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How did you find these bands?

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bobthenob View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bobthenob Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: How did you find these bands?
    Posted: March 29 2013 at 23:27
Yes, contrary to conventional wisdom, we did have means of gaining info before bits & bytes
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Progosopher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 23:05
Like many of my age, it was a matter of being familiar with popular prog bands like Yes, ELP, Tull, Pink Floyd, etc. from the radio and hearing about related bands through word of mouth, concerts, music mags & rags.  Artists going solo, such as Hackett and Gabriel.  Cover art conveyed a certain sensability but was not reliable.  For example, I much prefer Roger Dean's covers for Greenslade over his work for Yes, but I never got into the band.  I did buy an occasional album for the cover, which worked out in an acceptable manner as often as not.   Record store employees were also a good source when they found out what you liked, or even if they had similar tastes.  Sometimes they would play something specifically to get your attention and compel to buy, just like that one scene from Hi Fidelity.  Used record stores would usually let you listen to an album just as most of them will now let you listen to a CD.  There were also specialized magazines and newsletters for specific styles as well as fan clubs.  In a phrase, we had lots of resources back in the so-called day which worked quite well.
The world of sound is certainly capable of infinite variety and, were our sense developed, of infinite extensions. -- George Santayana, "The Sense of Beauty"
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Prog_Traveller Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 20:58
I'm curious as to how old your dad is. Age has something to do with it but also word of mouth. Maybe your dad didn't have any friends into prog or maybe your dad had no friends period. Back in the day I think it was heard on college radio. It was easier to find out about those bands in general and even outside of college radio a lot rock stations had late night prog shows. At some point probably in the late seventies and early eighties prog became very underground and eventually it became so underground that you didn't hear anything about it unless you went out of your way looking for it. This continued well into the nineties. The internet itself didn't save prog. What has helped a lot in the past ten years or so has been the growing number of prog fans and the growing network especially things like facebook(which I'm not on). I personally found out about some of these older bands through magazines and rock encyclopedias(this was in the 80's before the internet).
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guldbamsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 16:08
Pink Floyd actually found me now that I think of it. 
I was 9 sitting beside a tennis court, and then one of my friends suddenly decides to whack a couple of headphones on my skull, and says "here listen to this, it's incredible". It was the solo of Comfortably Numb, and I honestly haven't looked back since.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Evolver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 16:00
I the early 70's I was introduced to some bands via friends and acquaintances.  Some I heard on the radio.  By the mid-70s I was exploring a number of used record shops, and listening to college radio.
Trust me. I know what I'm doing.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guldbamsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 15:58
^^I've done that a lot of times and I can't even remember being let down.

This one I bought in Sweden when I was 15:

One of my favourite psych albums, even if I didn't "get it" the first time around.


Edited by Guldbamsen - March 29 2013 at 15:59
“The Guide says there is an art to flying or rather a knack. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.”
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stool Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 15:57
In the 70s, my dad had most of the early Pink Floyd albums (for some reason he didn't bother with the soundtrack albums). Then at school there was a longhaired guy who brought in Jethro Tull & Deep Purple, after that I found things through the music papers
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Windhawk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 15:54
Originally posted by dysoriented

Anyone name an album they bought at the time completely unknowing of the band, just based on the cover?
Was it any good?


As I had my formative years a bit later, I can't vouch for those who started their music interest in the 70's. But as someone who started listening to music a lot in the early 80's, I can most certainly vouch for the sales pitch of a good album cover.

Hawkwind - Choose Your Masques
Rush - Moving Pictures
Camel - Mirage

...a few examples of albums I bought where I didn't know anything about the bands at all when I bought the albums, the combination of cover art and song titles that enticed me into a purchase.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote HemispheresOfXanadu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 14:32
The radio, this website, friends, my bass teacher, my parents, and YouTube recommendations are how I find bands.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote progmatic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 29 2013 at 14:26
In the earkt 70s a friend traded me King Crimson's COTCK for Led Zeppelin I.
I was hooked on prog, but didn't have a clue how to find it.
So I searched for albums that had:
1. Awesome cover art
2. Four or less songs per side
3. Musicians who played multiple instruments: guitar, 12-string, double-necked electric, Moogs, ARP string synthesizers, mellotrons, etc.
4. Little to no publicity.
When I went to college I fortunately was fairly good at pool and other (rich) students were not. So I used to take my winnings to a little long-gone record shop in Lakeland Florida called Spec records and start at "A" looking for albums meeting the above criteria. The first week I discovered Camel and Caravan on the same day. Found Genesis, Hawkwind, PFM, Passport and lots others the same way.


