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Chris Farlowe

Chris Farlowe always seemed destined for great things as a singer -- and based on the company he kept on-stage and the people he worked with in the mid-'60s, he did succeed, at least on that level. Born John Henry Deighton in Islington, North London, in 1940, he reached his early teens just as the skiffle boom was breaking in England, and was inspired by Lonnie Donegan to enter music. His first band was his own John Henry Skiffle Group, where he played guitar as well as sang, but he gave up playing to concentrate on his voice, as he made the switch to rock & roll. He eventually took the name Chris Farlowe, the surname appropriated from American jazz guitarist Tal Farlow, and was fronting a group called the Thunderbirds, as Chris Farlowe & the Thunderbirds. They built their reputation as a live act in England and Germany, and slowly switched from rock & roll to R&B during the early years of the '60s. Their debut single, "Air Travel," released in 1962, failed to chart, but the following year, Chris Farlowe & the Thunderbirds (whose ranks included future star guitarist Albert Lee) were signed to EMI's Columbia imprint, through which they issued a series of five singles thru 1966, all of which got enthusiastic critical receptions while generating poor sales.

In 1966, with his EMI contract up, Farlowe was snatched up by Andrew Oldham, who knew a thing or two about white Britons who could sing R&B, having signed the Rolling Stones three years earlier, and put him under contract to his new Immediate Records label. Immediate's history with unestablished artists is mostly a story of talent cultivated for future success, but with Farlowe it was different -- he actually became a star on the label, through the label. His luck began to change early on, as he saw a Top 40 chart placement with his introduction of the Jagger/Richards song "Think," which the Rolling Stones later released as an album track on Aftermath. That summer, he had the biggest hit of his career with his rendition of the Stones' "Out of Time," in a moody and dramatic version orchestrated by Arthur Greenslade, which reached number one on the British charts. Farlowe had enough credibility as a soul singer by then to be asked to appear on the Ready, Steady, Go broadcast of September 16, 1966, a special program featuring visiting American soul legend Otis Redding -- he'd covered Redding's "Mr. Pitiful" on an Immediate EP, and now Farlowe was on stage with Otis (and Eric Burdon), and got featured in two numbers.

That was to be his peak year, however. The subsequent single releases on Immediate, including his version of the Stones' "Ride on Baby," failed to match the success of the first two singles, and he last charted for Immediate with "Handbags and Gladrags," written for him by Manfred Mann's Mike d'Abo. The label, always in dire financial straits, tried repackaging his songs several different ways on LP, but after 1967 his recording career was more or less frozen until the label's demise in 1970. After that, Farlowe's story became one of awkward match-ups with certain groups, including the original Colosseum on three albums, and Atomic Rooster (post-Carl Palmer). Following a car accident that left him inactive for two years, he made an attempt at re-forming the Thunderbirds in the mid-'70s, and "Out of Time" kept turning up in various reissues, but he saw little new success. Farlowe was rescued from oblivion by his better-known contemporary (and fellow Immediate Records alumnus) Jimmy Page, appearing on the latter's Outrider album in the '80s, which heralded a BBC appearance that brought him back to center stage in the public consciousness for the first time in two decades. Farlowe followed this up with new albums and touring with various reconstituted '60s and '70s groups, and although he never saw another hit single, his reputation as a live performer was enough to sustain a career -- nor did the release of his Ready, Steady, Go appearance with Otis Redding on videotape and laser disc exactly hurt his reputation; indeed, that was the first time many Americans appreciated just how serious a following he'd had in England. His recent albums, including The Voice, have gotten respectable reviews, and his Immediate Records legacy was finally getting treated properly in the 21st century, as well. Along with Manfred Mann's Mike d'Abo and Paul Jones, Farlowe remains one of those voices from 1960s England that -- with good reason -- hasn't faded and simply won't disappear. ~ Bruce Eder
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: The Voice / Hotel Eingang

Disc 1

1. I Want To Do Everything For You

2. Easy As That

3. Language Of The Heart

4. Private Number

5. Feel So Good

6. Loving Arms

7. Handbags And Gladrags

8. All Or Nothing

9. She Knows

10. Borderline Blues

11. Loving Arms (Live, 06. 05. 2006 Blues Garage, Isernhagen, Germany)

12. Lonesome Road (Live, 06. 05. 2006 Blues Garage, Isernhagen, Germany)

Disc 2

1. Jealous Man

2. Don't Wanna Love You Anymore

3. It Should've Been Me

4. So Hard To Get Along With

5. I've Got Your Love

6. The Woman? Or The Blues

7. 9lbs Of Steel

8. Baby's Arms

9. I Only Have Love For You

10. Fog On The Highway

11. I'd Rather Be Lying With You

12. That's Why Lovers Have The Blues

13. Hotel Eingang

14. Tough On Me (Live, 06. 05. 2006 Blues Garage, Isernhagen, Germany)

15. Guitar Don't Lie (Live, 06. 05. 2006 Blues Garage, Isernhagen, Germany)

x

Track List: Bursting Over Bremen (Live Bremen 1985)

