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Snippets of FEELIN' GOOD Issue 16/July 1999
Published with friendly permission of editor John Butterfield.
Welcome to Issue 16 which covers the Summer period of Dr Feelgood. Summertime is traditionally a quiet time of year for gigs as people are on holiday so the band tend to play short tours or one nighters (particularly festivals). This means that more than likely extra dates are added at very short notice as the Feelgoods have not been "booked up" so can respond to late requests. I cannot publicise these dates but Gabi can (if there is enough notice) on her excellent web site at http://surf.to/feelgood (Note by Gabi: As you are here already take the direct link to the TOURDATES).
Apologies to everyone who "believed" the April Fool article stating Kevin had left the Feelgoods. He was amazed at the numbers of letters asking if it was true and has asked me to assure you all that Kevin Morris is definately not leaving Dr Feelgood - sorry for any distress caused.
The next issue of Feelin' Good was originally intended for October to include details of the UK tour but it is usually late due to many dates not being confirmed prior to printing date. As we have an increasing number of fans from outside of the UK and there will be some important news to relate as soon as confirmed I will probably print an early edition of Issue 17 so get your saes in early if you have none on file. This issue will not contain any dates and I will print a date sheet to send mid October giving the UK tour details. I thank everyone who sent in stuff for this issue and future ones but I am always looking for more so please get writing.
Thanks as usual to everyone who helps with the newsletter - once more we have another Doc Word from John Alderdice. A big thanks to Roberto Pettarini and Mark McRea for sending in lots of press articles/interviews etc - these are very welcome as my memory is not as good as it used to be!
the next issue
Keep on Feelin' Good
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ON THE ROAD AGAIN
I for one was well looking forward to a few gigs in Scotland - a trip I always enjoy and have many happy memories from Edinburgh Preservation Hall, St Andrews University, Glasgow Renfrew Ferry and more. I was especially looking forward to the Edinburgh Blues Festival scheduled for the Saturday and the main reason for the Scottish dates - Dundee and Aberdeen were added to help pay for the diesel. However the festival was cancelled due to Little Feat pulling out but the Feelgoods still went ahead with the other two shows.
I went up to Sunderland the night before and saw the Rubettes whose drummer for the past 16 years has been one Alex Bines. We had a chat about the days he played with Wilko Johnson and Russell Strutter. Alex was also in a band called "The Bottles" featuring the one and only PH Mitchell. These days however it's playing in theatres with a 70's band and it suprised me how many songs I had heard before. The next day I set off for Dundee and arrived at 4pm managing to avoid the ?hundreds of speed cameras on the A1 the other side of the English border. The band had set off from Canvey at 8.30am and was picking up Steve and Pete on the way up so I made a quick phone call to Kevin on the mobile to find out an ETA (estimated time of arrival) furnishing me with the answer of 6pm to reassure the promoter Chris Wilson that the band were on the way. This meant 2 hours of refreshment courtesy of McEwans and talk about the music scene in Scotland. It sounds like Chris is doing a good job promoting local bands. At 6pm the van arrived and out tumbled 4 tired Feelgoods. Why do so many venues have to have their function rooms upstairs - off we struggled transferring the gear from the van, up the stairs and onto the stage. I set out the merchandise and then went on an early pub crawl before the doors opened. The band went and checked into the hotel and for a short rest. I trusted Phil to pick a nice room for me ie near the bar and preferably not up any stairs which can become hazardous in a state of alcoholic confusion.
Both gigs were scheduled to have the same support band, the Jed Thomas Blues Band from Yorkshire. They were a trio with a very obvious Rory Gallagher influence. Dr. Feelgood hit the stage, and played the usual concoction of oldies and later Feelgood tunes.
We left the venue early as Steve had spotted a pool table in the bar but we were disappointed as the bar had closed by the time we arrived. Never mind, an early night doesn't do any harm once in a while so it was our individual rooms to settle down watching the football on TV - and yes my trust in Phil did not go unwarranted.