PROGMATIC
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Post Options Post Options   Quote axeman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 21:04
For me, the trick wasn't finding the prog bands on the 70s. As somebody mentioned earlier they put out singles and then again Album-oriented Radio--before the record companies reined it in--made it easier to find the more interesting bands--until bands started not being interested in being interesting--outside of a look or perhaps even interesting textures to their pop instruments. 

The trick was the revelation that prog was out there again in the 90s, that the Long Prog Draught was at an end. Spock's Beard released The Light in 1992 and it took me until 1999, when streaming radio started to pull up a site called "ProgRock Radio" and tuned in to hear Escape by The Rocket Scientists, followed up by something from Jadis and Spock's Beard.

Thanks to the internet, I no longer get the scrunched face suggesting the absurd notion that the guy who known for Games without Frontiers or Shock the Monkey used to sing lead--instead of the guy who sang Against All Odds--for the band that was no famous for Invisible Touch and other top-40 dreck. Almost everybody now knows Peter Gabriel used to front Genesis. 

(On a totally different note, I'm listening to Weidorje on my Birds and Buildings IHeartRadio station--does anybody else think they sound identical to Magma?)
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Post Options Post Options   Quote cstack3 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 19:59
Originally posted by lazland

 
It was a strange situation then. Shows such as Top of the Pops were full of glam, crappy "soul" music from the States, and corny pop.

However, the music press then regarded what we call prog or art rock as the epitome, and shows such as Old Grey Whistle Test catered for serious music fans. When Rick Wakeman appeared on this, aided by a news dispute on BBC1, he became an overnight star.

Bands such as Yes, Led Zep, The Who, Deep Purple et al sold albums by the truckload. Serious bands sold out gigs at large venues.

I wish I were over there then!  I lived in Devon, briefly, in 1994-95.  The band "Oasis" was hugely popular, and try as I might, I couldn't find much prog to whet the whistle!    

I'll be back, someday!  Cheers!

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 13:26
Between 1970 and 1975 the radio wasn't wall-to-wall Prog but there was a lot of it on evening shows, just as daytime Radio One is crap and evening Radio One has all the music interesting to today's modern teens. It wasn't just "Fluff" Freeman (though even by 1977 he was becoming a parody of himself), before Peel turned traitor he was a supporter of Prog and was responsible for first playing Tubular Bells on the radio when no one had heard of it. With Peel, Pete Drummond, Alan Black, Annie Nightingale (another Prog traitor), Tommy Vance and Bob Harris (who also produced albums by Prog bands Druid and Wally) all played Prog on their evening programmes - Kid Jensen, Emperor Rosco, Stuart Henry, Johnnie Walker, Paul Gambaccini were also known to play a bit of Prog now and then.
 
IMO, after Ricahrd Williams stopped presenting OGWT it started playing far too much Southern Rock and not enough Prog, once that Prog-traitor Nightingale took over it was all down-hill.
 
 
 
ps: As well as playing the whole of Tubular Bells on his programme, Peel was also supposed to play Hergest Ridge in its entirity on the day of its release, but because Branson took out a full page advert in the music press to advertise this the BBC suits stopped him playing it .. Peel being Peel, played it the day before instead to get around the ban. He also played the whole of Tangerine Dream's Ricochet album a week before it was released, Branson took out a double-page ad after the event (bizzarre - if you can find a copy - it shows a cartoon of giant versions of Froese, Bauman and Franke smashing through a wall).
 
edit 2: found it:


Edited by Dean - March 28 2013 at 13:51


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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 12:37
Originally posted by Snow Dog

Originally posted by lazland

Originally posted by Snow Dog

Originally posted by cstack3

Originally posted by dysoriented

I asked my father the other day if he had heard of some of the 70's prog acts I listen to. To name a few, King Crimson, Hawkwind, Gentle Giant, Caravan... And he said no.

