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DiamondDog View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 31 2013 at 09:07
it's indisputable that 1-2-3 were the headlining act on Saturdays 11th 18th 25th March 1967. The so-called Marquee website (which is nothing to do with the Marquee club as such, just a fan's dedication site) does in fact show the headlining act as 1-2-3 on 18th and 25th (though it shows 11th as blank) as well as in 12th and 23rd May 1967, as well as others. If the Marquee fan-website has its own criteria for what constitutes a residency, that is another matter altogether, and hardly relevant. More significantly, there are existing Marquee programs which show the dates and the importance attached to 1-2-3's appearances.The program notes refer in several places to the band and the particular kind of music they are playing.  Among all the other arguments/discussions going on, the 1-2-3 headlining residency is a fact and the evidence is there to support that. 

From there, many clues exist as to what kind of music 1-2-3 played, and who was there to hear them playing it. The recording is just a glimpse of that music, and whatever the recording is or isn't, it has to be made during 1967. for the band appeared as Clouds at the Marquee on December 21st, and according to their Manager, they never played their version of "America" again. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 31 2013 at 09:11
Sorry, just read the other entry you made before this one on the other thread, where you partially deal with the points I made here. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Certif1ed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 31 2013 at 10:25
I researched this in some depth, with the aids of someone very close to Clouds, and draw the following conclusions (whether right or wrong - just adding to the discussion!);

1. There are certainly some particularly enthusiastic Clouds fans who post information that is unverifiable and somewhat tenuous - mostly, it seems, in the name of making the claim that Clouds were the first Prog act and everyone else got on their bandwagon.

2. There are also some quite vehement anti-Clouds people out there, a fact I find staggering. This would explain the enthusiasm of the above noted group.

3. 1-2-3 did have the claimed residencies at the Marquee, and latter day prog band members, including most of the big bands, were noted as being in the audience. A young David Bowie (Jones) wrote a glowing report of one of their gigs.

4. In 1967, the marquee installed its first recording studio - it's not impossible that 1-2-3 were among the first bands to use it. The applause on the recording is so clearly overdubbed, that I'm guessing it was all done in the studio.

5. It was common practise for one record company to get permission to use songs from another - even before the artists themselves had released them, and I understand, from my Clouds insider, that the band and Chris Blackwell (Island records) had connections with CBS and Simon and Garfunkel - so their recording of "America" could well date from before the release of Bookends - but there is no documented evidence of this.

6. None of this really matters - the 3 available Clouds albums are great, and showcase a band contemporary with the rise of Prog Rock, who had a unique style, and are well worth a listen. So are the early Nice albums:o)


Just my 2 cents
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 31 2013 at 11:22
I agree with everything you've said Mark. All things are possible, that doesn't mean they happened that way, the world is full of "if's" "but's" and "maybe's".
 
 
 
Nice sig btw Wink


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote giselle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 29 2013 at 11:10
Originally posted by Malraux Malraux wrote:

Thanks for the interview. The origins of progressive rock are complex and don't revolve around a single album.
It is the work that went on before any records were recorded, especially when the band were known as 1-2-3 in their pre Clouds days, that indicated that an iconoclastic musical form was emerging.
 
I believe that only one track, hastily recorded on a tape machine by an audience member even exists of 1-2-3 in action. They did not record and even when they later recorded as 'Clouds', they were best known as a live band.
 
I saw a few performances of the band in their 1-2-3 and later Clouds identities, and believe me that the audiences who were musically quite well informed in those days were split in their opinions. Some were amazed, while others puzzled. It was indeed a new and emerging form of music.
 
Of course, it is ridiculous to suggest that any one band 'invented' progressive rock music, and again I am not sure that this is what is being claimed. The music of 1-2-3 was unique in style at the time, but there were other Hammond players, like Mike Ratledge for example who were taking the sound of the instrument beyond the Jimmy Smith thing, albeit in a different direction. What 1-2-3 introduced was an organ fronted blend of musical styles which was just not being played anywhere else by anyone else.
 
