Climax Blues Band - Despite the fact that this great band were strongly influenced by the Chicago blues scene, they were in fact a British band from Stafford! They were formed in 1969 as The Climax Chicago Blues band, by sax player/vocalist Colin Cooper, bassist Derek Holt, drummer George Newsome, guitarist/vocalist Peter Haycock and bassist/keyboard player Richard Jones. After the release of their self-titled debut album in 1969, they dropped the "Blues Band " part of the name and became known as "Climax Chicago", and then, finally, as "Climax Blues Band". They concentrated more on the US market and their albums achieved moderate success there during the early to mid seventies. Their "Live/FM" album, recorded in New York in 1974, was a top seller for them in the US, but it wasn't until the release of their single "Couldn't get it right", off their "Gold Plated" album in 1976 that they became popular in their home country. Their music often had a distinct leaning more towards funk than towards blues, but this didn't detract from the fact that they could play the blues as well as any of their contemporaries. An excellent band, they appear on our first Dinosaur Days CD, playing a stunning live version of the Willie Dixon classic, "Seventh Son".

 

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Biography by Jason Ankeny
Led by Colin Cooper, the former frontman of the R&B unit the Hipster Image, the Stafford, England-based Climax Chicago Blues Band was one of the leading lights of the late-1960s blues boom. A sextet also comprised of guitarists Derek Holt and Peter Haycock, keyboardist Arthur Wood, bassist Richard Jones and drummer George Newsome, the group debuted in 1969 with a self-titled effort recalling the work of John Mayall.

Prior to the release of 1969's Plays On, Jones left the group, prompting Holt to move to bass. In 1970 the Climax Chicago Blues Band moved to the Harvest label, at the same time shifting towards a more rock-oriented sound on the LP A Lot of Bottle. Around the release of 1971's Tightly Knit, Newsome was replaced by drummer John Holt; upon Wood's exit in the wake of 1972's Rich Man, the unit decided to continue on as a quartet, also dropping the "Chicago" portion of their name to avoid confusion with the American band of the same name.

In 1974 the Climax Blues Band issued FM Live, a document of a New York radio concert. 1975's Stamp was their commercial breakthrough, and 1976's Gold Plated fared even better, spurred on by the success of the hit "Couldn't Get It Right." However, the rise of punk effectively stopped the group in their tracks, although they continued recording prolifically well into the 1980s; after 1988's Drastic Steps, the Climax Blues Band was silent for a number of years, but resurfaced in 1994 with Blues From the Attic. 

 

Peter Haycock
Colin Cooper
John Cuffley
Peter Filleul
Derek Holt
George Newsome
Art Wood
Richard Jones

Jeremy Spencer
Bob Welch
Joe Cocker
The Doobie Brothers
Boz Scaggs
Steve Miller
Little River Band
Jeff Beck
Blind Faith
John Mayall

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

 

 

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Climax Blues Band - 1969 - Plays On - 3.5/5

Climax Blues Band - 1969 - The Climax Chicago Blues Band - 4/5

Climax Blues Band - 1970 - A Lot of Bottle - 3/5

Climax Blues Band - 1971 - Tightly Knit - 4/5

Climax Blues Band - 1972 - Rich Man - 3/5

Climax Blues Band - 1973 - FM,Live - 4/5

Climax Blues Band - 1974 - Sense of Direction - 4/5

Climax Blues Band - 1975 - Stamp Album - 3.5/5

Climax Blues Band - 1976 - Gold Plated - 3/5

Climax Blues Band - 1978 - Shine On - 2.5/5

Climax Blues Band - 1979 - Real to Reel - 2.5/5

Climax Blues Band - 1980 - Flying the Flag - 2/5

Climax Blues Band - 1981 - Lucky for Some - 2/5

Climax Blues Band - 1983 - Sample and Hold - 2/5

Climax Blues Band - 1987 - Couldn't Get It Right (See for Miles) - 4.5/5

Climax Blues Band - 1988 - Drastic Steps - 2/5

Climax Blues Band - 1995 - Blues from the Attic - 3.5/5

Climax Blues Band - 2002 - Couldn't Get It Right (Repertoire) - 4/5

Climax Blues Band - 2002 - Gold Plated (Repertoire) - 4/5

Climax Blues Band - 2005 - The River Sessions - 4/5

Rating

 

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