This absolutely baffled me, because his music, in general is proggy! David Bowie, Queen, Bryan Ferry. So I suppose, what I'm asking here is, how was it marketed back then? I was told "We didn't have the internet back then to discover music, we just made do''. And it made me wonder, how people found out about these bands? As I'm guessing it was just as niche then as it is now.

Does that make sense? LOL

(By the way, I don't just mean those select few, I mean the whole prog scene, obviously there's a ton of bands/musicians that were active at the time)

Ha!  Prog was HUGELY popular back then!  Singles by Yes, ELP, Focus, Flash and other bands received as much airplay back then as Justin Bieber does today!   Rock magazines like Circus were full of news about Yes, Genesis etc.  




Not in the UK it wasn't. Most kids never heard of those bands

It was a strange situation then. Shows such as Top of the Pops were full of glam, crappy "soul" music from the States, and corny pop.

However, the music press then regarded what we call prog or art rock as the epitome, and shows such as Old Grey Whistle Test catered for serious music fans. When Rick Wakeman appeared on this, aided by a news dispute on BBC1, he became an overnight star.

Bands such as Yes, Led Zep, The Who, Deep Purple et al sold albums by the truckload. Serious bands sold out gigs at large venues.

I don't deny it. But at school. most of my contempraries  didn't delve into these bands. 
That's because you were too young. Back in those days three years made a huge difference in the friends you associated with and the music you got to listen to - I would never have shared my taste in music with someone three years younger than me or three years older: "And my brother back at home with his Beatles and his Stones, we never got it off on that revolution stuff". My generation lived Prog Rock - seriously; the school playground would be groups of kids swapping albums and talking music - everything from TONTO and White Noise, through Zappa and Beefheart, to Genesis, Yes and Floyd and out the otherside to Van der Graaf Generator, King Crimson and Gentle Giant - there were kids into Hawkwind and Gong; other's into Hatfield and Caravan; then the European music stated arriving - like Can, Faust, Focus, PFM, Le Orme, Tangerine Dream, Amon Duul, Kraftwerke. Everyone of those bands I heard while at school from other kids in the playgound, in the common room and more importantly, on the 40 minute bus ride home. It is hard to describe and hard to imagine just how popular all this stuff was between 1970 and 1974. I guess a close parallel would be the arrival of New Wave a few years later - it carried that kind of excitement and that level of interest.
 
 
 
PS: every schoolboy my age knew Flash because of the flash of knickers on the cover. Embarrassed


Edited by Dean - March 28 2013 at 12:41


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Post Options Post Options   Quote silverpot Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 10:42
In Sweden radio didn't play much popular music at all in the 60s so we got used to listening to Radio Luxenburg. And then there were the record stores. Without them it would've been pretty difficult to hear anything outside of the charts.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote TODDLER Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 08:28
Discovered Prog in the early 70's through my cousin (if memory serves), and then it was defined as "Art Rock' by teenagers. Many of the early underground European Prog bands which toured America were billed as opening acts for famous "Rock Stars" and that was the basic marketing concept at the time. PFM opening for Rory Gallagher or King Crimson opening for Humble PIE. That marketing concept drew a wide variety of fans who were interested in mainstream music. Extremely different than the world of Prog today or even much different from 1979 through the 80's where artists like Bill Bruford and National Health played small theatres in Philadelphia and N.Y. After Yes became internationally known, GRYPHON were on tour with them which was yet another different choice/way of doing things. It was a rarity for a "Hard Rock" band like STRAY DOG to be opening for ELP. Things were changing for the better and then it grew progressively worse in the late 70's regarding bookings.
 
When Bruford departed YES, fans took it to heart. Many fans turned up to the K.C. shows screaming Burford's name all night. That is evident on the live recordings of K.C. All Hell broke loose at J.F.K. stadium when YES played "RITUAL". The seats were set on fire and it started to spread rapidly as fire's often do. covering almost half of the entire stadium while Patrick Moraz continued to play his schizoid keyboard sounds at the closing of the piece. This is around the specific point in Prog history when Prog bands were actually playing stadiums just as the mainstream "Rock acts" were doing the same. Prog was actually part of the "Stadium Rock" time period. It is hilarious to think that at 1 time ELP headlined California Jam over Deep Purple who sold more for Warner Brothers than any act to date and within a 3 year period. Prog was in it's glory then. Triumvirat were being promoted as well and it truly puts things into perspective for me now. A very strange time to live through!