What helped was the superb musicianship of this trio. Harry Hughes for example who has to be one of the most acomplished drummers in the genre and is one of the few drummers I have seen who can do the 'Buddy Rich' one hand drum roll.
 
My six cents worth.
 
M.

This is still a very interesting comment on 1-2-3 - " a new and emerging form of music" and "an organ fronted blend of musical styles which was just not being played anywhere else by anyone else". What a shame the band didn't record at that time. 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 02 2013 at 09:43
A 123 album would have made it clear where all those UK Prog bands sprang from. Then again, as the Clouds guys say themselves, what came out from that influence was not a copy. Everyone is entitled to be influenced, even 123 had to start somewhere. Wonder what their influences where? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Prog_Traveller Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 02 2013 at 16:03
I've heard claims that these guys were the first real prog band. Of course some people won't buy that because they didn't have an album called "in the court of the Crimson King." Tongue
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 02 2013 at 16:07
I don't know that there is any such thing as the first real prog band. But 123 was certainly two years ahead of the pack, and much of the concept of the music was then taken up by those who followed, like King Crimson. The problem, as others have said, is that because 123 didn't release a record (only later as Clouds) it leaves the whole thing open to argument and debate. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Certif1ed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 02 2013 at 17:32
1967 was pretty much THE year of progressive - but not quite in the "Crimson King" sense.

The main essence of the 1-2-3 style (from what can be heard on "Above Their Heads", excuse me if I got the title slightly wrong) came from Jazz, of course - Buddy Guy and later Gene Krupa providing major drum cues for Harry Hughes - and organ led combos were not unusual at that time, e.g. Graham Bond's Organisation (check out their Live from Klook's Kleek album from 1965), not to mention Jimmy Smith, Wynder K Frogg et al.

Mixing Jazz and Classical idioms was something Jaques Loussier was famous for, and later, the Swingle Singers did some great things (and some appalling things) with that eclectic mix - to name but the most famous.

Blues Rock was pretty big prior to 1967, of course - the Yardbirds and Small Faces were producing some spectacular stuff which would go off into jazzy improvs. Don't forget that Pink Floyd had been producing some very experimental stuff before the release of Piper in 1967 - and there was the Fab 4 meeting Dylan and the Byrds, Newport Folk Festival of 1965, and the whole Electric Kool-Aid stuff going on in the US.

The concept of Progressive Jazz, which came to be the same as the "Progressive" in King Crimson, was kicked off by Stan Kenton in the early 1950s, if I recall correctly - and this was the concept of taking the music to its utmost limits, of almost destroying the concept of music within the music, if you like - much as "Moonchild" does on "In The Court".

Mixing and matching blues, classical and jazz was pretty much what a lot of people did in the mid 1960s, to cut the story short.

I don't think 1-2-3 were particularly ahead of the pack. There may have been some impetus to Keith Emerson, who knows - but his style was utterly different and fresher. And I am saying this as someone who is NOT very partial to ELP. Listen to the Nice's debut album, co-incidentally of 1967 - that album utterly destroys!

The real unsung pioneering in the 1960s, was in Electronica. Even Paul McCartney had a go at Electronica in 1967, but kept it under wraps until fairly recently when the internet made it more common knowledge. Electronica wasn't invented by Delia Derbyshire, but it begins with her by rights! The "Dr Who" theme of 1963 is a great example of what a stretched imagination can do to a piece of orchestral music.

There's no argument without conclusive evidence, though - as you say. The general conclusion has to fall where the evidence IS.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Prog_Traveller Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2013 at 00:22
Well George Harrison was doing electonic kind of things in 1968. I don't know about Paul McCartney though. He did an electronic kind of album in the late nineties or early two thousands under the name the Fireman. I don't think it was previously unreleased music though. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Certif1ed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2013 at 01:58
Paul McCartney was commissioned to write a piece called "Carnival of Light" in December 1966 for a special Electronica festival called "Million Volt Sound and Light Rave" at the Roundhouse in early 1967.

My "error" was ascribing it to McCartney, when all the Beatles were involved in writing it.

