any inroads.

I was still a senior in high school at the time. Aladdin Sane and Houses of the Holy had just come out. Mott and Bowie had just passed through Los Angeles within days of each other. Saw Deep Purple, Fleetwood Mac and Rory Gallagher at the Swing Auditorium a few days before the Pretty Things gigs. Went to Rodney's afterwards at the insistence of the gay egg rancher I was with. Never liked that place much. The legend has overpowered the reality, I'm afraid.

Also saw them open for Blue Oyster Cult 1975. Same drummer as in the 1966 video for these gigs. Always liked Dream/Joey from Silk Torpedo, but 1970's output was decidedly mediocre.

Last time I saw them was at the Whisky a Go Go 1999 with Dick Taylor back in the fold. The 1999 show was grrreat!!! Mostly 1st 2 LP's and S.F. Sorrow stuff.

Vickie Rock

Anonymous said...

Here's the Dream/Joey track from Silk Torpedo:

In the 1990's I used to visit a photographer friend of mine quite a bit. He was always amazed at my musical knowledge. Every time I would come over, he would try to stump me with a song he considered rather obscure. He never could.

He had a really great old-school stereo system with Altec Voice of the Theater speakers. He used to blast the shit out of them. Not sure what kind of amp he was using. But every time he turned it on the lights dimmed drastically. It must have been a mega-watter.

At any rate, he walked up to the turntable with a huge grin on his face thinking he had a real stumper. The minute the first notes played I called it as Joey/Dream from Silk Torpedo. He was flabbergasted.

I proceeded to dance atop his coffee table and sing along with every word of the song. He started taking pictures. The camera only inspired me to be more, shall we say, interpretive.

Our glee whirled totally out of control. It was a thrill ride in the carnal fun-zone. John Povey's keyboards salaciously fingered my libido and brought me to full gallop in the frenzy of exultations. The tune animated my imagination as I soared like a widescreen single wing turquoise bird spinning in a cyclorama.

The electric assault blasted through our sails and blew us on a new course for the old ceremony. I continued to leap from one canvas to another-I flickered from frame to frame-Careened from lick to lick. I was possessed by the spirit of Marie Laveau with the physicality of a brunette Joey Heatherton.

"Joey's in a dream. Joey's in a dream. Joey's in a dream I had today."

Vickie Rock

Anonymous said...

Oh, and Joey's got some super badass hand claps going on too!

Vickie Rock