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Earthen Vessel interview


I was searching for band members for a very long time. Finally we got in touch with members of Earthen Vessel. Here's their story for the very first time.

Childhood and early influences?

Ed Englerth: One of my earliest influences was with my baby sitter Susan House, who told me rock music was cool. But when she gave me a copy of “White Sport Coat and a Pink Carnation” by Pat Boone, I was disappointed. My mom had an album by an early female jazz singer, but I don’t remember the singer’s name, that may have been because my mom wouldn’t let me listen to it, and later on in life swears it never existed. When my cousin Gene Englerth was in high school he was in a band called the Badmons. Gene played keyboards and sax and I thought he was cool so I wanted to get into a band too. 

I liked the bass players Tim Borgert (Vanilla Fudge) and Lee Dorman (Iron Butterfly). I liked the Dave Clark Five for catchy hooks, before I even knew what hooks were. I like the Beatles and the way they continued to change their sound and songwriting. The music of The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Jefferson Airplane, Hendrix, Chicago Transit Authority (later shorted to Chicago), Blood Sweat & Tears, Johnny Winter, Janis Joplin, and Miles Davis all called my name. Davis’ ‘Bitches Brew’ album in particular was very influential. I tried to absorb a lot of stuff from all these styles.

I ordered my first bass from what was then known as Allied Radio (Shack). It came with a little amp that if you talked very loud, you’d drowned it out. This was during the summer of 1968, between 8th and 9th grade. At first I didn’t know how a ‘payment plan’ would work, because I signed up by filling out a form in a sales catalog and sending it in the mail. When I told my folks that I’d joined a band and was going to play bass, they said ‘that’s nice’ and wanted to know where I was getting the bass, I told them I’d ordered it through the mail. They didn’t believe me until it showed up later that summer. My dad helped me get an amp that was capable of being used and a couple of 15” speakers, I still don’t know from where. Seems like it was a old Bogen amplifier, and I think the speakers were Jensen. My dad helped build speaker cabinets and a box for the amp. He was into electronics and built me a fuzz tone that I had to turn on and off with a switch on the amp. He came up with the design and there wasn’t another one like it.

The first member lineup that I remember was John Bowles on guitar, Rick Taylor on vocals, Larry Mix on guitar, and me on bass. I don’t know if drummer John Burkey played with us then, but I know before too long the band became a trio of John Bowels on guitar and vocals, John Burkey on drums, and me on bass. This lasted about 3 years. My senior year I worked with a band consisting of Martin Vipond on keys, Jeff Bennet on drums, Jim Benchschooter on guitar, Deb Biang  on vocals and me on bass. By this time my rig was all the way up to a semi-acoustic Conrad bass and a used Sears Silvertone bass amp.

After graduation, Martin and I heard Earthen Vessel was looking for a keyboard player and a bass player. Although offered the gig, Martin decided to be a life guard at Mackinaw Island. I joined Earthen Vessel.

I got a used Fender Mustang bass for graduation and bought a West speaker cabinet with two 15” speakers and a black Custom power head.

David Caudill: One of my uncles was a country musician, playing in bars in Detroit, and that made me want a guitar by age 10-12... I have a brother four years older than I am, and he played guitar and taught me; by the time I was 16, I was playing a lot of country and folk music, and I joined a Christian folk group affiliated with the local chapter of Youth for Christ - so in my last two years of high school, I was performing. Compared to today, there was not a lot of Christian music in popular/rock genres; it was this soft folky sound.

Greg Miller: Like most of my era, the Beatles were a starting point, soon followed by the likes of Santana, Led Zeppelin, Cream/Clapton, and Hendrix.

Bob Sperlazoo: In my early years, I listened to lots of pop radio. Most of my influences were Peter, Paul & Mary and Simon & Garfunkel and the like - I started out as a folkie and moved into rock later.

Linda Moore Johnson: Earlier influences, church music, classical mostly.

Were you in any bands before forming Earthen Vessel? 

Ed Englerth: Only basement recordings. No releases

David Caudill: The group I was with in high school did not record, but when I was in college, the group had re-organized and I did play bass on its Christian folk music album.

Greg Miller: Just high school bands, played mainly school dances. No releases.

Bob Sperlazoo: Yeah, a number of "folk groups" before I started soloing (later with some backup musicians). No releases.

What was the scene back then in Lansing, Michigan? 

Ed Englerth: Even though it was only an hour from where I lived it seemed like everywhere else to me... either I assumed it was like what I was hearing while seeming a million miles away. We had a couple of places that had bands come in and play. The Note at Gun Lake seemed more teeny bop to me, but The Cobra in Hastings had a lot of cool bands come through: Alice Cooper, The Frost, SRC, Rationals, The Amboy Dukes, Universe, Wizkids, and many more.

David Caudill: I got involved with Campus Crusade for Christ early in college at Michigan State, and played at some of its evangelical events. After my first two-tri-mesters at MSU, I went to London in March of 1970 to work with Campus Crusdae as an intern; that summer I worked at Campus Crusade's headquarters in San Bernardino, California (I drove a school bus for kids at a summer camp). That summer of 1970, there were already Jesus festivals and Jesus music in southern California - it was not really hard rock, but at least there were Christian rock groups, and I thought that was a great gig.

Greg Miller: If memory serves, it was mostly folky stuff. Christian rock was in its infancy and most church people treated it like leprosy. But Larry Norman, Love Song, and a few others began to change that. I don’t remember too many venues outside of certain churches that would host musical events, usually Southern Gospel.

Bob Sperlazzo: Sorry, I came from Chicago.

Linda Moore Johnson: I moved into Lansing so was not from there. Can't comment on the scene except for the coffeehouse. Always pretty well packed on weekends to hear EV.

The original name of the band was The Rare Ones, but you decided to change it to Earthen Vessel. 

Ed Englerth: The band was already together when I met them. My friend and I talked to them after one of their gigs one night about how we dug what they were doing and that we were interested in doing something like that. We got invited to audition for the band.

David Caudill: When I returned to MSU in the fall of 1970, I played some solo gigs at Church youth group events, and one of them was at a Nazarene church. After that performance, the church's youth/music director, Leon Morton, told me he was forming a Christian rock group, and he had everything except a lead guitarist. I was game, and I met and played with John Sprunger on bass, Ken Fitch on keyboard, Eddie on drums, and Sharon Keel as the lead vocalist... it worked well, and we called ourselves The Rare Ones until all of us in the band said that the name was corny... I don't know who thought of Earthen Vessel, but that was obviously a biblical reference to humanity capable of holding God inside. We had our own coffee shop in a basement, the Catacombs, and we played there almost nightly until we went on the road.

