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Eloy (Germany) / Eloy - Historical Overview
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:45:07 AM »
Copied from the original entry by Melo the Prog Goddess on the old bazaar.

"The name Eloy is based on the book "Time Machine" by H.G. Wells. Wells describes in his book the situation of mankind about 800.000 years later, and Eloy is a human race in his story. The Eloy in Wells' story have made a new start with the help of the time traveler. In a way, it was a new beginning for the human race. German rockbands in the late 60's played mainly covers from other bands instead of playing their own compositions. Record deals for German bands were absolutely rare and German bands generally were considered to be second class bands in their own country. At that time it was a strong effort for a German band to come out with only their own compositions. It was a start into an unknown future, and from this point of view, comparable to the human race in Wells' story. That is why I got the idea to name the band Eloy.

I started to play in the early 60's, inspired by bands like The Shadows and American rock'n'roll singers, and later The Beatles. I found the other musicians of Eloy by chance, but I felt from the beginning that this would be a longtime project!"

1969: Eloy is formed. Initially it is a school band, whose repertoire inclued songs by The Beatles, The Moody Blues, The Who and Cream.

1970: Eloy wins the first prize at a newcomer competition and they recorded two of their own compositions for a single which is released on an independant label. ( Daybreak/Walk alone )

1971: Eloy's first LP (self-titled) is recorded in the "Stars-studio" (Hamburg) and released.

"From the beginning, we tried to find a very special style, influenced by progressive rock music. Of course, it took time to find an individual identity. In the beginning, we had with lead singer Erich Schriever, guitar and keyboard player Manfred Wieczorke, and me, 3 composers in the band. I got the leadership of the band after Erich left us in 1972. He was very good, qualitywise, but not willing to do the step to a professional. Furthermore we had some problems with him, while playing live. He was no entertainer at all, too politically-oriented and not visionary enough. At that time I was only the guitar player in the band. When Erich left overnight, I had to replace him for a couple of gigs and so I played guitar and sang. At that time, we intended to find another lead singer to replace Erich, but that wasn't that easy in the early 70's. The first two concerts with me as a singer turned out to be more successful than ever before! In the end, we decided that I continue to sing. Helmut Draht on drums was replaced by Fritz Randow.

Like every other band we had problems at the beginning to coordinate all ideas, but at the time of our first EMI album, "Inside", everybody in the band was agreeing on playing in a progressive style."

1973: "Inside" released on EMI's Harvest label. First tours supporting English acts like Beggars Opera or East of Eden.
- The song "Future city" reached the topten of some american radio-stations.
- The single "Daybreak" was released (B-side: "On the road")
- Wolfgang Stöcker left the band. Luitjen Janssen replaced him.

1974: "Floating" released. This album was recorded at night - at the same time as the Scorpions recorded their album "Fly to the rainbow", because Rudolf Schenker arranged Frank Bornemann for the production of their album.

1975: "Power And The Passion" released with second guitarist Detlev Schwaar. It reaches sales figures of 30.000.

"The reason for the break-up of the band in 1975 was mainly the way of working, plus the style of the music. I personally wanted to continue the way of Eloy with concept-albums and a mixture of symphonic arrangements, atmospheres and rock structures. Some members of the band didn't agree with this concept. Manfred Wieczorke changed to the band Jane, mainly for financial reasons, as Eloy was in an awful financial state after a lot of trouble with our manager Jay Partridge.

In 1976, I had to reform the band totally and found musicians in my hometown, who were sharing my vision regarding the future of Eloy. It was also the first time that I was accepted as the producer of the band, and so I could realize everything I had in mind.

Klaus-Peter Matziol is very individual and creative, and his way of playing gave Eloy a very special push. Jürgen Rosenthal came not only for drumming, but also wrote the lyrics for three albums : "Dawn" (together with me), "Ocean", and "Silent Cries And Mighty Echoes" (together with me). His way of playing the drums was influenced by Neil Peart and Bill Bruford, and also gave Eloy a special accent of the rhythm parts. Detlev Schmidtchen moved from the guitar to the keyboards and tried to replace Manfred in every way. He was excellent! These two musicians have a common spirit. With this line-up, Eloy became the most successful rockband in Germany.

In that period, the financial situation was better than ever before, so we could do whatever we wanted to do. To record an album like "Dawn", with a string orchestra, would cost much more money nowadays ! The inspiration in the lyrics to our albums was mostly the world we live in, and I usually use fantasy or science-fiction stories to bring out what I feel. Except for some lyrics by Jürgen Rosenthal, I wrote most of the songs, arranged and produced them all. Crediting the band collectively for writing the music was only a way to give every member of the band the same amount of money."

1976: "Dawn" sells 150.000 copies

1977: "Ocean" sells 200.000 copies. In german charts better than Genesis or Queen.

1978: "Eloy Live", a double-livealbum is released (due to technical problems not a complete live-album).

1979: "Silent Cries and Mighty Echoes" sales surpass "Ocean"

Eloy (Germany) / Eloy - Links & Info
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:43:37 AM »
Eloy is a German "Krautrock" band, which has been active since 1969 - present.

More on Eloy can be found in the other topics from this board and on the following website(s):

Eloy´s Website:

Eloy on MySpace:

Eloy on Facebook:

Eloy on ReverbNation:

Eloy on Proggnosis:

Kayak (NL) / Kayak - Links & Info
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:32:41 AM »
Kayak is a progressive band from the Netherlands, which has been active since 1972.

