Fresh Cream is the debut studio album by the British rock band Cream. The album was released in the UK on 9 December 1966, as the first LP on the Reaction Records label, owned by producer Robert Stigwood; the UK album was released in both mono and stereo versions, at the same time as the release of the single "I Feel Free". The album was released in a different form in January 1967 by Atco Records in the US in mono and stereo versions; the album peaked at No. 6 on the UK Albums Chart and No. 39 on the U. S. Albums Chart; the mono versions were deleted not long after release and for many years only the stereo recordings were available. The UK mono album was reissued on CD for the first time in Japan, by Universal Music, in late 2013 as part of a deluxe SHM-CD and SHM-SACD sets. In January 2017, the album was again reissued, by Polydor, in a 4-CD box-set containing mono and stereo versions of the original UK and US release along with singles and B-sides. Bass player Jack Bruce said that the opening song "N.
S. U." was written for the band's first rehearsal. "It was like an early punk song... the title meant "non-specific urethritis. It didn't mean an NSU Quickly -, one of those little 1960s mopeds. I used to say. I can't tell you which one... except he played guitar." In 2003, the album was ranked number 101 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. Uncut describes the songs as "all about playing in a band and relaxing, the joy of being young, they walk it like they talk it, being jumping-off points for wonderful spur-of-the moment improvisations." Writing for the BBC, Sid Smith notes that "blues and rock magically starts to coalesce to create something brand new". Stephen Thomas Erlwine of Allmusic believes the record to be "instrumental in the birth of heavy metal and the birth of jam rock". A release in the U. S. on RSO/Polydor uses the same track listing as the original UK edition given above, with the addition of the song "I Feel Free" as track 1. Polydor's CD release from the 1980s included the same track list but added "The Coffee Song" and "Wrapping Paper," which were removed from a second CD release in the 1990s.
An edition released only in Sweden in 1966 was a 12-track release like that in the UK which added two tracks: "Wrapping Paper", written by Jack Bruce and Pete Brown, "The Coffee Song", written by Tony Colton and Ray Smith. Both vinyl and cover were made in Germany and exported to the Swedish market only – the German original had the same 10 tracks as the UK; the group didn't want "Coffee Song" to be issued at all, but a mono version was mixed and coupled with "Wrapping Paper" as a single. There were no plans at this stage to release it in stereo, so for the Swedish issue, a crude stereo mix was used; this was made during the sessions in early August 1966 for instructive purpose – the whole track as basic mono is mixed far right and a solo guitar overdub far left. Never intended for release, this mix was soon lost and for stereo issues a new one was made; the front cover and record no. are the same as the German issue, but three different back covers exist. The first listed the correct 12 tracks, the second listed 10 tracks, a third where the 12 track listing has been "glued" over the 10 track listing.
Ginger Baker – drums, vocals Jack Bruce – vocals, bass guitar, piano Eric Clapton – guitar, vocals Robert Stigwood – producer John Timperley – engineer The making of Fresh Cream - from the Official Ginger Baker Archive
Al Kooper is an American songwriter, record producer and musician, known for organizing Blood, Sweat & Tears, providing studio support for Bob Dylan when he went electric in 1965, bringing together guitarists Mike Bloomfield and Stephen Stills to record the Super Session album. In the 1970's he was a successful manager and producer, notably recording Lynyrd Skynyrd's first three albums. He's had a successful solo career, written music for film soundtracks, has lectured in musical composition, he continues to perform live. Kooper, born in Brooklyn, grew up in a Jewish family in Hollis Hills, New York, his first professional work was as a 14-year-old guitarist in the Royal Teens, best known for their 1958 ABC Records novelty 12-bar blues riff, "Short Shorts". In 1960, he teamed up with songwriters Bob Brass and Irwin Levine to write and record demos for Sea-Lark Music Publishing; the trio's biggest hits were "This Diamond Ring", recorded by Gary Lewis and the Playboys, "I Must Be Seeing Things", recorded by Gene Pitney.
