They're now paying
much closer attention to the basic structure of the songs and building
the arrangements with an eye for underling the mood. To my ears its the
most convincing country rock sound yet made by an English band .
Its natural , relaxed character had a lot to do with its being recorded
on an eight track machine at home . In spite of the fact that they're pretty
close friends. the group have found ti easier - and above all , cheaper-
to live together in a a large suburban house in ana obscure part of Middlesex
known as Northwood: and you can hear their dog barking all through ì Egypt
î , which was made in the garden.
By Ian Hoare.
Schwarz came out of Kippington
Lodge , that well known hotbed of funk Tunbridge
Wells , where Brinsley himself , who
plays lead, went to school with Nick Lowe,
who writes most of the numbers as well as playing bass and various guitars.
Along with American drummer Bill Rankin and
ex PP Arnold organist Bob
Andrews , they were the centre piece of the infamous 1970 promotional
extravaganza made possible by Famepushers LTD ,
involving the flying out of a sizeable herd of journalists for the big
gig at the Fillmore. Things went catastrophically and the bands first
album was duly shat upon from a great height by reviewers everywhere.
They were nowhere and they were broke.
So they took off two months and altered their sound drastically,
trading in their 100 watt marshall stacks for little Fender amps
which they left at a low volume and miked through a sophisticated PA system
, thereby achieving far greater clarity and definition on-stage . Their
second album, ì Despite it Allî was made at
about this time . It had a a much cleaner sound and was generally more
direct and real , with less superfluous heavy flash than the debut set.
They began to win friends again.
By this time they were regarding
themselves as primarily a live group and were dissatisfied with the gap
between what they could do in the studio, using overdubs and the like and
the options open to them on stage. They set about the problem by advertising
for a second guitarist. . After seeing about fifty budding Alvins they
settled for Ian Gomm , who , at 24 , is a
couple of years older than the others and has been accompanying his auto
-changer since he was about eleven , absorbing influences going back to
Buddy Holly and the Ventures. His precise, understated style contributed
to the tightening up of the band evident in their latest album,. ì Silver
Cheech and Chong
Pacific Gas and Electric
Sam Apple Pie
Their most pressing
problem at present is that the lease expires in two months time . The band
themselves feel that ì Silver Pistol î
was very down and therefor short on raunch and they're currently aiming
to put a lot more of that particular commodity into their next LP , which
they've been cutting at Rockfield studios
in Wales, ( at the lunatic rate of eight tracks in 15 hours) . They also
intend to improve on the technical quality of the last set , which they
reckon had the disadvantages of a rough , live, sound without the
excitement that's created by a rough , live, audience. Some people are
never satisfied, I'm glad to say.
If you have any info regarding
the festival please get in touch Contact
intended programme and the artistic dropouts
Express- Bickershaw edition,includes site map New!
photographs from Roger Hutchinson -New!
festival publicity handout
Festival Runs at a Loss
of tickets . New Sept 22nd 2001
stills from BC'S 8mm footage of Bickershaw !
Adverts in the press
of all artists who performed at the festival . Band personnel , known tapes
and setlists . Updated Jan 2011
photos : Wishbone Ash, Kinks, Family, Captain Beyond, New Riders, Country
site photographs updated Nov 2004
Beefheart : Setlist, tapes, reviews, photos
Grateful Dead : Photos, setlist,tapes, transcript, eye witness reviews.
Updated Sept 2010
own Bickershaw saga.
from the mud :More eyewitness accounts from intrepid Bickershaw veterans.
Updated with many new photos Jan 2011
encounter with Captain Beefheart at Bickershaw:
by Charles Gee
of Captain Beyond at Bickershaw
to the main Archive.