More on Kayak can be found in the other topics in this board and on the following website(s):

Kayak´s Website:

Kayak on Facebook:

Kayak on iTunes:

Kayak on Proggnosis:

Kayak (NL) / Re: Kayak - Biography
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:31:02 AM »
2012 • 40th Anniversary

In 2012 Kayak celebrates their 40th anniversary with the 'Journey Through Time' tour that would continue into 2013. Then there's a book: a biography  (written by Irene Linders, based upon the views and notes of founder Ton Scherpenzeel). In the meantime, preparations are being made for new ambitious project, the third rock opera in the band's history: Cleopatra- The Crown of Isis. The double album is scheduled to be released mid 2014. Because of the fact that the costs of recording and releasing the new project are estimated to be considerably higher than the average album, Kayak starts a crowdfunding campaign, hoping for the financial support and loyalty of their fans.

Kayak (NL) / Re: Kayak - Biography
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:23:36 AM »
2006 • KAYAKoustic

Singer Bert Heerink’s unexpected departure has no serious consequences because Edward Reekers returns to the band after the succesful collaboration on ‘Nostradamus’, and Cindy Oudshoorn has become a full-fledged Kayak member.
There is no new album release this year. After the sudden demise of Nostradamus – despite the quite successful tour, the financial risk of a continuation of the project was too high – the band decide to opt for a small tour.
In the fall of 2006 there is the start of the KAYAKoustic Tour, which runs until the beginning of 2007. The band's original intent, an almost acoustical show, is watered down because of the late announcement: there are not enough theatre bookings to do the tour as planned, so a number of clubs has to be added to do the tour.
Eventually, a semi-acoustical approach is adopted, in which a great number of old songs that have rarely been played live before, like ‘Daughter or Son’ or ‘What’s in a Name’, were transformed by completely new arrangements.
In the theatre shows the strong vocal line up is emphasized: while Ton Scherpenzeel plays the grand piano, the guitarists stick to their acoustical instruments, Pim to his brushes and hotrods, and Jan van Olffen excels on double bass. Some of the shows of the tour have been recorded for a CD that is meant to be released in 2007.

2007-2008 • Coming Up For Air

A few months after the last KAYAKoustic concert the live album from that tour is released in May 2007. Just like the tour this release is on a small scale: the CD can only be ordered directly through Kayak’s internet web shop. The rest of the year there are no more gigs, as the band concentrates on writing and recording a new studio album, planned for an early 2008 release: ‘Coming Up For Air’, that will also once again take the group to the theatres and clubs of Holland. No rock opera this time, like the last two albums ‘Merlin’ and ‘Nostradamus’, but a ‘regular’ CD with fifteen songs without any conceptual connection.
The tour is also marked by the 35th anniversary of Kayak. In February 1973 ‘Lyrics’, the bands first single, was released. In the autumn of 2008 a live DVD is recorded in Paradiso , and subsequently ‘The Anniversary Box’, containing the Paradiso concert as well as a collection of fan chosen tracks is released.

2009 • Letters From Utopia

In 2009 Kayak releases a new album, a 2CD no less with 19 new songs, entitled ‘Letters From Utopia’. The line up had remained unchanged since 2005, the longest period in Kayak history. At the release of the album, shortly before the beginning of the tour, Kayak announces that it might just be their last tour. The band does not give a reason for this decision, but it is apparent that it is becoming increasingly difficult to set up a tour under professional conditions.
Having announced this, Kayak also made it clear that the band did not have the intention to quit the Dutch rock scene altogether though: they promised to keep on looking for other ways to continue.


On November 23rd disaster strikes: drummer Pim Koopman dies of a heart attack in the middle of the tour. The rest of the tour is, of course, cancelled. Kayak anncounces that the decision, whether to continue the band without Pim or not, will be taken when the time is right.


In 2010 the Pim Koopman Tribute concert takes place in the Amsterdam Paradiso hall, exactly (save one day) a year after Pim’s passing. Kayak performs a special set with guest artists or band members that Pim had worked with in the past as a producer and songwriter, like Pussycat, Diesel, The President, Jose, and Caren Maywood. Pim’s place as a drummer that night is taken by Hans Eijkenaar. A few weeks after the concert Kayak announces their intent to continue as a band with Hans as Pim’s successor on drums. A new album is planned for 2011.

2011 • Anywhere But Here

In 2011 the Tribute Concert DVD of the Paradiso concert in honour of Pim is released. The band works on a new album, that will be entitled ‘Anywhere But Here’ and is- no surprise- dedicated to Pim Koopman. Hans not only takes Pim’s place behind the drumkit, but also mixes the album. In September the album is released, and from October to December a re-energized Kayak embarks on a club tour.

Meanwhile, also having left their former label and bookings agency the year before, Kayak regain the copyrights to most of their releases since 1981 and set up their own webshop.

Kayak (NL) / Re: Kayak - Biography
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:23:06 AM »

2001 saw the release of two new Kayak albums: 'Chance for a LIVE Time' and 'Night Vision'. 'Chance for a LIVE Time' was the first real live album Kayak ever released ('Eyewitness' was recorded live in the studio, but the audience was added to the tracks later on). The album, recorded during the 'Close to the Fire'-tour 2000, reflected the new energy and inspiration within the band, that proved to be stronger than ever after Max Werner's sudden departure just before the tour started and Bert Heerink had to take over lead vocal duties. Shortly after the release of 'Chance for a LIVE Time' Kayak started working on their twelfth album called 'Night Vision', which was released in November. At the same time the band started working on ideas to rework the 'Merlin' suite (from the album of the same name that was originally released in 1981) into a full concept album and a theatre tour that included a real orchestra, planned for 2003.

line up: Bert Heerink, Rob Winter, Rob Vunderink, Pim Koopman, Ton Scherpenzeel, Bert Veldkamp.