Disc 1

1. Watching the River Flow (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

2. Jealous Kind (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

3. Satisfy Susie (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

4. Stormy Monday Blues (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

5. Watch Your Step (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

6. I Think It's Going to Rain Today (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

7. Time Is Tight (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

Disc 2

1. I Haven't Found Nothing Yet (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

2. Shakey Ground (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

3. I've Been Born Again (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

4. The Thrill Is Gone (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

5. Lucille (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

6. Sweet Little Sixteen (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

7. Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

8. I Believe in You (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

9. Going Back to Louisiana (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Live Bremen 1985)

x

Track List: Out of the Blue + Born Again

Disc 1

1. I Ain't Superstitious (feat. The Thunderbirds)

2. Gambler's Blues (feat. The Thunderbirds)

3. Them That's Got It (feat. The Thunderbirds)

4. Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City (feat. The Thunderbirds)

5. It's All Wrong (feat. The Thunderbirds)

6. Key to My Kingdom (feat. The Thunderbirds)

7. The Thrill Has Gone (feat. The Thunderbirds)

8. Watch Your Step (feat. The Thunderbirds)

9. All the Way Lover (The Thunderbirds)

10. Shakey Ground (feat. The Thunderbirds)

11. Circles Round the Sun (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

12. Medicated Goo (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

13. Out of Time (1991 Re-Recorded, Bonustrack)

Disc 2

1. Into the Night (feat. The Thunderbirds)

2. Starting All Over Again (feat. The Thunderbirds)

3. Lonely Eyes (feat. The Thunderbirds)

4. One Night Stand (feat. The Thunderbirds)

5. Ain't Got No Money (feat. The Thunderbirds)

6. I'm Yours (feat. The Thunderbirds)

7. I've Been Born Again (feat. The Thunderbirds)

8. Living Ain't Easy Without You (feat. The Thunderbirds)

9. Never Too Old (feat. The Thunderbirds)

10. End of the Line (feat. The Thunderbirds)

11. I Stayed Away Too Long (feat. The Thunderbirds)

12. Man of the World (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

13. We Can Work It Out (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

14. Jealous Kind (Live, Bonus Track)

x

Track List: Waiting In The Wings

1. Rock And Roll Soldier

2. Try Me

3. Some Mothers Son

4. Hold On

5. Working In A Parking Lot

6. On The Beach

7. Too Late To Run For Cover

8. Function To Function

9. Make It Fly

10. Livin' It Up

11. Don't Walk Away

12. Blues Anthem

13. Waiting In The Wings

14. Waiting In The Wings (Spanish Mix)

15. Don't Walk Away (Spanish Mix)

16. On The Beach (Live Bonus Track)

17. Ain't No Love In The Heart Of City (Live Bonus Track)

x

Track List: Glory Bound

1. Wide Open

2. Blues As Blues Can Get

3. Miss You Fever

4. Don't Wanna Live Without You

5. Shaky Ground

6. Glory Bound

7. Don't Think I Will

8. My Best Friends Girl

9. Tough On Me Tough On You

10. Gangster Of Love

11. Cry To Me

12. I Think It's Gonna Rain Today

13. Feel The Power Of Love

14. Handbags And Gladrags (Live)

x

Track List: One Night Stand

1. One Night Stand

2. Sha Na Na Song

3. Looking for Love in a Stranger

4. Stand By Me

5. Tired of Being Alone

x

Track List: Selected Hits

1. Yesterday

2. Why Don't You Change Your Ways

3. Who Can I Turn To?

4. What Have I Been Doing

5. The Last Goodbye

6. That's No Big Thing

7. Dawn

8. Paperman Fly In The Sky

9. My Girl Josephine

10. My Coloring Book

11. Looking For You

12. Baby, Make It Soon (Mono)

13. April Was The Month

14. Lipstick Traces

15. Life Is But Nothing

16. I Just Need Your Lovin'

17. Everyone Makes A Mistake

18. Don't Just Look At Me

x

Track List: Ride On Baby

Disc 1

1. The Fool

2. Treat Her Good

3. Think

4. Don't Just Look At Me

5. Out Of Time

6. Baby Make It Soon

7. Ride On Baby

9. My Way Of Giving

10. You're So Good For Me

13. Who Can I Turn To

14. (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction

15. Yesterday

16. I'm Free

17. Lipstick Traces

