Terry Reid

Terry Reid is an English singer, guitarist, and songwriter who emerged in mid-sixties beatsters Peter Jay & The Jaywalkers. He debuted as a solo artist with the 1968 US Epic release Bang, Bang You’re Terry Reid, followed by a self-titled album on Columbia.

As his profile soared, Reid passed on offers to join Led Zeppelin (but recommended Robert Plant) and Deep Purple (before they hired Ian Gillan). 

In his second decade, Reid released the albums Rivers (1973, Atlantic), Seed of Memory (1976, ABC), and Rogue Waves (1978, Capitol).


Background

He was born Terence James Reid on November 13, 1949, in St Neots, Huntingdonshire, and raised in Bluntisham village.

At fifteen, Reid left St Ivo School and joined his first band, The Redbeats. They held a residency at the St Ives River Club, where drummer Peter Jay drafted the young singer for his band, Peter Jay & The Jaywalkers, a onetime Decca instrumental group with four recent beat singles on Piccadilly. (Their prior singer, Pete “Buzz” Miller, cut the 1968 freakbeat single “Cold Turkey” as Big Boy Pete.)

The Jaywalkers embarked on a 23-date autumn 1966 UK tour with The Rolling Stones, Ike & Tina Turner, and the Yardbirds. During their show at London’s Royal Albert Hall, Hollies guitarist–singer Graham Nash befriended Reid and pointed the Jaywalkers to EMI Columbia, where Manfred Mann producer John Burgess oversaw their April 1967 soul-pop single “The Hand Don’t Fit the Glove” (b/w “This Time”), a minor hit billed as Terry Reid with Peter Jay’s Jaywalkers. Despite this uptick, the band dissolved.

“The Hand Don’t Fit the Glove” first reappeared on My Generation, a 1976 EMI comp with mod and freakbeat-era cuts by The Action (“Baby You’ve Got It”), The Artwoods (“What Shall I Do”), Downliners Sect (“Glendora”), The Gods (“Baby’s Rich”), Locomotive (“Mr. Armageddon”), Love Sculpture (“The Stumble”), The Moles (“We Are the Moles”), The Roulettes (“The Long Cigarette”), Tomorrow (“My White Bicycle”), Yardbirds (“Happenings Ten Years Time Ago”), and a young Rod Stewart (“Shake”), plus one track by Rod’s short-lived band with Peter Bardens, Shotgun Express (“I Could Feel The Whole World Turn Round”). My Generation lists the Jaywalkers track as a Terry Reid solo number.


1968–1972

In early 1968, Terry Reid acquired a 1952 Telecaster and linked with industry figure Mickie Most, a longtime producer (The Animals, The Moody Blues, Herman’s Hermits, Nashville Teens) whose current clients included Donovan and the Jeff Beck Group.

Reid formed a rock trio with two recent Donovan sidemen: keyboardist Eric Leese (ex-Mike Cotton Sound) and drummer Keith Webb (ex-Julian Covey & The Machine). Most produced Reid’s debut single and first two albums for Epic–Columbia.


“Better By Far”

On May 3, 1968, Reid made his solo debut with “Better By Far,” a recent Long John Baldry side, backed with the original “Fires Alive.” Most produced both sides at Abbey Road Studios with session guitarist Big Jim Sullivan.

A. “Better By Far” originated on the January 1968 Pye release Let the Heartaches Begin, the second solo album by ex-Hoochie Coochie Men frontman (and Bluesology–Steampacket singer) Long John Baldry; written by Tony Macaulay> and John MacLeod, the team behind The Foundations recent hit “Baby, Now That I’ve Found You.”
B. “Fires Alive”

Reid’s vocals impressed guitarist Jimmy Page, a onetime Most sessionist (“The Feminine Look,” 1963) whose current band, Yardbirds, were managed by Mickie’s business partner, Peter Grant. Page asked Reid to join his reconfigured Yardbirds lineup with Donovan sessionist John Paul Jones. Bound with solo commitments, Reid declined Page’s offer but mentioned a Midlands singer named Robert Plant, who fronted unsigned Brummie blues-rockers Band of Joy, which also featured drummer John Bonham. Page hired Plant and Bonham for the ‘New Yardbirds,’ which became Led Zeppelin.

