Archive for November, 2009

BBC TV Points West Granary book interview from 2004

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

When Al Read’s book about the Granary’s rock history was published in 2004, BBC TV’s Points West news programme included a feature about it. You can watch this interview on you tube via this link


An added interest in this feature is the rare footage of the Stranglers performing “Golden Brown” at the club. This was the first time that the Stranglers had played their iconic hit in public.


BBC presenter Ali Vowles is seen inside the Granary after it’s reconstruction from a club into an apartment block.


And there’s also Al Read fondly remembering the night in 1972 when he had booked Supertramp with Judas Priest supporting for a total of  £95.00.

BRISTOL FOLK by Mark Jones

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

An excellent book written by Gran Fan Mark Jones was published earlier this month and is recommended to all those interested in the Bristol folk scene of the the Sixties and Seventies.


Inside you’ll find

·       In-depth profiles of over 30 artists and coverage of many more.

·       Personal reminiscences from many of those on the scene.

·       34 pages of illustrations, including many previously unpublished photographs.

·       Histories of the numerous folk clubs and the two main local record labels.

·       A comprehensive discography listing more than 180 records.

·       A listing of CD re-issues and artists’ current websites.

In the late 1960s and early ‘70s, Bristol became nationally renowned for its powerhouse folk & blues scene, and was second only to London for the number and influence of its recorded artists. It’s an era still remembered with enormous nostalgia by those who participated, and is nigh legendary to those who came later.

Although focused on Bristol, Bristol Folk should be of great interest, not just to Bristolians, but to all fans of late 1960s and early 1970s British folk and blues music, not to mention that strange beast now known as ‘psych’ or ‘acid folk’, because many Bristol-based musicians became nationally-known and influential exponents of these various styles. Bristol, because of the national reputation of its folk scene, became a magnet for the brightest and best on the folk scene: established names such as Al Stewart, Stefan Grossman, the Incredible String Band and John Renbourn were enamoured of Bristol’s friendly folk scene and were frequent visitors to clubs, such as the Troubadour, where they were often given a run for their money by Bristol’s own resident musicians, many of whom went on to become national names themselves.

Bristol Folk, by music historian and discographer, Mark Jones, features painstakingly researched profiles of all the artists known to have recorded in and around Bristol’s vibrant folk scene in those two decades: from Ian Anderson’s country blues to the manic 1920s jug-based jazz of the Pigsty Hill Light Orchestra; from Adge Cutler & the Wurzels’ novelty rural folk to the sophisticated images of Shelagh McDonald; from the rustic rock of Stackridge to the finely-crafted ‘psych blues’ of Al Jones; from the magical ballads of Bob Stewart to ethereal pop hits by Sally Oldfield; from the inspired, original guitar work of Dave Evans to the ‘acid folk’ of Keith Christmas – and much more. These are discussed in the context of the wider music scene, with mention of the numerous and often vastly-popular groups and artists who either didn’t get to release records in their own right or had them issued outside of the years covered, from Canton Trig to the Deep Blues Band and many others.

Amongst those who contributed specially-written pieces – included in addition to their profiles – are Ian Anderson, Andy Leggett, Saydisc’s Gef Lucena, Rodney Matthews (yes, the world-famous fantasy artist started out designing LP sleeves and gig posters for Bristol’s folk set), Bob Stewart, Steve Tilston, Keith Warmington and Fred Wedlock, all of whose diverse careers either started in Bristol or were shaped by their time on Bristol’s folk scene.

The 34 pages of illustrations include photographs – many previously unpublished – promotional materials and memorabilia from the artists’ private collections and other archives to which the author had special access, plus over 80 record sleeves. Also included are cuttings from Bristol’s early 1970s arts and entertainments magazine, Preview, and Plastic Dog’s near-legendary Dogpress newsletter – one edition of which found itself being waved around at a Parliamentary hearing on obscenity!

froots-advert-v3-resizedFor more information follow this link Published November 2009, by Bristol Folk Publications, price £18.99 (+ shipping).

ONSLAUGHT Thursday 15th October 1987

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

Drummer Steve Grice termed the band “punk metal” and pretty successful they were too. They played twice at the club, once on Tuesday 10th September 1985 when they shared the bill along with SWEET REVENGE. They toured Europe with MOTORHEAD and featured in punk and metal charts with both singles and albums. They were, some say, Bristol’s most successful slash/metal/punk band. Their second times at the club was a big affair prior to their trip to Germany supporting BLACK SABBATH. Al has just delved into the Granary archives and found the poster advertising the event whilst Gran Fan Tom Andrews discovered that he had photos taken on the night in his collection. Such memories!