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  #1  
Old 02-17-2005, 07:01 PM
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ThePenguin ThePenguin is offline
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Default Spencer Davis interview

Found an interview w/ Spencer Davis where he mentions Chris.
Who knew Chris was into Canadian folk songs LOL?
http://www.sundazed.com/scene/exclus...avis_excl.html


***************
What were you playing when you moved to Birmingham to attend the University?
My partner in crime at the time, my girlfriend, was a young lady called Christine Perfect who later married (Fleetwood Mac's) John McVie. We used to play in folk clubs with the Ian Campbell Trio. With Christine on piano and me on 12-string, we'd play Canadian folk songs that she was into, mining songs like "Spring Hill, Nova Scotia." And we also did W.C. Handy songs like "Careless Love," and, of course, Leadbelly tunes. We were getting more and more into the blues things. Christine and I played the pub circuit.

-Lis

Last edited by ThePenguin : 02-17-2005 at 11:07 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-17-2005, 07:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePenguin
Found an interview w/ Spencer Davis where he mentions Chris.
Who know Chris was into Canadian folk songs LOL?
http://www.sundazed.com/scene/exclus...avis_excl.html


***************
What were you playing when you moved to Birmingham to attend the University?
My partner in crime at the time, my girlfriend, was a young lady called Christine Perfect who later married (Fleetwood Mac's) John McVie. We used to play in folk clubs with the Ian Campbell Trio. With Christine on piano and me on 12-string, we'd play Canadian folk songs that she was into, mining songs like "Spring Hill, Nova Scotia." And we also did W.C. Handy songs like "Careless Love," and, of course, Leadbelly tunes. We were getting more and more into the blues things. Christine and I played the pub circuit.

-Lis
Mining songs to top it off. Who knew?
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Old 02-17-2005, 07:23 PM
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macfan 57 macfan 57 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePenguin
Found an interview w/ Spencer Davis where he mentions Chris.
Who know Chris was into Canadian folk songs LOL?
http://www.sundazed.com/scene/exclus...avis_excl.html


***************
What were you playing when you moved to Birmingham to attend the University?
My partner in crime at the time, my girlfriend, was a young lady called Christine Perfect who later married (Fleetwood Mac's) John McVie. We used to play in folk clubs with the Ian Campbell Trio. With Christine on piano and me on 12-string, we'd play Canadian folk songs that she was into, mining songs like "Spring Hill, Nova Scotia." And we also did W.C. Handy songs like "Careless Love," and, of course, Leadbelly tunes. We were getting more and more into the blues things. Christine and I played the pub circuit.

-Lis
Hmmm...Canadian Folk songs & mining songs. Now, I would have loved to have heard that.

Spencer Davis referred to Chris as his girlfriend. But, I'm sure I read an interview with Chris somewhere where she said they weren't romantically involved, just friends & musical partners.
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Old 02-17-2005, 07:32 PM
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ThePenguin ThePenguin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macfan 57
Hmmm...Canadian Folk songs & mining songs. Now, I would have loved to have heard that.

Spencer Davis referred to Chris as his girlfriend. But, I'm sure I read an interview with Chris somewhere where she said they weren't romantically involved, just friends & musical partners.
yeah, i read something similar. I have read that he was her first boyfriend ( the guy she lost lots of weight to get! ) but I think it was a pretty innocent relationship. "More musical than illicit" as I think she said in Rolling Stone years ago.

-Lis
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Old 02-17-2005, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
What were you playing when you moved to Birmingham to attend the University?
My partner in crime at the time, my girlfriend, was a young lady called Christine Perfect who later married (Fleetwood Mac's) John McVie. We used to play in folk clubs with the Ian Campbell Trio. With Christine on piano and me on 12-string, we'd play Canadian folk songs that she was into, mining songs like "Spring Hill, Nova Scotia." And we also did W.C. Handy songs like "Careless Love," and, of course, Leadbelly tunes. We were getting more and more into the blues things. Christine and I played the pub circuit.
I thought "Careless Love" was a Richard Rodgers tune.