When he was 21, Kooper moved to Greenwich Village. He performed with Bob Dylan in concert in 1965, including playing Hammond organ with Dylan at the Newport Folk Festival, in the recording studio in 1965 and 1966. Kooper played the Hammond organ riffs on Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone", it was in those recording sessions that Kooper met and befriended Mike Bloomfield, whose guitar playing he admired. He worked extensively with Bloomfield for several years. Kooper played organ once again with Dylan during his 1981 world tour. Kooper joined the Blues Project as their keyboardist in 1965, he formed Blood, Sweat & Tears in 1967, leaving due to creative differences in 1968, after the release of the group's first album, Child Is Father to the Man. He recorded Super Session with Bloomfield and Stills in 1968, in 1969 he collaborated with 15-year-old guitarist Shuggie Otis on the album Kooper Session. In 1975 he produced the debut album by the Tubes. Kooper has played on hundreds of records, including ones by the Rolling Stones, B. B.
King, the Who, the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Alice Cooper, Cream. On occasion, he has overdubbed his own efforts, as on The Live Adventures of Mike Bloomfield and Al Kooper and other albums, under the pseudonym "Roosevelt Gook". After moving to Atlanta in 1972, he discovered the band Lynyrd Skynyrd, produced and performed on their first three albums, including the singles "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Free Bird". In 1972 he rejoined the Blues Project at a charity concert promoted by Bruce Blakeman at Valley Stream Central High School, he wrote the score for the TV series Crime Story and for the film The Landlord and wrote music for several made-for-television movies. He was the musical force behind many of the pop tunes, including "You're the Lovin' End", for The Banana Splits, a children's television program. During the late 1980s Kooper had his own dedicated keyboard studio room in the historic Sound Emporium recording studio in Nashville, next to studio B. Kooper published a memoir, Backstage Passes: Rock'n' Roll Life in the Sixties, revised and published as Backstage Passes and Backstabbing Bastards: Memoirs of a Rock'n' Roll Survivor.
The revised edition includes indictments of "manipulators" in the music industry, including his one-time business manager, Stan Polley. An updated edition, including supplementary material, was published by Backbeat Books in 2008. Kooper's status as a published author enabled him to join the Rock Bottom Remainders, a band made up of writers, including Dave Barry, Stephen King, Amy Tan, Matt Groening. In May 2001, Kooper was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Berklee College of Music. Kooper is retired from teaching songwriting and recording production at Berklee College of Music, in Boston, plays weekend concerts with his bands the ReKooperators and the Funky Faculty. In 2008, he participated in the production of the album Psalngs, the debut release of Canadian musician John Lefebvre. Kooper was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum, in Nashville, in 2008. In 2005, Martin Scorsese produced a documentary titled No Direction Home: Bob Dylan for the PBS American Masters Series in which Kooper's contributions are recognized.
Al Kooper is most notable as the driving force behind the RIAA certified gold album, Super Session as well as Blood, Sweat & Tears. He played the organ parts of Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone" and was in the band along with Bloomfield and Barry Goldberg at Dylan's notorious'electric folk' gig at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965. Kooper had been invited to the session as an observer and hoped to be allowed to sit in on guitar, his primary instrument, he began tuning it. After hearing Mike Bloomfield, the hired session guitarist, warming up, he concluded that Bloomfield was a much better guitarist, so Kooper put his guitar aside and retreated into the control room; as the recording sessions progressed, keyboardist Paul Griffin was moved from the Hammond organ to piano. Kooper suggested to producer Tom Wilson that he had a "great organ part" for the song, Wilson responded, "Al, you're not an organ player, you're a guitar player", but Kooper stood his ground. Before Wilson could explicitly reject Kooper's suggestion, he was interrupted by a phone c
Steppin' Out (instrumental)
"Steppin' Out" is a blues-instrumental composition recorded by American blues musician Memphis Slim in 1959. It was released on Slim's At the Gate of the Horn album. Although both releases list L. C. Frazier as the writer, Vee-Jay owner James Bracken is credited on versions by other performers. Memphis Slim's piano provides the opening harmony part, followed by a tenor sax solo and guitar solo by long-time Slim guitarist Matt Murphy. AllMusic critic Bill Dahl calls Murphy's album contribution as "nothing short of spectacular throughout". A live version recorded in 1986 appears on the Steppin' Out: Live At Ronnie Scott's, London album and video. Eric Clapton recorded several versions of "Steppin' Out" during his early career. In 1966, he recorded the song with three different bands: with Eric Clapton and the Powerhouse, recorded in March for the Elektra Records sampler What's Shakin'. Cream recorded a second live performance of the song for BBC Radio in January 1968, included on BBC Sessions though it was first released on Clapton's Crossroads box set in 1988.
