November 16, 2022

Rare TEB recordings at Top Gear on January 1971!

Avant-garde folk musician, TEB expert and friend Sean Breadin points me to this YouTube (audio) post in which the Third Ear Band plays at BBC Radio 1 "Sunday Show" on  January 17th, 1971. 
Only three tracks ("Water", "Eternity In D" and "Druid") but of extraordinary charm and high intensity.  
Enjoy it!
 
 
 no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)

November 05, 2022

Roy Hollingworth's prediction about the great Paul Buckmaster.

"Melody Maker" columnist Roy Hollingworth had already figured it out, and in December 1970 he wrote a brief prediction of the success that the brilliant musician, composer, arranger, and producer PAUL BUCKMASTER would herald. 

By that point in his career, Paul had already worked with Third Ear Band live and in the studio, David Bowie, Elton John and Leonard Cohen, but within a few months he would be a major contributor both to the composition and realization of the TEB's "Macbeth" soundtrack, but also to that misunderstood masterpiece that is Miles Davis' "On the Corner," also released in 1972... Later, History attested that Hollingsworth's prediction was correct and today it continues to be a great regret for many friends and fans to have lost a personality of this stature. The pretext of this little archival find allows us once again to remember and celebrate him as we should.

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October 25, 2022

New dates discovered of The Giant Sun Trolley live gigs?!?

During my research on the Edgar  Broughton Band for the book I'm writing, as well as some articles on the Third Ear Band I'm posting in this archive, I found references to dates of concerts by The Giant Sun Trolley

Dates unknown to this day that seems to suggest that the duo Tomlin-Sweeney (sometimes a trio with Roger Bunn), had played little and almost exclusively in London.
In fact, I have found dates of concerts in the provinces dating back to 1967, all in Coventry, where the band was introduced only as GIANT TROLLEY or GIANT TROLLY.

Asking Carolyn, Glen's missus, she doesn't remember much ("Sorry can't be positive about these memories. The only gig I can remember Dave doing with Glen which was outside London was a jazz and poetry..."); so she asked Steve Pank, former driver and manager of the band, and he replied that "GST didn't play anymore after UFO"... 

So I asked Dave Tomlin, now living in Hamspead Heath London "reasonably well although pretty old now. However, no complaints." Because I sent him a list of dates to check, he wrote quite laconically: "The list of Sun Trolley dates are fake unless some other group took over the name but I never heard of them."

At this point, any fans memory is well-accepted. 

Here is a list of documented appearances, which update the chronology on the band, taken from newspapers of the period (most of all from the Coventry Evening Telegraph):

 

September 23th, 1967 

Coventry, The Newlands (Flamingo Club) 

November 11th, 1967

Coventry, The Walsgrave

November 24th, 1967 

Coventry, The Walsgrave 

"Stars of Radio One!!!" 

December 10th, 1967 - Coventry, Hotel Leofric

with Jimmy Cliffe and The Shakedown Sound

December 16th, 1967 

Coventry, The Red House Hotel, Carnaby Club

December 23th, 1967

Coventry, The Walsgrave (Flamingo Club) 

"A big Christmas rave-up with THE SUN TROLLY" 

February 2nd, 1968

Coventry, The Walsgrave

"Another sensational night with THE SUN TROLLY"

February 11th, 1968 

Coventry, The Red House Hotel, New Carnaby Club

 

This is a rare photo Dave sent me with him (on right) and Joe Gannon (left) playing in London 1966 for  announcing the forthcoming Notting Hill Carvival in 1967. The picture is copyright Adam Ritchie and any use is under permission.
Gannon did the light-shows of the Pink Floyd in 1966 at Roundhouse.

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September 09, 2022

The Ferlaina Archive and the extraordinary discovery of unrealised TEB photos at Hyde Park! - part fourth.

This is the fourth and last part of the story... 

(first part here, second part here, part three here).
 

4.

What is exceptional is that photographer Pino Callá was in the fateful "right place" at the "right time"; he could not have been aware in those days of the historical importance that event would have in the youth counterculture of the time.

"Surely he was sent by some magazine to do a story. However he was very shrewd," Ferlaina says, "because first of all there are pictures of Mick Jagger in the trailer, so that means he followed it well. He was good because he photographed everything, he photographed the Rolling Stones from every angle, but he didn't limit himself to them, as anyone else would have done. He photographed everybody there, he documented everything. He did a 187-shot shoot."