However, it was McCartney who was approached to write this piece, which has acquired an air of mysticism, since it has never been released... or has it?


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A5p6z8QAVYU

Edited by Certif1ed - December 03 2013 at 02:03
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2013 at 04:03
Originally posted by Certif1ed Certif1ed wrote:

1967 was pretty much THE year of progressive - but not quite in the "Crimson King" sense.

The main essence of the 1-2-3 style (from what can be heard on "Above Their Heads", excuse me if I got the title slightly wrong) came from Jazz, of course - Buddy Guy and later Gene Krupa providing major drum cues for Harry Hughes - and organ led combos were not unusual at that time, e.g. Graham Bond's Organisation (check out their Live from Klook's Kleek album from 1965), not to mention Jimmy Smith, Wynder K Frogg et al.

Mixing Jazz and Classical idioms was something Jaques Loussier was famous for, and later, the Swingle Singers did some great things (and some appalling things) with that eclectic mix - to name but the most famous.

Blues Rock was pretty big prior to 1967, of course - the Yardbirds and Small Faces were producing some spectacular stuff which would go off into jazzy improvs. Don't forget that Pink Floyd had been producing some very experimental stuff before the release of Piper in 1967 - and there was the Fab 4 meeting Dylan and the Byrds, Newport Folk Festival of 1965, and the whole Electric Kool-Aid stuff going on in the US.

The concept of Progressive Jazz, which came to be the same as the "Progressive" in King Crimson, was kicked off by Stan Kenton in the early 1950s, if I recall correctly - and this was the concept of taking the music to its utmost limits, of almost destroying the concept of music within the music, if you like - much as "Moonchild" does on "In The Court".

Mixing and matching blues, classical and jazz was pretty much what a lot of people did in the mid 1960s, to cut the story short.

I don't think 1-2-3 were particularly ahead of the pack. There may have been some impetus to Keith Emerson, who knows - but his style was utterly different and fresher. And I am saying this as someone who is NOT very partial to ELP. Listen to the Nice's debut album, co-incidentally of 1967 - that album utterly destroys!

The real unsung pioneering in the 1960s, was in Electronica. Even Paul McCartney had a go at Electronica in 1967, but kept it under wraps until fairly recently when the internet made it more common knowledge. Electronica wasn't invented by Delia Derbyshire, but it begins with her by rights! The "Dr Who" theme of 1963 is a great example of what a stretched imagination can do to a piece of orchestral music.

There's no argument without conclusive evidence, though - as you say. The general conclusion has to fall where the evidence IS.

Such an interesting and essentially precise post deserves as considered a response as I can manage.

Yet you get off on the wrong foot by saying that the essence of 1-2-3’s style  came from jazz. This isn’t entirely your fault – again, the records are setting the record wrong – just as the lack of recordings blurs 1-2-3’s importance, the Clouds records are giving the wrong clues to the style of 1-2-3.  Despite containing the same musicians, Clouds was not 1-2-3. It was a completely different band, pushed off direction by Terry Ellis, their manager, who was trying to more directly reach the mainstream.

Yes, jazz was an important component, as was blues, and classical, but so was pop and particularly, pop songs. As Rolling Stone said, 1-2-3 was many things (also read Malreaux’s earlier post). A rough guide might be thinking of a jazzy – classical Vanilla Fudge. Yes, “Sing-Sing-Sing” was a 1-2-3 arrangement and another good clue, but look at “America”, and imagine a repertoire of songs covering that spectrum and beyond. Perhaps it was misleading of me to say that they were ahead of the pack, that gives the impression that they were playing King Crimson, Yes, ELP before these bands existed, when in actual fact, 1-2-3 would still stand on their own as unique, even today. As has been noted, these bands took elements, Yes took the baroque arrangements, Crimson took the melodic grandeur mixed with frantic muso invention, ELP (The Nice) took the concept of a classic organ trio. What these bands produced from there was their own version of elements of 1-2-3. They were all “utterly different and fresher”, all that is said is that the concept largely came from 1-2-3.