Linda Moore Johnson: Don't know about the name change. I came up there to visit Sharon. We were roomies in college.


You had your own bus and amplifiers provided by West Laboratories. Would you like to share some stories that happened on the road?

Ed Englerth: I remember the speaker cabinets were really heavy but it held up to the rigors of being hauled all over the place.

We would normally spread all the amps out, but there was one gig that had a really small stage and I got the idea to just stack them as tall as they’d go. It was funny because even though I’m 6’ 5” I almost had to jump to change any of the settings on the power heads that sat on the very top of the all the amplifiers.

I remember one of the first gigs I played with them they had the members of the band on separate risers or stages. It looked cool, but Dave on guitar was so far away and I could hardly hear him. Back then the only sound that went through the PA was vocals. Our bass and guitar amps had to supply all the sound for the concert and thus were really loud. Thankfully the drummer was close enough and loud enough to hear so we all just tried to stay with Eddie on drums and at least from those out front that could hear all of the instruments it came off really well.

I remember Earthen Vessel going to a two - day music festival in Indiana. Half were declaring the good new of Jesus and the other half of were the main stream rockers of the day. I remember one guy was crying cause he’d just dropped his bag of a ‘powdered substance’ all over the ground and the wind was blowing it away and he was too fried to know what to do. I’m not sure who the promoters were, but it seemed that they had invited the ‘Christian’ bands trying to capitalize on what they perceived as the “Jesus Movement.”

Another organization brought us in and put the musical amps and drums on a trailer and pulled up to various state park locations and other public venues and parks. Then we’d get up on the trailer and start playing which would cause the crowds to gather.

I also remember playing events and having the audience screaming and crying as if the Beatles had just shown up. We also played at the Ichthus Festival in Wilmore, Kentucky. We closed one night and Andre Crouch closed the other night. 

David Caudill: The bus was old, but decked out with a back bedroom for Sharon, 4 bunks in the middle for the guys, and a living area up front. The model was common for gospel quartets, and Leon Morton had been in a gospel quartet. John Sprunger worked at West Labs, and talked West into providing our equipment for the publicity ("Powered by West" on all our posters). We toured a lot in the Midwest, giving anti-drug assemblies in high school during the day, and then getting a venue that night - we would announce our evening concert at the assembly. The main thing I remember from the road is that we packed up every night, ate breakfast at 1-2 am, slept all night in the bus, arrived in another town, set up our equipment, etc., on and on, every day, and I felt like I had no life - no social life, no Friday night dates, just playing so that other people had a good time. It really is quite a sacrifice of life and time that you can never get back. I understand all the rock stars who say that the road is very life-negating, boring, etc.

Greg Miller: Before my time. By the time I joined, we were still using some West gear – PA and guitar and bass cabinets. There was a West guitar head, but I used my own Fender Twin instead – it was louder…

Linda Moore Johnson: All I know is that the bus barely got them where they were going most times, the bunkbeds were framed 2x4s unfinished, and reminds me of the buses in M.A.S.H.


How do you remember some of the rehearsals?

Ed Englerth: I wasn’t on the album, so I unfortunately don’t have any memory of those sessions. I do remember hearing that the studio wasn’t used to having loud bands record there. They set up like all the other recording sessions that they were used to doing, ignoring warnings from the Earthen Vessel people. When the band hit the first note, headphone came flying off the engineers’ head because it was so loud.  

John Sprunger.

David Caudill: We practiced every day in the Catacombs, and I'll just say that it was very easy to play with such great musicians... they were all studio - level musicians, which means everybody is in tune and in rhythm all the time, with little effort. Nowadays I play banjo on Wednesday mornings at a coffee shop where bluegrass musicians hang out, and I'm always amazed that 6-7 musicians who do not know each other can just say, "Eight more miles to Louisville, key of G", and then everyone is perfect and it sounds like a highly organized performance. That's what it was like with Earthen Vessel... we could write a song in an afternoon, and perform new material that night.

Bob Sperlazzo: After several personnel changes, we finally got the band ready to play.

Linda Moore Johnson: It was recorded in TN I believe. Was not privy to those trips.

By summer of 1971 you had enough material to do an album. Where did you record it and how many copies were made?

Ed Englerth: It was recorded in Nashville, TN. I don’t know how many pressing were made.

David Caudill: We went to Nashville, can't recall the studio, and "Colonel" Dave Mathis produced the record in 11-12 hours... he was critical of my inability to keep my guitar tuned; some songs took an hour, some less, some more, and it was a great experience.


Who did the cover artwork?

Ed Englerth: The location where the band was standing was at a place near Grand Ledge, MI. called the Ledges.

David Caudill: I don't recall; we just went out to some scenic spot outside Lansing where we could find a large rock to stand in front of.


Concert memories...

Ed Englerth: I remember playing on a float in a parade and the people that had brought us in had some of their kids on the float to hold amplifiers and cymbals from falling over and/or off the float. They’d had given the kids cotton for their ears to protect their hearing. As soon as we got underway, most of them took the cotton out. 

David Caudill: I recall an outdoor rock concert in Indiana, sunny day, great stage, and it felt like Woodstock... I also recall a Christian rock festival in Kentucky, where we were going to play that evening, and we were obviously the hardest rock band there... so in the afternoon we did a sound check, while people were just milling around waiting for the show, and we just blasted the break from "Life Everlasting", 30 seconds, total sound wall, and got everyone's attention. We tried to have the typical wall of amps, very loud, lots of distortion, precursor to Christian heavy metal.

Greg Miller: We played a lot of school assemblies. And yeah, we were nothing if not loud and powerful. But the kids would flock around us. It took some time to get used to signing autographs and being treated like rock stars. No doubt the highlight was being one of the featured bands and Ichthus 1973, at the time the largest Christian music festival on the planet. To this day I count it as one of the greatest experiences of my life. We played to over 5,000 people one night, and large crowds throughout the weekend. The weather was heavenly, the Spirit was moving, and it was a pure honor and pleasure to be there. Christian rock was really starting to happen and it was awesome to be part of that movement.


Bob Sperlazzo: One of our best was at Ichthus in Louisville, KY; we also did some other festivals and high school assemblies/concerts.

Linda Moore Johnson: Yes, they were loud. They had HUGE speakers. One fellow, I think his name was Larry, was kind of their roadie. He could pick up one of those speakers by himself and carry it to wherever. The first time I saw that I was next to Dave. We both had our jaws drop and just looked at each other. Quite a feat of strength. 

What was the songwriting process in the band?

Ed Englerth: I didn’t write any of the songs, but I liked playing them. Oh wait, I did write an instrumental or two. Forgot the names I think one might have called "People".


