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The Climax Blues Band (originally known as The Climax Chicago Blues Band) is a British blues rock band. The band was formed in Stafford, England, in 1967 by vocalist and harmonica player Colin Cooper (1939–2008), guitarist and vocalist Pete Haycock (1951–2013), guitarist Derek Holt (b. 1949),bassist and keyboardist Richard Jones (b. 1949), drummer George Newsome (b. 1947), and keyboardist Arthur Wood (1929–2005).[1]

Climax Blues Band
Climax Blues Band 1974.JPG
The band in 1974
Background information
Also known as The Climax Chicago Blues Band (1968–1970), Climax Chicago (1971-1972)
Origin Stafford, England
Genres Blues rock, soft rock
Years active 1967–present
Labels Harvest/EMI
Sire/Warner Bros. Records
Virgin Records
Major League Productions
Website Climax Blues Band
Members George Glover
Roy Adams
Lester Hunt
Neil Simpson
Chris Aldridge
Graham Dee
Past members Colin Cooper
Pete Haycock
Derek Holt
George Newsome
Arthur Wood
Richard Jones
Anton Farmer
Peter Filleul
John Cuffley
Nicky Hopkins
Dave Marquee
Henry Spinetti
John "Rhino" Edwards
Jeff Rich
Roger Inniss
Johnny Pugh

Contents

HistoryEdit

In 1972 the group shortened its name to the Climax Blues Band, under pressure from the American band Chicago.[citation needed] The band has released at least 18 albums and had a Top 10 hit in the UK with "Couldn't Get It Right".[2] That song and "I Love You" were also hits in the United States; "Couldn't Get It Right" reached No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1977, and "I Love You" peaked at No. 12 in 1981.[3]

Jones left the group in 1969 and Holt began playing bass. The band switched labels to Harvest Records in 1970 and subsequent records had a more rock-oriented feel.[4] John Cuffley replaced Newsome in 1971.

Albums issued in the 1970s include FM/Live (1973), a double set recorded at a concert in New York,[5] and the studio albums Stamp Album (1975) and Gold Plated (1976), featuring the single "Couldn't Get It Right". In the 1970s, the band's concerts in the US were attended by up to 20,000 people.[6] By 1981 the band was moving towards a pop-rock sound.[6] Holt and Cuffley left in 1983.

A previously unknown recording of a live performance was released as Climax Blues Band/World Tour 1976 by the Major League Productions (MLP) record label.

The album Sample and Hold was recorded for Virgin Records in 1983 by Haycock, Cooper, and Glover, with a rhythm section composed of the session musicians Dave Marquee and Henry Spinetti.[7] A follow-up album was in the works, but Cooper bowed out, citing personal reasons. Haycock went on to record several solo projects, the first of which was the album Total Climax, with his band, Pete Haycock's Climax; this band toured extensively in Europe, including Communist East Germany, and conducted a well-received tour in Australia. After that, Haycock was asked by his former Climax Blues Band manager, Miles Copeland, to record an instrumental album, Guitar and Son, and the live album Night of the Guitars (from the tour of the same name) for the I.R.S. No Speak label.[8] After that tour, Haycock teamed up with the guitarist Steve Hunter and former Climax Blues bandmate Derek Holt to record the album H Factor. He was later recruited by Bev Bevan to become a member of Electric Light Orchestra Part II and recorded and toured with that group from 1990 onwards. He also started his film score career at this time, playing the lead on Hans Zimmer's score to Thelma and Louise. He also performed on the Night of the Guitars tours, which included Holt on bass, keyboards and occasional vocals.

Holt wrote "I Love You," one of the Climax Blues Band's biggest hits. It is included on the Climax Blues Band double album, 25 Years 1968–1993, released by the German label Repertoire in 1993. "I Love You" still gets over 20,000 radio hits a year in the US and was used in Finn Taylor's 2002 film Cherish and in Kevin Smith's 2008 film Zach and Miri make a Porno.

"Couldn't Get It Right" was covered by the Fun Lovin' Criminals on their album Mimosa.[9] Holt revealed in an interview that the song was "about being on the road in America".[10]

In 1985 Cooper and Glover recruited guitarist Lester Hunt, drummer Roy Adams, and original member Derek Holt to record the Climax Blues Band album Drastic Steps, and this line-up toured in support of the album in the UK, Europe and America.[11][6] The new line-up soon became established with Cooper, Glover, Hunt, Adams and Neil Simpson in the early 1990s, releasing the live album Blues from the Attic in 1993 and Big Blues in 2004.[1][12]

Cooper died of cancer, aged 69, in July 2008. He is survived by his wife and two children. [6][9] He wanted the band to continue, as the other musicians had all been long serving (Glover since 1980, Adams and Hunt since 1985, and Simpson since 1991). Cooper was replaced by singer and saxophone and harmonica player Johnny Pugh, who retired in 2012, and was replaced in turn by vocalist Graham Dee and saxophone player Chris Aldridge. This lineup continues to tour.[13]

In 2017, original member Derek Holt formed a new band in the USA, also bearing the Climax Blues Band name. This situation, according to the existing band, is currently the subject of legal action.[14]

