December 28, 2012

An interview with Swiss filmaker Clemens Klopfeinstein that used TEB music for his film in 1979.


As you probably remember (if not, read at http://ghettoraga.blogspot.it/2010/05/german-underground-filmmaker-clemens.html) in 1979 Swiss film director Clemens Klopfenstein used a track of the Third Ear Band's second album (about 7' of "Fire") for his short film "Geschichte der Nacht" (Story of Night).

"Geschichte der Nacht" DVD
An advant-garde artist, Klopfeinstein, now 68, he has directed a lot of movies (http://www.klopfenstein.net/clemens.aspx/news), some also available in DVD format.
He's a painter too and sometimes he makes exhibithions around the world.
Quite surprisingly he's living just in Italy, in that wonderful little central region of Umbria.
Here's a short interview with him just to investigate the story and the reasons of that his eccentric choice... 

1. When/how did you know the Third Ear Bands music? 
"I think I heard them for the first time with their soundtrack of Polanski's "MacBeth".

2. Which was your first impression about it? 

"I was very impressed. As soon as I found an opportunity, I bought all their vinyl discs I was able to find (in Basel, at the Freienstrasse in particular)".

3. Why did you choice to use a track from the band's repertoire?
4. How do you think the music fits perfectly into the sequences?
5. Which kind of process you used to make that sequence? 

"I was shooting some takes of the carnival in Basel by night. The musical performances of the bands wandering through the strees, their drummers and pipers, are well known, very impressive, but also very corny. I knew I had to replace their music at all costs in order to give a dreamy, powerful, even nightmarish tone to my video takes. The tracks by the Third Ear Band fit that spot perfectly. The Swiss people, especially the people living in Basel, were stunned of the result! You know, the carnival in Basel is a bit bourgeois. When the people finally watched those ghastly platoons moving through the streets with that spooky music, they were positively shocked. In fact, the first takes were for a test film ("Ceremony", 10 minutes in black and white) which explored the possibilities of a new technique allowing us to shoot by night without any source of artificial light (except the faint lights already shining through the nightly city streets). That test film was shown at the national film festival of Solothurn, in 1976. At that point the German television ZDF (especially editor Sibylle Hubatschek-Rahn and head editor Ekart Stein) and its workshop "Das kleine Fernsehspiel" were electrified and gave their support for the full night movie "Geschichte der Nacht". The test film "Ceremony" was then re-cut and inserted into the final movie as a 3 minutes sequence".

6. Did you contact the musicians to get the permission for using it?
"No, it was a television production (ZDF and SF-DRS), therefore I only had to submit the list of musical works used and the television fixed the rights and permissions through Gema and Suisa".
 
5. Are you glad about the result of your film?
"I'm very glad about the result. In fact, it is - unfortunately perhaps - my best known production and it is still shown in various cinematheques even after many years. Once Ang Lee himself said that he had to study my "masterpiece" at film school".
 
6. Do you know your film is available free at http://ubu.com/film/klopfenstein_nacht.html
"Yes, I am aware of it".
 
7. Which reactions has it got? 
"Many, many reactions, most of them were positive ones. Even some imitators, which is also flattering". 
 
8. Have you used TEB music in other films made by you?
"No, never again. I'm afraid I lost my vinyls shortly thereafter. Or maybe they were stolen".

Clemens Klopfeinstein at his home as a painter.

About the movie, Chris Auty (Programme Note London Film Co-op) writes that "it's a black-and-white record of European cities in the dark (2-5am), from Basle to Belfast. Quiet, and meditative, what ermerges most strongly is an eerie sense of city landscapes as deserted film sets, in which the desolate architecture overwhelms any sense of reality. The only reassurance that we are not in some endless machine-Metropolis is the shadow of daytime activity: a juggernaut plunging through a darkened village, a plague of small birds in the predawn light. The whole thing is underscored by a beautiful 'composed' soundtrack, from quietly humming stretlamps to reggae and the rumble of armoured cars in Belfast. A strange and remarkable combination of dream, documentary and science-fiction."
You can watch here an excerpt of it taken from YouTube:



no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)     

December 19, 2012

Winter Solstice with the Third Ear Band.