David Caudill: "Life Everlasting". Great song, with Sharon sounding like Jefferson Airplane... the opening finger-picked guitar had a special set-up with only the high/thin strings, so the top three strings were the same as the bottom three strings.

"You Can". My guitar work sounds unsophisticated by today's standards, but I heard an early Black Sabbath jam the other day and I realized that the style was very much what was around in 1970.

"Let Jesus Bring You Back", "I've Been Walkin", "Coming Home" all of our songs were collaborations, with 5 people sitting around and adding things, including lyrics and chord details and so forth.

"Get High". This is a cover; we did not write this, but it's a great song.

Greg Miller: I don’t remember the actual songs all that well. Some were originals, some had been done by the earlier version of the band, and some were songs that were written by others that we made our own. Sorry, none of those song titles ring a bell. All I can remember now is "Plastic Jesus", "Hole In My Soul", and a Christian-ized version of "Gimme Shelter".

Bob Sperlazzo:
I Used to Sing the Blues
Plastic Jesus
I've Got a Hole in My Soul
Why Don't You Look into Jesus?
etc. (don't remember)


...And festivals?

Ed Englerth: Ichthus was the only name I remember. All the original members played Ichthus in 1972 and the reformed version played Ichthus in 1973. With Earthen Vessel as the last band on Friday night, then playing again on Saturday during the day, and Andre Crouch was the last band on Saturday night.

Greg Miller: Ichthus ’73 is the only one I remember now.


The Ichthus symbol.

Bob Sperlazzo: Ichthus; another one with Andre Crouch; etc.

How did you get involved with Jesus Movement?

Ed Englerth: The Jesus Movement as I saw it described in the press was more of a West Coast (read California) thing. When Vessel went to Europe it was in association with the Hollywood Free paper. It was mostly just people that were trying to find the answers to all those questions like, who am I, why am I here, is there a God… etc. The person of Jesus Christ was making an impact on people’s lives and supplying the best explanation for those questions. Many people in the traditional churches were perceived as the establishment. Some of the people in the Jesus movement referred to the traditional church people as ‘the chosen frozen’. The traditional church had tried to define God in a very narrow way, segmenting life into parts like, their work life, their family life, their recreational life etc. and yet when we read the Bible we found God was interested in all areas of our lives, we are whole people and He is interested in us as a whole person. Francis Schaeffer’s first few books were a big influence on my early growth in understanding about Jesus. And I remember seeing Dave Caudill reading Schaeffer and then turned me on to him.

Bob Sperlazzo: I was there from the beginning (even before) and watched it grow. It was an exciting time; many of the salvations brought us leaders even to today.

What happened next after the release of your album?

Ed Englerth: The record did not sell as well as the band had hoped. The gruelling wear of the road and the album’s failure, as well as the various college and career plans, coaxed the band members into disbanding by the summer of 1972. Earthen Vessel was reformed by Leon Morton. Ed Englerth – bass and vocals, Dan Vigus – drums and vibes, Greg Miller – guitar, Bob Sperlazzo  guitar and lead vocal. I (Ed) played in both the original Earthen Vessel (after John Sprunger left) travelling with that version of the band to several gigs. After the second group was together, they stayed together for about one year doing gigs around the Midwest and disbanded as the money evaporated and members of the band followed other interests.

David Caudill: We just kept touring, and the pinnacle was the 8-day tour of Sweden... the first night in the park in Stockholm we were so loud that the police shut us down... we finished the tour doing unplugged folk versions of our songs! Not long after that, I wanted to go back to school, and I thought (really!) that Christian rock would soon fade away - the long hair and loud amps and jumping around on stage was to me a fad... So I was really wrong, and I realize that every time I listen to contemporary Christian rock...

Greg Miller: Ed, you would know this better than I would. That LP was fairly old news by the time I joined. And the band only survived about a year after I joined.

What occupied your life later on and are you still in contact with other members?

Ed Englerth: I’ve tried to stay in touch with the people in Vessel, but other than Greg Miller who is still in this part of the universe, it hasn’t been until the Internet and Facebook etc..  that I’ve been able to get a hold of them.

I worked in another early ‘Jesus Music’ band called Aslan, which was based out of Spring Arbor, MI. Also while in Spring Arbor I worked with a jazz fusion band called ‘East Wind Exit’ (aka ‘Projective Razz’) which started as an independent study at the college and then stayed together for awhile, after class ended. A couple years later I worked in a house band at a bar in Alpena, MI with Donny Hartman (The Frost). When Donny left to work with Robin Robbins (Bob Seger’s Silver Bullet Band) on Robins new band. I moved to Hastings, MI and have been here ever since. I worked with various bands and spent some time with SC Studios, in Lansing, which is where I recorded some of my Linear Action Band material as well as became friends with Armada. I produced a project for Armada, and when their bass player moved on, I joined Armada, recording ‘Black and White’ and other material that has been released in various formats. I also did some early work with Xalt, and wrote the song, "God in a Box" which was on their first project. I also wrote a song called "Your Love Matters" that Herbie Russ recorded on one of his projects.

I started doing about as many solo shows as I was doing with Linear Action Band so I lay that band name aside and for the last several years have gone by The Ed Englerth Band when playing ‘band’ gigs.

David Caudill: I stay in touch with John and Ken, but not Eddie or Sharon... I finished college, went into the air force to fly in the back seat of F-4 fighter jets, then went to grad school in Amsterdam for my Ph.D. in philosophy, then to law school, after which I practiced law in San Diego and Austin before becoming a law professor in 1989.

Greg Miller: Through the 70s and 80s, I got very involved with both worship music and various Christian performance bands. The coffeehouse era was in full swing, and we played dozens of them. I was the main person responsible for booking bands at the Masters House in Lansing, and my bands played there frequently. I was also involved in concert promotion, responsible for bringing to Lansing performers such as Phil Keaggy, Lamb, Honeytree, Second Chapter of Acts, both Talbot brothers, Wayne Watson, Michael Card, and many others. The only EV member I’m in any kind of contact with is Ed, though I did talk to Bob Sperlazzo on the phone and exchanged a few emails about 10 years ago.

Bob Sperlazzo: Travelled with Free Fare for 1 year (all over the US and Canada); lots more soloing; got married and both performed/ministered; led lots of worship; ran a number of coffee houses, concert series and festivals; helped many others get up-and-running; etc.

Ed has a new band called Ed Englerth Band. Would you like to share a few words about it?


