Published January 30, 2012
Namelosers was the band with the fiercest and richest sound of all the Swedish 60s groups. There is nothing like it at all! Listen to this live recording, made for Swedish Radio in 1965, and you will understand what I’m talking about. It is as if the guitarist Johnny Andersson tries to get the amps to explode right there on stage when he strikes out the first chord in the Chris Kenner’s smash-hit “Land Of A 1000 Dances”. At the same time as the singer Tommy Hansson roars out the classic “Na na na na” like his life was depending on it. This is a true classic.
Their first release was an EP on Viking Records. At this time the band was playing under the name The Beatchers, but some kids from Göteborg (Gothenburg) had allready pantented the name Beachers. So pretty soon a new EP and a single was out, now on Columbia and with the new name; Namelosers. Which was made up by a thirteen year-old girl in a radio contest that attempted to help the band with a new name. And what a name! “Land Of A 1000 Dances” (Columbia, 1965) was Namelosers last explosion before the group disbanded.
See Namelosers discography
Above is Jack Downing & The Other Side performing “Greenback Dollar” in the Swedish television show Kram (Hug), probably in 1969. Jack Downing came from Little Rock, USA to Stockholm, Sweden in 1963. Pretty soon he met David Hynes at the university of Stockholm. Together they where the begining of The Other Side. A band who released their first single in 1966 on Karusell with a great self-composed B-side “Out My Light”. In the years to come the band changed members a couple of times. Kenny Håkansson from T-Boones, Baby Grandmothers and Mecki Mark Men, Bill Öhrström from The Merrymen and Boz Scaggs joined the band for a while, and so did all the members of the psych-rockers in Outsiders. It was with the Outsiders Jack Downing and his fellow members of The Other Side recorded his one and only LP “Now And Then”, 1970.
The LP had a whole new sound from the seven inch from 1966. Downing created an album that included all the influences he’d been collecting from American folk, country and rock. And with the backing from the Outsiders the LP was secured with a thick and fuzzy rock sound as in “A Force I Cannot Name”, “Pretty Miss Mike” and “Branded Man”. This is an exceptional piece of vinyl because nothing like it had been heard before in Sweden, and I’m not sure it has been since. In 2008 wrote Per Magnusson a very fine and exhaustive article for the garagerock/beat magazine Ugly Things #27 about Jack Downing’s life’s work. You can find the article at Per’s own site: Raised On Records.
Published January 24, 2012
Tags: Mecki Mark Men
There is no need for a second introduction for this Swedish super group; Mecki Mark Men. But here is some rare footage of the band acting to two of their absolut best songs “Running In The Summer Night” and “The Life Cycle: Being Is More Than Life”. This was broadcasted in the Swedish television show Kram: Tema Att Lyssna (Hug: Theme To Listen) Mars 31, 1969. “Being Is More Than Life”, written by Kenny Håkansson, is one of those fantastic songs that make all of your senses shiver and invokes the belief of an entirety. The film sequences with rapid zooming of winter landscapes from above along with the band sitting in meditation is among the best music videos that Swedish Television did in the 60s. Free from slapsticks and burlesque which otherwise was so common during the decade.
Published January 20, 2012
Tags: Black Bumbles
Black Bumbles came from Kalmar and started out as Les Vagabonds. They released three singles between 1965-1966 on the small label Midnight Sun Records. Black Bumbles came second in a pop competition called “Smålandsmästerskapen” that was held in Nybro May 19 1965. Below you can listen to two great songs with the band. “Shaking Baby” from the debut single released in 1965. This song is written by Black Bumbles own Inge Petersson (bass) and Per-Olof Blomqvist (Vocals, Guitar). The second tune is a version of Louis Armstrongs”Ol’ Man Mose” from their third and last seven inch from 1966.
Published January 18, 2012
Here is a rare one with The Beathovens playing “Hoochie Coochie Man” live in Swedish radio. Probably recorded in 1966 with Carl-Eiwar Carlsson, at the time a well known radio profile. Beathovens came from Motala and had two of the Swedish 60s best songwriters in the band; Bengt Andersson (nowdays Toll) and Pontus Olsson. Together they wrote some really innovative stuff like “About the sun” and “Summer sun”. Songs that just as well could have been written today. Beathovens released three singles on the Triola label and was near a breakthrough when they appeared on the television show Drop-In. But in 1966 Bengt and Pontus left the band and The Beathovens saga was over. The two songwriters recorded a new single under the name B & P, with the amazing song “Blow your horn”.