What happens when you mix what is - arguably - the world's most interesting record company, with an anarchist manic-depressive rock music historian polymath, and a method of dissemination which means that a daily rock-music magazine can be almost instantaneous?

Most of this blog is related in some way to the music, books and films produced by Gonzo Multimedia, but the editor has a grasshopper mind and so also writes about all sorts of cultural issues which interest him, and which he hopes will interest you as well.

Wednesday, 29 March 2017


Rob Ayling, yer Gonzo Grande Fromage, writes: 

"Thom the World poet is an old mate of mine from way back in my history. Even pre-dating Voiceprint, when I was running "Otter Songs" and Thom's poetry tapes and guest appearances with Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth and Mother Gong are well known and highly regarded. It just felt right to include a daily poem from Thom on our Gonzo blog and when I approached him to do so, he replied within seconds!!! Thom is a great talent and just wants to spread poetry, light and positive energy across the globe. If we at Gonzo can help him do that - why not?"

would you offer her the moon?If the frames
cost more than the images within-what price fame?
When the people in your poems demand their own voice
is there room enough in these lines for every choice?
Eye cannot claim to be nor see how babies see,nor elders/
still less indigenous or different cultures.And my sex
is no carte blanche to pontificate @large.But i do..
My life engages you and all who may just read,respond,create
You do not have to agree,nor even like.Response is golden!
Your creativity platinum!And you can remain believer,atheist,agnostic
when it comes to art,music,poetry or life itself(and its representation!..
Censorship shows who owns art.Figleafs and Popes.Buddhist sculptures&Taliban.
Palmyra and ISIS.Hitler valued art so much he stole it.Mussolini authorized bad art.
Many paintings will not survive the marketplace.Value is determined by sellers,not owners
Van Gogh sold one-to his brother,Theo.Picasso,Dali,Warhol sold everything.
Some art will offend you.It needs to live,to throw light and shade on our lives.
The narrator owns their own voice,but not the subject matter.You who read this now-
go out and write and draw and paint and dance your way through this battlefield world.
If you are ignored,and survive,you have won.Just ask Thom.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017


Binky Womack

Womack Style

Review by G. W. Hill
Binky Womack might have lived in the shadow of his more famous uncle Bobby, but he's not lacking in the talent department at all. This album shows off a lot of that classic soul sound blended with more modern rock Binky Womack plays a mean guitar, and it really gets to shine here. I'd say that in a lot of ways, the man shares a lot of musical territory with Prince. You can't argue with that pedigree, the Womack family business delivered with some Prince sensibility.
Track by Track Review
Sunday Morning
This is part rock music and part old school soul. I like the guitar sound on this, but in some ways this feels a bit over-produced. Still, it's a solid tune.
Just Enough
Built on a slow soul meets pop music groove, this is tasty stuff.
Nobody Loves Me Like You
Here we get a slow moving soul grind that's just so classic in sound and motif. It's such a great tune.
Me And My Guitar
As you might expect, there is some cool guitar built into this thing. It's one part classic soul and one part guitar based alternative rock. It's all class.
Malibu Nights
This is a classy, smooth soul number. It has a lot of jazz in the mix. It's slow and just so sultry.
Love Addict
Bobby Womack is heard on backing vocals here. Snoop Dogg is also featured on this thing. The cut is another killer soul journey. I dig the rap on this cut.
Must Be Nice
There is no big change here, but instead this is a classic sounding piece of soul music. I like the blend of vocals and the various layers of them that are all over this thing.
When You're Wrong
This is more of a rocker. It's a nice change and a good tune. it's just plain fun. There is some great funk in the mix here, too.
Here Womack covers John Mayer. In a lot of ways this really makes me think of Prince. It's a cool slow rocker with some great guitar work.
I'm In Love
I really like this rocker. It's a lot more modern in texture. It's another that makes me think of Prince quite a bit. Sure, there is still some classic soul in the mix, but this is newer in texture and delivery.
Love Is
This is a much harder rocking song. The guitars go to eleven on this. It's part Lenny Kravitz and part Prince.
Put Something Down On It
Wow! This is almost heavy metal. It pounds out with screaming guitar and is just so cool. Again, I think of Lenny Kravitz here, but this is much harder edged than that. This is a great way to end things in style.