Ed Englerth: I play ‘Moody Intelligent Folk Jazz Blues’ and just released my 9th solo recording called “Hope Dream Sigh” (My wife Panda appears on the cover.) on Blue Side Down Studios Recordings. www.BlueSideDownStudios.com which is available on iTunes, CD Baby etc.. where you can find my other most recent CDs called ‘D.I.A.L Business’ and ‘Restless Ghost’

I’m working with three excellent musicians. Don Cheeseman on bass, Alan Dunst on drums, and Bob Hartig on sax. 

What are some of your future plans, Ed?

Ed Englerth: Play, sing, write, record, repeat.


How about others?

Greg Miller: About 25 years ago, I came off the road after being with Heirborn for about six years. During those six years, we played hundreds of concerts in a dozen states and recorded three albums. At that time, the Lord called me to dedicate my musical life to worship music, something I had long done but considered a distant second. I wrestled with that calling for about two weeks in prayer, then submitted to the Lord. This began an amazing process where this music filled my soul like no other and He poured His Spirit out upon me whenever I entered into worship. From that day, I have remained very active in various worship ministries, primarily with my church. But I’m about to join a worship band that has branched out into playing concerts, something I’m very excited about. They have several albums done and 25 of their songs are available on iTunes. I have come to believe that worship music is a hyper-powerful tool for reaching souls, as well as moving those in the Kingdom from average to excellent.

Bob Sperlazzo: Lots of irons in the fire (but not musically).

Thank you for being part of our magazine. Last word is yours.

Ed Englerth: I’ve been very fortunate that I’ve been able to work with many fine artists and would like to thank them for letting me be a small part of their life. Ray White (Frank Zappa), Kenny Meeks (Sixpence None The Richer), Joe English (Paul McCartney & Wings), Robin Robbins (Bob Seger), John Lawry (Petra), Jan Krist, Ben Brown, Jim Cole, Aracely, Jim Earp, Scott Roley, Dave Perkins, Donny Hartman (The Frost), Xalt, Armada, Aslan, Harvey Jet (Black Oak Arkansas), and of course Earthen Vessel.

Bob Sperlazzo:  Very little has changed in the "industry," except that there's a whole lot less of Jesus and a lot more rock-and-roll.

Ed Englerth: for more information check out: http://earthenvesselband.wordpress.com/

Here’s the list of those interviewed and their relationship to Earthen Vessel: 

Ed Englerth, played in both versions of Earthen Vessel.
David Caudill, played in the first version of Earthen Vessel.
Greg Miller, played in the second version of Earthen Vessel.
Bob Sperlazoo, in the second version of Earthen Vessel.
Linda Moore Johnson, was married to Eddie Johnson, drummer for the first version of Earthen Vessel.
Other members declined offers to participate in this interview or were unavailable for comment.

Interview made by Klemen Breznikar/2011
© Copyright http://psychedelicbaby.blogspot.com/2011

John Drendall interview about John Drendall, B. A. Thrower & Friends & Damion

Vern "The Bopper" Albaugh, B.A. Thrower and John Drendall rehearsing for the Blue album

Interview:

1. Thank you very much for your time, John! I would like to ask you about your childhood and teen years. Where did you grow up and what were some of your main influences at the time?

Klemen, I am flattered to do this interview for "It's Psychedelic Baby". I was born on the Eastern Seaboard of the U.S. in New Castle, Delaware.  Born in 1950, it was a great time for music!  I remember watching "American Bandstand" on TV based out of Philly and all those great Do-Op groups. Elvis was a big influence early in my listening days as was Clarence "Frogman" Henry, the Everly Brothers and Ricky Nelson. Music was trying to "Bubble Out" of me as I really wanted to be a drummer.  I settled for the Trombone and began lessons in the 3rd grade.

I actually became pretty good at it once I broke the code of reading music. But then the Beatles exploded onto the scene and everything changed.  The British Invasion gave me a new direction listening to the "Stones", the "Kinks", the "Animals" and yes... Tom Jones.  I was going to be a Guitar player! This was against everything my Father believed in and he  forbid me to play the instrument. I was not allowed to own one and was ridiculed for listening to the new "Rock and Roll"!  I was also required to wear a flattop haircut... I was broken hearted.

A friend of mine enlisted in the U.S. Army and let me borrow his Gibson SG while he was away at boot camp. I hide the guitar under my bed and played late at night to keep from being discovered. The issue was that I am left handed and the SG was a righty, so I taught myself to play upside down and still do to this day.......

2. I know you were in a band as a teenager. The band was called The Reverbs. Would you like to share a story about it?

Ahhh, the "Reverbs", my first shot at being in a BAND!  They were established in the area but lost their bass player to "The Adapters".  The premier group in the area that had a promising recording future.

I was 15 years old and did not own a bass or amp.... where there is a will there is a way. I soon owned a rig and was asked to join the "Reverbs".  We played small venues across Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania.  I remember my mom covering for me with my dad and at times even slept in my bed  to keep him from knowing that I was "on the road".  I don't want to paint an ugly picture of my relationship with my dad but we had a line drawn in the sand regarding rock and roll and long hair.... and so it goes!                            

Did The Reverbs ever recorded anything?

The Reverbs never released a recording while I was in the band, however, I understand that they had a single released in the 68-69 time frame.  While I played with the Reverbs we did several radio spots regarding our troops in Vietnam. Several years after I left Delaware for Michigan I returned for a visit.  A friend of mine told me that the Reverbs were playing at a local club so we went to listen.   

There they were, the original members minus Eddie Day, our lead singer.  Eddie died in a train accident a few years earlier.  His brother Chas, the lead guitar player, filled in on vocals.  Chas had a great voice but was very different from Eddie. Eddie was  a true Rock Star but like so many Rock Stars, it caught up with him!

3. At what point did you left The Reverbs and move to Michigan?

It was the summer of "67".  My dad was promoted at his job and was transfered to Flint, Michigan.  I was up to my ears in music and the Reverbs so you can imagine my determination to stay in Delaware.  Well, long story short... we moved to Michigan
The Midwest was a whole new gig for me.  Being the new kid in town I was viewed from afar but through music, sports and new friendships I adapted well.  After all, we had Motown, "Terri Night and the Pack", "Grand Funk" and "Bob Seager" ( and the Last Herd )!!!  Musically, I hooked up with a guy named Greg Pappanuaex. A little guy with BIG talent.  Incredible voice and could play many, many instruments.  We never really put a band together for more than a week or two but looking back he was key to helping me make the musical transition into my new culture.

Shagraison Blues Band
"DD" with Shagraison @ Lizards in East lansing....1970

4. So in 1972 you released Papa Never Let Me Sing the Blues. I would like to know if you can share the whole story about it? What are some of the strongest memories from producing and recording this LP?

