Jimmy McCulloch

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Jimmy McCulloch
Jimmy McCulloch - Wings - 1976.jpg
McCulloch on stage with Wings in 1976
Background information
Born(1953-06-04)4 June 1953
Dumbarton, Scotland, UK
Died27 September 1979(1979-09-27) (aged 26)
Maida Vale, North West London
Genres Rock, hard rock
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter
Instruments
Years active1967–1979
Associated acts One in a Million, Wings, Thunderclap Newman, Stone the Crows, Small Faces, The Dukes, Blue

James McCulloch (4 June 1953 – 27 September 1979) was a Scottish-born musician and songwriter best known for playing lead guitar and bass, as a member of Paul McCartney's band Wings from 1974 to 1977. McCulloch was a member of the Glasgow psychedelic band One in a Million (formerly known as the Jaygars), Thunderclap Newman, and Stone the Crows. [1]

Paul McCartney English singer-songwriter and composer, bassist of The Beatles

Sir James Paul McCartney is an English singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and composer. He gained worldwide fame as the bass guitarist and singer for the rock band the Beatles, widely considered the most popular and influential group in the history of popular music. His songwriting partnership with John Lennon remains the most successful in history. After the group disbanded in 1970, he pursued a solo career and formed the band Wings with his first wife, Linda, and Denny Laine.

Psychedelic music is a wide range of popular music styles and genres influenced by 1960s psychedelia, a subculture of people who used psychedelic drugs such as LSD, psilocybin mushrooms, mescaline and DMT to experience visual and auditory hallucinations, synesthesia and altered states of consciousness. Psychedelic music may also aim to enhance the experience of using these drugs.

One in a Million were a 1960s psychedelic rock band from Glasgow, Scotland, that included Jimmy McCulloch, later a member of Paul McCartney's Wings, as their lead guitarist. They released two singles, "Use Your Imagination" / "Hold On" for CBS, and "Double Sight" / "Fredereek Hernando" for MGM. This has become one of the most collectable psychedelic singles, and was included in David Wells' Top 100 Psychedelic Records by Record Collector magazine. A compilation album was released in 2008, which included both their singles and previously unreleased acetate tracks. Their song "No Smokes" was used in an episode of the TV series Clangers.

Contents

McCulloch also made appearances on many albums, including John Entwistle's Whistle Rymes in 1972, as lead guitarist playing alongside Peter Frampton on "Apron Strings" and "I Feel Better". McCulloch also played guitar on Roger Daltrey's album One of the Boys which was released in 1977. McCulloch was a friend of the Who and a member of the band Thunderclap Newman, which was created and produced by his mentor Pete Townshend. At age 11, he was also a protégé of the Shadows' Hank Marvin. His brother is drummer Jack McCulloch.

John Entwistle English musician, singer-songwriter and record producer, bassist for The Who

John Alec Entwistle was an English bass guitarist, singer, songwriter, and film and music producer. In a music career that spanned more than 40 years, Entwistle was best known as the original bass guitarist for the English rock band The Who. He was the only member of the band to have formal musical training. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Who in 1990.

<i>Whistle Rymes</i> 1972 studio album by John Entwistle

Whistle Rymes is the second solo album by John Entwistle, bassist for British rock band The Who.

Peter Frampton musician from England

Peter Kenneth Frampton is an English-American rock musician, singer, songwriter, producer, and guitarist. He was previously associated with the bands Humble Pie and The Herd. After the end of his 'group' career, as a solo artist, Frampton released several albums including his international breakthrough album, the live release Frampton Comes Alive!. The album sold more than 8 million copies in the United States and spawned several hit singles. Since then he has released several major albums. He has also worked with Ringo Starr, David Bowie and both Matt Cameron and Mike McCready from Pearl Jam, among others.

Biography

Born in Dumbarton and raised in Clydebank and Cumbernauld, Scotland, McCulloch inspired by Django Reinhardt began to play the guitar at the age of 11 and at that age, he made his performance debut as the guitarist for the Jaygars, which was later known as One in a Million. One in a Million performed live in support of The Who during their tour of Scotland in 1967. That year, One in a Million released their "Fredereek Hernando"/"Double Sight" single on MGM. The single is now highly collectable, and an expensive purchase, now classed as a classic and obscure UK psychedelic release. Double Sight, a CD compilation of these and other songs written and recorded by the band, was released in 2009.