Womack Style
CD - £9.99



Various Artists

Rockin' the City of Angels written by Douglas Harr

Review by G. W. Hill

This book is something very special. A good tag-line for this would be "come for the pictures, stay for the stories." The photography in this book is exceptional and will be sure to pull you into the tome. The whole package, though, is great. This is a heavy duty book printed on exceptional paper. That makes it very heavy. It's also the perfect thing to have on your coffee table. You can pick it up and open to any page and find something to grab your attention.
Once you get beyond the pictures, though, there is a whole different level here. The main thing that comes through in the text is Douglas Harr's passion for music. I think that's the thing that draws people into playing music and covering music. My most recent book (Poetry of the Air: A Collection of Love Letters from Musicians to Music) was centered around that kind of passion for the art. This is almost a different angle to that same story. It's one man's personal journey through the music about which he's passionate.

Not all the bands covered here are prog acts. A lot of them are, though. Jethro Tull, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Yes, Camel, Kansas, King Crimson, ELP and even PFM are all covered. Other acts like Fleetwood Mac, Alice Cooper, David Bowie, Queen, AC/DC, Supertramp, The Rolling Stones, The Who and Elton John make the list. Each band gets a bit written about them and their appearance in LA, along with some recommendations for music and video to buy to complete the experience.

You could say that the selection of musical acts is a bit odd. The thing is, it reflects Harr's personal taste. It goes back to that passion. That makes this a personal glimpse into one man's passion in a lot of ways. That also makes it intimate and very real. However you line this book up, though, it's well worth having. I can't speak highly enough about it.

Rockin' The City of Angels
Book - £50.00


And to continue carrying on the YES name for Chris, who asked that you, his friend and replacement on bass Billy Sherwood and the rest of the band ...

Alan White: I think it comes down to the fact that we made a decision a long time ago to create music that we loved first and foremost. I can't even count ...


Union (2CD)
2CD - £7.99

THE GONZO TRACK OF THE DAY: Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band - German TV 1972


Don Van Vliet (born Don Glen Vliet; January 15, 1941 – December 17, 2010) was an American musician, singer-songwriter, artist and poet known by the stage name Captain Beefheart. His musical work..

Don Van Vliet (born Don Glen Vliet; January 15, 1941 – December 17, 2010) was an American musician, singer-songwriter, artist and poet known by the stage name Captain Beefheart. His musical work..

Monday, 27 March 2017

THE GONZO TRACK OF THE DAY: Nico - All Tomorrows Parties (Live at the Preston Warehouse, UK, 1982)

CD - £9.99

John Cale on Transforming Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’ Into a Modern Classic

Leonard Cohen's “Hallelujah” was a complex, nearly indecipherable musical riddle that flummoxed even its composer. Originally released as a ...



Rob Ayling, yer Gonzo Grande Fromage, writes: 

"Thom the World poet is an old mate of mine from way back in my history. Even pre-dating Voiceprint, when I was running "Otter Songs" and Thom's poetry tapes and guest appearances with Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth and Mother Gong are well known and highly regarded. It just felt right to include a daily poem from Thom on our Gonzo blog and when I approached him to do so, he replied within seconds!!! Thom is a great talent and just wants to spread poetry, light and positive energy across the globe. If we at Gonzo can help him do that - why not?"

Mindy Reed invited me to live @Recycled Reads
so i do,when Open Mikes are open
to every person hungry to learn
from within the covers of a BOOK.
There is something clear and smiling
about the welcome bookstores offer
Susan Post of BOOK WOMAN
has kept her book flag flying
Little lights that open minds to new discoveries
Sites of PAPERBACKS PLUS and other ghost bookstores
Today,Lone Star Literary Life ranked Austin #1
"bookish destination"in Texas.Cult of Book is growing
Ebooks are being abandoned as folk return to texts

and every body knows what type of learning ..is best!


WITH one foot in 60s psychedelic rock and the other in epic soundscapes, Hawkwind, featuring founder member Dave Brock, brought their latest show ...