Meanwhile, Reid cut his first album with Webb and keyboardist Bill Bonham, recently of Birmingham soul-posters Sight and Sound (no relation to John).


Bang, Bang You’re Terry Reid

Terry Reid released his debut solo album, Bang, Bang You’re Terry Reid, in November 1968 on Epic (North America, New Zealand) and Odeon (Japan).

Side A includes covers of Gene Pitney (“Something’s Gotten Hold of My Heart”) and Cher (“Bang, Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)”) and four originals, including “Without Expression,” a song Terry wrote at age fourteen.

Side B opens with an elongated version of Donovan’s “Season of the Witch” and features three originals, including one linked with the rock standard “Summertime Blues” and another (“Loving Time”) co-written with erstwhile sideman Eric Leese.

A1. “Bang, Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” (4:12) originates from Cher’s 1966 second solo album The Sonny Side of Cher, written by her then-partner Sonny Bono.
A2. “Tinker Tailor” (2:53)
A3. “Erica” (3:48)
A4. “Without Expression” (4:47)
A5. “Sweater” (2:03)
A6. “Something’s Gotten Hold of My Heart” (4:56) originated as a 1967 single by the English pop duo David and Jonathan (aka songwriters Roger Greenaway and Roger Cook). That autumn, American singer Gene Pitney scored a UK No. 5 hit with the song. (In 1988, a cover by Marc Almond lured Pitney out of retirement for a No. 1 duet version.)
B1. “Season of the Witch” (10:09)
B2. “Writing On the Wall / Summertime Blues” (10:14) “Summertime Blues,” the 1958 signature song by rockabilly legend Eddie Cochran, co-written with his manager, Jerry Capehart.
B3. “When You Get Home” (3:38)
B4. “Loving Time” (3:40)

Reid and his band recorded Bang, Bang on the rushed schedule of Most and engineer Dave Siddle, a soundman on 1967–68 tiles by Georgie Fame, The Herd, Jimi Hendrix Experience, and Picadilly Line. The font and back covers picture Reid, Bonham, and Webb side-by-side.

The Hollies cut a long-vaulted cover of “Without Expression” (titled “Man With No Expression”) during sessions for their 1969 album Hollies Sing Hollies. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young covered the song as “Horses Through a Rainstorm” for their 1970 album Déjà Vu, but it was dropped from the tracklist for Stills’ “Carry On.”


Second Band

Terry Reid retained Keith Webb and hired organist Peter Solley, recently of Chris Farlowe‘s backing band, The Thunderbirds. They toured behind the Epic release of Bang, Bang in the US, where they opened autumn 1968 dates by Cream, Procol Harum, Savoy Brown, and Spooky Tooth.

In December, Terry Reid played to 100,000 attendees of the Miami Pop Festival, a three-day year-end event (Dec. 28–30) at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Florida, with sets by The Amboy Dukes, Blues Image, Buffy Sainte-Marie, The Box Tops, Hugh Masekela, Iron Butterfly, Joni Mitchell, Marvin Gaye, Pacific Gas & Electric, Steppenwolf, Three Dog Night, and The Turtles.

In mid-1969, Reid declined an invitation from another band guitarist, Ritchie Blackmore of hard-rockers Deep Purple. Their singer, Rod Evans, was leaving after three albums. (They ultimately hired Episode Six frontman Ian Gillan.)


Terry Reid

Terry Reid released his self-titled second album in August 1969 on Columbia (UK, Europe, Oceania) and Epic (North America). It features six originals, including “Marking Time”, “Rich Kids Blues”, “Silver White Light,” and “Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace.”

