This excellent UK outfit, whose name came from the legendary baseball player, were formed in Hatfield in 1971 out of the ashes of "Shacklock". Guitarist Alan Shacklock was the founder member of the band that featured the stunning vocal talents of Jenny Haan, one of the best female rock singers of the era. They were a popular live act and their second album, "Amar Cabalero", released in 1973, went gold in the US and Canada. Shacklock left the band in 1975 after their self-titled third album, his replacement being UFO/ Wild Turkey's Bernie Marsden. It was felt that the popularity of the band began a steady decline after Shacklock left, and even more so when Haan left after "Stealin' Home" in the same year. Not much is known about this elusive lady singer, other than the fact that she had a short background vocal stint with UK act Strider in 1974. Vocalist Ellie Hope joined Babe Ruth for what would prove to be their final album, "Kid's Stuff", in 1976. Bernie Marsden went on to Whitesnake and Alaska, as well as recording a couple of great solo albums. Nowadays, he's in The Snakes with long time buddy Micky Moody. Other members of the band appeared in the early 80's disco band, Liquid Gold. And Babe Ruth? "First Base" is one of rock music's classic albums, and they should be remembered for this masterpiece.

Babe Ruth 
Babe Ruth - Elusive, from "Stealin' Home" in 1975, their 4th album. UK act Babe Ruth are already well represented in these pages, so we won't repeat their history again here. We will tell you, however, that this particular album was the first Babe Ruth album to feature ex-Wild Turkey/UFO guitarist, Bernie Marsden, who replaced founder member Alan Shacklock. Shacklock had tired of life on the road and left the band after their third, self-titled album. Marsden joined fellow ex-Wild Turkey keyboard player, Steve Gurl (who'd joined Babe Ruth in early 1975), drummer Ed Spevock, bassist Dave Hewitt and vocalist Jenny Haan for this, their second album to be released in 1975. Our featured track was yet another disco favourite at the time and also received a fair amount of airplay. Both Haan and Hewitt left the band the following year and they fronted the short-lived Lion (Haan later joining UK blues/rockers Strider as a back-up vocalist, and Hewitt later appeared in Whitford - St. Holmes and The Georgia Satellites). Their respective replacements were unknowns Ellie Hope and Ray Knott, and these two appeared on Babe Ruth's final album, "Kid's Stuff", which came out in 1976. When the band split for good, Marsden went on to find fame with Whitesnake and formed Alaska. He's currently with the Company of Snakes. Some of the other members of Babe Ruth appeared in the Liquid Gold disco outfit in the early eighties. 

 

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Biography by Jason Ankeny
Progressive rock unit Babe Ruth was formed in Hertfordshire, England in 1971 by singer Janita "Jenny" Haan, guitarist Alan Shacklock (whose surname lent the group their original moniker), and bassist Dave Hewitt. Pianist Dave Punshon and drummer Dick Powell joined the lineup prior to the 1971 release of Babe Ruth's debut single, "Elusive"; the 1972 LP, First Base — which credited the explosive Haan with "vocal power" — generated the group's best-known song, the Shacklock-penned "Wells Fargo," and despite limited interest at home, the album earned a following on North American shores, going gold in Canada. Drummer Ed Spevock replaced Powell for the follow-up, 1973's Amar Caballero, while ex-Wild Turkey keyboardist Steve Gurl assumed Punshon's duties for Babe Ruth's self-titled third effort; the most pivotal blow, however, was the subsequent exit of Shacklock, with another Wild Turkey alum, guitarist Bernie Marsden, signing on for 1975's Stealin' Home. Though the album seemed poised to finally push the group into the British mainstream, Haan and Hewitt both resigned; singer Ellie Hope and bassist Ray Knott were tapped for 1976's Kid's Stuff, but without a single founding member remaining in the lineup, Babe Ruth disbanded months later. Marsden eventually resurfaced in Whitesnake. 

 

Bernie Marsden
Steve Gurl
Jenny Haan
David Hewitt
Ellie Hope
Ray Knott
Dick Powell
Dave Punshon
Alan Shacklock
Ed Spevock

Wigwam
Jeff Wayne
Pavlov's Dog
Nucleus
Grobschnitt
Eloy
Banco

If you have any contribution to make to this band or something to add, email me - Japie Marais.

 

 

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Babe Ruth - 1972 - First Base - 3/5

Babe Ruth - 1973 - Amar Caballero - 2/5

Babe Ruth - 1975 - Babe Ruth - 2/5

Babe Ruth - 1975 - Stealin' Home - 3/5

Babe Ruth - 1976 - Kid's Stuff - 2/5

Rating

 

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