Barclay James Harvest Archive

Archive: FOBJH Newsletters

No. 5, April 1978

Line drawing of BJH

"Friends of Barclay James Harvest"
NEWSLETTER N0 5          April 1978



Dear Friend,

Happy Birthday! The club is now one year old. There were times when I thought we wouldn’t make it, but now we have come through the first year, I feel more confident about those still to come!

As I write, the membership stands at 475, and we bid welcome to those new members who have not before known the joy of this small heap of madness dropping through their letter-box I

For some of you, though, it is time to consider renewing your membership, and I will be sending reminders to you, setting out the benefits of becoming a second-year member. Ye godsl Sounds like I’m back at school!

Anyway, as this seems to be a really full issue, rather than waste any more time on my preamble, I will let you get on to the hard stuff!


F.O.B.J.H. Member prevents the red faces!

During the last few months, work has been forging ahead on the live album, to prepare it for its release in April (Polydor PODV 2001; Cassette: PODG 2001). The artwork is nearly complete, the test pressings have been approved, and a title has been decided upon.

I did mention the proposed title, "Caught Live", to a few of you who wrote in asking about the release date, but, until a member from Crewe, Chris Naylor, pointed out that the Moody Blues had released an album called "Caught Live, Plus Five", the band were blissfully unaware of any such similarity. As you can imagine, the critics would have had a field day, had the record gone out with a title so similar (albeit unintentionally so), to the Moody Blues!

Due to Chris’s intervention, we were able to change the title to "Live Tapes" in time, and wish to express our thanks to him for saving us much embarrassment.


New Material reviewed

On 13th March, the band met together at Strawberry Studios to listen to the new material written by each member and to review its suitability for the next album. A total of 25 songs were presented, and three (one of John’s, one of Woolly’s and one of Les’s), were chosen to be worked on straight away. The other tracks will be selected as work on the album progresses.


More News of Barclay’s Film

The one hour documentary film of Barclay James Harvest’s European Tour, mentioned in the last newsletter, looks like being much more popular than expected. Already, it has been bought by Belgian and Swiss television companies, where it will be released on 28th April and 2nd May respectively.

As well as this, it is now thought that it will be on the British cinema circuit, as a support for another film. It is hoped that by releasing it at approximately the same time as "Live Tapes", it will help to boost album sales, which, in turn, will help to spread the fame of the band. The film is certainly a must for all Barclay James Harvest fans, as it not only features some rare shots of the band playing live, but gives an insight into their fife-style, and their own view of themselves and their work. Obviously, I will not be able to give dates and places where the film can be seen, so it’s up to each of you to keep your eyes skinned and to find out for yourself when it will be in your area. I hope you enjoy it!


Silver Disc for "Gone to Earth"

Barclay James Harvest have been awarded a silver disc for the sale of over £150,000 worth of the album "Gone to Earth" in Britain. This will be the sixth such award they have received, the others being for "Live", "Once Again", "Time Honoured Ghosts", "Everyone Is Everybody Else" and "Octoberon".


New Single now out

Apart from "Hymn", the track from "Gone to Earth" which was most frequently played by radio stations in this country, was "Friend of Mule". As a result of this interest from DJs, it was decided that it should be released as a single, backed with the live version of "Suicide?". For this purpose, "Friend of Mule" was remixed to give the song a harder sound, and to bring the vocals forward. The single was released in early March on the Polydor label, No. 2059 002.


Barclay James Harvest guest on new Mandalaband Album

While you’re waiting for B.J.H.’s next studio album, why not fill in the time by listening to "The Eye of Wendor" by Mandalaband? Apart from being a very fine record, well worth listening to in its own right, you will be able to hear the work of all four members of the Barclays, as they all helped in its making!

"The Eye of Wendor" is the first of a three part series which will eventually unfold a magical tale overflowing with strange folk, beasts and happenings. The first part of the story, fully illustrated, comes with the album.

The record, which has taken two years to complete, is masterminded by Davie Rohl, who you will know as co-producer with Barclay James Harvest on "Gone to Earth".

Now, down to basics: the credit list reads like a hall of fame and our lads are not the only notables who worked on the project. Here are a few to be going on with though:—

WOOLLY — Mellotrons and synthesizers on all tracks.

JOHN — Guitar on "Witch of Waldow Wood"; solo guitar on "Eye of Wendor Theme".