Terry Reid also contains his second Donovan cover (“Superlungs My Supergirl”) and a heartfelt rendition of the recent Lorraine Ellison standard “Stay With Me Baby.” Side B interpolates the Reid original “Friends” with the Bob Dylan chestnut “Highway 61 Revisited.”

A1. “Superlungs My Supergirl” (2:39) originated on Barabajagal, the August 1969 seventh album by Epic label-mate Donovan. The phrase “superlungs” became Reid’s nickname.
A2. “Silver White Light” (2:51)
A3. “July” (3:30)
A4. “Marking Time” (3:45)
A5. “Stay With Me Baby” (4:10) originated as an October 1966 Warner a-side by Philly soul singer Lorraine Ellison; co-written by George David Weiss and Jerry Ragovoy (writer of multiple songs for Garnet Mimms and Howard Tate). Ellison’s version also inspired 1967–68 covers by Ferris Wheel, Long John Baldry, Sharon Tandy, The Walker Brothers, and (future Savage Rose frontwoman) Annisette Koppel.
B1. “Highway 61 Revisited / Friends / Highway 61 Revisited” (8:58) appropriates the title-track of Dylan’s 1965 sixth studio album.
B2. “May Fly” (3:41)
B3. “Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace” (4:24)
B4. “Rich Kid Blues” (4:15)

Novice soundman Martin Birch engineered Terry Reid amid 1969 titles by Fleetwood Mac (Then Play On) and the Jeff Beck Group.

Terry Reid sports the same guitar-wielding photo of the shaggy-haired singer on the front (sepia) and back (gray scale). The inner-sleeve shows a grass-set photo of Reid with Keith Webb and Peter Solley (identified as Peter Shelley).

“Superlungs” (minus the “My Supergirl” suffix) appeared as a UK one-sided promo titled Terry Reid Is Superlungs. Abroad, “Superlungs” appeared as an a-side in North America (b/w “May Fly”) and France (b/w “Stay With Me Baby”). In Japan, Odeon lifted “Stay With Me Baby” (b/w “Rich Kid Blues”).

Terry Reid was his debut album in the UK, where Bang, Bang You’re Terry Reid remained un-issued until its 1992 CD reissue. In Canada, Epic titled his second album Move Over for… Terry Reid.


Third Band

Reid embarked on UK tours with Fleetwood Mac, Jethro Tull, and Scott Walker. He opened select dates on the Rolling Stones’ autumn 1969 US tour.

In December 1969, Reid stopped working with Mickie Most, whose singles-oriented outlook clashed with the singer’s album-oriented ambitions. Their fallout restricted Reid to live work as he waited out the duration of his contract. Solley and Webb joined Paladin, which released the 1971–72 albums Paladin and Charge!

Reid formed a new band with English drummer Michael Giles (recently of King Crimson) and two Americans: Kaleidoscope multi-instrumentalist David Lindley (slide, banjo, fiddle) and Ike & Tina Turner Revue bassist Lee Miles. Meanwhile, Reid’s attorney sponsored Brazilian musicians Gilberto Gil and Caetano Veloso as they sought asylum from their country’s military dictatorship. They stayed at Reid’s Notting Hill apartment with members of their entourage.


Rock Festivals

In July 1970, Reid played the second Atlanta International Pop Festival, a two-day event at the Atlanta International Raceway with sets by the Allman Brothers Band, Ballin’ Jack, Bloodrock, The Chambers Brothers, Gypsy, Hampton Grease Band, It’s a Beautiful Day, Johnny Jenkins, Lee Michaels, Mott the Hoople, Mountain, Savage Grace, and Spirit.

