Royal Windsor Racecourse.
Time , in this fast moving world of ours, seems to fly quicker than it ever has before - or so it seems to me. It scarcely seems possible that one whole year has passed since the 1966 festival took place at the Royal Windsor Racecourse. Time of course, rings changes in all aspects of human endeavour and this past year has seen quite revolutionary changes in social behaviour and attitudes and I feel that , of all forms of present day expression and communication , popular music ( and I use the term in its widest sense to embrace every style from jazz to psychedelia) best mirrors this world of swiftly changing attitudes and the human condition.
This years festival -the seventh in a series which started in 1961 at the Athletic Association Grounds , Richmond, Surrey- will mirror the popular music of 1967 and when the three days festivities are ended some of us , at least , who will witness just about everyone and everything , will be a little wiser , and I hope a little more tolerant of some of the more extreme manifestations of popular music.
In the past few months much has been written and spoken about the " Flower Power" movement stemming from San Francisco. Old fashioned words like Love, and Beautiful have crept back into the modern day vocabulary and together with the jingle of bells and the scent of the flowers some people might suspect the "hippies " of ulterior motives. I personally feel that it is all very harmless and a lot of fun. After all, what are the alternatives, " War " and " Hate " ?
Linked with Flower Power, however loosely , are the psychedelic groups and the light shows and these will be represented at this years festival, alongside the traditional and conservative forms of popular music .
The festival is a joint presentation of the National
Jazz Federation and the Marquee
Club, of which I am manager and compere and I am
very proud that six groups associated with the Marquee should be represented
at the festival this year . They will all be making their first festival appearances
and I am confident that thay will make many new friends and add to their already
growing reputations . They are headed by The Marmalade,
that wonderful group from Scotland who are resident at the club on Thursdays.
, The Syn and The
Nite People ,( who all appear on the Friday opening
night session ). The Time Box,
and Ten Years After
are included on the Saturday night session and the Picadilly
Line and Al Stewart
are featured on the Sunday Afternoon.
It is astonishing , for me at least , to reflect
back over my last five years with the Marquee and to recall now
world famous groups like the Rolling Stones
and The Who ,
starting their careers at the Club, as did many of the artists on this
The Move for example, now one of the countryís top attractions, came down to the Marquee from Birmingham only last year and soon had a weekly residency which swiftly led to best selling records , radio, TV and concerts. The Move appear on Friday night.
Paul Jones also started
his career as singer with the Manfred
Mann group , at the Marquee. At one time he
was modestly known as P.P Jones
and later heavily disguised as Manfred Two.
Since then his departure from Manfred Mann he has added strings to his bow
, notably as an actor in the Peter Watkin's film "Privilege"
. This will be his first festival appearance as an artist in his own right
( Saturday evening ). He will be accompanied , incidentally, by the Manchester
based Richard Kent Style
, an excellent group which has impressed me a great deal in the past.
Alan Bown scored a great success at last years festival and in the past twelve months he has continued to play regularly at the Marquee , where it first began to happen for their group. Alan Bown with his effervescent young singer, Jess Roden are set for Sunday night.
Denny Laine, one time singer
for the Moody Blues, also came down from Birmingham to
the Marquee and it was in the Marquee Recording Studios that Denny recorded his first big hit " Go Now " . Recently he has assembled with the inspiration of Denny Cordell to guide him, a rare combination of violins and cellos with the basic group rhythm section.
The result is as musically exciting as it is adventurous, which you will discover on Sunday night.
Jeff Beck was Eric
Clapton's replacement in the Yardbirds-another
famous Marquee discovery and although he tends to be erratic at times ,
his guitar playing is always brilliant and unusual. After a shaky start
his new formed group has taken shape and plays a wide variety of exciting
material. The Jeff Beck Group
can be heard on Monday night.
John Mayall, I often feel, existed long before the Marquee.Certainly he was with us back in the pioneering days and he is with us still today. What I love about him , other than certain mutual interests , is his musical integrity and his unfailing ability to discover new talent. The recent addition to the Bluesbreakers of tenor and baritone saxophones, makes Johnís music more exciting than ever before. John Mayalls Bluesbreakers are also to be heard on Sunday night.
1967 Festival menu.
The early festivals.
You can find out the complete
line ups of the first festivals if you follow the links below, but otherwise
information is fairly limited.
Most of these have fairly complete documentation .
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