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I started a quest to find terrific blues music and incredible musicianship when I was just a little kid. I also have a tremendous appreciation of fine musical instruments and equipment. One of my greatest joys all of my life was sharing my finds with my friends. I'm now publishing my journey. I hope that you come along!


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Showing posts with label Jeremy Spencer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jeremy Spencer. Show all posts

Saturday, December 3, 2016

MDV Visual: Man Of The World: The Peter Green Story - DVD - New Release Review

I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Man of the World: The Peter Green Story and it's riveting. Many blues fan have been listening to the original Fleetwood Mac and John Mayall's Bluesbreakers with Peter Green for a long time and most have seen video clips of their performances but this release is seriously great! Rather than paste together more clips with music that may or may not be released, this film takes a totally new direction playing Peter Green's music in full fidelity between and behind excellent candid interviews with John Mayall, Peter Green, Jeremy Spencer, John McVie, Mick Fleetwood, Peter's brothers and many others. This film is focused and fresh, showing the band as it was ... up close and really personal questions regarding Green, his talent, his problems and how the band Fleetwood Mac got it's name. It's tormented yet sensitive. It's done in an organized fashion so that it's easy to follow but not oversimplified to be repetitive or slow. Last but not least, you get a personal tour by Green of his guitar collection. It's curious to see his wonder with each guitar as if they are new but then his recall of stories related to each. Another extra is the reading of a letter that Green wrote to his manager when he was in Hawaii, explaining his interest in remaining clear of money. Lastly, there are further discussion of his prec=vious bandmates which were left out of the film. I see a lot of film and this one is really top notch with necessary live footage showing the band in performance. I highly recommended this film for anyone with even remote interest in British blues and modern blues roots. Excellent!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

My Heart Beats Like a Hammer/ Shake Your Moneymaker - Fleetwood Mac

Maybe a little lip synching here....


Fleetwood Mac were formed in 1967 in London when Peter Green left the British blues band John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers. Green had replaced guitarist Eric Clapton in the Bluesbreakers, and received critical acclaim for his work on their album A Hard Road. After he had been in the Bluesbreakers for some time, Green asked if drummer Mick Fleetwood could replace Aynsley Dunbar. Green had been in two bands with Fleetwood—"Peter B's Looners" and the subsequent "Shotgun Express" (which featured a young vocalist named Rod Stewart). John Mayall agreed and Fleetwood became a member of the band.

The Bluesbreakers now consisted of Green, Fleetwood, John McVie and Mayall. Mayall gave Green free recording time as a gift, in which Fleetwood, McVie and Green recorded five songs. The fifth song was an instrumental which Green named after the rhythm section, "Fleetwood Mac".

Green contacted Fleetwood to form a new band. The pair desperately wanted McVie on bass and even named the band 'Fleetwood Mac' as a way to entice him. However McVie opted for steady work with Mayall rather than the unknown of a new band. In the meantime Peter Green and Mick Fleetwood teamed up with talented slide player Jeremy Spencer and bassist Bob Brunning, who was in the band on the understanding that he would leave if and when McVie agreed to join. The Green, Fleetwood, Spencer, Brunning version of the band made its debut on 13 August 1967 at the Windsor Jazz and Blues Festival. Within weeks of this show, John McVie agreed to become the bassist for the band.

Fleetwood Mac's first album, Fleetwood Mac, was a no-frills blues album and was released on the Blue Horizon label in February 1968. In fact there were no other players on the album (except for the song "Long Grey Mare", which was recorded when Bob Brunning was in the band). The album was successful in the UK, hitting no.4, though it did not have any singles on it. The band soon released two singles "Black Magic Woman" (later a big hit for Santana) and "Need Your Love So Bad".

The band's second album, Mr. Wonderful, was released in August 1968. Like the first it was an all-blues album, but this time they made a few changes. The album was recorded live in the studio with miked amplifiers and PA system, rather than plugged into the board. This method provided the ideal environment for producing this style of music, and gave it an authentically vintage sound. They also added horns and featured a friend of the band on keyboards, Christine Perfect of Chicken Shack.

Shortly after the release of their second album Fleetwood Mac added guitarist Danny Kirwan, then just eighteen years old, to their line-up. Green had been frustrated that Jeremy Spencer had little desire to contribute to Green's songs. A mature and accomplished self-taught guitarist, Kirwan's signature vibrato and unique style added a new dimension to an already complete band. With Kirwan the band released their first number one single in Europe, "Albatross". Around this time they released their second American album, English Rose, which contained half of Mr. Wonderful, new songs from Kirwan, and their third European album called The Pious Bird of Good Omen, which was a collection of singles, B-sides, and a selection of some work the band did with Eddie Boyd.