To all the Third Ear Band fans 
and Ghetto Raga Archive readers
(in spite of Maya calendar and other assorted catastrophic prophesies)
HAVE A GREAT WINTER SOLSTICE!

 
"Stigma. A XMas ghost story" (BBC, UK 1977)
 
Discovered by our post folk-shaman Sedayne, this old short film (just 31.49) was produced by BBC and broadcasted on December 28th, 1977. With a track by Rolling Stones' "Aftermath" ("Mothers little helper"), on the soundtrack you can listen also to an excerpt of "Air" played by the Third Ear Band!
"Stigma" is one of the Christmas BBC short movies (read at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Ghost_Story_for_Christmas) produced in 1971-1978. It was written by Clive Exton and directed by Lawrence Gordon Clark

The DVD edition (UK 2012).
This is the original synopsys: "The pagan stone circles of Avebury are the backdrop for writer Clive Exton's modern-day horror. The attempted removal of an ancient menhir from a family's back garden unleashes a bloody curse on unsuspecting housewife Katharine, whose rising panic is captured brilliantly by Kate Binchy". 

Read a good review of it at http://www.the-medium-is-not-enough.com/2011/12/christmas_lost_gems_stigma_1977.php

no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)

December 13, 2012

TEB on "Beat Instrumental" magazine in 1971!


Thanks the rare kindness of a fabulous English record shop - BEATCHAPTER (www.beatchapter.com) - I've got an old precious article about the Third Ear Band published on "Beat Instrumental" (issue 132) on October 1971.
Written by S.T. (Steve Turner), is an interesting cross-section of the Band in that year, just after the (failed) attempt to become a pop group and during the recording sessions for Polanski's "Macbeth" film soundtrack.
Glen Sweeney quotes his favourite musicians - Terry RileyMiles Davis, Gyorgy Ligeti (!!!) - saying: "It's very hard to me get into Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young for instance. This is because it's all vocals and I don't seem to be able to relate to it in the way I feel I should"...


Beatchapter - 49 Sebert Road, Forest Gate - London UK E70NJ
ph.: 020 85194590     e-mail: sales@beatchapter  

no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first) 

December 08, 2012

"Armistice". A recent Dave Tomlin's writing on "International Times" Web site.


Here's a recent writing by Dave Tomlin, published on International Times Web site (http://internationaltimes.it).


At the close of the 1914 -18 war the streets of London were inundated with a population suffused with an unbounded joy. Dancing and merrymaking were the order of the day and many tears of happiness were shed; many tears of sorrow too. And one word was on everyone’s lips, a word that flew in every voice from one to another throughout the land ─ the long awaited ‘Armistice’. A word synonymous with peace, conciliation and relaxation from the terrible austerities and carnage of war. ‘Hooray!’ they sang, for at last had come the great Armistice.

In those innocent days when a majority of that population were semi-literate and unlikely to have much access to a dictionary; no dissenting voice was heard; and even the intelligentsia were strangely silent; for one look in any dictionary gives the whole game away.

‘Armistice ─ an agreement to stop fighting temporarily.’


Were those who drew up the documents and devised the terms under this word aware of its meaning? Or of the terrible prophecy which it irrefutably implied. Three wrecked and depleted economies agreeing to disengage for a while to lick their wounds and allow a couple of generations to refresh their stocks of cannon-fodder. For, of course, twenty years later that prophecy was fulfilled and the signatories returned to the fray.

This syndrome, although as illustrated here relates to high politics, can be seen to operate in all walks of human life, and reveals itself on the smallest scale and in the commonest of incidents.


Armistice

Emma has just stepped out into her back garden. She stands looking upward watching an aeroplane as it passes overhead and for one moment she almost loses her balance. She stretches out her arm and holds on to the fence which divides her garden from the one next door. The fence is of light construction and her weight as she wobbles bows it a little.

A curtain in the window of the kitchen adjacent house twitches slightly and a moment later the kitchen door opens and Mrs B─ steps out. She is a stout woman and her manner is stern. She walks up to the fence and addresses Emma who still rests her hand on the fence.

‘Be careful of that fence,’ she says. ‘It’s not very strong and can’t take your weight.’

‘I’m so sorry,’ says Emma, hurriedly withdrawing her hand. Emma doesn’t like Mrs B─, who she thinks is common. ‘But it was quite accidental and look.’ She straightens the fence. ‘It’s all right now.’

