Posts Tagged ‘Ian Hunter’

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Mott The Hoople Gets The Word Out Pt. 1

February 10, 2013

A brief look at some of the print advertising used to promote various Mott The Hoople albums back in the 1970’s.

MTHad

Mott The Hoople - Insert Back (1)

mott-atlantic

Mottjapan

MTHcover

oaaa_mottthehoople2

 

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Getting Social: Rockers Hanging Out Pt.2

September 30, 2012

Here’s another selection of photos of various rock & roll stars hanging out
and partying with various friends of various bands from the 1960’s & 1970’s.
It’s like one big club!
CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE!

Janis Joplin & Grace Slick

Nico & Brian Jones

Gene Simmons & Brooke Shields

Steven Tyler & Rick Derringer

Diana Ross & Brian Jones

Gene Simmons & Bowser

Keith, Mick & Bob

Mick Ronson & Lou Reed

Keith Richards, James Brown, John Belushi

Todd Rundgren, Bebe Buell, Alice Cooper

David Bowie, Yoko, John Lennon

Neil Young & Patti Smith

Mick, John, Yoko

Freddy Mercury & Ian Hunter

Ian Hunter & Joe Elliott

Dolly Parton & Mick Jagger

Cher, Sonny, Bob Dylan

Chuck Berry & Mick Jagger

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When ‘King Biscuit’ Was King Of Sunday Nite

December 9, 2011

Back in the 1970’s during the throes of my rock ‘n roll obsession  it was rock ‘n roll 24/7/365. I can remember attending three concerts in a week on occasion. Got all the albums, 8-tracks, posters, concert tickets, wearing apparel, just like you did. For the most part myself and friends, we worshiped at 100.7 on the dial, WMMS in Cleveland. And for most if not all of the 70’s a weekly feature that we always tuned in to (unless we were at a concert) was the Sunday evening broadcast of the King Biscuit Flower Hour, a syndicated radio program that broadcast concerts with the biggest bands in the land.
 
Sometimes we’d record them, I knew someone who damn near had a full library of King Biscuit broadcasts during the 70’s. I can recall recording a few, depending who the band was that night and if I was near a home based stereo. An old pal, Dave Corbett, recorded an Aerosmith King Biscuit concert on 8-track (!) and gave it to me. I wore it out.


 I can remember many a Sunday evening out cruising back roads with a carload of friends getting our minds right and listening, at maximum volume of course, to whatever band(s) were on that particular week.
 
The King Biscuit Flower Hour debuted on February 18, 1973 with Blood, Sweat & Tears, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Bruce Springsteen. Bill Minkin served as the show’s host from the debut into the mid-1990s and he became a familiar voice to us rockers out there. The show eventually was carried over 300 plus radio stations across the country.


 I can remember attending a couple shows at the Cleveland Agora that were recorded for King Biscuit Flower Hour broadcasts (Ian Hunter/Mick Ronson & Rockpile in 1979, for one).
 
The King Biscuit producers would usually show up with a mobile recording truck, record the concert, mix and edit it and then radio stations who participated would receive reel-to-reel tapes of the shows. The producers didn’t switch over to CDs until 1987. New broadcasts lasted until 1993.


 I had no idea the show lasted as long as it did. I figure I probably heard my last King Biscuit broadcast on the radio circa 1980 or so, but it was a nice diversion on a Sunday night, it was also a chance to record some live gigs by favorite bands for the cost of a blank cassette (it had to have been a bootleggers money machine back in the 70’s). I also recall that King Biscuit producers would manufacture albums for radio stations to broadcast that were meant for radio stations only but I recall buying a couple of them at record shops back in the day.
 
In 2006, the King Biscuit tape archives were acquired by Wolfgang’s Vault that began streaming concerts online and has made some available for download.

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The Ballad of Mott The Hoople

October 21, 2011

 

Finally! Start Productions recently announced The Ballad of Mott The Hoople, the long awaited documentary on one of the 70’s more influential bands, was released on DVD in the United Kingdom on October 10 and will be available here in the States on November 14, 2011. Last week (October 11) the film was part of the New York Film Festival at the Walter Reade Theater in New York City.