When the band went to the United States in January 1969 they recorded many songs at the soon-to-close Chess Records Studio, with some blues legends of Chicago including Willie Dixon, Buddy Guy and Otis Spann. These would prove, however, to be Fleetwood Mac's last all-blues recordings. Along with their change of style the band was also going through some label changes. Up until this point they had been on Blue Horizon. With Kirwan in the band, however, the musical possibilities were too great for them to stay on a blues-only label. The band signed with the Immediate Records label and released "Man of the World", another British and European hit single. For the B-side Spencer fronted Fleetwood Mac as "Earl Vince and the Valiants" and recorded "Someone's Gonna Get Their Head Kicked In Tonite", typifying the more raucous rock 'n' roll side of the band. Immediate Records was in bad shape and the band shopped around for a new deal. Even though The Beatles wanted the band on Apple Records (Mick Fleetwood and George Harrison were brothers-in-law), the band's manager Clifford Davis decided to go with Warner Bros. Records (Reprise), the label they have stayed with ever since. Their first album for Reprise, released in September 1969, was the well-regarded Then Play On. The American release of this album contains the song "Oh Well", featured consistently in live performances from the time of its release through 1997 and then again starting in 2009. Then Play On, which was the band's first rock album, featured only the songs of Kirwan and Green. Jeremy Spencer, meanwhile, recorded a solo album (he was backed by the rest of the band) which consisted of many 1950s-style rock and roll songs.

In July 1969 Fleetwood Mac opened for Ten Years After at the Schaefer Music Festival at New York City's Wollman Rink. They re-appeared at the festival in 1970.

Fleetwood Mac were an extremely popular band in Europe at the time. However, Peter Green, the frontman of the band, was not in good health. He had taken LSD in Munich, which contributed to the onset of his schizophrenia.[1]

German author and filmmaker Rainer Langhans mentions in his autobiography that he and Uschi Obermaier met Peter Green in Munich, where they invited him to their "High-Fish-Commune". They were not really interested in Peter Green. They just wanted to get in contact with Mick Taylor: Langhans and Obermaier wished to organise a "Bavarian Woodstock". They wanted Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones to be the leading acts of their Bavarian open air festival. They needed the 'Green God' just to get in contact with The Rolling Stones via Mick Taylor.

Green's last hit with Fleetwood Mac was "The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Prong Crown)" (first recorded at the Boston Tea Party in February 1970 and later recorded by Judas Priest). Green's mental stability deteriorated, and he wanted to give all of the band's money to charity. Some other members of the band did not agree, and subsequently Green decided to leave the band. His last show with Fleetwood Mac was on 20 May 1970. During that show, the band went past their allotted time, and the power was shut off. Mick Fleetwood kept drumming.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

I Can't Hold Out - Jeremy Spencer


Jeremy Cedric Spencer (born 4 July 1948), is a British musician, best known as one of the first guitarists in Fleetwood Mac.

Spencer was born in Hartlepool, County Durham. He grew up in South London and was educated at Strand School, where he became known for hilarious impressions of the headmaster and several of his staff.

Spencer's speciality later became the slide guitar. He was strongly influenced by the blues musician Elmore James. He joined Fleetwood Mac in July 1967 and remained with the band until February 1971, when he joined a religious cult called the "Children of God", now known as "the Family International", of which he is still a follower.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Dust My Broom - Fleetwood Mac


Anyone who has ever played slide guitar has played a tribute to Elmore James. Fleetwood Mac was one of the original British bands to exposure America to the Blues acknowledging it and promoting it. I haven't found any footage of Elmo, but there are plenty of bands to play his songs and his style. Keep listening...and thanks Elmo!

Friday, April 22, 2011

I'm Worried - Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac


Fleetwood Mac wasn't always a pretty face. Fleetwood used to have some of the best guitar players on the planet. Peter Green and Jeremy Spencer. Peter with his blistering fingering and Jeremy with his Elmore James like slide style, they helped to bring the blues to white America. Unfortunately they had issues that needed to be resolved. The core of the band, John MacVie and Mick Fleetwood retained the name, found some good writers and made them into one of the most popular Pop bands of the next decade.

This is where it all started... from John Mayall
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