‘Well that may be,’ says Mrs B─ ‘But I’d just as soon you don’t lean on it again.’

This gets up Emma’s nose a little; she is not going to take orders from this prole.

‘Well you can just as soon something else then, and be less rude into the bargain.’

‘Rude!’ says Mrs B─. ‘I’ll show you rude if you start calling me names.’

‘I just think you shouldn’t be so rude.’ says Emma.

‘Well as far as I’m concerned you can just piss off.’ says Mrs B─. Emma is shocked by this and throws caution to the winds.

‘You vile woman,’ she shouts, her voice carrying across the nearby back gardens.

‘Oh, so I’m a vile woman am I? How dare you? You dirty whore.’

Emma lowers her voice but puts a steely edge to it.

‘You fat old cow,’ she grits. ‘You piece of low-life scum!’

Mrs B─ now falls into a fearful rage and spittle flies as she screams her defiance. ‘You filthy stinking SLAG!’ She searches through her repertoire for more of the same. ‘And what’s more your husband is a pimp.’

‘Don’t you dare call my husband a pimp,’ cries Emma, this last had got to her and there are tears in her eyes.

‘Oh, crying now are we?’ says Mrs B─ scornfully. ‘It only goes to show your sneaky nature.’

‘But I’m not sneaky,’ says Emma through her tears, ‘and I’m always ready to be friends.’

Mrs B─ considers this and reluctantly concedes a point.

‘Well all right then,’ she says. ‘But you must promise to leave my fence alone.’

‘I will,’ says Emma gladly, ‘and I don’t really think you’re a fat old cow.’

Mrs B─ allows herself just a hint of a conciliatory smile.

‘Well all right my dear,’ she says. ‘And you’re not a slag.’

Now they are both smiling and Mrs B─, imbued with a sudden and unexpected feeling towards her neighbour invites her in for a slice of cake and a cup of tea.

Emma eagerly agrees and since there is a gate in the fence for the convenience of the gardeners she comes through and follows Mrs B─ into her kitchen.

They sit at the table waiting for the kettle to boil while Mrs B─ cuts the cake.

‘I must say,’ begins Mrs B─, ‘you have managed to get some very nice flowers to grow in your garden.’

Emma likes this; maybe Mrs B─ is not so bad after all. She ventures a compliment of her own.

‘Well thank you,’ she says, ‘and I never fail to admire you hollyhocks.’

Now it is the turn of Mrs B─ to harbour warmer feelings; but…

‘You know my dear,’ she says condescendingly. ‘It was my husband who built the fence and he had quite a difficult job sinking in the posts.’

‘Yes of course,’ says Emma, ‘and I have said I’m sorry.’

Mrs B─ pours the tea but hasn’t finished yet.

‘So you must understand that I can’t allow people to go around leaning on it.’

Emma is now on the defensive.

‘But I wasn’t actually leaning on it; just recovering my balance.’

‘Well it looked to me as if you were definitely leaning.’ says Mrs B─ firmly. ‘And if that fence goes down my husband is going to be very upset.’

‘Look, can’t you just shut up about the bloody fence for a moment,’ says Emma now becoming irritated by this. ‘I thought we were over that and I’ve promised not to do it again.’

‘Don’t tell me to shut up in my own kitchen,’ shouts Mrs B─. ‘I didn’t invite you in to be insulted.’

‘Well if you behave like a common fish-wife I have no choice but to retaliate.’

‘Oh, a fish-wife now am I?’ screams Mrs B─. ‘Then you can just get out of my bloody kitchen NOW!’

They get to their feet and Emma’s chair crashes to the floor. She turns and flounces out while flinging a Parthian shot over her shoulder.

‘You’re nothing but a fat scumbag and a dirty slut!’ she shrieks.

‘And your husband’s a pimp!’ screams Mrs B─."

(©2012 Dave Tomlin)

no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first) 

November 12, 2012

What TEB has to do with Prog? An age-old controversy.