Mott The Hoople Then

The DVD contains a 12-page booklet with sleeve notes by Morrissey and a limited edition 5-set of postcards. Also, a very limited set of cinema posters is available from Start Productions website. You can also order the DVD from them, too as well as from the usual sources like Amazon, etc…
 
Besides tracing the band’s career in comprehensive detail the DVD also has a full slate of extras:
 
The 2009 Hammersmith Reunion features unseen live footage from the triumphant 40th anniversary at Hammersmith Apollo in 2009: Rock ‘n’ Roll Queen, The Moon Upstairs and I Wish I was Your Mother.

Mott The Hoople Now

All the way to Memphis/The Legendary Graceland visit. Leee Black Childers talks about the epic journey to get the band to Memphis for the gig at the Ellis Auditorium three days before Christmas. Ian Hunter talks about the time he and Verden made an impromptu visit to Elvis’s home, Gracelands.

Seadivers (the Mott The Hoople Fan Club) Chairman, Kris Needs talks about his early years watching Mott The Hoople & David Bowie playing his hometown of Aylesbury.

Mott The Hoople Then

The Clash’s guitarist Mick Jones talks about his experiences working with Guy Stevens.

Mott organist Verden Allen takes us around the bands old London haunts.
 
Ariel Bender, Morgan Fisher & Buffin talk about the bands opening night on Broadway and their run in with Led Zeppelin.
 
A look through their Mott The Hoople photo album as Mott Roadies Phil John & Richie Anderson narrate through Phil’s old Mott photo album.

Mott The Hoople Now

As you most likely recall in October 2009 the five original members of Mott The Hoople reunited for the first time since their breakup for five shows at London’s Hammersmith Apollo Theatre.   After tickets for the two original dates sold out, and a third date at the same venue was added for 3 October 2009. After that one sold out as well another two dates were added on 5 and 6 October. The special limited 3 CD-set recorded during the first show at Hammersmith Apollo was sold directly after those concerts.

Mott The Hoople also held a warmup gig prior to their five-night stand at the HMV Hammersmith Apollo in October. The show was held at the Blake Theatre in Monmouth, Wales on 26 September 2009.
 
The reunion made headlines all across the United Kingdom and was an unqualified success. Will there be another reunion set of gigs? Maybe in the USA? Not likely according to Ian Hunter on his website’s Horse’s Mouth column.
 
Tons of Mott The Hoople media coverage and videos out there on the internet. Hit up your favorite search engine and enjoy!
 

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Mick Ronson Remembered

October 20, 2008
Mick Ronson - One of the greats!

Mick Ronson – One of the greats!

A recent conversation with a friend about Mick Ronson brought to my pal the startling realization that Mick Ronson has been gone for 15 years now which is hard to believe. Ronson was a gifted guitarist, arranger, songwriter and producer who made his mark in rock ‘n roll and to this day has a strong following. Ronson lost his battle with liver cancer on April 30, 1993 at age 47 but his accomplishments won’t soon be forgotten.

I first became aware of Ronson during his stint with David Bowie in the early 70’s as Ronson led the Spiders From Mars and helped Bowie construct more than a handful of now classic songs and albums, particularly The Rise & Fall of Ziggy Stardust & The Spiders From Mars. The first time I saw Ronson perform live was with Bowie and the Spiders on September 22, 1972 at the Music Hall in Cleveland, OH.

After Ariel Bender had left Mott The Hoople in 1974 Ronson joined the band in September of that year. I was ecstatic! One of my favorite guitar players was joining one of my all time favorite bands. I couldn’t wait for Mott The Hoople to tour the USA so I could catch Ronson with the band but alas, they never made a USA tour as Ian Hunter fell ill and soon after left the band with Ronson in tow.

When Ian Hunter started his solo career Ronson was on board and eventually the Hunter-Ronson Band started gigging throughout the USA and I was fortunate to catch several of their shows, the first on April 26, 1975 at the Music Hall in Cleveland, OH with the band Bonaroo as support.

