Brand X

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Brand X
Origin London, England
Genres Jazz fusion
Years active1975–1980, 1992–1999, 2016–2019
Labels Charisma, Passport
Associated acts Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, Genesis, Atomic Rooster, Soft Machine, Fire Merchants, Mahavishnu Orchestra, The Liverpool Scene, Weather Report, Rod Argent, Imperial Triumphant

Brand X are a jazz fusion band formed in London in 1975. They were active until 1980, followed by a reformation between 1992 and 1999, and are currently active following a 2016 reunion. Members have included John Goodsall (guitar), [1] Percy Jones (bass), Robin Lumley (keyboards) and Phil Collins (drums). Goodsall and Jones were the sole constant members throughout the band's existence until October 2020, when Jones left the band. [2]

Contents

History

1975–1980: First incarnation

Brand X co-founder Percy Jones Up percy jones.png
Brand X co-founder Percy Jones

In December 1974, rehearsals began developing a five-piece instrumental jazz fusion group at Island Studios in London, which included Percy Jones on bass and Phil Collins (of Genesis) on drums. They had secured a recording deal with Island Records and prepared tracks for a studio album which originally included vocals. However, the vocals were negatively received from Island management, leaving the group to write new material, [3] at the suggestion of Island A&R man Richard Williams. [4] After Collins left for other commitments, the line-up changed from Jones, John Goodsall on guitar, Robin Lumley on keyboards and vocals, Pete Bonas on guitar, and John Dillon on drums and percussion, to a departing Bonas and Dillon, the latter replaced by Phil Spinelli for a short time before a newly available Collins took his place in April 1975. [4] The four recorded Unorthodox Behaviour in September and October 1975 at Trident Studios with Jack Lancaster on saxophone. [5] They were named Brand X after Island Records staffer Danny Wilding wrote down "Brand X" to keep track of their activity on the studio calendar, and the name stuck. In preparation for their upcoming gigs, the four were joined by Geoff Seopardi on percussion by December 1975. [6] [7] Genesis manager Tony Smith became their manager. [4]

Brand X played their first gigs with a series of low key warm-up shows in November and December 1975. These were followed by a full-scale tour across the UK from February 1976, mainly on the college circuit. They had little funds, resorting to renting a synthesiser and PA system, operated with a small road crew, and often played support for the headlining act. [6] In December 1976, the band returned to Trident Studios to record their second album Moroccan Roll , by which time percussionist Morris Pert joined the band full-time. They had previously employed Gaspar Lawal, Bill Bruford, and Preston Heyman for the position, but each operated in an unofficial capacity.[ citation needed ]Moroccan Roll was released in April 1977 and peaked at No. 37 in the UK [8] and No. 125 in the US. With Collins leaving the group for other commitments, Kenwood Dennard of Pat Martino's group was recruited in New York City in time for their 32-date US tour in May and June 1977. Collins briefly returned later in 1977 for a series of dates, including a spot at the tenth Crystal Palace Garden Party in London and the Fête de l'Humanité in Paris on the same day on a specially chartered plane, the latter attended by an estimated 200,000 people. [9]

Following the completion of the two albums, Clark and Pert departed the band, and the remaining six members recorded another album, 1982's Is There Anything About? , which would be the final album to feature both Lumley and Collins, and which would not be released until two and a half years after the band's dissolution. Following the completion of the recording sessions, the band embarked on a world tour, following which Collins departed for the final time. Clark returned to the drum stool, and the band toured the UK in April and May 1980 (co-headlining with Bruford). [10]

Discography

Studio albums

Live albums

Members

Current members

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<i>Moroccan Roll</i> 1977 studio album by Brand X

Moroccan Roll (1977) is the second studio album by British jazz fusion group Brand X. The title is a pun referring to this being their second album: "more rock and roll", however, Moroccan Roll is not a step toward the rock & roll side of the fusion equation, but rather an experiment with Eastern sounds and softer textures. The album is mostly instrumental. "Sun in the Night" notably contains vocals sung by Phil Collins in Sanskrit. "Disco Suicide" and "Maybe I'll Lend You Mine After All" also contain vocals, although they are wordless.

<i>Do They Hurt?</i> 1980 studio album by Brand X

Do They Hurt? (1980) is an album by British jazz fusion group Brand X. The tracks on this album are outtakes from the Product sessions.