Swimming in this putrid, polluted, toxic river of nonsense that is often the Net, recently I've discovered an album of an Italian group professing to be inspired by the Third Ear Band, Ballo delle Castagne (Dance of Chestnuts), described by the label as "a psychedelic journey from west to east. More then ever, the oriental sound is still present


and expanded through a journey deep in prog rock music. From Kraut rock to West coast music with special mention to Italian Godfathers of Prog Rock, Ballo delle Castagne release his new records featuring special guest like Carolina Cecchinato (Egida Aurea) and Maethelyiah (Blooding Mask)". 

Inside an interview (http://www.metal.it/interview.aspx/819/ballo-delle-castagne-spirali-d-ispirazione-liberazione-e-illuminazione/) the musician Marco Garegnani states: "... and the Third Ear Band. I think they are a mysteric creature that in some ways influenced me, mainly for about the more tribalistic-ritual parts of the record..." - but listening to the music I think there's no trace of it - just a boring, quite  conceited Prog music so far from the magical spirituality of "Alchemy" or the pagan soul of the "Elements" album.

Anyway you can check by yourself and form an opinion about it (http://www.myspace.com/ballocastagne):





My personal point of view is that TEB is often exploited by musicians to increase the real value of their project: a sort of easy credit card because TEB music sounds esoteric, magic, arcane... at the end eccentric and strange, and the evocation of it can charme fans around the world...

So, after all these years, for myself  the Questions are:
What TEB has to do with Prog? 
Why usually musicians and journalists use to categorize TEB music as Prog?

Of course, as usual here any free opinion will be well-accepted...

no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first) 

November 01, 2012

Singing Serpent Tarot: English artist Eleanor Boyce uses TEB's "Mosaic" for a video of her Tarots.


Eleanor Boyce
English artist Eleanor Boyce uses "Mosaic" as soundtrack for a slide-show/video of her own Tarot designs titled "Singing Serpent Tarot".

Painter, sculptor, illustrator, writer, researcher, director, performer, Witch and Shaman... Eleanor Boyce lives and works in Scarborough (& Whitby), England: you can watch her intriguing world at http://www.nakthag.com

A nursery crymes doll by Eleanor
Because her inusual choice I've asked Eleanor some few questions:

Why have you selected just "Mosaic" for your virtual show?
"To begin to answer this question I shall quote from the SINGING SERPENT prologue:
'The Song the Serpent Sings is often a hushed and remote whisper in the dark, barely audible, drowned by a cacophony of other sounds. At times it is an urgent calling and, at on occasion, a beauteous melody underscoring our existence. It is carried on the breath of a wind, the dance of a wave upon sand, the flicker of flame, beat of heart and upon the flap of a moth wing. It is everywhere and nowhere in particular, ancient, primal,constant and eternal, a Song that remains forever the same. It is the Soul Song, Spirit Song, Deep Self Song and this Song belongs to us all - we need but only listen, learn and sing along.' My Tarot is designed, and written about, in such a way as to facilitate the opening up of the recipient to the Serpent Song which resides within. When the eye is focused upon an archetypal symbolic image for any length of time, the deeper regions of mind, where intuitive wisdom resides, are stirred.
The virtual show of my Tarot images is very short, but does have a touch of the hypnotic and if it were of longer duration it would, no doubt, have effect in moving the mind to a different level. In the light of what has been so far said, it would be of no surprise to hear that the music I should chose for this project was selected with some deliberation.
As with specific archetypal visual imagery, certain music, also has the same power to transport the listener, and facilitate the opening of the doors of mind into the same inner space. Third Ear Band created such music. I sat in a darkened room with the show on the screen and dropped a few pieces into the timeline, playing back with the visuals to determine the effect. There was no doubt that 'Mosaic' was the one for it. I guess it is no accident that the musicians who created the piece, and myself, were/are possessed of pagan sensibilities, for it seems to me that our aims, though working in different genres, share a harmony of intent. The result of the marriage of their music and my visuals is a happy and magickal one, and I do not feel any other music would have done".



What are the qualities of 'Mosaic' you feel are so perfect for your project? 
"The piece has an elemental, a pure primal, even raw quality to it, yet at the same time is highly sophisticated and this, together with the blend of instruments, imbues it with both a timelessness and a universality. The repetitions, spaces and rhythms are almost hypnotic as if they are directly affecting the alpha rhythms of the brain itself, which, indeed, they may well be doing, for the auditory experience of 'Mosaic' (and other pieces by the band) are certainly conducive to the entering into an altered state of consciousness. My drawings, too, are somewhat elemental and primal, but not lacking sophistication, built upon line, space and rhythm, stripped of reference to any one time, place or ideology. Whether or not they hold the same beauty as the Third Ear Band piece I have chosen to accompany them is not for me to judge, but I hope, to some degree they do, for someone, somewhere".