The next morning after a leisurely breakfast the Feelgoodmobile dropped Kevin and I off at the West Port to collect my car. We were taking a detour to Aberdeen via Perth as Kevin wanted to visit a music shop. The weather was the hottest I've known it in Scotland so with sunroof open off we went. During the journey it gave us a chance to talk about future developments with Dr Feelgood to enable a schedule for the contents of "Feelin' Good". I try and plan for the future as much as I can to ensure there will be enough articles to keep everyone informed. Needless to say Kevin added to my list of proposed articles and I am very grateful to him for this. After visiting the music shop in Perth we set off for Aberdeen keeping an eye out for the van on route. We didn't see it and reached Aberdeen about lunchtime. When checking in the hotel we saw Pete going for a walk into town and Steve and Phil taking a trip to the golf course to get a little practice on the driving range. Kevin and I checked in and drove into town to have a spot of lunch and a wander around Aberdeen Centre. We went our seperate ways and met up at a music shop where Kevin was once more doing his public relations for Drum Workshop. Back at the hotel there was time for a little nap before taking the van to the Blue Lamp at 6pm.
We quickly unloaded the van and set the gear up before our old acquaintance Ivor Johnson appeared with his PA system. The band sound checked and then left for the hotel for something to eat. I had to stay behind to be at the venue when the doors opened at 8pm so had a quick pub crawl and a Thai curry. On arriving back at the venue the support band hadn't turned up yet so it was a bit of a panic for Chris Wilson as they were due on at 9pm. Needless to say they did arrive eventually. The Feelgoods played their set and what an improvement on the previous night - the highlights for me was an absolutely brilliant version of "Down by the jetty blues" with Steve playing some excellent guitar and a version of "Bony Moronie/Tequila" with the "Tequila" riff opening the song. I don't know whether the band were more relaxed following the long journey the day before but it was a great night. This time the bar was a late bar so we carried on drinking into the early hours before leaving at 1.45am. On the way back to the hotel Phil did his Paul Daniels impression and produced a few bottles of beer to keep us sustained for the 10 minute drive. We then persuaded the night porter to give us some tea/biscuits as we'd already consumed the one's in our rooms. I remember going to bed and making a cup of tea, switching the TV on, going to bed and that's it. Next thing I know is it's morning and turning to my side there was a cold cup of untouched tea (I must have been tired!). Up for breakfast then it was time to be Going Back Home. I reckoned I clocked up 770 miles so the Feelgoods must have nearly doubled that in the feelgoodmoblie. All for two gigs but it was worth it to visit Scotland again - hopefully we will return!
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GOING BACK HOME
"Down by the Waterside" we laid "Slipping and Sliding" on the wet grass "Underneath Orion" in the sky lit up by the flames from the oil refinery. Me and my "Beauty", "The Beautiful Madrilena". I told her "I really love your Rock 'n' Roll" and will "Keep on Loving You" as long as you "Take It Easy". She spoke her mind and said she could not - "She's Good Like That" as she got dressed and left me laying there. "Come Back and Love Me" I cried but no she would not listen. I pondered and puzzled why all this should be as one hour earlier I had been "Some Kind Of Hero".
The NEW Wilko CD is out now called "Going Back Home" although no idea why as the classic "GBH" track does not appear. It contains the 11 tracks listed above and features Wilko, Norman Watt-Roy, Salvatore Ramundo and guesting on some tracks John Denton on piano. My favourite tracks are "I really love your Rock 'n' Roll" (??Dedicated to Dr Feelgood), "Underneath Orion", a new version of "Down by the Waterside" and the classic "Some Kind of Hero". "Some Kind Of Hero" is also the name of Wilko's newsletters, perhaps the Feelgoods will now record a song called "Feelin' Good "!!!
The CD can be obtained from Grand Records at the same price as Feelgood single CD's. £13.50 for UK orders, Europe (£16.50), Rest of the World (£17.50). These prices are inclusive of postage & packing.
(Note by Gabi: Please visit the GRAND RECORDS Order Shop page for actual prices and ordering info etc.)
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Jean Paul Martin (17 Rue Estelle, 13001 Marseille, France)
Q: Has the group "Practice" (Figure, Sparko, Gypie, Gary Miller) recorded anything on vinyl/CD and why are there no articles in "Feelin' Good"?