John performing the "Papa" album on the campus of Central Michigan University....Notice the "DOVE"

Well, it's a long story but I will hit the high points as I remember them.
After High School I attended Ferris State College for a short time.  College really didn't work for me so I moved back home and got a job driving a truck.  I had traded my bass for a Rickenbacher clone and an Espana classical guitar.  I was back on track with a six string.  I experimented with recording and actually was able to do multiple tracks on an eight track cassette...?  I got into Hendrix and other things. Bought my first Stratocaster and began to write tunes.  

John in code lift rehearsing for the Blue Album.....

Photo of B.A. in code lift reverse.....

The Bopper, B.A. and John rehearsing for Papa......

After a year or two I was promoted at my job to an outside sales position and was transfered to East Lansing, Michigan.  Now the story begins to unfold.

I was working and had an income, which made me different from most of the college students on campus at Michigan State University. I soon made several friends and moved into a town house with The "Fang" and Roger *MARVEL* Dean.  Fang was a very good looking, energetic guy with tons of personality.  *Marvel* was a clinical phycologist and spooky smart.  It was years after we went our separate ways that I realized *Marvel* had me "on the couch" much of the time.  I helped him with music... he helped me with life!  We developed quite a diverse click with characters like "The S-Man, "The Bopper", Tommy Caruso, Ross maxwell, "Meat" and B.A. Thrower.  But the most critical personality that entered my life during this period was Dick "DD" Dunham, the "Worlds Greatest Drummer"!  That's my story and I am sticking to it.  To this day "DD" is one of my closest friends.  We played together before the "PAPA" album and we are still recording together today.
Our roots were in the Blues so it only seemed fitting that we start a Blues Band.  Yours truly on guitar and vocal, "DD" on drum, Mike Skory on piano and *Marvel* on bass.  We were the "Shagraison Blues Band".  This project was really the start of the "PAPA" album as we played and jammed with many of our friends.  We would always have folks sit in at our gigs as we played around the Southern Michigan area.  As our taste for music expanded we began jamming more and more... experimenting with other styles and compositions.

At one point B.A. through out the idea of finding a studio that would record the tunes / jams we had been working on for the past year or so.  It was a great idea, however no one knew what was involved in recording an LP. Certainly not me, but ignorance is bliss.
The first thing we needed to do was to find that studio,,,  this was B.A.'s job and it didn't take him long.  He and I went on a road trip to Kalamazoo, home of the Gibson Guitar factory.  We met with Bryce Robinson at his Sound Machine Studio!!  Bryce was a prick! He assured us that we didn't know what we were doing, that the project would sound like crap... If we ever completed it, and made it very clear that his studio was run his way.  A very loud BARK... and I believe he had some teeth in his bite.

I clearly remember the ride back from Kalamazoo to East Lansing....  What are we getting into? Was Bryce right or did we have the Magic to pull this off?  One thing was clear, we were not going to jam our way through it!  We needed to prepare in a different way, after all, the tape don't lie! 
We cut our deal with the "Sound Machine Studio" and went to work.  We all had day jobs and stole as much time as we could to rehearse.  All of our friends were involved.  From Vern ( The Bopper ) Albaugh on flute to Nelson Wood on Harp.  From Tommy Caruso on slide to Mike Skory on Keyboards and Jimmy Spillane on his  Angelic background Vocals.  We also leaned heavily on Ross maxwell, a well versed music critic, harp player and charter member.

I don't remember how many sessions we booked to complete the project but it was more than two.  On more than one occasion Bryce would shut it down and send us home to rethink what we were doing.  Not everyone were at all the sessions , but B.A. and I were.  I recall blowing into one of Bryce's mic's as a test.... BIG mistake. He often questioned if we were in tune!! We had about half the LP written as we were in the studio.  A lot of the music was written on the fly..... I don't even think B.A. was aware!  The fact that we had a group of very talented musicians and friends all on the same page was the key ingredient for the magic that unfolded in this LP.

"The "PAPA " album or the "Blue" album as it was referred to was truly a magical mystery tour.  The freedom to write parts, place textures and tones and build dynamics over and over again was insane.  We also noticed that Bryce was tapping his toe... so to speak.  He got involved in the production of several tunes and  actually played bass on "Get Too Heavy"!  He was a monster guitar player.  If you look him up he spent many years playing with Chess Records .  I have a copy of a Howlin Wolf LP with Bryce playing guitar.

We spent many nights ( ALL Night ) at the Sound Machine only to drive back to our day jobs in the early hours.  A work of love / pain / and education!
We finally finished the L.P. although you never feel as though it is complete......   We built a bond between all of the Friends.... and this included Bryce!!!

What gear did you guys use?

I played a 1968 Gibson Dove on the acoustic tracks, I still play her to this day!  B.A. also played the Dove on the "Papa Never Let Me Sing The Blues" track.  I also used a 1970 Fender Stratocaster ( right handed ) as well as a Mid 60's Gibson 335. B.A. played an awesome X500 Guild and he could make her cry! "DD" had a set of Vintage 60"s Ludwig's but I believe he mostly played the studio trap set. 

We used an old tear drop VOX bass as well as the studio Hammond B-3


Tommy Carruso played his parts on "I Feel" and Get Too Heavy" on his 60"s Gibson Hummingbird.
Bryce's Sound Machine used an MCI deck with a switchable 8 / 16 track head.  Neuman U87's for vocals, Shure SM 57's / 58's for amps, etc and I believe KM 184's for over heads and acoustic stuff.

What can you say about the cover artwork?


B.A handled all the art work.  He came up with the overall concept, Hired Jesse Arrnet to do the photography and dealt with the printing, colors, etc....B.A. had / has a very artistic talent the includes more than music.  He runs a very successful photography company to this day. Check him out at
www.bradthrower.com                                        

Where was it all recorded?

The L.P. was recorded at "Uncle Dirty's Sound Machine Studios" in Kalamazoo, Michigan. 1971-72.  The pressing was at "Queen City" in Cincinnati, Ohio. They did a huge Gospel business at the time and were very interested in getting into the "ROCK" market.  I remember we had to make a decision on the grade of vinyl we would use.  If you recall the oil embargo was under way at the time and the vinyl was made  from petro.  The higher the quality the the better the sound... less popping, etc.  We settled on a mid range quality.

It was privately released, what can you say about that? Who released it and how many copies were made?

We released it under the "Deacon Productions" Label.  This is our own label and we still use this to release our DAMION material. I believe we released 100 copies but I honestly do not recall as we really didn't sell them.

How did it sell?