How and when did you know the Third Ear Band music?
"Many, many years ago I visited a friend, as I was apt to do often in those days, who had the most phenomenal music collection I had ever seen. It stretched around all the walls of his room, leaving only space in the middle of the room for a mattress and cushions. He was an avid collector, and nothing delighted him more than introducing his friends to musical gems he had acquired. I remember him saying "You will love this, Eleanor ... it is weird enough for even you!" as he slipped Third Ear Band's 'Alchemy' from its sleeve and placed it on the turntable. He was absolutely right!! I sank back into the cushions in ecstasy. I purchased the album the very next day. It was the same time my fascination for the Tarot began to seed, so there is also a personal reason as to just why something from this particular album is so fitting to accompany my own Tarot deck". 

[Watch Eleanor Boyce's Tarots deck at http://www.nakthag.com/#/singing-serpent/4570450061]
                      
                                   SINGING SERPENT TAROT
"There is something very right about the video being uploaded to YouTube and all this occurring at Shamain - the Celtic ending and beginning of the year, when the dead are honored and the 'veil between the worlds' is thin. The Seasons Blessings to you!!"
(Eleanor Boyce)


Concept, Artwork, Video, Tarot designs:
ELEANOR BOYCE
http://www.nakthag.com
 

Music:
THIRD EAR BAND
Digital re-master of 'Mosaic' from the album ALCHEMY (1969 EMI)

Background template:
http://tigers-stock.deviantart.com/


no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)  

October 16, 2012

TEB's "Area III" 'track of the day' at WNUR American Web radio!


At http://www.wnur.org/third-ear-band-area-iii/ TEB's "Area III" was track of the day last week at WNUR, an American Web radio station. With a short comment to it and a kind quotation of this archive by Dan Sloan...


As stated on the site, "WNUR is a non-commercial, listener-supported radio station broadcasting at a frequency of 89.3 MHz FM and a power of 7200 watts. The WNUR studios are located in Louis Hall, on the campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, and the station produces a signal that can be heard by nearly 3 million potential listeners throughout Chicagoland. WNUR also streams on the Web to listeners around the world.
Through its programming, WNUR strives to provide a forum for underrepresented music and ideas. By pursuing the cultural, intellectual, and artistic aspects of radio, WNUR promotes musicians, musical genres, news, public affairs issues, and athletic events often overlooked by major media outlets. Additionally, because it is completely independent of commercial pressures, WNUR has the opportunity to provide unique and challenging programming to the Northwestern, Evanston, and Chicago communities no matter how unpopular or controversial."


no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first) 

October 10, 2012

The core of it. Some personal autosuggestions of postfolk-shaman Sedayne about the Third Ear Band.


An artist is an artist - an artist, an artist, an artist - as George Sand would tell today about Sedayne (Sean Breadin), the English postfolk shaman devoted to strong fieldworks on traditional soundscapes.
These are some inspired suggestions by him to get us ready for the Autumn-Winter season...

"A visitor to my house recently looked through my CD shelf and was surprised to see more than the three old Third Ear Band albums they were aware of. They hadn't known of the Hydrogen Jukebox, nor yet the re-union era Italian albums, much less Abelard and Heloise and The Magus; they hadn't known of all the rarities that have emerged in recent years from The National Balkan Ensemble to the session material (ancient & modern) or the German DVD and the French TV footage.

Time was, I was well content with my three Third Ear Band albums - old habits die hard: on cold Autumn mornings I always play Macbeth. Alchemy is special beyond measure - I only play it when it snows! Elements I play on stormy elemental evenings remembering the friends I never saw again after I first played it to them - Gong they could cope with, but the Third Ear Band was going too far.