2002 started off with the succesful 'Night Vision' tour. After the tour Ton, Pim and Irene concentrated on writing and arranging for the new Merlin 'rock opera', which would become the most demanding and most pretentious project Kayak had ever taken on. But not just that. To make it even more demanding, halfway through the year the band was confronted with two dramatic changes. The first major drawback was the split within record company and tourpromotor ProActs, which meant that Kayak had to look for a new record company to release the new album which was considered to be vital for the future of the band. The second blow came when shortly before the recordings began, guitarist Rob Winter announced his departure, as he found it would become impossible to combine his work with the Marco Borsato Band and Kayak. Rob's successor was found in Joost Vergoossen, who in recent years had played (among others) with the Ilse de Lange Band (with... former Kayak bass played Theo de Jong!) Joost joined the group in the autumn of 2002 and could start right away with his musical contribution to the new album. Another remarkable change in the line up took place: for the album and upcoming tour, that was based on the story of Merlin, and that was going to be presented in the form of a rock opera, Kayak needed another singer to fulfill the role of the scorceress Morgan (Merlin's adversary). Leadsinger Bert Heerink already played the part of Merlin, while second vocalist/guitarist Rob Vunderink was reinvented as Mordred, the illegitimate son of Morgan and her halfbrother, King Arthur. The quest for a female vocalist that could perform that role ended succesfully when Cindy Oudshoorn accepted the offer. Cindy had not only been a solo singer with a few singles (in Dutch) on her name, but had also worked as a session vocalist, live and in the studio, for acts like K-Otic and Ruth Jacott. Once more, the cast for Kayak was complete. And the show could go on- which it did. The second half of 2002 Kayak concentrated on recording their magnum opus 'Merlin- Bard of The Unseen'.


2003- 'Merlin- Bard of the Unseen' line up, f.l.t.r. Ton Scherpenzeel, Bert Heerink, Cindy Oudshoorn, Rob Vunderink, Joost Vergoossen, Pim Koopman and Bert Veldkamp.


In April 2005 Kayak is expected to release the CD 'Nostradamus- The Fate of Man'. Although recordings have already begun, at this moment it is still unsure whether or not all 28 (!) new songs will be featured on the CD. This would then have to be a 2CD because of the total track time of ca. 1 hr 50 minutes. Much will depend on the progress of the preparations for the tour. Kayak plans to release a DVD that will feature all the songs, after the tour.

For promotion only a special mini-CD will be released, that will contain the most 'accesible' or 'radio-friendly' songs.

Nostradamus - The Fate of Man - 2005 Tour

Kayak's line up (or should we say: cast?) for 2005's theatre tour 'Nostradamus- The Fate of Man' has been confirmed. The band (Ton Scherpenzeel, Pim Koopman, Bert Heerink, Rob Vunderink, Joost Vergoossen and Bert Veldkamp) will be joined by guest vocalists Monique vd Ster and Edward Reekers. Together with Bert and Rob they will perform the leading roles in the rock opera about the famous 16th century French astrologer.

Besides these (solo-)vocalists two more singers/dansers will be performing in the show. The name of the female singer/dancer that has been selected is Marjolein Teepen. Marjolein currently plays the leading role in the Opus One theatre production 'Alice in Wonderland', with music by Ton Scherpenzeel.

Kayak (NL) / Re: Kayak - Biography
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:22:39 AM »

Seventeen years would go by with only one sign of life of the band: In 1997 Kayak reunited for a TV program called "Classic Albums", that concentrated on the album "Royal Bed Bouncer", featuring the lineup that made this record in 1975. Meanwhile, all the original LP albums were re-released on CD, most of them with extra tracks and lost B-sides, some as compilations. Besides EMI and Phonogram, a new and specialized record company called Pseudonym Records took care of the re-release of several LP-s.

In the TV program it became clear that Ton, Pim and Max had been busy with demo recordings (of an unnamed "project"), but this unfortunately didn't attract too much interest from the major record companies. It looked like Kayak would never return.


line up: Rob Winter, Ton Scherpenzeel, Pim Koopman, Max Werner, Bert Veldkamp

In 1999 Kayak was asked by popular Dutch/Frisian band De Kast (once big fans) to be its guest on a TV program called "De Vrienden van Amstel Live." Kayak, for the first time in 17 years, agreed to perform live in front of an audience. Ton Scherpenzeel, Max Werner, Bert Veldkamp and Johan Slager, together with Pim Koopman's temporary replacement Marc Stoop (Pim, partly living in Ireland, couldn't make it in time), played this legendary gig in Café de Paap in The Hague in November 1999 together with members of De Kast. This marked the beginning of Kayak's "second" life. The demos that were slowly gathering dust in Ton's studio, surfaced again, and drew the attention of a new record label called ProActs, a project in which De Kast participated. And what no one had dared to hope, finally happened: Kayak (this time with Ton, Pim, Bert, Max and new guitarist Rob Winter) started working on its new album, "Close to The Fire." Released in May 2000, "Close to The Fire" got an extremely positive reception, partly because original singer Max Werner had again taken to the microphone, drawing fans from the early years. The old magic, the inspirational fire was back. Kayak also returned to the stage, this time as a six-piece band. Ex-Vandenberg singer Bert Heerink became the second lead vocalist, giving Max the opportunity to share the frontman responsibilities with somebody else and expand his percussion ambitions. With Bert, Kayak could also perform the songs that Edward Reekers used to sing, like "Ruthless Queen" and "Merlin", to name but a few. Unfortunately, severe health problems kept Max from maintaining his position as lead singer very long and he was forced to leave the band in the autumn of 2000. Soon after that it became clear he had never intended to stay with the band much longer than that first tour and would have quit anyhow. He was not really replaced, because Bert Heerink had already taken over some of his vocal duties, but an extra guitarist/vocalist was added, Rob Vunderink. Rob had played in bands like The Hammer and Diesel.


line up: Rob Winter, Ton Scherpenzeel, Bert Heerink, Bert Veldkamp, Rob Vunderink, Pim Koopman

Kayak (NL) / Re: Kayak - Biography
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:22:17 AM »

line up: Ton Scherpenzeel, Max Werner, Johan Slager, Charles Schouten, Theo de Jong