Haaha!! I can see Chris in the old days doing some folk stuff -- straight out of "A Mighty Wind"!
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Old 02-18-2005, 03:32 AM
Gailh Gailh is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePenguin
yeah, i read something similar. I have read that he was her first boyfriend ( the guy she lost lots of weight to get! ) but I think it was a pretty innocent relationship. "More musical than illicit" as I think she said in Rolling Stone years ago.

-Lis
Yes I remember the Rolling Stone interview and the "more musical than illicit" quote. I think she also said "I swore I would get thin and go out with him ... and I did"

Gail
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Old 02-18-2005, 11:39 AM
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mining songs like "Spring Hill, Nova Scotia."
That's where my parents grew up..lol
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Old 07-17-2016, 07:48 PM
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[only a passing reference to Christine here, but I thought the article was interesting retrospective, especially the kicker. Made me sad. It's not about money. It's about time]

Will legendary Spencer Davis Group reunite for one last gig in Birmingham?
06:30, 17 JUL 2016 BY MIKE LOCKLEY for the Birmingham Mail

http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/what...unite-11614830

Fan petition gains backing of the legendary Birmingham band's drummer

The driving riffs of Keep On Running and Gimme Some Loving sound as fresh, and adrenaline-fuelled, today as they did when first laid down at the height of the Swinging Sixties.

The tracks, both massive hits, established The Spencer Davis Group as one of the most influential, and successful, bands to come out of Birmingham.

In turn, they spawned supergroup Traffic, and lead singer Steve Winwood – a former city choirboy – went on to enjoy global success as a solo artist in the 1980s.

Now, a Canadian fan has launched a petition, calling for the original line-up – Winwood, brother Muff Winwood, Spencer Davis and Pete York – to reunite for one last gig at Birmingham Town Hall.

And it’s more than just a pipedream – John Woodhouse’s camapign has already received the backing of drummer Peter York, and the internet petition is gathering pace daily.

The 56-year-old, who runs superb music site BrumBeat, was born in Harborne but moved to Canada with his parents as a teenager.

“Mum and dad left after 25 years because the winter’s were just too much,” he says. “They now live in Bournville and I see them every year.”

John, who works as a draugtsman, explains the appeal, and importance, of The Spencer Davis Group.

“In those early days, half the groups in Birmingham were trying to be like The Shadows, the other half like The Beatles,” he explains.

“But the Spencer Davis Group were different in that they had their own sound. A lot of bands went on to copy that sound.”

It was a sound spawned at the Golden Eagle Pub on Hill Street where Muff and Steve – the latter only 15 years old, but with a honed Blues voice – had a residency.

It was not, however, a hit sound spawned by Birmingham’s grime.

Spencer Davis, now 76, was actually born in Swansea and learned his craft in London where he played for a number of skiffle groups.

He began studying German at Birmingham University in 1960 and, after graduating, gained work as a teacher at Yardley’s Whittington Oval Junior School. In the evenings, Spencer supplemented his income by singing the blues and playing 12-string guitar in local pubs.

For a short time, he and Christine Perfect, who would find 1970s fame with Fleetwood Mac, performed as a duo.

The Winwood brothers cut their teeth in the business at a very early age. Their dad played sax in a dance band and the boys would be invited on stage to perform jazz and rock’n’roll.

Muff, now 73, recalls: “We were both playing guitars so my father said ‘Why don’t you play the rock‘n’roll medley with our band?’

“We’d stand up and play three or four rock numbers in the set, and it went down a storm. Steve was wearing his short trousers!”

They were raised in a house on Atlantic Road, Old Oscott, taught to play the piano when very young and sang in the local church choir.

At first Steve, now 68, and Muff – real name Mervyn – were drawn to jazz, but their father persuaded them to tread a more popular musical path.

They formed their first group, Johnny Star and The Planets, in 1959, while still at school.

The big time beckoned in 1963 when Spencer Davis met the brothers, now performing as the Muffy Wood Jazz Band, at the Golden Eagle.