These days - God knows. I often find myself playing Brainwaves when I'm cooking. It's nothing special in the way the other albums are, but it is Glen - the heart and soul of the Tertius Auris; Shaman, Trickster and catalyst for some of the finest music I've ever heard. Hell, even The Magus has its moments of utter transcendence, and Druid Grocking on the German footage is one of the most astonishing things I've heard in my entire life. 

The core remains the pure Alchemy of the four elementals though, as revealed on the French film: Richard is Fire - he burns & blazes, relentless, hungrily consuming the silences whilst lighting the very dark & warming the bitter cold; Paul is Air - he blows as the rushing wind that moves the waves & sets the very trees a dancing; Glen is the Earth - the stone circle dragon-alignments that set pulse and pattern to both enrich and 
 reveal the very chaos of nature; and Ursula is Water - she flows, she sparkles and she thunders in the depths of the unfathomable abyss. At least that's how I see it anyway.

Oh, and I forgot to mention New Forecasts, featuring Ursula on Sybilic Violin by way of pure Revelation, as the best of it remains, eternally...".

Follow Sedayne at:
http://ploughmyth.blogspot.com/ 
http://soundcloud.com/rapunzel-and-sedayne
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rapunzel-and-Sedayne/217002238319466

                                                        Sedayne - "Mr. Fox's Equinox" (March 2012)
no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first) 

October 05, 2012

Who knows the Extremities?



Alan Freeman (synths, keys, guitar, voice, loops, effects, whistle, percussion), Steve Freeman (bass, synths, loops, samples, turntable, voice, harmonica), Jim Tetlow (synths, loops, guitar, voice, percussion, toys, gadgets, pipes) and Dave Powell (hurdy gurdy, effects) are The Extremities.

They are an experimental/post-KrautRock/avantgarde/industrial band from Leicester (Midlands, UK) - born when Dave Powell joined-in the Endgame - with nine albums (on CD-R format) and a DVD recorded (http://www.myspace.com/extremitiesimprov).
About two tracks of their vaste repertoire they state they have been "definitely inspired by the Third Ear Band".
Listen to them and decide if they're right ...


                                  The Extremities - "Bite me" (2007)

                           The Extremities - "Balkan Ninja" (2002-2003)

no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)    

September 27, 2012

TEB French broadcast: the unseen cuts.


Here's a sequence of cuts from the broadcast that INAMediaPro hasn't included on the TEB concert available at INAfr.
The musicians (Kevin Ayers & the Whole World, Bridget St. John, the TEB and Edgar Broughton Band) come into the concert hall at the inn of Olympia Theatre in Paris (France).

                                                                         Paul Minns and Ursula Smith

                                                   Glen Sweeney, Bridget St. John and Richard Coff

                              Richard Coff and Edgar Broughton

                                                                                       Paul Minns on left

                                        Glen Sweeney on right

                                                               Bridget St. John and Richard Coff

                                                                         Kevin Ayers' concert starts


Inside the TV programme, after the Beatles playing "Let it Be" (from the original movie) and an excerpt from the Kevin Ayers' set on stage, just before TEB's "Hyde Park Raga", there's a short sequence in the backstage with the bands relaxing and smoking together...

                                                         Coff explaining Glen how to roll a cigarette (?!)
 

no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)     

September 14, 2012

At last here's the wonderful, tremendous 1970 TEB TV broadcast!


As announced in the last days, here's the link at INAfr to watch the best TEB broadcast existing!
Thanks Gérard Sayag ("It was a pleasure to modestly contribute to bring this musical piece to the ears of all the fans", he writes me...) all the TEB fans can watch now the Band at the zenith of its playing, with a wonderful Paul Minns on oboe and the strings players (Richard Coff on violin and Ursula Smith on cello) using all the ways to play their instruments (pizzicato, bow, arpeggio...).
Two tracks only ("Hyde Park Raga" and a not-so-easy-track to identify - maybe a rendition of "Mosaic" or a part of "Abelard & Heloise", the band would have recorded two months later in Germany...) but very intense and exemplar of the rare, magic interplay of the four musicians.

Richard Coff introducing "Hyde Park Raga".

The Band on stage at Olympia.

A visual masterpiece, totally unexpected!
The concrete proof that there are probably other recordings somewhere around from the golden era of the group...