A really cool gig I was fortunate to see up close was on June 18, 1979 at the Cleveland Agora with the Iron City Houserockers opening. Another reason I remember this gig is two days later my daughter was born two months early (and she spent consider time in an incubator at Akron Children’s Hospital)! Hunter and Ronson and company were just totally on fire that night and an appearance with the band by Ellen Foley capped a great night.

The Hunter-Ronson Band came back to the Cleveland area three months later headlining the Richfield Coliseum with the David Johansen Group. Hunter’s You’re Never Alone with a Schizophrenic was red hot in northeast Ohio and the band, once again, was on fire. Great show.

The last time I saw the Hunter-Ronson Band in its original incarnation was the following year when they returned to the Richfield Coliseum on June 7, 1980. The show was advertised with Hunter-Ronson headlining but when we showed up for the concert the promoters put Heart as the headliner. Mistake. While Heart did a great job, it was a bit of a let down and anti-climatic after Hunter-Ronson and associates had the huge crowd rocking the rafters. Intense performance by the band and Heart had to be dismayed following Hunter-Ronson that night.

I bought everything on vinyl that featured Ronson back in the day, including his solo LPs Slaughter On 10th Avenue and Play Don’t Worry. He continued working with a number of bands and performers but to me, his best collaborations were with Ian Hunter on his studio LPs and his, to me, classic live LP, Welcome To The Club.

For those unfamiliar with Ronson spend some time on the Mick Ronson website and find out how much of an impact he had on rock ‘n roll. His resume is one of the most varied and impressive of any rock ‘n roll guitarist. And be sure and check out Ronson’s daughter Lisa’ s band, The Secret Society (Lisa Likes Rock ‘N Roll, ya know!).

Yes, he was THAT good!

 

Ian Hunter & Mick Ronson - They had some great shows.

Ian Hunter & Mick Ronson – They had some great shows.

 

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Favorite Books Of My Youth Pt. 5

October 13, 2008

When word came out that this book, Ian Hunter’s Diary Of A Rock And Roll Star (titled Reflections Of A Rock And Roll Star here in the States), would be published in 1974 I literally haunted books stores, record stores and head shops for several months until I finally came across a copy either at (faulty memory here) Camelot Music in Akron or Arsenic & Old Lace in Akron. I read it several times over the ensuing months and next several years and it took a proud slot in my library at the time.

The book was originally published in 1974 and Ian Hunter chronicles Mott The Hoople’s November-December 1972 tour of the United States right after All The Young Dudes LP was released. It’s an inside look at touring and the rock ‘n roll lifestyle in 1972 and Hunter…ahem…rolls away the stone and leaves everything exposed that entails life on the rock ‘n roll road. It was critically acclaimed.

Unfortunately by the end of the decade it was gone, loaned to an acquaintance to never be seen again despite having loaned it to over a dozen people in the preceding years (Mott The Hoople were big time in Orrville, OH back then, especially from 1972-1975).

But one day in the winter of 1996 the wife and I stopped in Canton, OH at the Quonset Hut store and as I’m walking down an isle of CD’s there in a big display is a reissue (import) of Diary Of A Rock And Roll Star! I had no idea they reissued it but I immediately purchased it! Even today, it is among my other books and is still shrink wrapped! I haven’t even opened it in 12 years!

That is going to change in the next week or so, as soon as I find a spare evening I’m going to open it up and read it once again, for the first time in nearly 30 years. I think I was afraid to peel open the shrink-wrap and read it for fear it would be lost again. But I’m willing to chance it….!
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Albums My Mom Bought For Me

October 7, 2008

In less than 10 days it will be one year ago that I lost my Mom, so naturally she’s been on my mind a lot here lately. One memory that came back recently was when, after I became a teenager and she saw my growing record collection (and my sister’s and my brother’s), she would ask each Christmas for a list of three or four album titles, in case they were sold out of one or two selections. She would always make it a point to tell me to only expect o-n-e album, if any at all, yet invariably each year there would be two or three albums under the tree (it was that or another bottle of Hai Karate cologne!). Shown here is just a small random sampling of some of the albums my Mom bought me over the years.  Looking back she was younger than I am now when she bought these for me (she was in her early 40’s). God bless you Mom. You were always hip!

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