Having become the rightful owner of these photos, Ferlaina has tried to enhance the heritage by promoting exhibitions and producing a self-published catalog of the Rolling's photos in Hyde Park, but his focus in recent times has turned to selling the archive.

"What I've managed to do," he admits, "is to make a point of attention that has been vented in a few markets ... that's enough for me, I don't want to be a gallerist or a photo agency. Mine is a work of a scholar, researcher, I don't want to organize and take care of logistics.... I would like to sell the whole archive or even a part of it (e.g., the Rolling Stones shots with the Led Zeppelin collection)... I am willing to consider any interest and offers. In the meantime, though, but I would like to make a photo book with these photos, perhaps in collaboration with Ghettoraga!?"

Glen Sweeney in the backstage.

For all fans of the Third Ear Band, however, Ferlaina has already planned an event for the next year: from January 20th to February 23th, 2023 , at the archive in Milan (via Muzio Scevola, 4), there will be a photo exhibition of all the band's shots (and the King Crimson's one) in Hyde Park!

To stay up-to-date on Archivio Ferlaina initiatives, this is the website address: http://www.archivioferraina.com/

Richard Coff and  girlfriend

Paul Minns, his wife Mary Haynes and son.

Paul Minns playing oboe on stage.
 no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)

August 29, 2022

In August 1969 "Beat Instrumental on "Alchemy" with a veiled irony...

In August 1969, clearly out of time, "Beat Instrumental" devoted a blurb to "Alchemy", which had come out two months earlier. It's four shrill words that echo, with veiled irony ("seeking the fifth dimension"...), the notes written by Glen on the inside cover. But at the end they recognized, goodness gracious them, that "they aren't a bad band at all."

 

no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)

August 23, 2022

The Ferlaina Archive and the extraordinary discovery of unrealised TEB photos at Hyde Park! - part three.

This is the third part of the story... 
(first part here, second part here).
 
3.

"So I engage in the sale of photographs, especially from the 1970s - things like Living Teathre... - and art books and catalogs. At home I have particular books, for example on Conceptual Art.... which I have 'fed' on over the years, but they didn't sell much, it was almost like an exchange of stickers between enthusiasts ... but the photos, those did sell well. I used to buy them on eBay, for example, for 50-60 euros and resell them for 100, you didn't have a huge margin but it worked..."
 
Ferlaina during the interview.
At some point Ferlaina had the intuition to broaden the commercial discourse to music, his great passion, and began to frequent antique markets as a buyer, finding very interesting material without worrying about copyrights and agencies. One day he happened to go there early in the morning, at five o'clock, and came across a stall with boxes...

"I asked the people selling them if they would give me first refusal to see them before the others.... 'How many are you selling them for,' I asked him? 'Five euros each, but if you get some I'll make even less. I selected an initial bundle and went home in seventh heaven. I saw that the name of an agency was printed behind the photos and, not knowing anything about it, I inquired, worried about the possible legal consequences (embezzlement...). I found out that the agency no longer existed--but who was the photographer? I would have liked to involve him in some initiative, like organizing an exhibition. At that time I had organized an exhibition at the Palazzo delle Esposizioni of Novegro (Milan), on "Photography and otherness", and I had become interested in the work of an Italian stage photographer, Franco Cattarinich, a great master of technique."
Ferlaina meets the photographer and discovers that the latter, having started his own agency in 1980, has a basement full of old photos purchased from other photographers that he never marketed. Ferlaina asks to see something and makes an offer, but hesitates. He insists, peeks through the envelopes at the words "Rolling Stones London," and decides to offer a cash sum. He ticks it off. It's the beginning of a long negotiation that will lead him to acquire as many as 21 boxes of photos and negatives totaling thousands of pieces (as of today still to be cataloged).
 
Ferlaina Archive in Milan.
As he began to delve into what he had purchased, he came across the nearly 150 shots of the Stones' Hyde Park concert. But who is the photographer? - I asked him. "On the photo envelopes was this name, Callá," he says. "I did some research and found out that he was the director of "Colpo Grosso" ["Big Shot", a trivial broadcast of the 1970s, ed.] and "Disco Ring" [a music broadcast of the same era, ed.] Pino Callà, a RAI director who has been living in New York for years. In the late 1960s he was a freelance in London. Now he lives in Milan." 
In fact a Callà's Wikipedia page does exist here as a Facebook's one here. 
 
(end of part three - to be continued)

A group of Hell's Angels.    
The audience.

The Third Ear Band playing on stage.

Paul Minns with Paul Buckmaster on stage.