At the very least, 1-2-3 was playing a form of progressive music long before these other bands were even formed. But the nature of things in Rock music is that the records are used to make these judgements rather than live performances, and that’s where it went wrong for 1-2-3, though beyond the shores of Prog itself (ironically!), their crucial contribution is more readily accepted. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2013 at 05:35

PS what I should also have added was that the real innovation was in the arrangements more than the playing. Also, it was the first time that a Rock band had lead keyboards instead of lead guitar. Other bands had organ ingredients, not organ/keyboards as sole lead instrument.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2013 at 06:01
ORLY.





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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 03 2013 at 06:41
Hardly! Tom McGuinness was the lead guitarist. The organ was an ingredient.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cactus Choir Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 04 2013 at 03:02
What about Don Shinn? He was doing Hammond-led, rocked up classics as far back as 1966. He played at the Marquee and has been openly acknowledged as an influence by Keith Emerson several times:

http://www.themarqueeclub.net/keith-emerson-2001

Not surprising when you listen to this:






Edited by Cactus Choir - December 04 2013 at 03:06
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 04 2013 at 07:10
Don Shinn was/is unique; a one-off original; but his guitar-less trio wasn't formed till late 1967.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cactus Choir Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 04 2013 at 09:33
Originally posted by DiamondDog DiamondDog wrote:

Don Shinn was/is unique; a one-off original; but his guitar-less trio wasn't formed till late 1967.


But his influence on Emerson in particular dates from a Marquee residency in mid-1966 (and the keyboard-led record linked to is also from 1966). This from the BritishSound blog:

"Monday, June 6, 1966: Marquee Club, 90 Wardour Street, Soho, central London, UK with The Graham Bond Organization
The not yet famous organ God Keith Emerson was in the audience during one of the band Marquee shows that summer, and was duly inspired by Don Shinn's act that featuring hilarious stage antics such as a habit of disappearing around the back of his organ to draw out weird sounds with the aid of a screwdriver, and also "treated" adaptations of classical pieces such as an arrangement of the Edvard Grieg's Piano Concerto In A Minor, one of the most popular of all piano concerti. Seeing Don Shinn do that, made Keith Emerson realise that he'd like to compile an act from what Don did." 

I have nothing against 1-2-3/Clouds (!) and hope they get their due recognition as artists. I just think it's wrong to present them as the fountainhead of what happened in UK prog in the late 60s which you seem to be attempting to do. There were a whole load of more central influences in on it such as Procol Harum, Zappa, Soft Machine, The Moody Blues, Pink Floyd, and of course the Beatles who were probably the biggest influence of all. Bill Bruford said that when you formed a band in the late 60s there were two questions: a. Was it as good as the Beatles? b. Did it sound different to anyone else?

The likes of Don Shinn and Clouds I'm sure had their own influence on what happened at a lesser level. It just seems weird that no one from Crimson/ELP/Yes et al has cited 1-2-3/Clouds as an influence if they were so central and when other ones have been readily acknowledged. Unless of course there is some sort of sinister Prog musician "omerta" going on to deny them their proper due? If there is I think we should be told and I will then retract all of the above. LOL


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DiamondDog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: December 04 2013 at 09:52
I've no problem with Don Shinn being an influence on Emerson too, and no, I don't think anyone was" the fountainhead"- prog was a culmination of many forces - read Malraux's earlier post - but there's no doubt that 1-2-3 was a crucial influence, in terms of the concept of the music - none of the musicians from the bands that followed needed to copy anyone in the execution of the music.  It's also largely true that out of Crimson/ELP/Yes, only Jon Anderson has publicly cited 1-2-3/Clouds as a major influence, but rivalry certainly plays a part in that. Don Shinn, as stated, is an unique individual, but not a rival in the same sense, therefore easier to acknowledge (or use as acknowledgement). The point I was also making is that Don's band featured keyboard, but alongside lead guitar, in traditional fashion for that time. 

As I also mentioned, outside the shores of prog archives, there is plenty of critical acceptance of 1-2-3's influence, so it's not just my opinion as a humble punter that's being put forward here. Check outside these walls. You at least seem open-minded, which is as much as anyone can ask.
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