It really didn't sell.  I think we only had a hundred or so copies made.  One of our "Friends" Uncle Meat was going on a national road trip and we gave most of them to him to sprinkle across the country.... kind of like "Johnny Appleseed"! But nearly 40 years later we have been contracted to re release the "Papa" album on CD by Riverman Music and LP by Guerssen Records.  The "Papa Never Let me Sing The Blues" Album was voted one of the top 25 re releases in 2010 by UReview, along with some heavy hitters such as - The Beatles, Neil Young, King Crimson and others......  Go figure!

5. Did you play any live shows to promote the album?

We played lot's of gigs and featured the "Papa" album tunes sprinkled in our repertoire but never really did a production. We did include " Cold Night In August" on our latest DAMION CD, "Stormy Night In Texas".... was pretty cool to do a remake. If you go to our Damion website at www.damion.biz   you can hear a sample of the Cold Night In August remake.  You can also link to down load the entire CD.  We are looking at doing more tunes from the blue album.  The next Damion CD, "Burden Of Life" is due out in the next few months and we are looking at reissuing "Throw Off Your Troubled Past" from the blue album.

6. I would love if you could comment each song from the LP!

A1       Cold Nite in August
Our shot at a traditional blues cut by some young white musicians. I tried to incorporate the exaggerated painful lyrics with a 1-4-5 chord progression.  Check out Elmo on the keyboards! This cat can play!!! Nelson Wood kills the harmonica part and Tommy does a non traditional slide to boot!

A2       Old Man Gibbs
This tune is about an old man that was in fact a customer of mine during my outside sales gig.  He was part or most Cherokee Indian and was very opinionated.  He didn't really purchase much but I found him captivating and returned to his small farm in the guise of a sales call to spend time with him.
He gave me comfort in a relationship that I knew would be short lived. Check out B.A.'s B-3 organ part... along with the vocal from "DD".  Kind of has a Neil Young flavor.... but not really!

A3       Friends
We took the opportunity to do a short piece and jam as we had done so many times in the past.  All of our friends involved in a piece that was maybe meant to reflect the "John Lee Hooker" influence on our musical lives!

A4       Papa Never Let Me Sing the Blues
Ahhhh, the title tune.  I wrote this song to try and expunge the conflict I had with my father regarding my interest / path in music.  Notice I try to resolve the issue in that he "Finally Found A Way".... he never did!  I love the touch B.A. has on the Dove.... along with the background vocal of "DD" and
Jimmy Spillane! ......................  the song builds nicely and has a tasteful amount of harmonica and electric guitar through out.                   

B1       Get Too Heavy
Oddly written about my brother Mike....  He was / is very intense and insecure, but also very talented.  He never seemed to be able to keep things in perspective, I love him dearly but needed to exclaim concern to him! Partly in fun, partly serious.  Check out the rim work by "DD" that adds to the guitar work by Tommy Carruso on his Hummingbird.  Of Course you get the bass line by Bryce!!!

B2       I Feel
This is a  mosaic of emotions inspired by "Hermann Hesse" regarding a young man seeking parental approval while moving forward with his life.  Note B.A. on the Violin Bow with the Bopper on flute in the back ground.  The song is rounded off by the guitar work of Tommy Carruso on his Hum
Hummingbird in an esoteric lead part. Looking for Tera Firma with determination to expose one's self at great risk.  Inspired by the writings of Herman Hesse.....

B3       Throw Off Your Troubled Past
Once again a "Hermann Hesse" inspired tune. Kind of the next step from "I Feel".... Some but not all of the answers are coming to light! Pretty heavy huh? You have got to appreciate the key board work by Mike Skory... as I said before, this cat can play.  This tune also features our esoteric or fluid mode.  The middle jam goes completely out of time and allows for colors and textures outside the bounds of the song only to return on time for the finale. We have carried this esoteric concept on with many of our DAMION works..... lot's of fun!

B4       Black River Lady
This tune was written by B.A...... I believe it was written about his Guitar, a Guild X500 ( sweet ) that was named after a one night stand on the Black River.... we may never know! Check out how sweet B.A. plays this chord pattern.  The lead was almost an after thought.

B5       Bye Bye Mr. Jones
A sad affair, the song was inspired by the death of my pet, Deacon Jones... an English Bulldog that had the personality of any three men.  He was hit by a car as we rehearsed in our Garage / Studio in Okemos, Michigan.  We all grieved for days but decided that he should go out with an up tempo  tune.
He was a snaggle toothed con man that brought much joy to all of our Friends!!!!!...........................

1978 Band Of Fools newspaper ad

7. What happened next? I know you had a project called Damion and if you can tell how did Damion started and what happened to the band thru years until now...

We took the name Damion from a Hermann Hesse novel correctly spelled "Demian".  This was long before the horror movie and the content of the name was intended to represent quite the opposite.  We felt funny using his title at first but after all... Steppenwolf did it!
Well, the truth is that the "PAPA" album was the launching pad for "DAMION".  "DD" and I knew we had to move on musically and would have taken the whole friends band with us if they wanted to go.  The only takers were me, "DD" and "Tommy Carruso".

Sid, "DD", and John somewhere in Colorado.....

We sold all that was not absolutely necessary ( including several vintage guitars ) and moved to Key West, Florida.  We played on Mallory Square for tips and food stamps, got a seasonal gig at the "Boat Bar" for a couple of years and jammed with many great musicians. We played with a great conga player, Conga Jim.  He taught "DD" the fundamentals of the instrument and gave him the foundation to become the conga player he is today.... Mostly African style as opposed to the more traditional Cuban style. 

Picture of Ross as he wrote the liner notes....

But the Key ingredient that we added to Damion was our bass played, Sid Seymour.... Sid was a young, cocky, bantam rooster....!  He had an artful ear AND eye, but most importantly he gave the band it's bottom end, and he gave it with a passion!  Sid, ( Charlie Hugh to some ) brought a dimension
to the band that enabled us to soar.... keeping the pulse, he and "DD" developed a true rhythm section that gave me a ton of freedom.  As a three piece band we were playing songs such as Mavin Gaye " What's Going On" , Les Mcann "Compared to What" and Jimi's "1983".  Sid brought the power to DAMION and is still slamming it today. DAMION also made a trip back to Kalamazoo to record a single. Never Been In Love Before" was the "A" side and and "Peaceful State" was the "B" side.  I think this was some of our best work.  We were embraced by Bryce for this project... we never released it! 