Just some clarifications: the TEB broadcast is around 17:30 long, not the 31:27 as cut by Ina fr (infact after the band you'll see the great Bridget St. John play her acoustic guitar...). 
Then, contrary to what I've understood, INAfr asks you to buy  the video on DVD format (at around € 12,00) or download (at € 2.99).

Anyway enjoy this extraordinary TV broadcast at:
http://www.ina.fr/recherche/recherche?search=third+ear+band&vue=Video
Any comments on this gem, especially in review format, will be welcomed here!

Glen Sweeney smoking in the dressing-room just after the concert.
no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)     

September 07, 2012

An interview with Muz Murray, the first mystic 'gardener'.


Muz Murray has been a real protagonist of London underground scene, founder of the famous "Gandalf's Garden", a psychedelic mystic magazine edited in 1968 and 1969 (six issues printed) and thought, as he says, for "offering hope and a positive lifestyle to the lost and lonely".

Later, become Ramana Baba, he has been tripping all around the world, painting, writing books, recording music, making conferences about Mantra Yoga, Mystical Awakening, Massage and Meditation.
He has got a very intriguing Web site at http://www.mantra-yoga.com/index.htm full of  infos and stuffs (as the complete collection of "Gandalf's Garden" issues on CD-R format). 
I've contacted him for having an interview about his memories on the Third Ear Band (but, as he writes, "I will do my best, but I am not sure I can add much to what you already know..."), a band he loved and  interviewed in 1968 for his magazine (read at http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~pardos/GGThird.html), writing probably the very first review of "Alchemy" on "Gandalf's Garden" # 5.


Why did you decide to dedicate an interview (one of the first ever...) to the Third Ear Band?
"I wanted express what was the feeling of the non-commercial music on the Scene at the time. And as soon as I saw the name ‘The Third Ear Band’ I knew this was something that would fit nicely in "Gandalf’s Garden" magazine. So I got in touch with Glen right away and we got on very well together. After hearing the music I wasn't disappointed and we became firm friends".

What kind of relations you had with the band and the Ladbroke Grove scene?
"We had a good rapport with the group also. They came and played freely at our Magical Sunday Benefit Concert at Middle Earth in Covent Garden [May 19th, 1968], London, in order to help us to bring out the second issue of "Gandalf’s Garden", together with other up-and-coming unknowns like Marc Bolan and David Bowie.
I used to live in Pembroke Villas next to Ladbroke Grove, so Notting Hill Gate and Portobello Road and market was my scene".

Have you ever watch/listen to the TEB in a live concert? Any memories about it?
"As mentioned, they came and played for us. And we saw them in concert and were with them in private sessions too. It was a great pleasure because their music put us into a state of dreamlike meditation without any effort. And they also seemed to go into a trance as they played. It was not like that they played, but the music came through them".

What kind of mood do you think people 'breathed' at their concerts?
"I’m sure it had the same effect that it had on us. I saw that audiences went off into pleasant dreams and did not like to spoil it by clapping afterwards".

What do you think about their music and more at large about their peculiar cultural/artistic project?
"It was not so much ‘music’ as such but more of an artistic expression of deep 'feeling'. It was exactly what was needed to counteract some of the popular rubbish played at the time. And it catered for more of the mystically inclined supporters that we were cultivating through "Gandalf's Garden" magazine and our mystical Centre down along the scruffy end of King’s Road".


Do you think they was authentic or, someone thinks nowadays, Glen Sweeney was a sort of mystic trickster?
"Then someone thinks wrong. Glen and the other musicians were totally sincere as far as I am concerned. They had to be, in order to play the kind of non-commercial music that was not going to earn them a fortune on "Top of the Pops". Glen often came to mediate with us at the Garden".

 The Gardeners meditating with Glen Sweeney (with hat) an Carolyn Looker on far right  (© Gandalf's Garden).

Have you got in your archive (if you have one) some stuffs of the band (photos, music, video...) for the Ghetto Raga archive?
"Alas, we could not afford a camera in those days, and video did not exist. I don’t think I have anything other than the photo attached. If I can find anything else I will send it to you".


                                                                              Muz Murray today

This is the original Muz Murray's review of "Alchemy" published on "Gandalf's Gardens" # 5 (note the beautiful EMI-Harvest promo ad below):

 
no©2012 Luca Ferrari (unless you intend to make a profit. In which case, ask first)