At the end of 1976 Pim and Bert were replaced by Charles Schouten and Theo de Jong. This line up recorded "Starlight Dancer." The title track, one of the band's all-time classics, reached number 14 in the Dutch charts, and Kayak seemed to be back. The American release of the same name (a compilation of the Dutch LPs "The Last Encore" and "Starlight Dancer") was even a minor success in the USA, with "Want You to Be Mine" peaking at 55 in the Billboard charts. Kayak was even voted Most Promising Band of the Year by the influentual American music paper Record World. But as time went by, musical differences between the original and new members appeared to be unreconcilable, and within 18 months the band (or what was left of it) again had to find a new bassplayer and drummer. And not only that...


line up: Ton Scherpenzeel, Johan Slager, Max Werner, Edward Reekers, Katherine Lapthorn, Peter Scherpenzeel, Irene Linders

What followed was a very chaotic year, in which the band's break up often seemed near, because in spite of the possibility of an American tour and the long-awaited international breakthrough, lead vocalist Max Werner made it clear he wanted to withdraw as Kayak's frontman. Werner had always felt like a drummer, and had more or less happened to find himself trapped in the lead singer role because of his unique voice. When the drum chair became vacant, he told the others of his wish to become the band's new drummer, which meant that Kayak had to start looking for a new leadsinger. All plans had to be discarded and the group basically had to start from scratch. Edward Reekers became the new vocalist. With him three "newcomers" joined the band: Peter Scherpenzeel (Ton's younger brother) signed on as the new bass player, while backing vocalists Irene Linders (Ton's wife and lyricist for many of his songs from then on) and Katherine Lapthorn were added to give the band a whole new identity. All these changes, and the release of the new album "Phantom of the Night", meant a significant break with the past in more than one way -- for many old fans this band had little to do with the original Kayak. But the "new" group suddenly and unexpectedly reached a bigger audience than ever before. "Ruthless Queen" was Kayak's first and only really major hit single (number 4 in the Dutch charts). The album even made it to number one, being awarded platina for over 100,000 copies sold in Holland.

Ton, Max, Johan, Irene, Peter, Katherine, Edward in Toppop

The next album, "Periscope Life" (1980), was recorded in Los Angeles. It was similar in style, but lacked the big hit and surprise factor that made its predecessor such a phenomenal success. However, it still outsold the first five albums. With its next album, "Merlin" (1981), Kayak returned to its original progressive and symphonic rock roots, with a suite about the legendary medieval magician on side A. This album, together with "Royal Bed Bouncer", was generally considered to be Kayak's best work. With the decline of commercial success however, personal and musical struggles within the band surfaced. The desperate financial situation that manager Hirschland had led the band and its members into only made things worse.


line up: Ton Scherpenzeel, Johan Slager, Peter Scherpenzeel, Edward Reekers, Max Werner

While Max Werner celebrated a number one single as solo singer (!) in Germany with "Rain In May", the band finally collapsed under its own weight. Kayak (now without the two female backing singers) still managed to produce one semi-live album, "Eyewitness." This LP contained three new songs, but mostly consisted of recordings that were done 'live' in the studio, with only minor repairs and dubs added. The applause was overdubbed, something that became clear when later the CD version of the album was released: Ton Scherpenzeel explained in the liner notes that he had decided to have the album edited and re-released without the clapping and yelling audience, something that had always irritated him so much that he had never been able to listen to "Eyewitness" himself in its original form. This album would be the last that was heard from Kayak for a long time.

Kayak (NL) / Kayak - Biography
« on: October 23, 2015, 10:21:59 AM »
The History of Kayak:


line up: Ton Scherpenzeel, Ron van de Werff, Chiel van Praag, Pim Koopman

Kayak's roots are in the Dutch town of Hilversum, where founding members and neighbourhood friends Ton Scherpenzeel (keyboards, bass guitar) and Pim Koopman (drums, guitars) played together in several bands like Balderdash (1967) and High Tide Formation (1970, pictured above). Guitarist Johan Slager played in HTF's final line up until the group disbanded in 1971. That same year Ton, Pim and Johan began to record a number of demos (a project called 'Ten Ride Ticket') and occasionally played live (as Alta Quies). Around this time both Ton and Pim started studying at the Hilversum Music Academy, where fellow student Max Werner joined forces with Ton and Pim by lending his unique voice to their musical efforts. Ton's main classical instrument was the double bass, Pim and Max both studied percussion. When bassplayer Cees van Leeuwen (replacing Frenchman Jean Michel Marion) completed the first line up, the group that was to become Kayak managed to get a recording contract with EMI- after being dismissed by Phonogram who had an initial interest in the band, even recorded some demos with them, but in the end let go when Ton and Pim refused to record other material than their own.


line up: Max Werner, Pim Koopman, Cees van Leeuwen, Johan Slager, Ton Scherpenzeel

Kayak was launched by EMI and manager Frits Hirschland as a new supergroup, although the individual members were hardly 20 years old, had little experience as a live band and basically had not proven anything in the music business other than having an original and stubborn mind of their own. The first two albums, "See See the Sun" and "Kayak II" delivered three modest hits ("Lyrics", "Mammoth" and "Wintertime"), but more importantly made Kayak's name as a talented young band with a growing progressive following.


line up: Ton Scherpenzeel, Pim Koopman, Bert Veldkamp, Johan Slager, Max Werner

In 1974 bass player Cees van Leeuwen decided he couldn't combine his university studies with the hectic tour and recording schedule of the band, and left. He was replaced by Bert Veldkamp. In this lineup the band recorded its third album, "Royal Bed Bouncer", which generated another modest hit single, "Chance for a Lifetime." If the first two albums showed an even balance between the two main writers of the band, Pim and Ton, RBB showed Scherpenzeel at a creative peak. The band kept on touring and by 1976 was an established top act on the Dutch/Belgian music scene. A row between manager Hirschland and EMI lead to the departure of the group from EMI. It turned to Phonogram, the same company that in 1971 had refused to sign the band. With LP number four, "The Last Encore", Pim Koopman found himself solidly back in the writer's chair with Ton. The first big setback came later that year, when Pim left the band. Bass player Bert Veldkamp also quit, so within two months the band lost its complete rhythm section and one of the group's main songwriters.