In late August, Reid played the third Isle of Wight Festival, a five-day event (26–30) at at Afton Down with sets by Cactus, Chicago, The Doors, Fairfield Parlour, Family, Free, Heaven, Lighthouse, Mighty Baby, Miles Davis, Pentangle, Shawn Phillips, Sly & the Family Stone, T2, Taste, Ten Years After, The Who, and (in their second performance) Emerson Lake & Palmer. Terry and his band played on Day 2 (Thursday the 27th), which also featured sets by Black Widow, Gary Farr, Gracious!, Groundhogs, Supertramp, and Reid’s friends Gil and Veloso.

Reid’s set from the island valley event later appeared on the disc Silver White Light – Live at the Isle of Wight 1970, released in 2004 by seventies archivists Water.

After the Isle of Wight performance, Giles re-teamed with Crimson colleague Ian McDonald in the symphonic-rock duo McDonald & Giles. Reid hired Griffin drummer Alan White, a recent participant in George Harrison’s Apple Jam.

In 1971, Reid performed at the Glastonbury Festival, a June 21–26 event with sets by Arthur Brown, Brinsley Schwarz, David Bowie, Edgar Broughton Band, Fairport Convention, Gong, Hawkwind, Pink Fairies, Quintessence, Skin Alley, and Traffic.

Lindley plays on three tracks (“Consummation,” “When I Was a Child,” “Smile Your Blues Away”) on the 1971 Island release One House Left Standing, the debut album by Claire Hamill. Reid plays guitar and sings backing vocals on the album’s seventh track, “Urge for Going,” which also features Free drummer Simon Kirke with associates Rabbit Bundrick and Tetsu Yamauchi.

Atlantic Records president Ahmet Ertegun signed Terry Reid and linked him with ELP engineer Eddie Offord, who recently produced The Yes Album, the 1971 breakthrough release by Yes. Despite multiple sessions with Offord, Reid and his band failed to capture their live energy in the studio. As the progress stalled, Lindley joined Jackson Browne’s backing band and White replaced Bill Bruford in Yes (just in time to tour behind their epic 1972 release Close to the Edge).


1973–1978

Terry Reid resumed sessions for his third album with veteran drummer Conrad Isidore (ex-Sundae Times, One) and veteran producer Tom Dowd. Over the ensuing five-and-a-half year period, Reid released three albums on as many labels. Bassist Lee Miles (sometimes credited as Leo Miles) remained his one constant amid revolving casts of backing players.


River

Terry Reid released his third album, River, in February 1973 on Atlantic. It features seven originals, most in the five-minute range, including “Avenue” and “Live Life.”

Tom Dowd produced the entirety of Side A (which features drummer Conrad Isadore) and “River,” which features American Latin-jazz percussionist Willie Bobo. “Dream” and “Milestone” date from the earlier Eddie Offord-produced sessions with drummer Alan White (uncredited).

David Lindley plays assorted string instruments (slide, steel, electric) on Side A (“Dean” excepted) and “River.”

A1. “Dean” (4:43)
A2. “Avenue” (5:05)
A3. “Things to Try” (4:24)
A4. “Live Life” (5:12)
B1. “River” (5:42)
B2. “Dream” (5:18)
B3. “Milestones” (5:52)

Willie guested on Rivers amid session for 1973 albums by Buddy Miles and longtime associate Cal Tjader. Isadore also played on concurrent titles by Linda Lewis, Rabbit Bundrick, Paul Kossoff (the root album of his post-Free Back Street Crawler) and Manticore funksters Hanson (a springboard for Hummingbird).

Dowd fit Rivers into a busy 1972–73 schedule that also included productions for Ramatam, Donny Hathaway, Herbie Man, Tami Lynn, Bette Midler, Dusty Springfield, and Aretha Franklin, an early champion of Reid. The album’s mixing engineer, Ed Barton, also worked on the 1973 Atlantic release Bright Moments, a double album by Rahsaan Roland Kirk.

Rivers is housed in a gatefold sleeve with a full-scale spread of branches reflected on gold, rippling water (outer) and a blue-framed photo of Reid seated at a riverside. The graphics team of Vicki Hodgetts and veteran Jazzland visualist Barry Feinstein also share credits on 1972–73 covers for The Crusaders, Dave Mason, Kenny Rankin, White Witch.