A: The Practice were a short lived group formed after Lee's death. As far as I know they did not record anything and lasted just over a year. Gypie Mayo is at present playing with the Yardbirds but I have no current news on the other members.
(Note by Gabi: Here's some news on Gypie and The Yardbirds, incl. links to more info)
Q: I am missing a few English records can any of your readers help?
She does it right 7"
Back in the night (live) 7"
Don't wait up (pack of 2 x 7") STIFF BUY253
Be Seeing You LP Edsel ED 238
Paul Langley (80 Bevisland, Eldene, Swindon, Wiltshire)
Q: Can you give me details of how to get a copy of the South Bank Show featuring Dr Feelgood?
A: It was broadcast in 1981 and featured the Feelgoods (Lee, Gypie, Sparko, Figure) LIVE in the studio along with interviews with Lee and Figure. The songs played were Down at the Drs, Love Hound, Take a Tip, Night Time and for the finale Dr Feelgood, Blues Band, Nine Below Zero all played Route 66 together. Fans can call into London Weekend, Upper Grand, London SE1 to view the show. Thanks to S. Tomblin for providing this information.
Watty Robertson (Scotland)
Q: Was at the Dundee gig in May and want to know what kind of Amp the guitar player was using.
A: Steve "Whirlwind" Walwyn uses a Fender Hot Rod De Ville amplifier with no pedal effects (just the guitar plugged straight in)
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It's 1976, and "Roxette" is blastering out of a transistor radio somewhere in London. The guitar-obsessed schoolboy is listening intently... and dreaming...
It's 1996, and "Roxette" is blastering out of a P.A. system somewhere in London. The guitar-obsessed schoolboy is listening intently... and smiling... after all, he'd played in the support band just an hour earlier.
Good story, eh? True story too - and I should know, for I am that schoolboy.
Inspiration, they say, takes many forms. As someone who was attempting to learn guitar in the late 70's, music was almost beyond obsession - to figure out a Who riff, or the chords of "Pretty Vacant" seemed to be so much more important than... well, anything really (sometimes it's still is, but that as they say, is another story). To end up supporting Dr. Feelgood meant a lot more than just playing in a good venue in front of more people than usual. It was, literally, a dream come true. The band I played in that night, (The Informers, since you ask) calls itself an R'n'B band. Nothing too unusual in that you might say - except that I happen to think that every band that calls itself an R'n'B band, owes a dept, maybe even its very existence to the Feelgoods. A strong opinion, but it's mine and I'm sticking to it. So there.
(The gig, in case you were wondering, was fantastic, even though we had to be really careful about which songs we chose, in case the Feelgoods were likely to play them - see what I mean about depts? And I broke a string in the last number. Ah well... dreams are always a bit weird at the end though, aren't they?)
Anyway, back to the 70's for a minute, and your humble narrator has finally scraped together enough money to buy himself the "Stupidity" album. After the umpteenth playing of "Roxette" that day, a chance look at the label (as we used to call them!) revealed the composer of said song, to be "Johnson" - coincidentally the surname of the band's guitarist. Hmmm... all these bands I like write these great songs themselves do they?
Well, of yourse they do, but, as I say, I was only a kid, and didn't know that then - I suppose I thought songs just appeared there or something(!). Anyway, once I'd realized that, I thought I'd better have a go for myself. So I did...
... and although the songs I'm writing at the moment (1998) in our band - The Flame, are more Rock'n'Pop songs than Rhythm'n'Blues, I know there's still a bit of "Roxette" in there, somewhere. And last year, we were lucky enough to work with Pip Williams - producer of among other things, the "Classic" album by Dr. Feelgood - on our E.P. "Straight for Your Heart". See - the circle continues...
If any of the above sounds naive, childish even - no apologies. That's the way it is - such is inspiration I guess. So on behalf of all us over-grown schoolboys who ended up guitarists, thanks to the Feelgoods - great music, great gigs, and still going strong. Cheers!
OTHER PARTS OF THIS
of 6th Lee Brilleaux Memorial to Memorials
"G" is for... to Feelgood Dick'n'arry
Dr Feelgood Crossword to Feelgood Puzzles
to Newsletter Issue 17/October 1999
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