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Nazz - 13th & Pine (1998)



Amerykańska grupa założona w Filadelfii w 1967 r. W jej skład weszli: Todd Rundgren (ur. 22.06.1948 r. w Upper Darby w stanie Pensylvania, USA, gitara, śpiew), Carson Van Osten (bas, śpiew), eks-członkowie barowego zespołu Woody's Truck Stop oraz Robert "Stewkey" Antoni (śpiew, instrumenty klawiszowe) i Thom Mooney (perkusja).

Zadebiutowali jako grupa towarzysząca The Doors w koncertowej trasie, jednak celowa taktyka menedżera Nazz, Johna Kurlanda, kreującego wokół zespołu aurę ekskluzywności, przyniosła w sumie więcej szkody niż pożytku. Lukratywny kontrakt nagraniowy z firmą Screen Gems przyniósł album Nazz, syntezę brytyjskiego i amerykańskiego popu, nawiązującą stylistycznie do dokonań The Who, Jimiego Hendrixa, Buffalo Springfield i Small Faces.

Przesadna fascynacja Anglią, a zwłaszcza młodzieżowym stylem "mods" z połowy lat sześćdziesiątych, nie przysporzyła Nazz fanów w dobie narastającej fali acid-rocka, niesnaski zaś w zespole były pierwszym symptomem późniejszego rozpadu. Płyta Nazz Nazz wzbogaciła przeniesione z poprzedniego longplaya elementy o bardziej autorskie pomysły muzyków.

W 1970 r. Rundgren wybrał karierę solisty, co doprowadziło do rozwiązania zespołu. Album Nazz III zmontowano z tematów z poprzednich sesji nagraniowych nie wykorzystanych na wcześniejszym longplayu. Stewkey i Mooney wraz z Rickiem Neil senem i Tomem Peterssonem (później w Cheap Trick) występowali w zespole o stale zmieniających się nazwach, jednak spośród członków Nazz prawdziwą popularność zdobył tylko Rundgren. Pomimo towarzyszącej im komercyjnej otoczki nagrania Nazz uznano z czasem za prekursorskie dla całego pokolenia amerykańskich zespołów lansujących brzmienie brytyjskie, w rodzaju The Raspberries, Stories i Sparks. (uktop40.republika.pl)

Todd Rundgren - vocals, guitars
Robert Antoni - vocals, keyboards
Carson Van Osten - bass
Thom Mooney - drums, percussion



Nazz was a psychedelic and garage rock band from the 1960s. Though sometimes mistakenly called "The Nazz", the group's official name on all records and press materials is simply "Nazz", without the definite article. The band was formed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1967.

Nazz took their name from the song "The Nazz are Blue" by The Yardbirds from their album Roger the Engineer. That song, in turn, took its title from Lord Buckley's comic monologue, "The Nazz," which is a re-telling of the tale of Jesus of Nazareth. It is also often erroneously said that the band took its name from a line in the David Bowie song "Ziggy Stardust" which goes: "He was the nazz, with god-given ass..." but that song appeared in 1972, long after the first Nazz album, which appeared in 1968.

Nazz was marketed by their manager, Michael Friedman, as a teenybopper band along the lines of The Beatles or The Monkees. The group signed with SGC Records, releasing Nazz in October 1968. The album was not commercially successful and neither was the first single, "Open My Eyes" of which the flip side was "Hello It's Me" (#41 Canada) except in Boston. "Open My Eyes" was the side SGC Records was promoting, but accidentally the flip side was played at the home of Boston"s WMEX Music Director and DJ Ron Robin. He was impressed and added it to the station's playlist. Reaction was strong and "Hello It's Me" became a number one hit at WMEX in 1968. Several weeks later it was on the playlist of Boston's other Top 40 radio station WRKO and eventually at other stations across the country. SGC Records presented Ron Robin with a Silver Record which reads "WMEX, Where it All Began. Thanks!".

After a brief trip to England in October 1968, cut short by visa problems, Nazz recorded their second album, originally entitled Fungo Bat in Los Angeles in late 1968 and early 1969. (A fungo bat is a special baseball bat used only for practice; it is not intended to hit pitched balls.) The album was originally intended as a double album but was shortened to a single LP before being released as Nazz Nazz in May 1969. Much of what was cut was experimental, piano-based Rundgren material, heavily influenced by singer/songwriter Laura Nyro - a far cry from the group's original Beatles-Who-Yardbirds derived sound. Disillusioned, Rundgren departed the group, along with Van Osten, soon after.

With Stewkey in charge, the band continued to tour during 1969 and 1970. Without the full band's knowledge or consent an unsuccessful Nazz III was released in 1970, in which Rundgren's vocals in the old tapes were replaced by his own. Mooney soon left, eventually playing with a variety of groups including the Curtis Brothers, Tattoo, Fuse and Paris. Stewkey played with Fuse alongside Mooney for a brief period, but then left. Rundgren went on to have a successful solo career. Rundgren's biggest solo hit was an up-tempo version of Nazz' first unsuccessful single, "Hello It's Me". Stewkey has been performing as Nazz again as of 2006 with an all new line-up. (wikipedia)

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The album "13th & Pine" is a collection of odds and sods; rarities and obscurities. It's designed for the obsessive Todd Rundgren collectors out there, and, in that sense, it satisfies, since there is a lot of weird, unheard music here. Still, this is a collection primarily of small pleasures, lacking revelations or forgotten gems--it's just simply another way to dig deeper. That's not a bad thing, but it does mean that it's not essential for those outside of the obsessives.

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4 komentarze:

Ankh pisze...

link

Anonimowy pisze...

'Open my eyes' that's the track to remember.Check the youtube for video.Best psychedelic song ever.I bet I'll bet a will be a big seller even today.Maciej

Weekend Hippie pisze...

A much underated band. Many thanks!

kobilica pisze...

Thank you for this wonderful rare music.Great band...

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