Clapton's early versions were brief – ranging from under two minutes to little over three – but in live performances with Cream, "Steppin" Out" became an extended improvisational piece lasting thirteen minutes or more. On occasion, the group's bassist Jack Bruce would drop out of the song after several minutes, leaving Clapton and drummer Ginger Baker to take the song in new, less blues-oriented directions. An example of such can be heard on a live recording from the San Francisco Winterland Ballroom in March 1968, first released on the album Live Cream Volume II in 1972 and on the Cream box set Those Were the Days in 1997. Jesse Gress, writing for Guitar Player magazine, noted that Ritchie Blackmore's "bluesy head to'Lazy' fondly paraphrases Slowhand’s Bluesbreaker-era showcase'Steppin’ Out,' right down to the same style of third-position swing-sixteenth G blues riffing"
Robert Leroy Johnson was an American blues singer and musician. His landmark recordings in 1936 and 1937 display a combination of singing, guitar skills, songwriting talent that has influenced generations of musicians. Johnson's poorly documented life and death have given rise to much legend; the one most associated with his life is that he sold his soul to the devil at a local crossroads to achieve musical success. He is now recognized as a master of the blues as a progenitor of the Delta blues style; as an itinerant performer who played on street corners, in juke joints, at Saturday night dances, Johnson had little commercial success or public recognition in his lifetime. He only participated in two recording sessions, one in San Antonio in 1936, one in Dallas in 1937, that produced recordings of 29 distinct songs; these songs, recorded at low fidelity in improvised studios, were the totality of his recorded output. About half of these were released as 10-inch, 78 rpm singles from 1937–1939, many after his death at the age of 27.
Other than these recordings little was known of him during his life outside of the small musical circuit in the Mississippi Delta where he spent most of his life. His music had only a small, but influential, following during his life and in the years after his death; as early as 1938, his music was being sought by influential producers such as John Hammond, who tried to recruit him to record and tour without knowing of his death. Brunswick Records, which owned the original recordings, was bought by Hammond's Columbia Records, which would release the recordings to a wider audience. Musicologist Alan Lomax went to Mississippi in 1941 to record Johnson not knowing of his death. A compilation album, titled King of the Delta Blues Singers, was released by Columbia in 1961, which brought his work to a wider audience; the album would become an influential record on the nascent British blues movement, just getting started at the time. Musicians as diverse as Bob Dylan, Keith Richards, Robert Plant have cited both Johnson's lyricism and musicianship has key influences on their own work.
Many of Johnson's songs have been covered over the years, becoming hits for other artists, his guitar licks and lyrics have been borrowed and repurposed by a many musicians. Renewed interest in Johnson's work and life led to a burst of scholarship starting in the 1960s. Much of what we know about him today was reconstructed by researchers such as Gayle Dean Wardlow; the 1991 documentary The Search for Robert Johnson by John Hammond, Jr. was another attempt to document his life, demonstrated the difficulties arising from the scant historical record and conflicting oral accounts. Johnson was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in its first induction ceremony, in 1986, as an early influence on rock and roll, he was awarded a posthumous Grammy Award in 1991 for The Complete Recordings, a 1990 compilation album. His single "Cross Road Blues" was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998, he was given a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006. In 2003, David Fricke ranked Johnson fifth in Rolling Stone magazine's "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time".
Johnson was born in Hazlehurst, Mississippi on May 8, 1911, to Julia Major Dodds and Noah Johnson. Julia was married to Charles Dodds, a prosperous landowner and furniture maker, with whom she had ten children. Charles Dodds had been forced by a lynch mob to leave Hazlehurst following a dispute with white landowners. Julia left Hazlehurst with baby Robert, but after two years sent the boy to Memphis to live with her husband, who had changed his name to Charles Spencer. Robert rejoined his mother around 1919 near Tunica and Robinsonville, they lived on the Leatherman Plantation. Julia's new husband, known as Dusty Willis, was 24 years her junior. Robert was remembered by some residents as "Little Robert Dusty", but he was registered at Tunica's Indian Creek School as Robert Spencer. In the 1920 census, he is listed as Robert Spencer, living in Lucas, with Will and Julia Willis. Robert was at school in 1924 and 1927; the quality of his signature on his marriage certificate suggests that he was well educated for a boy of his background.