Edited by TODDLER - March 28 2013 at 08:31
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Gog/Magog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 08:15
Early 1980s heard Duchess by Genesis on the radio, thought nice song think I'll investigate this (had very little interest in the music I was exposed to at the time). Bought Duke, great album, must buy more by this band.

Purchased Wind and Wuthering listened, thought what the hell is this? Listened a bit more hooked, bought Nursery Cryme, blimey this is a bit too weird, listened a bit more, again hooked.

Discovered other great bands, found Van der Graaf were perhaps what I had been looking for all my life.

Then lost interest in the mid-1980s and listened to a lot of 80s indie music (I was young and impressionable what can i say). 

Lost interest in that when the whole scene dissolved into nothing in particular, went back to prog and have never loved it more than I do today.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Ethos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 07:57
For me it was a slow process.  Radio played very little prog, just the short under 5 minute songs.  Most of mainstream were into top 40 stuff back then (some things never change).  I, like many people, found the Beatles in the 60's, then ELO because they were different and had strings.  My neighborhood friends were hugely influential because they introduced me to Genesis, Tull, Roxy Music, ELP, Yes.  Genesis was the real hook for me.   It was not called "Prog" back then!  I don't recall hearing the term progressive until later on.  Not much if any prog talk at school as I recall.  It has always been fringe music.

One thing that was cool back then was finding hole in the wall record stores that usually had drug paraphernalia behind the counter, on shelves or behind the glass, bongs, pipes, etc. and perusing through the bootlegs bin.  I still have many of those old bootlegs on vinyl, but they were abused for reasons I don't care to discuss right now.
They had interesting names like "Bedside Yellow Foam"  and "Awed Man Out"

Going to concerts and talking to record store personnel was my internet back then.  Talk to strangers at prog. concerts!  They are your brothers in music.  Even today I learn about many groups through word of mouth.  I learned about King Crimson, Camel, Ethos, Van Der Graff Generator, Heldon, Dixie Dregs, Tangerine Dream, through word of mouth at concerts.  I learned about Gentle Giant because they were on the bill with Yes.  What an amazing group that was to see live.  They all played multiple instruments.  Truly one of the most talented groups I have ever seen.  They were captivating.

I had never been exposed to Canterbury Scene back then, strangely enough.  The world was a lot larger then.

There has never been a better time for music than now.  Enjoy it!  You will look back fondly on this time period!Big smile
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Slartibartfast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 04:42
I got seriously into prog in the late '70's, you know that time when punk had supposedly killed prog.  Personally the most grievous wound prog suffered was commercialitis.   However, a lot of the big names in '70's prog did manage to get a song or two played on the radio.  Interesting music was occasionally the stuff of hits.  There were of course magazines and record stores and musicians who changed bands.  The latter was great stuff for discovery through connections.  For example, if you liked Yes and King Crimson,  Jon Anderson had a cameo in KC and Bill Bruford jumped ship (before my prog time).  You can't underestimate the power of word of mouth.  My circle of friends and relatives that liked prog reveled in discovery so when we'd get together and enjoy music there was a lot of hey look what I found going on.  The internet has been a great help in keeping prog alive and vital.  Too many new artists I have discovered thanks to PA and before that, AOL had progressive as one of their streaming "radio" stations.


Edited by Slartibartfast - March 28 2013 at 04:43
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Post Options Post Options   Quote richardh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 28 2013 at 02:32
Originally posted by Snow Dog

Oh well  I am obviously barking mad. I never heard Prog on mainstream radio. What else can I say? Just explaing why it is not unusual for his dad not to have heard of those bands.

IN most cases it wasn't the great long tracks that were played. For instance I can remember DLT playing Hoedown and that would have been about 1976. I had never heard ELP before that.

Also John Peel I recollect did play some prog.I used to listen to his show a lot when I was 15. There were also the odd event type radio programmes that looked at the history of rock music.Prog was always there or thereabouts.1978 to about 1981 it probably more or less disappeared although it was about 1981 that I discovered I could get Radio Caroline. There were at least 3 DJ's on that station that were prog fans! It wasn't just the well known stuff either.. Of course there was also the Friday Rock show. Might only have been 2 hours a week but it was massively important.


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