MEL — Drums on "Eye of Wendor Theme", "Witch of Waldow Wood" and various percussion throughout.

LES — Bass on "Eye of Wendor Theme

JUSTIN HAYWARD —. Singing the part of Aenord.

MADDY PRIOR — Singing "Like the Wind".

PAUL YOUNG and IAN WILSON (Sad Café) — Singing about Silesandre.



All four members of the old 10 cc (Eric Stewart, Graham Gouldman, Lol Creme and Kevin Godley) also appear in various disguises.

The album will be released on 1st May on the Chrysalis label, No. CHR 1181.1 thoroughly recommend it!


Competition Results

What a fickle lot you are! The replies to the questionnaire which was sent out in October, showed me that 150 members would prefer a competition to a Prize Draw, and considering that the membership has increased since then, I was expecting at least this many entries. Instead, there were only 85, and I had to seriously consider withdrawing the first prize, as the entry fees might not cover the cost.

Anyway, chiding aside, I will now tell you the correct answers to the quiz, and then let you know the names of the lucky winners.

1. One Barclay James Harvest album was available in SQ. Ouadrophonic. Name this album.


2. In his song "Sea of Tranquility", Woolly quotes from two of his previous compositions. Which songs do the quotations come from?


3. One of Barclay James Harvest’s albums has been available in two quite different sleeves. Which is it?


4. Excluding themselves, how many producers or co-producers have the band used over the years? FIVE. (Norman Smith, Wally Allen, Roger Bain, Elliot Mazer and Davie Rohl!)

The Winners

Before I name names, I thought I’d better let you know how the competition was judged, so that you can be sure that it was entirely fair. Firstly, I sorted the entries into "correct" and "incorrect", and then presented the band with a list of title suggestions from all those who gave the right answers, so that they could decide the final winners. No details which may have influenced their decision (such as names, addresses etc.) were given to them. Where a member sent in more than one suggestion, the lads were instructed to chose only one title from the group, so that no unfair advantage was given.

First Prize of an expenses paid visit to the band, while they are recording at Strawberry Studios in Stockport, went to Roland Mansell (Member No. 304 from Camberley, Surrey), whose suggestion for a title for the next studio album was "True Sanctuary". — I will be arranging the details of this visit with Roland and the band.

The title "Timeless Flight" won Malcolm Kerr (Member No. 93 from Bloxham, Oxfordshire) the Second Prize of an autographed copy of the album "Live Tapes" as soon as it is released.

The Third Prize of a pair of autographed drumsticks were won by Colin Dixon (Member No. 33 from Shinfield, Reading). His suggestion was "Majestic Journey".

Fourth Prize, the 1977 World Tour "Artiste" sweat shirt went to Andy Renwick (Member No. 47 from Whiteinch, Glasgow), whose suggestion was "Certificate".

Fifth and Sixth Prizes of "Surprise Packages" were won by Rob Hancock (Member No. 142 from Runcorn, Cheshire) with the title "Rural Mystique" and Alison Scott (Member No. 363 from Garelochhead, Dumbartonshire) with the title "For All Eternity".


For those of you who are curious about the contents of the mysterious "Surprise Packages", I will explain:— Each consists of one "Gone to Earth" presentation pack, one "Gone to Earth" poster, one "Time Honoured Ghosts" poster, one 12" diameter "Gone to Earth" window sticker, one winged lady sticker, one autographed photo-card, and a couple of "Time Honoured Ghosts"-time biographies. All this is presented in a 12" x 12" "Time Honoured Ghosts" box, ideal for cosseting any Barclay James Harvest record collection.

N.B. These are "one-off" items, many of which were only available as publicity material, which was never on sale, so please don’t write and ask for any of the things mentioned, as I cannot get them for you.

Two extra prizes of copies of the next single to be released will be sent to Chive Gawthorpe and Linda Brook, whose entries were "highly recommended".


The Fifth Man

Apart from the band themselves, the most familiar face at any Barclay James Harvest concert must be Ian Southerington’s. Ian has been the band’s "soundman" (his own description!) for just over seven years now and he estimates that he has engineered at five hundred gigs. Of course, things have changed rather a hot since he started and the simplistic equipment that he used when he mixed his first gig is a far cry from the complicated mixing desk he now manipulates so expertly.