LineupsEdit

1968–1969 1969–1970 1970–1973 1973–1975
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – guitar, bass, keyboards
  • Richard Jones – bass, keyboards
  • George Newsome – drums
  • Arthur Wood – keyboards
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards
  • George Newsome – drums
  • Arthur Wood – keyboards
  • Anton Farmer – keyboards
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards
  • George Newsome – drums
  • Arthur Wood – keyboards
  • Peter Filleul – keyboards
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals
  • Peter Filleul – keyboards
  • John Cuffley – drums
1975–1977 1977–1978 1978–1979 1979–1980
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals
  • John Cuffley – drums
  • Richard Jones – keyboards, bass
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals
  • John Cuffley – drums
  • Peter Filleul – keyboards
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals
  • John Cuffley – drums
  • Peter Filleul – keyboards
  • Nicky Hopkins – keyboards
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals
  • John Cuffley – drums
  • Peter Filleul – keyboards
1980–1983 1983 1983–1985 1985
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • Derek Holt – bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals
  • John Cuffley – drums
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Dave Marquee – bass
  • Henry Spinetti – drums
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • Pete Haycock – guitar, vocals, bass
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • John "Rhino" Edwards – bass
  • Jeff Rich – drums
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Roy Adams – drums
  • Lester Hunt – guitar, backing vocals
  • Roger Inniss – bass
1985–1991 1991–2008 2008–2012 2012–present
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Roy Adams – drums
  • Lester Hunt – guitar, backing vocals
  • Derek Holt – bass
  • Colin Cooper – vocals, saxophone, harmonica, guitar
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Roy Adams – drums
  • Lester Hunt – guitar, backing vocals
  • Neil Simpson – bass
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Roy Adams – drums
  • Lester Hunt – guitar, backing vocals
  • Neil Simpson – bass
  • Johnny Pugh – vocals, saxophone, harmonica
  • George Glover – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Roy Adams – drums
  • Lester Hunt – guitar, backing vocals
  • Neil Simpson – bass
  • Graham Dee – vocals
  • Chris Aldridge - saxophone

TimelineEdit

 

DiscographyEdit

AlbumsEdit

  • The Climax Chicago Blues Band (1969)
  • Plays On (1969), US No. 197, Billboard 200 chart (1 week)
  • A Lot of Bottle (1970)
  • Tightly Knit (1971)
  • Rich Man (1972), US no. 150, Billboard 200 (10 weeks)
  • FM/Live (1973), US no. 107, Billboard 200 (30 weeks)
  • Sense of Direction (1974), US no. 37, Billboard 200 (29 weeks)
  • Stamp Album (1975), US no. 69, Billboard 200 (11 weeks)
  • Gold Plated (1976), US no. 27, Billboard 200 (44 weeks), UK No. 56 UK Albums Chart[2] (1 week)
  • Shine On (1978), US no. 71, Billboard 200 (11 weeks)
  • Real to Reel (1979), US no. 170, Billboard 200 (6 weeks)
  • Flying the Flag (1980), US no. 75, Billboard 200 (16 weeks)
  • Lucky for Some (1981)
  • Sample and Hold (1983)
  • Drastic Steps (1988)
  • Blues from the Attic (1993)
  • 25 Years 1968–1993 (1994)
  • Big Blues (2004)
  • Climax Blues Band World Tour 1976 (2011, Major League Productions)
  • Security Alert: The Live Bootleg (2014)
  • Tempus Fugit 4 track EP: Album Sampler (2018)

[15]

Albums (guest appearance)Edit

SinglesEdit

Year Title CAN CAN AC US US
AC
UK
1969 "Like Uncle Charlie"
1971 "Cubano Chant"
"Reap What I've Sowed"
"Towards the Sun"
1972 "Mole on the Dole"
1973 "Shake Your Love"
1974 "Sense of Direction"
1975 "Using the Power"
110
1976 "Couldn't Get It Right"
8
38
3
43
10
1978 "Makin' Love"
91
"Mistress Moonshine"
1979 "Children of the Night Time"
1980 "I Love You"
14
30
12
20
"Gotta Have More Love"
47
1981 "Darlin'"
1982 "Friends in High Places"
1983 "Listen to the Night"

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Biography by Jason Ankeny". AllMusic. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  2. ^ a b Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records. p. 110. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  3. ^ "Allmusic ((( Climax Blues Band > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )))". 
  4. ^ "NME biography". NME. Archived from the original on 21 February 2010. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  5. ^ Pierre Perrone (22 November 2013). "Pete Haycock: Guitarist with the Climax Blues Band who went on to write film music for John Badham and Franc Roddam". The Independent. Retrieved 26 March 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c d "Obituary by Garth Cartwright". The Guardian. London. 7 August 2008. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 24 June 2013. Retrieved 15 April 2013. 
  8. ^ "Vinyl LP Record Collector's Guide: Night of the Guitar with Steve Howe, Leslie West, Robbie Krieger, Randy California, Steve Hunter, Pete Haycock, Andy Powell, Ted Turner, Alvin Lee 12" Maxi-Single / LP Vinyl". Lp-covers.blogspot.com. Retrieved 15 February 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Colin Cooper obituary". The Times. 28 July 2008. Retrieved 21 August 2018. 
  10. ^ "Couldn't Get It Right". Songfacts.com. Retrieved 3 March 2009. 
  11. ^ "Drastic Steps - Climax Blues Band". Retrieved 9 June 2018. 
  12. ^ "Official website biography". Climaxbluesband.com. Archived from the original on 25 June 2009. Retrieved 28 August 2009. 
  13. ^ "Current Gigs". Climax Blues Band. Retrieved 21 August 2018. 
  14. ^ "Fan Advistory - Climax Blues Band Not Touring the USA in 2018". Climax Blues Band. Retrieved 21 August 2018. 
  15. ^ "Allmusic ((( Climax Blues Band > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". 

Other sourcesEdit

External linksEdit