Camel (UK) / Re: Camel - Biography
« on: October 21, 2015, 06:37:21 PM »
Upon hearing an album by a group called "Happy The Man" in 1979, Andrew Latimer and Andy Ward immediately agreed Kit Watkins was a keyboardist they wanted in CAMEL. Bassist Colin Bass had been highly recommended and became Camel's lasting bassist. Jan Schelhaas had remained with CAMEL after the 'BREATHLESS' tour both for his playing skills and his easygoing temperament. Watkins and Bass arrived during rehearsals at Wood Farm, Suffolk, in early '79. A remarkable technician, Kit impressed all who heard him; Colin's solid, earthy sound melded with Ward in a seemingly perfect harmony.

For awhile, it appeared CAMEL would settle but, again, unavoidable circumstance would prevail. CAMEL worked nearly 12 months of '79, enjoying only short breaks in-between recording and touring. Originally titled 'Endangered Species', this title would be changed at the last minute to 'I CAN SEE YOUR HOUSE FROM HERE' a poor attempt at humour that would give the band problems, not only from their advertisers. The intensive schedule would create conflict and misunderstandings between the musicians. Watkins left the band shortly before CAMEL entered the studio to record 'NUDE' in 1981, but he would return for the tour and leave again immediately after.

The recording of 'NUDE' and the subsequent promotional tour would be the most devastating for CAMEL. In mid-1981, as he would tell 'Q' Magazine some 10 years later, Andy Ward succumbed to alcohol and drug abuse and attempted suicide, unsuccessfully to the relief of all. But it rendered Ward unable to play drums in the foreseeable future. In shock, the band dissolved, the remainder of the tour was canceled and recording for the next album was postponed in the hope that Ward would recover...

Internal problems of the band were not the concern of Decca Records to which CAMEL were contractually bound for a specific recorded output. Decca refused to be put off any longer and upped the pressure for a hit single. With delays no longer possible, Latimer had to accept that his friend and drummer would not recover and thus, with Andrew Latimer the sole surviving member of CAMEL, 'THE SINGLE FACTOR' was recorded and duly released in April 1982. Writing on demand had produced an odd mix of songs but entering the studio provided an unexpected bright spot. During the recording of NUDE in studio 3 at Abbey Road Studios, the Alan Parsons Project were recording just down the hall in studio 2. Curious by nature, singer Chris Rainbow and bassist/singer David Paton popped in on the CAMEL sessions and new friendships were forged. Unbeknownst to all at the time, this laid the groundwork for a new lineup. Eventually, 'THE SINGLE FACTOR' would see a whole new line of artists including Rainbow and Paton aswell as Anthony Phillips (former Genesis), Francis Monkmon (Sky), and guest drummers Simon Phillips (The Who, Jeff Beck, Toto), Dave Mattacks (Fairport Convention) and Graham Jarvis (Cliff Richard). Time had healed the rift between Latimer and Bardens and although their opposing musical styles would not see eye-to-eye again, Bardens made a guest appearance on the album, forging new friendships himself that would later become 'Keats'. But Ward was unable to appear on the album and hoping to keep the matter private, CAMEL naively included a simple footnote in the liner notes that Andy Ward did not appear due to an injury to his hand.

The promotional tour for 'THE SINGLE FACTOR' turned out to be just the breath of fresh air Latimer needed. The mix of personalities was magical with a ceaseless, positive energy from Chris Rainbow who, with Paton and Tosh (Scotsmen, all three) maintained a flow of laughter from start to finish of the tour. Kit Watkins had returned for his third CAMEL tour and the level of musicianship delighted audiences. Latimer would call it "the funniest tour I've ever been on".

It would be a temporary respite, however, for soon after in late October, manager Max Hole, unexpectedly announced his departure for a position with a major record company, leaving CAMEL effectively without management. Then, as 1983 dawned, the inevitable came to be. Unable to stop abusing alcohol, Ward could not continue with CAMEL. On a sad January day at the offices of Fleet Street lawyers, Ward's association with CAMEL ended. Nearly 13 years to the day he had joined Ferguson and Latimer, Andy Ward formally left CAMEL never to perform with them again.

The loss of Ward left Latimer in limbo and musical pursuits, for the most part, were overshadowed by the need to concentrate on sorting out legal problems that had plagued the band for years. Former manager Geoff Jukes had filed a lawsuit against CAMEL claiming past commissions from CAMEL's earlier days. Having literally abandoned the band in 1978 at the point of Bardens' departure and upon the eve of a world tour, Jukes' lawsuit would ultimately prove futile. The legal battle began to heat up by 1983. Latimer battled the suit alone despite all members being named and it would take 5 stressful years at great expense, both spiritually and financially, before settlement in Camel's favour. In this year of change, Latimer fought hard. CAMEL was worth the battle.

There were musical bright spots in 1983 including a new contract with Decca Records which had just been taken over by PolyGram. In preparation for the new recording committment, Latimer had gotten in touch with Dutch keyboardist, Ton Scherpenzeel (KAYAK) whose playing he had always admired. Ton visited London and the two musicians quickly made plans to record Camel's new studio album 'STATIONARY TRAVELLER'.

'STATIONARY TRAVELLER' was released in April of '84. Flush with critical acclaim of the album, CAMEL were once again on the road. Former CAMEL bassist Colin Bass returned to the UK, after having moved abroad in 1981. Bass got in touch with Latimer and the former bandmates patched up past differences. Chris Rainbow joined the tour and Paul Burgess (Jethro Tull, 10cc) who had approached Latimer prior to recording 'STATIONARY TRAVELLER' did so again for the tour. Although not fond of touring, Ton Scherpenzeel never let it show. Ton made a superb addition to CAMEL that thrilled KAYAK and CAMEL fans, though his fear of flying would severely limit his time with CAMEL to the disappointment of fans and musicians alike.

