Sunday, 18 February 2018

British Waterways Building, Nottingham - Trent Navigation Company

The British Waterways Building, adjacent to the Nottingham/Beeston Canal.

Formerly the warehouse of the Trent Navigation Company, I believe it may now have been turned into apartments.  

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Severn`s Building, Nottingham

Severn`s Building is a medieval merchant`s house located near Nottingham Castle.

Originally it stood near the Middle Pavement area but was dismantled and rebuilt when the Broadmarsh Shopping Centre was built. There had been later additions to the building but only the original medieval structure was saved.

If you`re interested, the Picture the Past site has a picture of it in it`s original location.

I must admit I personally don`t find it an attractive building, but certainly it has historical interest.

Should you be interested, it takes it`s name from John and James Severn who used it as the base for a wine importing business in the 1700s.

As far as I know it is currently standing empty. 


Ripley Hippodrome, Derbyshire

I took this pic of Ripley Hippodrome on a visit there two or three weeks ago.

Some say it`s an original 1913 building, others say it`s actually a 1920 building that incorporates parts of a building dating from 1913. Still others say it has too much of a plain brick appearance to be really distinctive.

I have no idea how old it is but I do know I like it. I gather it was under threat of demolition a couple of years ago but has since been reprieved.

Unfortunately, it`s been standing empty for a while and it`s future must be uncertain.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Eugene , Sydney and Eddy

Eugene, Sydney and Eddy ; `Wheel and Jig` Revisited

In my last post we looked at the song `Wheel and Jig`. How it had appeared twice in 1974, once on a single credited to The Viceroys, and again on an LP, credited this time to Winston Groovy and The Pioneers.

But there was to be one more appearance for this tune, albeit in altered form.

The same year, Attack Records, a subsidiary of Trojan, released a single credited to Boy Wonder - All on the House/Cold Blood. Once again, Sydney Crooks of The Pioneers was credited as producer. 

The `A` side is an agreeable enough slice of `70s pop/reggae, written and performed by Eugene Paul, an Antiguan-born singer who is still active in music today.

The flipside is a track called Cold Blood, with the songwriting credit going to S Crooks/E Grant - obviously Sydney and Eddy respectively.   

Singles produced by Sydney during this period often played host to pretty nifty instrumentals on the `b` side, and this is no exception. The surprise is that Cold Blood, despite it`s sinister title, is actually a chirpy little tune based on `Wheel and Jig`. 

Featuring some attractive saxophone playing, it`s upbeat, quirky and jazzy. All in all it`s pretty nifty, but don`t take my word for it - it`s on You Tube, posted by reggaeukseventies.   

That does really end the story of Wheel and Jig  - or does it ? If I hear of any other versions, I`ll post the details here. 

Where Are They Now ?

Eugene Paul lives in London and has a Facebook page and You Tube page. `All on the House` appears on his `The Early Years Vol 1`. I would doubt if he had any involvement with `Cold Blood`.

 Sydney Crooks, sometimes known by the nickname `Luddy` lives in Brazil where he uses  the stage name Norris Cole. He has two Facebook pages - one as `Sydney Crooks, Luddy Pioneer, Norris Cole`, the other as `Luddy Pioneer Crooks` .

Eddy Grant has his own website and Winston Groovy has his own You Tube page.

The other Pioneers, Jackie Robinson and George Agard aka George Dekker, are also still involved in music.  

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Pioneers, Viceroys and Winston Groovy

The Viceroys ? - Wheel and Jig - Harry J - 1974

Vinyl reggae single.

With it`s tinkly piano motif and oddly dated words, `Wheel and Jig` is a quirky gem of a reggae single. But nothing is quite what it seems with this disc. 

The track is credited to The Viceroys, A Jamaican vocal trio noted for their smooth harmonies and philosophical lyrics. 

The songwriting credit, however, goes to Crooks/Agard/Robinson, the members of the most successful line-up of The Pioneers, and the production credit goes to Pioneers founder Sydney Crooks.

It doesn`t sound like the Viceroys and the chorus backing vocals do sound a lot like The Pioneers. This has led some collectors to regard this as an unacknowledged Pioneers outing. 

In fact, this track also appeared elsewhere the same year. Check out the LP `Presenting Winston Groovy` and you find exactly the same recording on Side Two, credited to Winston Groovy and The Pioneers. Like the single this album was produced by Sydney Crooks and features a number of covers of Pioneers songs plus some Crooks compositions presumably written specifically for this album.

Having listened to some of his other stuff I`m convinced that 
Winston Groovy and The Pioneers collaborated on this track. 

                          `Presenting Winston Groovy` - Cover Art    

Sidney Crooks ran his own record label, the aptly-named Pioneer,  in Jamaica and licensed a number of tracks to companies in the UK and US in the `70s, a number of which he credited to The Viceroys. Whether this was accurate or not is hotly debated amongst collectors !

Most of those tracks had previously been issued as singles in Jamaica. Interestingly,this does not seem to have happened with `Wheel and Jig` , which makes me think it was always intended to appear on the Winston Groovy album and for some reason was wrongly attributed to The Viceroys when UK licensing was arranged.

Winston Groovy has his own You Tube channel, `Winston Groovy Music`, which features much of his back-catalogue. `Wheel and Jig` can be found there  so if you want to hear it, scoot along there pronto and experience this slightly odd but deeply wonderful tune ! 

You might think that`s the end of the story where `Wheel and Jig` is concerned, but there`s more to come, as my next post will show.