<i>Is There Anything About?</i> 1982 studio album by Brand X

Is There Anything About? is the sixth studio album by British jazz fusion group Brand X. It is the last album to feature longstanding members Robin Lumley and Phil Collins. It was assembled from outtakes from the 1979 Product sessions. These sessions produced around twenty tracks which became Product (1979), Do They Hurt? (1980) and Is There Anything About? (1982). "Modern, Noisy and Effective" is the backing track to "Soho" with a new keyboard line overdubbed over the top of it. "A Longer April" is just an extended version of "April" from Product, with a bit of synth noise added in the middle. "TMIU-ATGA" is taken from an old cassette tape running in the studio while the band were improvising; the title is an acronym for 'They Make It Up As They Go Along'.

Robin Lumley is a British jazz fusion musician, keyboardist, record producer, and author who was a member of the band Brand X with drummer Phil Collins, guitarist John Goodsall, and bassist Percy Jones. He is a second cousin of the actress Joanna Lumley.

<i>Unorthodox Behaviour</i> 1976 studio album by Brand X

Unorthodox Behaviour is the first album by British jazz fusion group Brand X. It peaked at 191 on the Billboard 200 in 1976, the same year it was released.

John Goodsall is a progressive rock & jazz fusion guitarist most noted for his work with Brand X, Atomic Rooster and The Fire Merchants. John Goodsall is currently touring with Brand X and performing with acclaimed singer/songwriter/guitarist James Bracken. Goodsall was born in Pennsylvania and has lived in Los Angeles, England, Milan and Minnesota.

<i>Product</i> (Brand X album) 1979 studio album by Brand X

Product is the fourth studio album by British jazz fusion group Brand X, originally released in 1979. It features primary member Phil Collins back once again on drums following his absence on Masques. Drummer Mike Clark and bassist John Giblin also appear on this album.

<i>Masques</i> (Brand X album) 1978 studio album by Brand X

Masques is the 1978 album by the British jazz fusion group Brand X. This was the band's first studio recording without drummer Phil Collins. The rear of the album cover has a photo of the crowd from the Knebworth Festival, 1978 — a bill that included both Brand X and Genesis, Collins' other band.

The Rock Peter and the Wolf is an album adapting Sergei Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf by Jack Lancaster and Robin Lumley released in 1975. As the title suggests, it features a rock arrangement of Prokofiev's music. Performers on the album include Jack Lancaster, Robin Lumley, Gary Brooker, Bill Bruford, Phil Collins, Julie Tippett, Stephane Grappelli, Jon Hiseman, Brian Eno, Alvin Lee, Gary Moore, Cozy Powell, Manfred Mann, Keith Tippett, Viv Stanshall, and the English Chorale. This album is notable for featuring the first lineup of a band that would later become Brand X.

Andy Pyle is a British bassist. He played with The Kinks from 1976–1978. Prior to that, he was in Blodwyn Pig (1968–1972) and Savoy Brown (1972–1974). Later, he played with Wishbone Ash.

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<i>Livestock</i> (Brand X album) 1977 live album by Brand X

Livestock is a live album by British jazz fusion group Brand X released in 1977. The album has five tracks. It is the first album on which Kenwood Dennard appears as a replacement drummer for Phil Collins on two of the five tracks. The recordings on the album come from Brand X's 1977 European and North American tour.

<i>Manifest Destiny</i> (Brand X album) 1997 studio album by Brand X

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References

  1. "Band Approved Videos". youtube.com. Retrieved 10 October 2011.
  2. https://www.loudersound.com/news/percy-jones-quits-brand-x
  3. Fudger, Dave (13 March 1976). "Which xciting, xtravagant, xtremely x-rated, xquisitely xtroverted band sends you into flights of xtasy?". Sounds. p. 43. Retrieved 28 April 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 Welch, Chris (17 December 1977). "Brand X: This is a stick-up!". Melody Maker. pp. 8–9. Retrieved 28 April 2018.
  5. Unorthodox Behaviour (Media notes). Brand X. Charisma Records. 1976. CAS 1117.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  6. 1 2 Johnson, Derek (6 December 1975). "Brand X: Genesis drummer debuts new group". New Musical Express. Retrieved 27 April 2018.
  7. Dallas, Karl (10 January 1976). "Collins cleans up with Brand X". Melody Maker. Retrieved 27 April 2018.
  8. 1 2 Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). Guinness World Records Limited. p. 76. ISBN   978-1-904994-10-7.
  9. Fudger, Dave (1 October 1977). "A gig too far". Sounds. Retrieved 28 April 2018.
  10. "Percy Jones interview". December 2000. Retrieved 21 November 2009.
  11. "Brand X Performances". Edensongs.com. Retrieved 19 May 2014.