Meanwhile, producer Mike Mansfield had heard the band and wanted to include CAMEL in his upcoming television series, "Mirror Image", for the UK's Channel 4. Video recording plans mingled with tour production and an atmosphere of excitement followed throughout the tour and carried on into post-production for the live album and video that was to follow. CAMEL participated in the video recording of extra visuals for the broadcast and the pleasure of this experience concluded the year on a high note.

The live performance video and CD of the 'STATIONARY TRAVELLER' tour was appropriately called 'PRESSURE POINTS' . CAMEL wanted to include the entire concert but due to lighting problems on the night of recording, the first half was too dark for Mansfield's approval so only the second half of the performance made it to broadcast and a video cassette. Astonishingly, the earlier portion of the concert would actually be erased by PolyGram and lost forever! Decca Records (now owned by PolyGram) flexed their muscles and insisted on dividing the concert material so that both recordings had different track listings, under the auspicious assertion that it created more diversity for the buying public. There was an added pleasure for many fans when Richie Close joined the tour at the 11th hour on backup keyboards. Sadly, Richie died just a few years later from Legionnaire's disease. He will be forever young on Camel's video.

The lawsuit with Jukes reached fever pitch by 1985. Latimer divided his time between lawyer's offices and record companies as he sought an outlet for Camel's new material titled ''DUST AND DREAMS''. Each pursuit was filled with roadblocks but the lawsuit would finally take a sudden turn for the better. As Latimer scrutinized old contracts it came to light that CAMEL were owed royalties that had never been paid by Camel's management/production company, GAMA Records. Highly charged by this discovery, Latimer gathered support from Bardens, Ward and Ferguson to file a suit against GAMA. This lawsuit, by comparison, would be brief and glorious. On 25th March 1985, long overdue, they finally reaped the benefits of their past work together. Reunited in the same attorney's office that had accepted Ward's resignation from CAMEL just two years earlier, happier times now prevailed. The former bandmates settled their lawsuit with GAMA and received their first of many royalty payment to come. Formalities completed, they celebrated at a local pub until closing time. Old wounds healed, memories flourished and, though they no longer had interest in playing together, all parted as friends.

Geoff Jukes would finally accept the futility of his lawsuit and offer settlement. After lawyer's fees, court costs and general expenses were paid, CAMEL received "...just enough money to buy dinner for one (in a Bistro)". But it was a moral victory of momentous proportions and the end of a long haul for CAMEL.

Since the PolyGram takeover, the changes at Decca had reached the extreme and Latimer could see that CAMEL needed to get out of their contract. After a 10 year association, Decca and CAMEL would mutually and amicably agree to go their separate ways on 10th April 1985. CAMEL was free to search for a more like-minded record company, yet this newly found freedom also brought a shock to Latimer when he would later remark he "couldn't get arrested with new CAMEL material". That material would evolve to become ''DUST AND DREAMS''.

When not a lawyer's office, Latimer had hawked CAMEL for a deal. In late 1987, he began negotiating with EG Records, on a seemingly successful course. A small label, EG hosted such names as Brian Eno, Robert Fripp, Brian Ferry to name a few, and a CAMEL/EG marriage seemed a promising step. But negotiations dragged on for 6 months only to come to an abrupt end when Latimer was asked why Peter Frampton wasn't in the band any longer...

Disillusioned, Latimer made a drastic change. In mid-1988, he sold his London home and moved to America. He would take a 1-year sabbatical and during this time, he realised the "slap in the face" EG Records had given him was the sign of the future for CAMEL. He decided the second half of 'DUST AND DREAMS' "wasn't quite right", and rewrote it in 1990. He used the proceeds from the sale of his London home to finance construction of a small studio where he recorded and produced 'DUST AND DREAMS'. He then set out, once again, to find a deal but this time around, 'DUST AND DREAMS' was a finished product and things would be different. Or so he thought...

Latimer would look back on his experiences and eventually laugh. With 'DUST AND DREAMS' completed and ready for release, finding a record company seemed a mere matter of formality. But the same attitudes greeted him and time dragged on without success. After a lengthy and unproductive meeting with a Virgin Records A&R rep, Latimer, along with partner Susan Hoover, decided to use the remaining finances from the sale of the London home to set up their own production company, Camel Productions (CP). They would release 'DUST AND DREAMS' themselves.

'DUST AND DREAMS' would give Latimer yet another shock only this time it was the shock of unprecedented success. Dealing directly with distributors who knew of CAMEL, sales took off. The high energy output was intoxicating. CP soon began organising a world tour and set about licensing Camel's first album for release on compact disc. Thus began the resurgence of CAMEL with the two recordings most poignant... the first, 'CAMEL' and the newest, 'DUST AND DREAMS'.

During the move to set up the studio, Latimer stumbled upon some old reel-to-reel tapes. These rare gems would launch the hugely successful 'Offical Bootleg' series. Latimer was disgusted by the poor sound quality and extortionate prices bootleggers charged for such recordings. Soon, 'WARNING: CAMEL ON THE ROAD 1972' would become the flagship for this series, the artwork inspired by a bumper sticker a fan had sent to Latimer years before which proved amusingly appropriate. It was lovingly mastered and fairly priced. By August, CAMEL were ready to hit the road after a 7 year absence. Paul Burgess resumed his drum stool and keyboardist Mickey Simmonds (FISH, Mike Oldfield) was drafted in. Colin Bass and Andrew Latimer were now the mainstays of CAMEL and fans greeted CAMEL with open arms. So emotional would this tour become, it would find some bandmembers fighting to hold back tears on-stage.