Space Ritual Live - Special Edition
2DVD/2CD - £29.99

Space Ritual Live 
2CD1DVD - £19.99

Sunday, 26 March 2017


From Burbank, CA comes the latest release from singer/songwriter/producer Binky Womack, nephew of the legendary Bobby Womack. Binky's new album titled "Womack Style" was released through the U.K. label, Gonzo Multimedia. His new twelve-song release begins with the bright, up-tempo soul/pop beats of "Sunday Morning."Binky gets his R&B groove moving on "Just Enough," then pays tribute to the great Sam Cooke with the smooth vocals of "Nobody Loves Me Like You." Snoop Dogg lends a hand with the background vocals of "Love Addict" as Binky finds the perfect setting for his funky R&B style. Then he steps out into a new light with the up-tempo rock number "When You're Wrong," before reworking John Mayer's "Gravity" into a great soulful blues number. He finishes up with a modernized version of the classic Bobby Womack tune "I'm In Love" and then plugs in for the electrifying rock of "Put Something Down On It" as Binky showcases his skills on the guitar. To find out more about Binky Womack and his latest release "Womack Style," please visit binkywomackla.com.

THE GONZO TRACK OF THE DAY: Peru Amazon Ayahuasca Shamanic Songs

Being Sunday I always post sacred music. The name of the deity may change, or even the deity Him/Herself but the spirit remains the same


Strange Fruit is a unique two-hour radio show exploring the world of underground, strange and generally neglected music. All shows are themed and all shows set out to give the most hardened of sound-hounds some new delight to sample.

The show is also unique in providing homework for undergraduate students on North West Kent College’s Foundation Degree in Professional Writing (who dig up many of the odd facts featured in the links between tracks).

Neil Nixon, the founder and presenter of the show has released a book about rare albums for Gonzo Multimedia.

The show is broadcast on Miskin Radio every Sunday from 10-00-midnight.

Mannequin Pussy:  Kiss
The Green Question Mark:  Pegasus
The Damned:  Plan 9 Channel 7
Bedlam’s Offspring:  The Thrill is Gone
Jolly Rogers and the Poppitteers:  Beautiful Lady in the Sky
Brightblack Morning Light:  Black Feather, Wishes Rise
Lambchop:  Paperback Bible
Wyclef Jean:  Rough Boy
Mbilia Bel  Mayaval
ZZ Top:   Sure Got Cold After the Rain Fell
Us and Them:  When I Was Walking
Forgotten Thymes:  Won’t you be With Me?
Es Shades:  Anyday Anywhere
Gene Vincent:  Flea Brain
The Human League:  Sound of the Crowd
The Handless Organist:  Turn your Radio on
Paul McCartney and Wings:  Loup (First Indian on the Moon)
P J Harvey:  A Line in the Sand
Cranium Pie:  Mechanisms Part IV:
The Bombay Royale:  Houghly Night Patrol
The Marauders:  Just Times Between Us
Green  Beans:  Superstition
Big Joe Long:  For a While
Sparks:  Bon Voyage


Rob Ayling, yer Gonzo Grande Fromage, writes: 

"Thom the World poet is an old mate of mine from way back in my history. Even pre-dating Voiceprint, when I was running "Otter Songs" and Thom's poetry tapes and guest appearances with Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth and Mother Gong are well known and highly regarded. It just felt right to include a daily poem from Thom on our Gonzo blog and when I approached him to do so, he replied within seconds!!! Thom is a great talent and just wants to spread poetry, light and positive energy across the globe. If we at Gonzo can help him do that - why not?"

and spiral nebulae,oceans,waves,energies without name
If we return "as if always to the same point in time"
Groundhog Day.Deja Vu.Past Lives Regression.
If all Theories are true,and all conjecture solid evidence
Then we are in motion always-kinetic ,accelerative
@various rates of random motion.When we stop,we die
and a new state of being -dust,ashes,bones,is reduced to beginnings..
Spiral staircases.Open circles.Galaxies.Constellations-we are part of this
Always in motion,wave upon wave upon wave/spiraling round one sun
as if in time limited decay.As if each and every day were one rung on a ladder

And every night a window to the stars.


The Animals frontman Eric Burdon has paid tribute to Chuck Berry, saying his influence on music was so important that “anybody who was in the world ...