Dumbarton town and burgh in Scotland

Dumbarton is a town in West Dunbartonshire, Scotland, on the north bank of the River Clyde where the River Leven flows into the Clyde estuary. In 2006, it had an estimated population of 19,990.

Clydebank town in West Dunbartonshire, Scotland, UK

Clydebank is a town in West Dunbartonshire, Scotland. Situated on the north bank of the River Clyde, Clydebank borders Dumbarton and the villages of Old Kilpatrick, Bowling and Milton to the west, as well as the town of Bearsden in East Dunbartonshire, and the Yoker and Drumchapel areas of the adjacent City of Glasgow. Historically part of Dunbartonshire, Clydebank is part of the registration County of Dumbarton, the Dunbartonshire Crown Lieutenancy area, and the wider urban area of Greater Glasgow. Clydebank was founded as a police burgh on 18 November 1886.

Cumbernauld Town in North Lanarkshire, Scotland

Cumbernauld is a town in North Lanarkshire, Scotland. It is the ninth most-populous locality in Scotland, positioned in the centre of Scotland’s Central Belt. Geographically, Cumbernauld sits between east and west, being on the Scottish watershed between the Forth and the Clyde; however it is culturally far more weighted towards Glasgow and the New Town’s planners thought to fill 80% of its houses from Scotland’s largest city to reduce housing pressure there.

In April 1967, McCulloch played lead guitar for the Utterly Incredible, Too Long Ago to Remember, Sometimes Shouting at People during the 14-Hour Technicolour Dream event, which was held on the grounds of the Alexandra Palace in London. [2] That year, he played guitar for One in a Million, which performed live at The Upper Cut and other London venues.

Alexandra Palace entertainment venue in Alexandra Park, London

Alexandra Palace is a Grade II listed entertainment and sports venue in London, located between Muswell Hill and Wood Green in the London Borough of Haringey. It is built on the site of Tottenham Wood and the later Tottenham Wood Farm. Originally built by John Johnson and Alfred Meeson, it opened in 1873 but following a fire two weeks after its opening, was rebuilt by Johnson. Intended as "The People's Palace" and referred to as "Ally Pally", its purpose was to serve as a public centre of recreation, education and entertainment; North London's counterpart to the Crystal Palace in South London.

McCulloch first rose to fame in 1969 when he joined Pete Townshend's friends, Andy 'Thunderclap' Newman (piano) and songwriter John 'Speedy' Keen (vocals, drums), to form the band Thunderclap Newman. The band enjoyed a UK No. 1 hit with "Something in the Air" that year. Thunderclap Newman's album, Hollywood Dream , on which McCulloch's title instrumental then and his song "I See It All" later appeared, sold well but was not as successful as their hit single. From January 1971 until mid-April 1971, the band had toured England, Scotland, Holland, and Scandinavia before they disbanded a couple of weeks later.

Thunderclap Newman was a British rock band that Pete Townshend of the Who and Kit Lambert formed in 1969 in a bid to showcase the talents of John "Speedy" Keen, Jimmy McCulloch, and Andy "Thunderclap" Newman.

Something in the Air 1969 single by Thunderclap Newman

"Something in the Air" is a song recorded by Thunderclap Newman, written by Speedy Keen who also sang the song. It was a No. 1 single for three weeks in the UK Singles Chart in July 1969. The song has been used for films, television and adverts, and has been covered by several artists. The track was also included on Thunderclap Newman's only album release Hollywood Dream over a year later.

<i>Hollywood Dream</i> 1970 studio album by Thunderclap Newman

Hollywood Dream is the only studio album by British rock band Thunderclap Newman.