Outtakes from the two-year sessions behind Rivers constitute The Other Side of The River, issued in 2016 an archival CD and double-LP on Future Days Recordings. This title uses the blue inner-gate as an outer cover and features eleven songs.

A1. “Let’s Go Down” (6:51)
A2. “Avenue (F # Boogie)” (6:04)
A3. “Things to Try” (6:30)
B1. “Country Brazilian Funk” (9:14)
B2. “River” (5:55)
B3. “Listen With Eyes” (3:48)
C1. “Anyway” (5:46)
C2. “Celtic Melody” (1:54)
C3. “Funny” (8:06)
D1. “Late Night Idea” (2:22)
D2. “Sabyla” (5:33)

Reid appears as a backing vocalist on 1974–75 albums by Jackson Browne (Late for the Sky) and Bonnie Raitt (Home Plate).


Seed of Memory

Terry Reid released his fourth album, Seed of Memory, in May 1976 on ABC. It features eight originals, including “Faith to Arise,” “To Be Treated Rite,” and the lucid Fender Rhodes ballad “Fooling You.”

Reid recorded Seed of Memory with longtime friend and early benefactor Graham Nash, who harmonizes with the singer.

The album features longtime bassist Lee Miles and twelve additional backing players, including two drummers (James Gadson, Soko Richardson) and a five-piece horn section composed of jazz trumpeter Blue Mitchell, funk trombonist Fred Wesley, flutist Tim Weisberg, and fifties-era saxophonists Clifford Solomon and Plas Johnson.

In addition to Reid, Seed of Memory features six string players, including cellist Jesse Erlich, acoustic guitarist Joel Bernstein, and steel players Al Perkins and Ben Keith. Veteran jazz guitarist Al Viola (a longtime Frank Sinatra sideman) plays the balalaika, a triangular Russian lute-like instrument. Prior Reid sideman David Lindley returns on violin and guitar (acoustic and slide).

A1. “Faith to Arise” (4:28)
A2. “Seed of Memory” (5:25)
A3. “Brave Awakening” (6:27)
A4. “To Be Treated Rite” (5:52)
B1. “Ooh Baby (Make Me Feel So Young)” (4:03)
B2. “The Way You Walk” (4:40)
B3. “The Frame” (4:33)
B4. “Fooling You” (7:13)

Sessions took place at Sound Labs, Hollywood, and Rudy Records, San Francisco, where Graham Nash produced Seed of Memory in sequence with the 1976 ABC release Whistling Down the Wire by the partial CSNY configuration of Crosby & Nash.

Wesley (a former James Brown sideman) also played on 1976 albums by George Benson, Hank Crawford, Idris Muhammad, Parliament, and Bootsy’s Rubber Band.

Soko Richardson (a former Ike & Tina backer) also drummed in John Mayall’s current band.

Perkins (an ongoing Dan Folgelberg sideman) played on concurrent alums by Ambrosia (Somewhere I’ve Never Traveled), Daniel Amos, and Andraé Crouch & The Disciples.

Erlich (a Wrecking Crew alumni) plays on time-sake titles by Harry Nilsson, Ronnie Laws, Tom Waits, The Tubes (Young and Rich).


Rogue Waves

Terry Reid released his fifth album, Rogue Waves, in October 1978 on Capitol. It features five originals and covers of ’60s hits by the The Crystals (“Then I Kissed Her”), Everly Brothers (“All I Have to Do Is Dream”), The Left Banke (“Walk Away Rene”), and The Ronettes (“Baby I Love You”).

For this album, Reid assembled a three-piece backing band composed of perennial bassist Lee Miles, Toro drummer John Siomos, and session guitarist Doug Rodrigues. Deniece Williams sings backing vocals along with her sister Dyanne Chandler and Maxinne Willard Waters (of the Waters brood). Load organist Sterling Smith fills out the arrangements.