We toured the country, from Key West, to Colorado, to New York to California to Michigan, playing gigs that were prescheduled as well as pick up gigs as we went.  But Key West was our home base.  We developed relationships with most of the musicians in town and cross gigged when ever possible.
Life was good!  I developed a close relationship with Sandy Allen, a transplant from Chicago the had an extreme resume.  From the Rockets to George Carlin to Stan Getz.  He had a Dixieland Band going on and was playing every night.  But Sandy needed more.  We hooked up, wrote a Rock
Opera, combined bands in addition to several other players and came up with the "BAND OF FOOLS"!!!!! We did the whole production in Key West including choreography  and dancers.  We actually were invited to NYC to interview with Bret Adams, agent as well as Sammy Bays, choreographer for  "Fiddler on the Roof" and "Gospel"

Mother Note Studios

The big company production company wanted some one else to perform our piece, we wanted to do it our selves...... not too smart on our part, the deal feel apart.  But please note that shortly afterward " All That Jazz" was released and was a huge success as well as very similar to the "Foolish Fantasy"      We took the "Band Of Fools" to  guess who.... Bryce Robinson and his Sound Machine Studio.  We recorded about 10 tunes not related to the fantasy.  We actually lived in the studio building with wives, kids and girl friends. Shortly after the band broke up.  We ra-gathered DAMION and played for several years in the Michigan area, but family commitment eventually broke us apart. In 2000 I got a call from Sid who was living in Las Vegas.  He was telling me about a recording program that was computer based (PRO TOOLS ) that he had purchased.  One thing led to another and we were back together as a recording band.  DAMION lives on.... we have recorded over 6 CD"s since then and are working on our seventh, " Burden Of Life". We have twin studio's at our home's and get together 3-4 times a year to record our new tune.  Some are written individually but all are recorded collaboratively.   We have not performed live at all but have enjoyed the creative freedom that a studio setting brings.  You can hear our latest works at www.damion.biz.

DAMION Today
"DD", John, Sid
Uncle Meat... today



Sid


Brad Thrower

8. What are some of your future plans?


We would very much like to have some of our music published and used in film or re recorded by other artists..  We keep talking about playing a live concert or something along those lines, but remember we are not kids anymore.....

In the mean time we continue to write music, record and enjoy our times together doing what we love. Sid actually has a working  recording studio...( Mother Note Studios ) and a has a few clients working.  Sid is the engineer of the group... with out doubt!!!  I try to keep my studio ( Ladyland West ) up to date with his so that when we get together in Texas he has the tools he needs.



9. Thank you very much! Would you like to send a message to It's Psychedelic Baby Magazine readers?

Well, as I said in the beginning of this interview, I am flattered to be asked to share our musical history.  I feel as though I have been a little long winded but believe me I have left a lot of details out.....

It brings a smile to my face to know that there is a population of listeners / players who seek out and appreciate recordings of small, private pressings of material such as the Papa LP and more....
I would also like to thank Douglas McGowan of YOGA Records for guiding me through the re release process.

As a final note; B.A. runs a successful photography Business Jimmy Spillane's son, Johnny, just won a Silver Metal in the Olympics Mike "Elmo" Skory is still playing in the Michigan area with the "Root Doctor Band"   www.rootdoctorband.com Tommy Carruso is selling oriental rugs in New England Vern "The BOPPER" Albaugh is un accounted for..... Ross maxwell is a Park Ranger in the Michigan U.P. Nelson Wood has a wood Working Company and doing well Bryce Robinson..... RIP "DD" Dunham, Sid Seymour and Guitar Johnnie Dee are still "ROCKIN" as DAMION!!!! "And Just In Case You Really Didn't Know.... The Music Deep Inside You Makes You Glow"!!!!!

Best Regards,
John Drendall















Interview made by Klemen Breznikar / 2011
© Copyright http://psychedelicbaby.blogspot.com/ 2011

Eloy interview with Frank Bornemann

Interview:

1. It's really exciting to have you on my Magazine. I would like to start at the beginning of your carrier. My first question is about your childhood. What are some of the early influences you had as a young boy and then later as a teenager?

I ´ve got a record player on the occasion of my birthday. I was 13 and it was a gift from my mother. My first record was Elvis Presley´s Jailhouse Rock and I was fascinated by that kind of music. A couple of years later I started to play guitar.

2. Before forming Eloy, were you or other band members in any other bands. Perhaps any releases from then?

Like all young musicians in Germany I started to play in a coverband who played the latest hits and well known songs from The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Cream, led Zeppelin, Moody Blues etc. but also from many famous  US-rock´n roll artists like Chuck Berry,Little Richard, Buddy Holly etc. It was a good education!

3. If I'm not wrong the name Eloy was taken from the novel Time Machine of H.G. Wells? Would you mind telling me what do you remember from early band sessions you had?

ELOY was born in 1969 and the name was indeed taken from H.G. Wells. I considered the story of Time machine as a perfect symbol which reflects the situation of a german band in those days who did dare to play it´s own compositions with english lyrics. It was an enormous and courageous step. No one here was interested to listen to music from a german rockband. The fans of rock and pop music wanted only the successful songs from famous groups and artists, nothing else!


4. Your first release was Daybreak / Walk Alone in 1970. What do you remember from recording it?


The young band Eloy was the winner of a band contest and we got the chance to produce a single with two songs. By the result of these recordings of two compositions of the band (Walk alone /daybreak) we obtained an artist record deal and were signed to Philips.

5. In 1971 you released your first LP on Philips. It's much more of a straight ahead hard rocking LP compared to you later, more space rock sounding material. The LP was released in limited edition in 1970 on the Philips label in Germany. Do you perhaps know how many copies were made?
I would also like to know what can you tell me about producing and recording this LP?


You are right...the first album was not yet the progressive band who you will find on all our following albums. We were inexperienced beginners and our artist profile was unclear. Each member of the band was naturally inspired, each to varying degrees, by the new sensational  musical creations which not only  came over to us like an invasion from England, but also dominated the international music business. In the light of this fullness and wealth of different influences we found it diffilcult to cleary define our musical direction as well as form an independent identity. I consider this album as Krautrock. The sales figures were not impressive.


6. Inside is your first album, that sounds like a typical Eloy album. It's really amazing progressive album. This is dark and intense progressive hard rock with really amazing atmosphere. Would you like to tell me what do you remember from studio sessions?

First of all ... on INSIDE we had a new line up and our former second guitarist Manfred Wieczorke played henceforth Hammond Organ. Since Inside, keyboards played a very important part in our music. We were able now to create a mixture of pulsating rhythms and atmospheres. The sound of Eloy was born.


7. One year later in 1974 you released Floating. I think this one is a bit different because you did a lot more of improvisations on it. Year later you released very ambitious release. It's a concept album, featuring huge production, with extensive keyboards. What can you tell me about this two releases?


