Many English bands tried to blend folk music with progressive rock with various degrees of success. Most of these relied on old, traditional themes with elements of progressive rock being added to produce the desired effect. Fuchsia is quite different as there are almost no traditional influences at all. Take a whimsical, eerie, gentle folk theme, with acoustic guitar and soft voices, both male a female, throw in cello, harpsichord, and then run it through a fiery electric guitar along with a solid rhythm section and you have Fuchsia.
Recorded in 1964 immediately after leaving the Miles Davis Quintet, Sam Rivers' Fuchsia Swing Song is one of the more auspicious debuts the label released in the mid-'60s. Rivers was a seasoned session player (his excellent work on Larry Young's Into Somethin' is a case in point) and a former member of Herb Pomeroy's Big Band before he went out with Davis. By the time of his debut, Rivers had been deep under the influence of Coltrane and Coleman, but wasn't willing to give up the blues just yet. Hence the sound on Fuchsia Swing Song is one of an artist who is at once very self-assured, and in transition.
Fuchsia was a British progressive folk rock band formed in 1970. Named after Fuchsia Groan they released one album before disbanding. Their self titled album was featured as one of Mojo's Forgotten Classics. Their style was similar to their contemporaries Jade and Comus. The band was formed by Tony Durant (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, lead vocals), while a student at Exeter University, and comprised Michael Day (bass guitar), Michael Gregory (drums, percussion). The trio was soon augmented by Janet Rogers (violin, backing vocals), Madeleine Bland (cello, piano, harmonium, backing vocals) and Vanessa Hall-Smith (violin, backing vocals) so that Durant could explore his musical ideas.
Mute and Spoon are pleased to announce the release of VILLA WUNDERBAR, on 4 November 2013, a 2CD set, compiling the work of Can founder Irmin Schmidt’s solo and soundtrack work, including two unreleased Can remixes and a collection of soundtrack pieces personally compiled by long-term collaborator Wim Wenders. CD1 is a compilation of Irmin Schmidt’s extensive work as a solo artist over the past 30 years, whilst CD2 – selected and presented by the filmmaker Wim Wenders – is an insight into Schmidt’s vast work as a composer for film and television for which Wenders has written extensive sleeve notes. The two CD compilation includes tracks such as Villa Wunderbar, Kick On The Floods and Bohemian Step, alongside unreleased remixes by Schmidt of two Can tracks, Alice and Last Night Sleep.
With 63 tracks and a total running time of just under four hours, Dust On The Nettles examines the metamorphosis that British folk underwent during the late 1960s, when the influence of psychedelia and the counterculture saw the idiom being twisted into all kinds of new and exotic shapes, as the finger-in-the-ear folk clubs of yore were inexorably drawn into a brave new world of Arts Labs, free festivals and the nascent college/university circuit.