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A Renaissance confusion

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Category: Progressive Music Lounges
Forum Name: Prog Music Lounge
Forum Description: General progressive music discussions
Printed Date: May 22 2018 at 10:08
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Topic: A Renaissance confusion
Posted By: el böthy
Subject: A Renaissance confusion
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 13:00
Help me out here, cause I surely am confused...

The band Renaissance from 1969 to 1970 thats produced the albums Renaissance and Ilussion and the band Renaissance with Haslam and co are two different groups, that have nothing to do with each other but the name? Or are this the same band, but with total different mambers? No, right? its the first one...right?
Then, if its is the first one, why are this two groups under the same name link, why dont make two different links fro this groups???ConfusedConfusedConfusedConfused

"You want me to play what, Robert?"

Posted By: Joolz
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 13:07
It is the same band.

Although the personnel changed, both Dunford and McCarty continued from the old band in a 'backroom' role.

An excerpt from the band's history on their website:


Actually, the original lineup started falling apart prior to the second album's completion, giving rise to personnel and style changes over the next year before reaching a stable lineup. McCarty hated to fly and left the band in 1970 when they were about to embark on a European tour; Keith Relf and Louis Cennamo left shortly after to pursue a heavier style, eventually forming Armageddon. But before the original Renaissance had completely fallen apart, McCarty brought back his friend, guitarist and songwriter Michael Dunford to carry on and recruit new band members. Dunford had worked with John Hawken in The Nashville Teens and had been playing with the Plebs backing American artists but was introduced to the Renaissance lineup in 1969. Keith Relf and Jim McCarty opted for more of a background role where they could concentrate on writing songs.

When it appeared that there was not enough material to fill the second album, the original lineup got back together, without Hawken, but adding Michael Dunford to complete the Illusion album with the recording of "Mr Pine" in the summer of 1970. Session player Don Shin, with whom Louis Cennamo had played in James Taylor's backing band, joined the original lineup for the track "Past Orbits Of Dust" on electric piano. Hawken returned to lead the band while Dunford recruited vocalist Terry Crowe, drummer Terry Slade to replace Jim McCarty, and Neil Korner to replace Louis Cennamo on bass. This lineup -- Dunford, Hawken, Korner, Crowe, Slade and Jane Relf -- went on to tour Europe in September and October 1970.

After the Illusion album's drawn out completion and the European tour, Dunford and McCarty, still behind the scenes with Renaissance, continued to handle turnover in the band's lineup. Jane Relf quit after the tour completed in the fall of 1970 and was replaced by American female vocalist, Binky Cullom from late October to December 1970. John Hawken, dissatisfied with the new vocalist among other reasons, left to join Spooky Tooth and was replaced by keyboard player John Tout around the same time. Hawken later joined the Strawbs in 1973-1974.

Louis Cennamo left to join Colluseum and played on the Daughter Of Time album. He then put together Axis with ex-Jody Grind members, then joined Steamhammer which evolved into instrumental band Bogomas which ultimately folded in 1973. In February 1974 he met up with Keith Relf again; they left for America with ex-Steamhammer guitarist Martin Pugh. In Los Angeles they formed Armageddon with drummer Bobby Caldwell, rehearsed for several months and flew back to London to record an album only to break up immedately afterwards.

So by late 1970 all of the original performing band members had left and been replaced. A bootleg video shot in late autumn 1970 of a live Renaissance performance in Germany serves to commemorate this lineup and the significant transitions occuring at the time.

Further changes were needed so Renaissance manager Jon Michelle worked with Dunford and McCarty to fill in the new lineup. Melody Maker advertisements were placed for new artists including one for a female singer. Annie Haslam, a brilliant young singer with formal classical vocal training, a beautiful five-octave range and a vivacious personality, answered the Melody Maker advert and got an audition with the band where she met founding members Keith Relf and Jim McCarty. Annie, who had been trained by Sybil Knight, the famous opera singer, learnt the Kings And Queens album back to front before the audition and her vocal performance of the song "Island" got her the job on New Year's Day 1971. Annie's stunning voice would begin a transformation of the band and become one of the most recognised and well respected in the industry. The lineup of Annie Haslam, John Tout, Terry Crowe, Neil Korner, Terry Slade and Michael Dunford toured Europe extensively leading to further personal and acoustic transitions. Danny McCullough, Frank Farrell and John Wetton each took their turn at bass during the period. Keith Relf and Jim McCarty were still very much involved in the direction of the band behind the scenes and while Relf eventually became disinterested, McCarty remained involved until 1973.

Miles Copeland had met John Tout years before in Beirut when John was with Ruperts People; after making contact again, he took over as the band's manager and John Sherry became the band's agent in 1972. At that time Ed Bicknell, who later became Dire Straits successful manager, was one of the booking agents involved. The current group was disbanded and a new band was formed around Annie Haslam and John Tout while Dunford was asked to concentrate on writing. Copeland arranged further auditions; bassist Jon Camp was selected to replace Neil Korner and drummer Terence "Terry" Sullivan replaced Terry Slade. This lineup of Renaissance played 11 gigs in 14 days and then went into the studio to record what would become their first album entitled Prologue. Michael Dunford wanted to focus on writing and production so he was replaced with young guitarist Mick Parsons. Tragically, Parsons was killed in an automobile accident right before the album was recorded so Rob Hendry was brought in last minute to replace him, only to leave not long after the album -- dedicated by Renaissance to Parsons -- was released.

The completed and finally almost-stable Renaissance lineup -- Annie Haslam on vocals, John Tout on keyboards, Jon Camp on bass, Rob Hendry on guitar and Terry Sullivan on drums -- released their first album, Prologue, in 1972. With six tracks evolving out of the original Renaissance sound to be more richly produced, it included two McCarty-Thatcher songs, two Dunford-Thatcher collaborations and two Dunford-written instrumentals with vocals but no lyrics. When asked how the band remained solvent during the period from when Annie Haslam joined and the release of Prologue, Michael Dunford replied, "the band toured just about everywhere."


Posted By: micky
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 13:11
that about covers it

here's a couple clappies Joolz


I find your lack of Bassoon disturbing.....

Posted By: Ricochet
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 15:57
neatly said, Joolz. btw congrats on the Renaissance major round-up of reviews you've covered recently. Thumbs Up


Posted By: Andrea Cortese
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 16:19
Yep, great reviews as always from him. After BJH then he moved on Reinassance. A wonderful band.
And Hawken, after the departure will be member of the Strawbs. With him, mellotron reached the highest peaks in their discography and after his departure the band, despite some fine songwriting from Cousin, started to loose their progressive behaviour. Still great, though, 'cause I really like them. I hope to review as soon as possible the album Deep Cuts (1976).
But this is another story...

Posted By: el böthy
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 17:02 THAT is a complex history...
John Wetton was in renaissance for some times too???...that guy was everywhere

But, with time didnt Tout write the majority of the bands songs? I mean, from Ashes are burning up to...what ever¿

"You want me to play what, Robert?"

Posted By: Joolz
Date Posted: November 10 2006 at 17:09
Originally posted by el böthy el böthy wrote:

But, with time didnt Tout write the majority of the bands songs? I mean, from Ashes are burning up to...what ever¿

No, he didn't - Michael Dunford wrote most of the music throughout their career, but towards the end Jon Camp wrote some lyrics to Dunford's music and a few all on his own.

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