A school friend, Willie Coffee, interviewed and filmed in life, recalled that as a youth Robert was noted for playing the harmonica and jaw harp. Coffee recalled that Robert was absent for long periods, which suggests that he may have been living and studying in Memphis. After school, Robert adopted the surname of his natural father, signing himself as Robert Johnson on the certificate of his marriage to sixteen-year-old Virginia Travis in February 1929, she died in childbirth shortly after. Surviving relatives of Virginia told the blues researcher Robert "Mack" McCormick that this was a divine punishment for Robert's decision to sing secular songs, known as "selling your soul to the Devil". McCormick believed that Johnson himself accepted the phrase as a description of his resolve to abandon the settled life of a husband and farmer to become a full-time blues musician. Around this time, the blues musician Son House moved to Robinsonville, where his musical partner Willie Brown lived. Late in life, House remembered Johnson as a "little boy", a competent harmonica player but an embarrassingly bad guitarist.
Soon after, Johnson left Robinsonville for the area around Ma
Tom Rush is an American folk and blues singer and songwriter. Rush was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, the son of a teacher at St. Paul's School, in Concord, New Hampshire. Tom began performing in 1961 while studying at Harvard University after having graduated from the Groton School, he majored in English literature. Many of his early recordings are versions of Lowland Scots and Appalachian folk songs, he performed at the Club 47 coffeehouse in Cambridge, the Unicorn in Boston, The Main Point in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. In the 1970s he lived in New Hampshire. Rush is credited by Rolling Stone magazine with ushering in the era of the singer-songwriter. In addition to performing his own compositions, he sang songs by Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Murray McLauchlan, David Wiffen and William Hawkins, helping them to gain recognition early in their careers, his 1968 composition "No Regrets" has become a standard, with numerous cover versions having been recorded. These include The Walker Brothers, who gave Tom Rush Top Ten credit as a songwriter on the UK singles chart, Emmylou Harris, who included the song on her 1988 album Bluebird, Midge Ure whose cover made the UK Top Ten.
On March 1, 2007 a video of his performance of Steven Walters' "The Remember Song" was uploaded to YouTube, and, as of April 2017, it has received over 7 million plays. Writing on his website, Rush said,I've been waiting 45 years to be an overnight sensation, it's happened! A video clip of my performance of "The Remember Song" has'gone viral.' I felt terrible at first, thinking I was being accused of being a musical equivalent of Ebola, but my children explained to me that this was a good thing. One of the earliest music videos produced for an artist by a record company, can be found at his website, www.tomrush.com. It was used to promote his signature song, "No Regrets" for his "The Circle Game" album. A number of recent videos from a 2010 concert performed in Old Saybrook, CT can be found on the video website Vimeo under a search for Tom Rush. Tom Rush is married to author Renée Askins and was married to singer Beverly Rush. Over the years Tom Rush has used a number of guitars on stage, his current primary one a handcrafted acoustic made by Don Musser.
In February 2012, Rush appeared on stage in Colorado with a new instrument, a cedar-top Dreadnought with an inlay of a snake wrapped around a reclining nude woman. The guitar, crafted by McKenzie & Marr Guitars is a "re-incarnation" of one of Rush's earliest acoustics, the famous "Naked Lady". On Dec. 28, 2012, Rush appeared at Boston Symphony Hall to celebrate fifty years in the music business. With his new album “Voices” out, at age 77, Rush is still performing, touring the United States, these days accompanied on piano by Berklee graduate Matt Nakoa. 1962 Tom Rush at the Unicorn 1963 Got a Mind to Ramble 1964 Blues, Songs & Ballads 1965 Tom Rush 1966 Take a Little Walk with Me 1968 The Circle Game 1970 Wrong End of the Rainbow 1970 Tom Rush 1972 Merrimack County 1974 Ladies Love Outlaws 1982 New Year 1984 Late Night Radio 2001 Live at Symphony Hall, Boston 2006 Trolling for Owls 2009 What I Know 2013 Celebrates 50 Years of Music 2018 Voices Official website Tom Rush at AllMusic "The Remember Song" on YouTube
Cross Road Blues
"Cross Road Blues" is a blues song written and recorded by American blues artist Robert Johnson in 1936. Johnson performed it as a solo piece with his vocal and acoustic slide guitar in the Delta blues-style; the song has become part of the Robert Johnson mythology as referring to the place where he sold his soul to the Devil in exchange for his musical talents, although the lyrics do not contain any specific references. Bluesman Elmore James revived the song with recordings in 1954 and 1960–1961. English guitarist Eric Clapton with Cream popularized the song as "Crossroads" in the late 1960s, their blues rock interpretation inspired many cover versions and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame included it as one of the "500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll". Rolling Stone placed it at number three on the magazine's list of the "Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time" in recognition of Clapton's guitar work. Little is known about Johnson's life and musical career, although his recordings are well documented.