Ian’s debut as a sound engineer came while he was still working as a booker for the Manchester agency, who then handled Barclay James Harvest. Disaster struck when the band’s original engineer quit during an afternoon performance in "The Way In" at Kendals in Manchester. Ian took his place for the rest of the set, and also filled in for him that evening at Didsbury College of Education. One week later he was mixing a concert with the orchestra at Maidstone! He learned as he went along — there was nothing else he could do in such a situation!

Ian has not always been connected with the music business, and at one time was a fully qualified chef, whose positions included cooking for an Austrian property magnate on his yacht during a Mediterranean cruise, and working at the Piccadilly Hotel, Manchester. Well, I suppose it’s all mixing of one sort or another!

When the Barclays are not using their equipment, Ian is in charge of hiring it out to other acts, which means that he sees quite a variety of performances. The band’s P.A. has been used by Caravan, The Four Tops, Max Boyce, Gene Pitney, Little and Large, Harry Chapin, The Three Degrees and Sad Café, to name a few; so if you’ve ever wondered what happens to all that gear when the band aren’t rehearsing or touring, you now have the answer.

Earlier, I mentioned that the equipment has changed considerably over the years, so it may be of interest to you to know that the original P.A. was a 400 Watt Wem system.

Whilst on the subject of the band’s equipment. I may as well take this opportunity to update the information given in the equipment list.

Additions: —

6 1 x 15" bass bins
4 H4000 Gauss radial horns
2 Gauss long-throw horns
3 Amcron DC300A amps
3-way crossover built into mixer
4 Shure 58 mikes


Barclay James’ Success in European Polls

Ana-Paula B. Santos, a member from Portugal sent me the following information about a "pop poll" in her country:— In 1977, "Octoberon" was voted 14th best album, and B.J.H. were voted 5th best band. In 1976, "Time Honoured Ghosts" came 19th.

Similar, but even more encouraging news reached me from Belgium via Jean-Paul Borremaus. The results of the 1977 "rock poll" were as follows:— Best group on record — BJ.H. 7th (1st — Genesis)

Best group live — B.J.H. 13th (1st Genesis)

"Eurorock Classific" — B.J.H. 1st

Concert of the Year — B.J.H. 9th (Ancienne Belgique, Brussels) (Yes, were 1st with their performance in Antwerp.)

Album of the Year — B.J.H. 10th ("Gone to Earth") (1st place went to "Never Mind The Bollocks).

Sleeve of the Year — B.J.H. 2nd ("Gone to Earth") (1st was David Bowie with "Heroes")

Thanks are due to both Jean-Paul and Ana-Paula for sending this information.


Polydor Singles

I will be the first to admit that the original "Singles List" is rather confusing. So many different versions of the band’s singles are released in other countries (some that even the band themselves don’t know about), that it is very difficult to keep track of them. With the help of Polydor International, I have been able to come up with the following revised list of Polydor releases, which I know will be of interest to all members, but especially to those living outside the U.K.

Catalogue No. TitleCountry of 1st release
2058 474 Poor Boy Blues/Crazy City U.K.
2058 572 Child of the Universe/Crazy City U.S.A.
2058 656 Titles/In My Life Netherlands
2058 660 Titles/Song For You U.K.
2058 662 Titles/Sweet Jesus Germany
2058 703 Sweet Jesus/Hymn For The Children Netherlands
2058 869 Rock ‘n’ Roll Star/Medicine Man U.K.
2058 871 Rock ‘n’ Roll Star/Crazy City Germany
2229 198 EP: Rock ‘n’ Roll Star/Medicine Man, parts 1 & 2 U.K.
2058 904 Hymn/Our Kid’s Kid U.K.
2058 970 Hymn/Love Is Like A Violin Italy
Crossword grid