Jazz drummer Pete York, born in Middlesborough but a Birmingham University graduate, joined the ranks and the four-piece began their working life as The Rhythm and Blues Quartette. Within weeks they had gained a massive following at the Golden Eagle, with Slade star Noddy Holder declaring himself one of their biggest fans.

Noddy recalls: “Of all the bands I saw in those days, they were the ones who impressed me the most. They had this small public address system, one of the smallest I had seen, and were very unassuming on stage.

“Then this spotty kid on the organ suddenly opened his mouth and screamed ‘I Love The Way She Walks’ and launched into an old John Lee Hooker number. My mouth fell open and I felt a chill down my spine!

“That was the night I discovered rhythm and blues for the first time.”

Before long, industry bigwigs in London were being told of the brilliant band. Chris Blackwell, founder of Island Records, realised the potential and secured a recording contract with the Fontana label, while Island handled the publishing rights.

Surprisingly, the band’s name was not dreamed up by Spencer Davis. Muff came up with the Spencer Davis Group because he and Steve wanted no part of being in the publicity spotlight.

Their first single, a cover of John Lee Hooker song, Dimples, released in April, 1964, failed to chart. But the next three 45s – I Can’t Stand It, Every Little Bit Hurts and Strong Love – all achieved lowly placings. All were cover versions.

But, slowly, the nation was turning on to The Spencer Davis Group.

The lads’ star rose when Blackwell brought in Jamaican singer-songwriter Jackie Edwards who penned Keep On Running. The single was a smash, knocking The Beatles’ Day Tripper off the top of the charts in January 1966.

Another Jackie Edwards’ composition, Somebody Help Me, reached the top spot in April 1966, but When I Came Home failed to break the top 10.

It was time for the group to write their own music – and they came up with the number that was to become their anthem, Gimme Some Loving. It reached No 2 over here and cracked the US top ten.

The group’s days were already numbered, however. Steve Winwood was keen to stretch his wings as a musician and began to mix with Dave Mason and Jim Capaldi of Midlands’ band Deep Feeling, and Chris Wood from Birmingham’s Locomotive.

Muff says: “We’d already decided to quit. Steve wanted to get involved in the whole psychedelic thing. There were big changes happening lifestyle-wise. I said to him ‘If you wanna go, I’ll go, too’. We both fixed a date and it wasn’t acrimonious in that sense.

“We decided to promote our single I’m A Man and then quit. I’ve got the date in my old Melody Maker diary – April 7, 1967. That was the last gig of a package tour with The Hollies.”

I’m A Man reached No 9 and soon afterwards Steve left to form Traffic with Capaldi, Wood and Mason.

Spencer Davis wasn’t prepared to pull the plug on his group and recruited Eddie Hardin on keyboards, and guitarist Phil Sawyer, to plug the gaps.

Interestingly, one musician who failed to impress Spencer during auditions was a certain Reginald Dwight.

It was probably for the best – in later years, Reg didn’t do badly under his stage name ... Elton John.

More line-up changes followed, but the group failed to replicate earlier success. A hit eluded Spencer who re-located to the USA. Muff, who took a job as promotion agent at Island Records, rose to be senior executive at Sony. Pete York lives in Germany.

The Spencer Davis Group’s time in the sun may have gone, but it was far from the last the general public heard of the four talented musicians.

Readers of a certain age will remember 1970s children’s TV show Magpie and its catchy theme song: “One for sorrow...”

That, believe it or not, was a Spencer Davis Group song, recorded under the pseudonym of The Murgatroyd Band.

John Woodhouse feels the time is right for a Birmingham reunion.

“The aim of this petition is to show support for the original line-up of The Spencer Davis Group to re-unite and perform at Birmingham’s Town Hall,” he says.

“Their drummer Pete York has requested support from fans of the BrumBeat website to help this cause, in his own words ‘before time robs us of our facility to do so’.

“We are losing more of our heroes from the 1960s with depressing regularity. It’s not about money, it’s about time!”
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