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August 19, 2022

Glen Sweeney and Richard Coff talk about TEB's music to "Beat Instrumental" in 1969.

Here's another little archive tidbit, this time a short article about the band in which Sweeney and Coff talk about the music. The monthly magazine 'Beat Instrumental' published it in September 1969, a few months after the release of 'Alchemy' and with the four-man line-up with Coff and Ursula Smith. Few words but interesting...

 no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)

August 14, 2022

The "underground" movement according "Disc & Music Echo" and John Peel in 1968.

On November 2nd, 1968 a five-pages article about the "underground music" edited by Hugh Nolan was published by "Disc & Music Echo" with a short profile of the Third Ear Band by legendary DJ John Peel. Title: "Underground  - not so much pop music more a way of life".

Peel writes: "Another I've not heard yet. I must rectify this as such authorities as Pete Drummond speak well of them."

A little-known fact is that Drummond was a great friend of Glen and Carolyn since the beginning, so much so that to this day he still uses to have a lunch or take a walk around London with Carolyn... 

 
 
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August 01, 2022

The Ferlaina Archive and unpublished photos of the Third Ear Band in Hyde Park 1969 free concert - part two.

Here is the second part of the extraordinary accidental discovery (read the first part here).

2.

On 1st June I took the train and went to meet in Milan, Lambrate area. There, a stone's throw from the station, is the photographic archive where many treasures unknown to most are kept. So many photos that tell the story of 20th century Italian culture through the world of entertainment, especially live concerts and television appearances. Portraits of Italian cultural personalities such as Pasolini or Moravia, singers such as Modugno or Dalla, directors such as Fellini... mostly unpublished or rarely circulated shots (which may have appeared in a magazine or newspaper article).  

Giuseppe Ferlaina (June 1st, 2022).

Giuseppe Ferlaina himself turned out to be a character with an important story to tell, strong passions (Erik Satie), great ambitions (writing, between art and philosophy). Speaking of "Vexations", Satie's composition-paradox, he says, for example: "Even today Satie is an undefeated master, because he dilutes the music, at a certain point you don't hear it any more, entering the mechanism of compositional praxis... you don't hear it any more, he liquefies it, which with "4'33"" Cage evokes it, he only represents it. Satie doesn't make a representation... No one else succeeded in obviating the work like Satie... All the avant-garde, the happenings, Fluxus, where do they come from? They come from there, an absolute master!" 

Born in Naples in 1970, after graduating, he first moved to Milan in 1989, only to return almost immediately to Naples, working in a photography studio as a fashion assistant. In '94 he returned to Milan again and worked for a few agencies doing simple auditions, but was dissatisfied because he had an idea for more creative work and returned to Naples again, before finally moving to Milan in 1997. At that point, 'disappointed with the economic results achieved', he went to work as an agent for the prestigious Treccani publishing house; then as commercial director for Vallecchi. Marriage and the birth of two children forced him 'to put his head down' and accept a more coventional job as an employee in a cooperative. "In the meantime, I still continued to study, particularly philosophy of art... I had to, like it was medicine..."

Once this experience was over, he took up photography again and came up with the idea of the archive, opened around 2012. "I was already buying photographs, I was interested in the 1970s, in artistic research. Everything was born out of love for art, despite the fact that I had graduated without practically opening a book..."

(end of part two - to be continued)

 

Mick Jagger in Hyde Park, July 1969.

Jagger reading the poem for Brian Jones.

 no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first.

July 13, 2022

Can you believe that in a photo studio in Milan I found 26 unreleased photos of the Third Ear Band?

1.

It was a classic stroke of luck, sort of like when an occasional customer at a junk store comes across a dusty Van Gogh, hidden in a corner of the store under cheap prints and a lamp from the 1960s.
A dear friend of mine, an excellent electric guitar/bass player, in a flea market buys a portfolio of four unpublished black-and-white photos of Led Zeppelin, taken at the ill-fated but legendary Vigorelli Velodrome gig (in Milan) in 1971: all happy and proud about this find, he tells me that it was a photographer from Milan, a certain Ferlaina, who sold them to him.
He also tells me that the photographer has a Web site at  http://www.archivioferraina.com/ 

He days: "Drop by and you will see that he has interesting things."