The tour ended at London's Town & Country Theatre (now defunct). At the hotel afterwards, there would be a celebration that lasted long into the night.

In early '93 as Latimer was preparing to produce 'NEVER LET GO', a live recording from the '92 tour, sadness loomed on the horizon. By March, instead of working in the studio, Latimer would see his father die and begin a new learning process in life. A musician himself, Stan Latimer had been the one to recognise young Andrew's talent and send him to lessons. The experience stunned Latimer and delayed production of 'NEVER LET GO' until August '93. Afterwards, he spent personal time with his family. As they shared stories and recollections of Stan Latimer and their mutual past, Latimer discovered his fraternal roots. In 1994, he returned to the studio seeking solace in music and began work on the album that would become 'HARBOUR OF TEARS'. Latimer would pour his heart into the album and end it with a track titled 'The Hour Candle (A song for my father)' which had been inspired by a hymn sung at the funeral. Fans would write to share their experiences of loss and recovery. Latimer's grief would gradually ease and CAMEL began to prepare for another tour.

CAMEL prepared to set out on the road once again. On the '92 tour, fans proved that absence does indeed make the heart grow fonder and turned out in droves. The '97 tour was even more successful, reaching new territories in a now opened Eastern Block including the Czech Republic and Poland. CAMEL would see the customary changes in their makeup, with Paul Burgess and Mickey Simmonds struggling to balance time with their young children and life on the road. Dave Stewart would take Burgess' place and Foss Patterson would replace Simmonds. Thus, another live performance was captured on tape and video recorded for posterity.

In 1998, joining the highly successful collection of live recordings, 'COMING OF AGE' was released on both video and compact disc. Recorded in Los Angeles, California, the performance was attended by fans and friends alike including original keyboardist, Peter Bardens whose appearance was announced to the audience when Latimer dedicated 'Never Let Go' to "Me old mate, Pete". By evening's end, an impromptu party ensued and the two musicians privately reminisced until the early hours while the rest of the entourage danced the night away.

'COMING OF AGE',would prove a superb visual and audio testament to the enduring strength of CAMEL. The appearance of the Hale-Bopp comet in the heavens added an allure to the tour, seeming to follow the band around the world. This tour would be as emotional as the '92 tour. The affection for CAMEL was tangible.

As the 20th Century wound towards the 21st (metaphorically speaking), CAMEL would reach a quiet turning point. No longer bound by the shackles of record company whims and pressures, CAMEL has attained a level of acceptance and maturity. Independence is hard work, but ultimately satisfying, and artistic freedom a price worth paying. CAMEL prepared for the final release of the century. Bass, long since involved in the world music scene, had given Latimer a gift of a book entitled 'World Music - A Rough Guide'. In the section on Arabic music, Latimer read about a form of musical poetry called 'rajaz'. Sung in ancient times, 'rajaz' was a spontaneous composition inspired by the rhythm of the camels footsteps to help the weary travelers reach their destination. Latimer was smitten with the idea that the rhythm of the camel would help people reach their journey's end. Returning to his musical roots, Latimer composed chiefly on the guitar and in October 1999, 'RAJAZ' was released. A beautiful collection of songs, hypnotically interwoven, 'RAJAZ' also welcomed the return of Ton Scherpenzeel on keyboards (courtesy of CD-ROM). Sending files electronically and communicating directly, the two former bandmates plan future projects together including a guest appearance by Latimer on a Y2K Kayak album.

For more than 27 years, CAMEL have been and endearing, enduring musical force. Players have come and gone; some have returned. Some albums have been better than others but this is always an assertion for the beholder. Few agree on which album is their best. But there is no doubt that the single, most durable force behind CAMEL has been and always will be Andrew Latimer. Latimer has guided CAMEL through the highs and lows of musical tastes, trends and fashions. He has, from time to time, stumbled beneath the pressures of outside forces and these times are left to the listener to decipher. But all will agree that Latimer has never compromised the sound, feel and integrity of CAMEL. Latimer has stayed true to himself and it is his 'sound' that transports you back or holds you in the present. Like good friends getting together after a long break, you pick up right where you left off, as if you'd never parted.

Official website:

Camel (UK) / Camel - Biography
« on: October 21, 2015, 06:37:09 PM »
Copied from the original topic by Jethro Fish on the old Bazaar.

By August of '72, CAMEL were signed to MCA Records. They quickly entered the studio to record their first self-titled album, 'CAMEL'. A collection of individual songs, chiefly from Latimer and Bardens, the album was greeted with muted success and MCA did not take an option for a second album. By now, the group had acquired management, Geoff Jukes and Max Hole of Gemini Artists (later to become GAMA Records), and moved to Decca Records where they would remain for 10 years. The push & pull relationship between Latimer and Bardens brought out the best from their compositional skills. They inspired one another with their individual solo work both in the studio and on stage. Energies were high. CAMEL gigged 9 months of the year and firmly established a reputation for their excellent live sound.

Their second album, 'MIRAGE', heightened their profile and the album sleeve attracted the unwanted attention of the USA branch of Camel cigarettes who demanded the band change the cover or face legal action. The USA record company quickly fashioned a new sleeve to avoid legal hassles. The original sleeve remained unchanged throughout the rest of the world as Geoff Jukes had already struck a deal with the European branch of the cigarette company to release tiny packets of cigarettes (5 cigarettes to a packet) using the CAMEL artwork, including track-listing. So enamoured were the executives in Europe, they visited the band in the studio trying to talk CAMEL into renaming the songs on 'MIRAGE' (e.g., "Twenty To The Pack"). They also wanted CAMEL to cover their amps with camel skins, allow advertisements and give away cigarettes at all the performances. The latter was successful as Jukes had struck a deal the band were never privy to. The band were getting 'belligerent' and a sarcastically amusing Peter Bardens suggested an album song-title of "Twenty Sticks Of Cancer".

Thus ended the association twixt the beast and the leaf.