In October 1936, Johnson auditioned for music store owner and sometime talent scout H. C. Speir in Jackson, Mississippi. After a second audition, Oertle arranged for Johnson to travel to San Antonio, for a recording session. Johnson recorded 22 songs for ARC over three days from November 23 to 27, 1936. During the first session, he recorded his most commercially appealing songs, they represented his original pieces and reflected current, piano-influenced musical trends. The songs include "Terraplane Blues" along with "Sweet Home Chicago" and "I Believe I'll Dust My Broom", which became blues standards after others recorded them. A second and third recording date took place in San Antonio after a two-day break. Johnson reached back into his long-standing repertoire for songs to record; the material reflects the styles of country blues performers Charley Patton and Son House, who influenced Johnson in his youth. The songs are among Johnson's most heartfelt and forceful, music historian Ted Gioia sees a shift in the lyrical themes: At the close of the San Antonio session, the darker, more apocalyptic side of Johnson's work emerges... evokes the themes of damnation and redemption and light... glimpses into the musician's inner life, all its attendant turmoils.
"Cross Road Blues" was recorded during Johnson's third session in San Antonio, on Friday November 27, 1936. The sessions continued at an improvised studio in Room 414 at the Gunter Hotel. ARC producers Art Satherley and Don Law supervised the recording and used a portable disc cutting machine, it is unknown what input, if any, they had into Johnson's selection of material to record or how to present it. Two similar takes of the song were recorded. A crossroads or an intersection of rural roads is one of the few landmarks in the Mississippi Delta, a flat featureless plain between the Mississippi and Yazoo rivers, it is part of the local iconography and various businesses use the name, such as gas stations and retail shops. A crossroads is where cars are more to slow down or stop, thus presenting the best opportunity for a hitchiker. In the simplest reading, Johnson describes his grief at being unable to catch a ride at an intersection before the sun sets. However, many see different levels of meaning and some have attached a supernatural significance to the song.
Both versions of the song open with the protagonist kneeling at a crossroads to ask God's mercy, while the second sections tells of his failed attempts to hitch a ride. In the third and fourth sections, he expresses apprehension at being stranded as darkness approaches and asks that his friend Willie Brown be advised that "I'm sinkin' down"; the first take of the song, used for the single, includes a fifth verse, not included in the second take. In it he laments not having a "sweet woman" in his distress; the song has been used to perpetuate the myth of Johnson selling his soul to the Devil for his musical ability. The lyrics do not contain any references to Satan or a Faustian bargain, but they have been interpreted as a description of the singer's fear of losing his soul to the Devil. Music historian Elijah Wald believes. Delta bluesman Tommy Johnson promoted himself as having made a deal with the Devil and Southern folklore identifies a crossroads or graveyard as the site of such a pact, which Wald identifies as sources of the myth.
However, musicologist Robert Palmer points out that Johnson was "fascinated with and obsessed by supernatural imagery." His song "Hellhound on My Trail" tells of trying to stay ahead of the demon hound, pursuing him and in "Me and the Devil Blues" he sings, "Early this mornin' when you knocked upon my door, I said'Hello Satan I believe it's time to go'". These songs contribute to the Faustian myth. Blues historian Samuel Charters sees the song as having elements of protest and social commentary; the second verse includes "the sun goin' down now boy, dark gon' catch me here", a reference to the "sundown laws" or curfew during racial segregation in the United States. Signs in the rural South advised "Nigger, don't let the sun set on you here". Johnson may be expressing a real fear of trumped up vagrancy charges or lynchings that still took place. Others suggest that the song is about a more personal loneliness. Writers Barry Lee Pearson and Bill McCulloch argue that the fifth verse in the single version captures the essence of the s
Manfred Mann were an English rock band, formed in London in 1962. The group were named after their keyboardist Manfred Mann, who led the successful 1970s group Manfred Mann's Earth Band; the band had two different lead vocalists during their period of success, Paul Jones from 1962 to 1966, Mike d'Abo from 1966 to 1969. Manfred Mann were in the UK charts in the 1960s. Three of the band's most successful singles, "Do Wah Diddy Diddy", "Pretty Flamingo" and "Mighty Quinn", topped the UK Singles Chart, they were the first southern-England-based group to top the US Billboard Hot 100 during the British invasion. The Mann-Hugg Blues Brothers were formed in London by keyboard player Manfred Mann and drummer/vibes/piano player Mike Hugg, who formed a house band in Clacton-on-Sea that featured Graham Bond. Bringing a shared love of jazz to the British blues boom sweeping London's clubs, the band was completed by Mike Vickers on guitar, alto saxophone and flute, bassist Dave Richmond and Paul Jones as lead vocalist and harmonicist.