A1. “Ain’t No Shadow” (3:57)
A2. “Baby I Love You” (4:04) originated as a November 1963 a-side by The Ronettes, co-written by producer Phil Spector and the Brill Building team of Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry (see below).
A3. “Stop and Think It Over” (3:45)
A4. “Rogue Wave” (5:58)
A5. “Walk Away Rene” (4:24) originated as a 1966 ballad by The Left Banke, co-written by their keyboardist–singer Michael Brown with lyricist Tony Sansone. Also recorded by Four Tops, Blades of Grass, Orpheus, and Baby Grand, whose concurrent version appears on their second album Ancient Medicine.
B1. “Believe In the Magic” (6:49)
B2. “Then I Kissed Her” (4:59) is a gender-flipped cover of the Spector–Greenwich–Barry composition “Then He Kissed Me,” a 1963 girl-group classic by The Crystals; recently sung from the make perspective by the Beach Boys.
B3. “Bowangi” (4:29)
B4. “All I Have to Do Is Dream” (5:39) originated as a 1958 ballad by the Everly Brothers; written by country songwriter Boudleaux Bryant, who also wrote the duo’s 1960 ballad “Love Hurts,” a recent hit for Nazareth and Jim Capaldi.

Sessions took place at Brother’s Studio, Santa Monica, where Reid co-produced the album with fellow Englishman Chris Kimsey, a veteran post-psych soundman (BB Blunder, Family, McGuinness Flint, Wonderwheel) who worked on mid-seventies albums in Europe (Fruupp, The Movies, Rory Gallagher, Strapps) and the US (Automatic Man, Piper). He worked on Rogue Waves in sequence with the 1978 Rolling Stones release Some Girls.

Kimsey produced Siomos beforehand in Peter Frampton’s Camel. The drummer also played on albums by Rick Derringer and Todd Rundgren (Something / Anything?, A Wizard, a True Star). Siomos interacted with Rodrigues (and Rundgren sideman Moogy Klingman) in Buzzy Linhart‘s Music. Rodrigues also played on albums by Betty Davis, Lenny White, Mandrill, and Santana.

Smith once served as the organist for JD Blackfoot. He co-operated Owl Recording Studios in Columbus, Ohio, where Rogue Waves engineer Alex Vertikoff worked on recent Owl Records titles by Wee and Smith’s band The Load.

Rogue Waves also credits an organist named James E. Johnson (linked by Discogs to the profile of Vibrations singer James Johnson). The album features string arrangements by one Terence James.

Photographer Wayne Wilcox captured Reid in a rock-guitarist pose (front) and profiled each member frame-by-frame (inner). Steve Bissell photographed the back cover: an upshot of a silhouetted woman who points to a haloed crack in a dark-blue sky.

Designer Terry Lamb rendered the graphics in a glistening style similar to his work on 1972 Impulse! titles by John Klemmer (Waterfalls) and Ahmad Jamal (Outertimeinnerspace), as well as recent covers for Shadowfax (Watercourse Way) and Moody Blues keyboardist Mike Pinder (The Promise). The words “Rough Waves,” presented in silvery serif, are split by a miniature reproduction of The Great Wave off Kanagawa, a familiar 1831 Japanese woodblock print (approximated by Jade Warrior on their 1975 release Waves).


Later Activity

Reid lived a quiet life through the 1980s but returned in 1990 with a cover of the Spencer Davis Group classic “Gimme Some Lovin’,” recorded for the Tom Cruise vehicle Days of Thunder. He teamed with producer Trevor Horn for his sixth album, The Driver, released in 1991 on WEA.


Discography:

  • Bang, Bang You’re Terry Reid (1968)
  • Terry Reid (1969)
  • River (1973)
  • Seed of Memory (1976)
  • Rogue Waves (1978)

Sources:

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