Crossword sent in by Adrian Smith

1. Super Group (7,5,7)
8. The next album, maybe? (4)
9. What you must be of Barclay James Harvest to do this
crossword (7)
11. Whoever’s over you (1’l)
13. On or off the boards, these boards are 22 downs. (3)
15. See 23 down.
16. Bank holiday, but only for this year. (3, 31
18. Song for the sun. (2)
19. They would sound bad on tour without this. (1, 1)
21. Taking some time here. (2)
23. A song has this meaning. (2)
24. See 49 across.
26. Flying album sales in this month. (9)
29.. . . Sunshine. (2)
31. Beatle inspiration? (6)
33. See 43 down.
34 & 44 down. Do origami ducks have these? (5,5)
36. What "she" did.. (4)
37. Religious rock song (for the children?) (4)
38. Believe . . . me. (2)
39. Disappeared in the "Earth". (4, 2)
42. Linda, the Street’s inspiration. (8)
43. Medicine person. (3?
45. Is there, in mine, beyond the grave? (4)
46. Boy’s, Men’s Wages. (4)
48. Is it mocking you? (4)
49 & 24 across. Mr. Bassman. (3, 7)
51. More quick yarns. (5,5,7)


1. This poor one is blue. (3)
2 & 25. Son of an astronaut? (5, 2, 3,8)
3. Fun loving ‘B’ side from the pack of cards. (5)
4. All day. (5,7,7)
5. One side of "Octoberon". (3)
6. "Rock ‘n Roll Star" was one. (1,1)
7. These spirits are graced with watches. (4, 8)
10. Barclays first record label. (1, 1, 1)
11. Where it is, to my life. (2)
12. Touring would be difficult without one. (3)
14. B.J.H. started in one, of the farm variety. (4)
16. Is common with water girl. (4)
17. The "best of" may be this, of their "greatest hits". (3)
20. John uses it, but not for chopping wood. (3)
22. An artist in sheep’s clothing? (6)
23. & 15 across. For who? (2,3)
25. See 2 down.
27. Part of the early 8.J.H. (9)
28. They go on it with a new album. (4)
30. This city is mad. (5)
32. The light that solos deserve. (4)
35. Could be known as F.O.B.J.H. (4)
40. John’s six-string fire-guard. (6)
41. This one is somebody else. (5)
43. & 33 across. Is this man’s talent only skin deep? (3,9)
44. See 34 across.
47. 100,000 smiles where? (3)


Will the member who wrote to me concerning a friend’s uncle who had reputedly discovered a stock of "Early Morning Onwards" albums or sleeves, please write again, as I appear to have mislaid his letter! I remember the contents, but not the name of the sender! Thanks.


Song Lyrics No. 2



Do not ask me how I know,


But this dark sky will soon be blue;


Don’t ask, no, don’t ask:


Just watch:—


The grey mists of winter fall like so many drops of dew,


Feel the ice melt to warm tears in my eyes


Under the light of a tin sun.


Do not ask me how I know


The effect of light on unseeing eyes.


How could I know?


How could I know?

Sung: Dark now my sky,
  The sea of peace has left my shore.
  No birds sing;
  The silent spring will overflow.
  Oh you’ll never know
  I love you so,
  You’ll always be a part of me.

  Dark now my eyes,
  The sea of peace has met the sky.
  No birds sing
  And, like the spring, life whispers by.
  Oh you’ll never know
  I love you so,
  You’ll always be a part of me.
  Dark now my sky,
  The winds of time have swept my shore.
  No birds fly;
  The trees that fall will rise no more.
  Oh you’ll never know
  I love you so,
  You’ll always be a part of me.

Poster Offer

I have had a great number of enquiries about posters, and until now, have been unsuccessful in my attempts to obtain any for sale through the club. However, now the news is much better, as Polydor have promised to reserve 100 copies of the poster advertising "Live Tapes" for me. These posters would normally only be given to record shops etc. for advertising purposes, so this is a bit of a "scoop" arid I’m pleased to be able to offer them to you. At this stage, I do not have the posters, but they should be arriving shortly, and my suggestion to save time and effort on both sides, is that you put in your order as normal, and that I will send the required number to you as soon as they arrive. The posters will be dispatched folded, but any creases caused by posting should fall out, if you use a warm iron on the back.

For further details, see Order Form.


Old Newsletters

Quite a few newer members have expressed an interest in seeing the earlier newsletters, and I am now happy to inform you that I have had these reprinted and they are now available. A small charge will be made, to cover the cost of printing and postage. For details, see Order Form.


Well, that’s it! I hope I leave you considerably more enlightened! Remember, as usual, I am here to help, so if you have any questions arising from the contents of this newsletter, or maybe just something you’ve always wanted to know about the band, then do write and ask, enclosing a stamped, self-addressed envelope, or an International Reply Coupon with your letter.


Best Wishes,


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