I go in there and am immediately heartbroken when I realize that in his archive there are over 200 shots from the legendary concert that the Rolling Stones played in Hyde Park on July 1969. A concert that unfortunately, by the naïve logics of the time, was filmed extensively only to document the commemoration the Rolling did of their founder genius Brian Jones, but no footage was devoted to the other groups involved by Blackhill Enterprises - King Crimson, Alexis Korner & the Blues Incorporated and the Third Ear Band (read more HERE). 

It doesn't take me long to call the studio and talk to Mr Ferlaina who, very kindly, explains that yes, in addition to the Rolling Stones, "there seem to be pictures of other musicians." I jump in my chair and ask him to send me some examples: after a few minutes shots of Alexis Korner, Robert Fripp, and... Of Glen Sweeney playing on stage with Richard Coff! Then shots taken backstage where Glen is hugging Carolyn Looker and Paul  Minns is with first wife Mary Haynes and Tristan, their first son!
Even of Edgar Broughton that day in the audience with Lauren Loz, his wife...

(1- to be continued)

Edgar Broughton with his wife Laurie. 

 no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first.

June 28, 2022

A rare old interview with Lyn Dobson from "Melody Maker".

It has never been frequent to read interviews with Lyn Dobson in the past for a few reasons: first, for the fact that he has always been a session man and studio turner, having played with many bands, including Manfred Mann and the Soft Machine; also, in spite of his histrionic nature on stage, he has always preferred to respond to words with music. 

Devoted to John Coltrane's saxophone, passionate about the I King and meditation, a good draughtsman, involved in volunteer organizations (including as a bus driver for transporting the disabled), I knew him as a shy, thoughtful person, anything but egotistical - except when he took the stage, transforming himself into an outstanding performer!
In this fine interview with Richard Williams, published by "Melody Maker" on January 31, 1970, he shows all his intelligence and sensitivity as a young musician with a philosophical reflection on the power of music...


 no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first.

June 20, 2022

A 40 minutes unrealised recording from a 1970 TEB live gig in Germany found!

In the last few weeks, Michael Schutz of Mig Music wrote me for asking some help about how to contact original members of the TEB because he has found a 40' UNREALISED LIVE RECORDING from a 1970 gig. He wrote me this:

"Mig Music has been working with the German state TV station WDR since 2009 and WDR is the producer of the TV series " Rockpalast " which is recognised worldwide as a music/rock/TV format. 

WDR has always used its own sound engineers for the recordings of Rockpalast but also for other musically valuable festivals. One of these gentlemen was Joachim Manfred Kaiser, who two or three years ago told the current chief editor of the Rockpalast programme that he still had extensive security copies of recordings of the Rockpalast from 1975 onwards, the Berlin Jazztage since around 1968 and also of the Essen Pop and Blues Festival, and that he would like to hand them back to his former employer.

There were recordings of about 100 minutes from 1969 with the Keef Hartley Band and from 1970 with the Keef Hartley Big Band. The last living musician who founded the band together with Keef is Miller Anderson. We are friends. Miller got 12 minutes of the recordings and immediately agreed to release them. The quality of the recordings is incredibly good, considering that the tapes are 52 years old.

The tapes also include a performance by the Third Ear Band from the 1970 festival in the Grugahalle in Essen, which is just over 40 minutes long. We know from the Keef Hartley tapes how uniquely high and therefore good the quality of the recordings by the sound engineer Kaiser are. These are always radio recordings. Not like the Rockpalast for TV, he was the sound engineer for the music radio departments of the WDR.

Unfortunately, there is no further information about the recordings, such as which pieces are involved and which artists were on stage in Essen.

I would therefore ask you to inform us who we should contact from the band. With Glen Sweeney or with Dave Tomlin or maybe with Paul Minns? This has nothing to do with EMI and nothing to do with Cherry Red. Here only the musicians who were on stage have the right to say yes or no."

I explained him, as we know, that the band played at least four times in Germany with two different line-ups, one acoustic (for example, for the "Abelard & Heloise" TV soundtrack) and one electric (for the appearance on "Beat Club" TV programme).

So he assuered me he will send some excerpts just to detect the band  musicins and the titles of tracks... 

Could be this another buried treasure?

no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first.

May 15, 2022

Gary Lucas' piece on the TEB is out now!

The Wire magazine (issue 460 - June 2022) is out now with a piece by Gary Lucas on the TEB. As the publisher writes announcing the issue on the website: 

"Epiphanies: Gary Lucas is enchanted by Third Ear Band’s trancelike medievalis."

                                                                                                                    
And in fact in this writing he remembers the impact the music had on him, and the meeting with Glen in his flat...


no©2022 LucaChinoFerrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first