In 1975, CAMEL 'concept' album came about. For 'MIRAGE' Latimer had written 'White Rider' (inspired by Tolkein's 'Lord Of The Rings') and Ferguson suggested doing a an entire album based on a book. All band members were fond of reading at the time so each set out in search of a good story. Bardens suggested 'Siddhartha' and 'Steppenwolf' but when Ferguson suggested Paul Gallico's 'THE SNOW GOOSE' the emotional appeal was strong. 'THE SNOW GOOSE' took fans by surprise. Entirely instrumental, 'THE SNOW GOOSE' earned them Melody Maker's "Brightest Hope" award and firmly established the band with a strong and loyal fan base. It also took author Paul Gallico by surprise. Gallico, a fierce opponent of cigarette smoking, hated the name of the band believing it to be connected to the cigarette company and threatened to sue if the title was not changed. Legalities observed, the album title had the additional words "inspired by" and the threat was subdued. This behind-the-scene drama had no effect on the appeal of the album. On 17th October 1975, accompanied by the London Symphony Orchestra, CAMEL performed 'THE SNOW GOOSE' at The Royal Albert Hall to a sold-out crowd.

In early '76, 'MOONMADNESS' brought greater critical acclaim in the USA. Producer Rhett Davies created an open, intimate sound for'MOONMADNESS', and the 'concept' was more ethereal with inspiration derived from the individual musician's characters. Yet'MOONMADNESS' would become the swansong for some. A jazzy influence had impressed itself upon CAMEL and, during the European tour, the dynamic sound of saxophonist Mel Collins marked the first change in the sound of Camel after Ferguson had encouraged Collins' inclusion in the band.

Not long after Andy Ward was pushing for a more complicated rhythm section, a style that matched neither Feguson's ability nor interest. This would be the first major change CAMEL would see. In the early days of 1977, bassist Doug Ferguson left CAMEL never to appear with them again. The loss of Ferguson's quiet strength would prove, in years beyond, to have the greatest impact on the band...

The first major shift in CAMEL's lineup created 'RAIN DANCES'. Although not an "official member" of CAMEL, Mel Collins would spend much of his time in the studio and on the road with the band. Preferring to maintain his independent status as a session player, Mel would continue to appear with CAMEL on and off until 1985.

Richard Sinclair, formerly from Canterbury's Caravan, possessed the jazzier style Andy Ward had hoped for but the mix of personalities did not posses the balance of earlier days. Inevitable change began to gather momentum. Pressure for a hit single was brought to bear from the management and Decca Records.

Latimer and Bardens struggled with their opposing styles of writing, complicating instead of complimenting their relationship. Camel's sound was further affected by a new producer, Mick Glossop. Upon release, 'BREATHLESS' proved a bit of a shock to fans with its unusual combination of pop, jazz and progressive. It was loved by some, hated by others.

'BREATHLESS' entered the charts and quickly exited shortly thereafter. But chart success was not the last change CAMEL would encounter in '78. On 30th July, just before Camel's tour and amidst a storm of disagreements, keyboardist Peter Bardens left the band...

The split with Peter Bardens had been acrimonious but unavoidable. Bardens went straight into rehearsals with former bandmate Van Morrison for an album, "Wavelength", and tour. Bardens also promptly signed a lucrative solo deal with Arista Records and soon released 'Heart To Heart'.

But Andy Ward and Andrew Latimer decided to embrace the opportunity to expand the band. Two keyboard players would create an interplay CAMEL had not been able to experiment with previously. They contacted Richard Sinclair's cousin Dave Sinclair, and his former bandmate Jan Schelhaas for the '78 tour to promote 'BREATHLESS'. Although this lineup had no recorded output, Dave Sinclair had made a quiet appearance on 'BREATHLESS', performing keyboards on "You Make Me Smile" and "Rainbows End", a song Latimer had written for Bardens.

The 'BREATHLESS' tour lasted 3 months. The pressures of live performing took toll. By tours end, Dave Sinclair would return to Canterbury and Richard Sinclair would be asked to leave CAMEL...

Camel (UK) / Camel - Links & Info
« on: October 21, 2015, 06:34:07 PM »
Camel is a progressive rock band from the UK, which has been active from 1971 - present.

More on Camel can be found in the other topics from this board and on the following website(s):

Camel´s Website:

Camel on Facebook:

Camel on Proggnosis:

Tangerine Dream (Germany) / Re: Tangerine Dream - Quantum Key (2015)
« on: October 21, 2015, 06:20:09 PM »
Check out for some soundbites of TD´s forthcoming album.

Listening Profiles / Obi´s playlist
« on: October 21, 2015, 04:38:46 PM »
Listening to the king of blues, B.B. King.

Tangerine Dream (Germany) / Tangerine Dream - Quantum Key (2015)
« on: October 21, 2015, 04:22:14 PM »
On the 20th ofnovember 2015, Tangerine Dream will release a new cupdisc called Quantum Key.

Quantum Key will be the vanguard of the coming Quantum Gate album which Thorsten, Ulrich and Hoshiko are currently working on.

Edgar Froese, the head and founder of Tangerine Dream, had the wonderful idea of translating the current knowledge of the quantum physics - which he was very much interested in - into sound and already started this project before his sad death in January 2015. The cupdisc Mala Kunia was the first music out of “The Quantum Years” series which was published in November 2014 on the occasion of the MMW Festival concert in Melbourne.

It was a great fortune that Edgar still had the chance to discuss his vision with the remaining band members and that Bianca, Edgar's wife, decided to continue with Tangerine Dream. She knew that Thorsten, Ulrich and Hoshiko could face this huge challenge with their beautiful talents. At the same time this task would be a unique chance for the music coming into life. So the band continued developing these musical ideas after Edgar's sudden "change of his cosmic address" and you will have the chance now to listen to some wonderful tracks. In honour of Edgar!

I´m curious.

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