By this time they had changed their name to the Manfreds. Gigging throughout late 1962 and early 1963, they soon attracted attention for their distinctive sound. After changing their name to Manfred Mann at the behest of their label's producer John Burgess, the group signed with His Master's Voice in March 1963 and began their recorded output that July with the slow, blues instrumental single "Why Should We Not?", which they performed on their first appearance on television on a New Year's Eve show. It failed to chart, as did its follow-up, "Cock-a-Hoop"; the overdubbed instrumental soloing on woodwinds, vibes and second keyboard lent considerable weight to the group's sound, demonstrated the jazz-inspired technical prowess in which they took pride. In 1964, the group were asked to provide a new theme tune for the ITV pop music television programme Ready Steady Go!. They responded with "5-4-3-2-1" which, with the help of weekly television exposure, rose to No. 5 in the UK Singles Chart. Shortly after "5-4-3-2-1" was recorded, Richmond left the band, though he would record with them later.
He was replaced by Jones' friend Tom McGuinness—the first of many changes. After a further self-penned hit, "Hubble Bubble", the band struck gold with "Do Wah Diddy Diddy", a cover version of the Exciters' No. 78 Hot 100 hit earlier that year. The track reached the top of the UK, US charts. With the success of "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" the sound of the group's singles moved away from the jazzy, blues-based music of their early years, to a pop hybrid that continued to make hit singles from cover material, they hit No. 3 in the UK with another girl-group cover, "Sha La La", which reached No. 12 in the US and Canada, followed it with the sentimental "Come Tomorrow" but both were of a noticeably lighter texture than their earliest output. Meanwhile, "B" sides and four-song EPs showcased original material and instrumental solos; the group returned to jazz and R&B themes on their albums: their first, 1964's The Five Faces of Manfred Mann, included standards such as "Smokestack Lightning" while the second and last with this line-up, Mann Made, offered several self-composed instrumentals and a version of "Stormy Monday Blues" alongside novelties and pop ballads.
With a cover of Maxine Brown's "Oh No Not My Baby" began a phase of new depth and sophistication in the arrangements of their singles. The group began its string of successes with Bob Dylan songs with a track on the best-selling EP The One in the Middle, "With God on Our Side", next reaching No. 2 in the UK with "If You Gotta Go, Go Now". The EP's title track reached the British top ten singles, the last self-written song and the band's last R'n'B workout to do so; the run climaxed with a second UK No. "Pretty Flamingo", produced by John Burgess. The group had managed an initial jazz/rhythm-and-blues fusion, had taken chart music in their stride—but could not hope to cope with Paul Jones' projected solo career as singer and actor, with Mike Vickers' orchestral and instrumental ambitions. Jones intended to go solo once a replacement could be found, but stayed with the band for another year, during which Vickers left. McGuinness moved to guitar, his original instrument, contributing the distinctive National Steel Guitar to "If You Gotta Go, Go Now" and "Pretty Flamingo", was replaced on bass by Jack Bruce, playing for the Graham Bond Organisation for some time before a recent brief stint with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers.
In his brief tenure before leaving to form Cream, Bruce played on "Pretty Flamingo" and on the EP Instrumental Asylum, which began the group's experiments with instrumental versions of chart songs. He was replaced by Klaus Voormann; the band changed record companies just afterward, although EMI released an EP of earlier unissued 1963–66 era songs titled As Was, a hits compilation. Jones was replaced by Mike d'Abo in July 1966, the group switched labels to Fontana Records, where they were produced by Shel Talmy, their first Fontana single, a