18. It's All Over Now, Baby Blue

Disc 2

3. Handbags And Gladrags

4. Everyone Makes A Mistake

5. The Last Goodbye

6. Paperman Fly In The Sky

7. Paint It Black

8. I Just Need Your Lovin'

9. Dawn

10. April Was The Month

11. Mr. Pitiful

12. In The Midnight Hour

13. My Colouring Book

14. North South East West

15. I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself

16. What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted

17. My Girl Josephine

18. We're Doing Fine

x

Track List: Hungary For The Blues

1. I Don't Want To Sing The Blues No More (Live)

2. Lonesome Road (Live)

3. Stormy Monday (Live)

4. All Or Nothing

5. Tough On Me, Tough On You

6. Shaky Ground

7. The Guitar Don't Lie (Live)

8. I Think It's Gonna Rain Today

9. Easy As That (Live)

10. Out Of Time

11. Who's Been Sleeping In My Bed

12. Miss You Fever

13. Handbags And Gladrags

14. Rock And Roll Soldiers (Live)

x

Track List: Rock 'N' Roll Soldier: Anthology 1970-2004

1. Trouble

2. Blues As Blues Can Get

3. Stormy Monday

4. Language Of The Heart

5. Handbags And Gladrags

7. Sitting On Top Of The World

10. Tough On Me Tough On You

11. On The Beach

13. Bewitched

14. All Or Nothing

15. Glory Bound

16. Out Of Time

x

Track List: Farlowe That

1. Trouble

2. Sending Me Angels

3. A Matter Of Time

4. Let's Get Together

5. I'll Leave The Light On

6. Ain't No Big Deal

7. Lonesome Whistle

8. As Long I Can See The Light

9. Sitting On Top Of The World

10. Living It Down

11. Nina

12. I'll Sing The Blues For You

13. Borderline

14. Only You

15. (Standing On) Shaky Ground (Live)

x

Track List: The R&B Years

1. I Remember

2. Push Push

3. Girl Trouble

4. Itty Bitty Pieces

5. Just A Dream

6. What You Gonna Do

7. Hey Hey Hey Hey

8. Hound Dog

9. Buzz With The Fuzz

10. You're The One

11. Voodoo

12. Think

13. Lipstick Traces

14. Don't Play That Song

15. Rockin' Pneumonia

16. Baby Make It Soon

17. Cuttin It

18. North South East West

19. My Way Of Giving

x

Track List: Born Again

1. Into the Night (feat. The Thunderbirds)

2. Starting All Over Again (feat. The Thunderbirds)

3. Lonely Eyes (feat. The Thunderbirds)

4. One Night Stand (feat. The Thunderbirds)

5. Ain't Got No Money (feat. The Thunderbirds)

6. I'm Yours (feat. The Thunderbirds)

7. I've Been Born Again (feat. The Thunderbirds)

8. Living Ain't Easy Without You (feat. The Thunderbirds)

9. Never Too Old (feat. The Thunderbirds)

10. End of the Line (feat. The Thunderbirds)

11. I Stayed Away Too Long (feat. The Thunderbirds)

12. Man of the World (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

13. We Can Work It Out (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

14. Jealous Kind (Live) (Bonus Track)

x

Track List: Out of the Blue

1. I Ain't Superstitious (feat. The Thunderbirds)

2. Gambler's Blues (feat. The Thunderbirds)

3. Them That's Got It (feat. The Thunderbirds)

4. Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City (feat. The Thunderbirds)

5. It's All Wrong (feat. The Thunderbirds)

6. Key to My Kingdom (feat. The Thunderbirds)

7. The Thrill Has Gone (feat. The Thunderbirds)

8. Watch Your Step (feat. The Thunderbirds)

9. All the Way Lover (The Thunderbirds)

10. Shakey Ground (feat. The Thunderbirds)

11. Circles Round the Sun (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

12. Medicated Goo (feat. The Thunderbirds) (Bonustrack)

13. Out of Time (1991 Re-Recorded) (Bonustrack)

x

Track List: 14 Things To Thinks About

1. Think

3. Lipstick Traces

5. That's No Big Thing

6. Don't Play That Song

7. Looking For You

8. It's All Over Now, Baby Blue

9. I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself

10. Rockin' Pneumonia

11. Why Don't You Change Your Ways

12. My Girl Josephine

13. Yesterday

14. Don't Just Look At Me

15. In The Midnight Hour

18. Who Can I Turn To ?

19. The Fool

20. Treat Her Good

21. Out Of Time

22. Baby Make It Soon

24. My Way Of Giving

26. Paint It Black

Comments

Report as inappropriate
billiot.vond a
True story !! It is hurricane season at its heights!!!
Report as inappropriate
David B if you get the chance go see the Voice still Fantastic Farlowe
Report as inappropriate
I love it!!!! Is that skat signing?
Report as inappropriate
I'm surprised Pandora found this obscure great song
Report as inappropriate
What a pleasant surprise
Report as inappropriate
jeanjacque3
Blue-Eyed Soul thats Hard to the Core!
Report as inappropriate
Love his sound.

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