In October 1971, McCulloch played guitar in concert with John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers in England and Germany. On 31 October 1971 McCulloch's band Bent Frame made its performance debut in London. The band subsequently renamed itself the Jimmy McCulloch Band and toured England and Scotland in support of Leslie West's Mountain in February 1972. By then, McCulloch had done session work for Klaus Voorman, Harry Nilsson, Steve Ellis, John Entwistle, and others.

Harry Nilsson singer-songwriter, songwriter

Harry Edward Nilsson III, usually credited as Nilsson, was an American singer-songwriter who achieved the peak of his commercial success in the early 1970s. His work is characterized by pioneering vocal overdub experiments, returns to the Great American Songbook, and fusions of Caribbean sounds. A tenor with a 3½ octave range, Nilsson was one of the few major pop-rock recording artists of his era to achieve significant commercial success without ever performing major public concerts or undertaking regular tours. The craft of his songs and the defiant attitude he projected remains a touchstone for later generations of indie rock musicians.

In June 1972, McCulloch joined the blues rock band (and fellow Mayall-school alumni) Stone the Crows to replace guitarist Les Harvey, who had been electrocuted on stage. McCulloch helped Stone the Crows to complete their Ontinuous Performance album by playing on the tracks "Sunset Cowboy" and "Good Time Girl". Stone the Crows disbanded in June 1973.

In 1973, McCulloch played guitar on John Keen's album, Previous Convictions, had a brief stint in Blue and he played guitar on Brian Joseph Friel's debut album under the pseudonym 'The Phantom'.

Paul McCartney/Wings and after

Wings on tour, 1976 Paul McCartney with Jimmy McCulloch - Wings - 1976.jpg
Wings on tour, 1976

McCulloch joined Wings in August 1974. His debut track with them was "Junior's Farm". McCulloch composed the music score of the anti-drug song "Medicine Jar" on Wings' Venus and Mars album and the similar "Wino Junko" on the band's Wings at the Speed of Sound album. He also sang both. Colin Allen, former drummer for Stone the Crows, wrote the lyrics of both songs.

During his time with Wings, McCulloch formed White Line with his brother Jack on drums and Dave Clarke on bass, keyboards and vocals. They played several impromptu gigs and released a single, "Call My Name"/"Too Many Miles". A 13-track album, White Line – Complete, was released in 1994 on Clarke's Mouse Records. [3] Jimmy McCulloch and White Line had appeared on the British TV programme Supersonic on 27 November 1976. In addition, McCulloch recorded and produced two unreleased songs by The Khyber Trifles and had occasionally performed live (in London and their native Glasgow) with the band. Finally, as noted above, he played guitar on Roy Harper's album, Bullinamingvase, and Ricci Martin's album, Beached, in 1977.

In September 1977, McCulloch left Wings to join the reformed Small Faces during the latter band's nine date tour of England that month. He played guitar on the Small Faces' album, 78 in the Shade. In early 1978, McCulloch started a band called Wild Horses with Brian Robertson, Jimmy Bain and Kenney Jones, but both McCulloch and Jones left the band soon afterward. In 1979, McCulloch joined the Dukes. His last recorded song, "Heartbreaker", appeared on their only album, The Dukes.

A melodic, heavily blues-infused guitarist, McCulloch normally used a Gibson SG and a Gibson Les Paul, and he occasionally played bass when McCartney or Laine were playing piano or acoustic guitar.

Death

On 27 September 1979, McCulloch died of heart failure caused by a heroin overdose at his flat in Maida Vale, North West London, aged 26. He was discovered by his brother sitting in an easy chair with a burnt out joint in his hands. There were no drugs in the house, but pot, booze and heroin in his bloodstream. His brother thought it could be homicide because it looked like the place was cleaned. The rock community was shocked and saddened, however, among those who had worked with him, there was not a lot of surprise.

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References

  1. ""Jimmy McCulloch" by Miguel Terol". The Musicians' Olympus. 11 November 1997. Archived from the original on 18 December 2007. Retrieved 29 April 2008.
  2. Article: Bell: Performance puzzling...and a plastic past, by Ian McDonald, New Musical Express , issue dated 25 November 1972.
  3. "Jimmy McCulloch". Mouserecords.kastoffkinks.co.uk. Retrieved 2015-12-20.