The reason of all theses improvisations is easy to explain. The band played many concerts in 1973 and each night on stage we have played improvisations. Finally we did the same in the studio. The result was an album with lots of spontaneous moments. After the release of Floating we were once again permanent on tour but we had new plans. We decided to dare another musical step. The biggest challenge for me in those days was the realization of a concept album..... and there was a story roaming in mind, power and the passion! This album was the biggest success before our prime with dawn, ocean and silent cries and mighty echoes. Unfortunately the band went in split after this album and I was compelled to rebuild the band a new and to continuer with new musicians.


8. In 1976 and 1977 you released two incredible albums. The first one is called Dawn on which the production is so good and the second one is legendary Ocean, which is an amazing concept album. I would love to hear a story behind this two albums. The production was really big...also the song writing is amazing here..


Dawn was the first album which was produced by me and I got the chance to work with an orchestra. A great opportunity to realize all my dreams and wishes. This album was the break through on the german market .It was the continuation of power and the passion but this time I could do my work without compromise. Dawn is still one of my favorite albums of the band. On Ocean everybody in the band was enormous motivated (last but not least because of the success of Dawn) to make something which is absolutely extraordinary and outstanding. The story (based on the mythe of Atlantis) and the lyrics were written by our drummer Jürgen Rosenthal. It was again a concept album and we were experimenting with lots of sounds, effects and atmospheres. This album became the most appreciated album of the band and is still the biggest progressive rock success of a german band. We sold up to now more than 300.000 copies only in germany.


9. In 1978 you released a Live album. Would you mind telling me an interesting story behind some concerts you had...what festivals did you attend?


Unfotunately we´ve got many technical problems with the recordings and many wonderful moments found never the way on the live album. The reason of all these problems was our huge light & sound equipment. Most of the recordings were useless because of technical noise on the tracks. Finally we were forced to put the tracks on the record which were clean enough for a disc. Nevertheless  ......, many Eloy fans like it. It is not perfect in case of the soundquality, but at least the truth.


10. Last album in the 70's was Silent Cries and Mighty Echoes. You were also very active thru the 80's with albums like Colours, Planets, Time to Turn, Performance, Metromania and Ra. Same goes for the 90's with albums like Destination, The Tides Return Forever and Ocean 2: The Answer. I would like if you could share a few words about this albums and maybe you can tell me how it was recording part 2 of legendary Ocean album for you?


Silent cries & mighty echoes was another big success but once again the band lost two members. Klaus Peter Matziol (bass) and I found three wonderful new musicians with Jim Mc Gillivray (drums) Hannes Folberth (keyboards) and Hannes Arkona (guitar and additional keyboards) and we could continuer. Colours was the first statement of the band, but it was not a concept album. Instead of the expected next big concept work we started with an album of a collection of songs and sounds, composed and arranged in our rehearsal room. 


Some Eloy fans were disappointed, some were pleased about the new flavour in the music. Although Colours was a good start for us we decided to create again a huge concept work. Once again I had some images and the idea to describe the situation of our world and our society by a science fiction story. Planets/Time to turn was once again a convincing work in opinion of the Eloy fans and I personally was absolutely happy about the wonderful response of our fan community....but there were many changes in the music beginning of the eighties (Punk, Deutsche Welle in Germany etc.) and some of the band members wanted (because of these things) to change also the style and the image of the band. That was a time of dissension and many stressful discussions. Finally the majority inside of the band enforced the music and the image on our album performance. This album became a flop and was the beginning of tensions inside of the band. Our last album for EMI Records was Metromania and I did my very best to bring the band back to their roots. The result is Metromania. We did play some concerts in Europe and even in England ( two sold out shows at the Marquee Club by an invitation of BBC) and although the band played wonderful on stage these concerts were the last of the band. Everybody left the band and wanted to go his own way. It was the end of  Eloy until I met Michael Gerlach in Berlin 1986. We started playing music together and with the time we decided to continuer Eloy as a band of two musicians. Our first album release was RA 1988 and it was placed in the ofiicial german album charts. 


I was very surprised by this unexpected success after the break of nearly 4 years. In those days a produced many bands in my studio in Hannover (most of the time heavy metal bands) and because of all these productions I had not enough time to continuer the cooperation with Michael on Eloy. I took nearly 4 years to make another Eloy album. Destination was finally released in 1992 and surely influenced by my work with heavy metal stuff. 


I think many Eloy fans were irritated by this strange mixture of sounds and styles on this album. From my point of view of today there were too much different things on destination (something was good but something too far away from the Eloy sound) and I invited to many guest musicians.

During our work on the both Cronicles I recognized the confusion on our last album and found the way back to the roots.


On "the tides return forever " I tried to turn back time. Klaus Peter Matziol came back to the band and played a wonderful part on the album of 1994. On the occasion of our 25th anniversary we played some concerts after a break of 10 years! Our drummer on tour was Bodo Schopf, our second guitarist Steve Mann. The concert tour in autumn 1994  was an amazing success and we played further concerts in spring 1995.

Because of many requests I produced three years later the long expected follower of our album Ocean. On Ocean 2 "the answer"  you find the same line up which was on tour 4 years ago. 


Most of Eloy fans said.." Ocean 2 is the best Eloy album for long time  and one of the band ever". This time the lyrics were written by me and unlike Jürgen Rosenthal I tried to spread out a positive message. During the recording sessions we used only vintage equipment (synthesizer and amplification) in the studio. Furthermore you can hear Hannes Folberth (first time since 1984!) playing a moog solo on the song Ro Setau. After the Ocean 2 album I decided to finish Eloy. The rest is surely well known. Because of the incredible fidelity and power of our fan community I produced with the band 2009 "Visionary".


11. Well in 2009 you came back with a Visionary album in 2009. The production and sound on it is really great. Would you like to share a story behind making Visionary album?

You will find my statement inside the booklet of Visionary.
 
12. After more than 13 years you will be playing at the Night Of The Prog festival at the Loreley on July 8th, 2011 and at the Burg Herzberg Festival on July 17th, 2011.



How do you feel about the fact you will play live again?

The concerts were an overwhelming experience! Our listeners were wonderful and were so close to our fans. The press wrote about a mighty return and a magical performance. Returning to the stage was a good decision. We did enjoy every minute!


13. What are some of your future plans?

We will play a tour in spring time next year and we will be the headliner on the famous NEARfest -Festival 2012 in USA.

14. Thanks a lot for your time and effort. I appreciate it a lot to have you on It's Psychedelic Baby Magazine. Would you like to add something else?

I think, everything is said.














Interview made by Klemen Breznikar / 2011
© Copyright http://psychedelicbaby.blogspot.com/ 2011