Beat Beat Beat - Eric Burdon
DVD - £4.99

Friday, 24 March 2017

Gonzo Magazine #227

Gonzo Magazine #227
In this rockin’ and a rollin’ issue we say goodbye to Chuck Berry, Doug goes to see Zucchero, John sees Hendrix in Bristol (not really), Alan writes about Beaver and Krause with his mate Phil, we introduce you to our very own druid, and Jon nearly gets charged with a crime of moral turpitude.
Groovy huh?
It’s all free!
And there are radio shows from Mack Maloney, Friday Night Progressive, and Strange Fruit. We also have columns from all sorts of folk including Roy Weard, Mr Biffo, Neil Nixon and the irrepressible Corinna. There is also a collection of more news, reviews, views, interviews and pademelons outside zoos (OK, nothing to do with small marsupials who have escaped from captivity, but I got carried away with things that rhymed with OOOOS) than you can shake a stick at. And the best part is IT's ABSOLUTELY FREE!!!
This issue features:
The Beatles, Michael Jackson, Johnny Marr, The The, Morrissey, Jon Anderson, Yes, Nick Mason, Ronnie Wood, Prince, Black Sabbath, Lily Collins, Phil Collins, Strange Fruit, Friday Night Progressive, Canterbury Sans Frontieres, Mack Maloney's Mystery Hour, Jeremy Smith's Seven Deadly Sins, Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry, James Henry Cotton, John Lever, Tommy LiPuma, Joey Alves, James Martin Pacelli McGuinness (Irish: Séamus Máirtín Pacelli Mag Aonghusa), Norman Colin Dexter, OBE, Evan Johns, Don Warden, Joan Elise Sledge, Tony Lorenzo, John Thomas "Sib" Hashian, PC Keith Palmer, Tony Ashton with Jon Lord, Ian Paice, Bernie Marsden, Micky Moody, Neil Murray, John Entwhistle, Zak Starkey (Ringo’s son), Z, Gastank, Lutz Ulbrich featuring Nico, Arthur Brown's Kingdom Come, Atomic Rooster, Mary Hopkin, Adelmo “Zucchero” Fornaciari, Beaver and Krause, John Brodie-Good, Jimi Hendrix, Kev Rowland, Aborym, Accept, Agnostic Front, Sepultura, Ashenspire, Mr Biffo, Hawkwind,  Martin Springett, John Lennon, George Harrison, Kurt Cobain, Andrew Ridgeley, Andy Phillipson, Neil Nixon, Sandra Cross
Read the previous few issues of Gonzo Weekly:
Issue 225-6 (The Rites of Spring)
Issue 224 (Hibernal)
Issue 223 (Beatles)
Issue 222 (Cruise to the Edge)
Issue 221 (Deke Leonard)
Issue 220 (Larry Wallis)
Issue 219 (Martin Stone)
Issue 218 (Mark Reiser tribute)
Issue 217 (Dig Doug Harr)
Issue 215-6 (New Year 2017)
Issue 213-4 (Yule 2016)
Issue 212 (Greg Lake)
Issue 211 (Phil Collins)
Issue 210 (Nico)
Issue 209 (Pink Fairies)
Issue 208 (Leonard Cohen)
Issue 207 (Tibet)
Issue 206 (Raz)
Issue 205 (Pink Fairies)
Issue 204 (Gas Tank)
Issue 203 (The Gardening Club)
Issue 202 (Gong)
Issue 201 (Auld Man's Baccie)
Issue 200 (Deep Purple)
All issues from #70 can be downloaded at www.gonzoweekly.com if you prefer. If you have problems downloading, just email me and I will add you to the Gonzo Weekly dropbox. The first 69 issues are archived there as well. Information is power chaps, we have to share it!
You can download the magazine in pdf form HERE:

SPECIAL NOTICE: If you, too, want to unleash the power of your inner rock journalist, and want to join a rapidly growing band of likewise minded weirdos please email me at jon@eclipse.co.uk The more the merrier really.



Bob Dylan doesn't give many interviews. To make up for lost time, he sat down for a massive Q&A with author Bill Flanagan, which was posted on his ...


Advanced Archeology Review Radio - Episode #26: Guest Merrell Fankhauser


Merrell Fankhauser has led one of the most diverse and interesting careers in music. He was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and moved to California when he was 13 years old. Merrell went on to become on..

Merrell Wayne Fankhauser (born December 23, 1943, Louisville, Kentucky, United States) is an American singer, songwriter and guitarist, who was most active in the 1960s and 1970s with bands ..


Rob Ayling, yer Gonzo Grande Fromage, writes: 

"Thom the World poet is an old mate of mine from way back in my history. Even pre-dating Voiceprint, when I was running "Otter Songs" and Thom's poetry tapes and guest appearances with Daevid Allen, Gilli Smyth and Mother Gong are well known and highly regarded. It just felt right to include a daily poem from Thom on our Gonzo blog and when I approached him to do so, he replied within seconds!!! Thom is a great talent and just wants to spread poetry, light and positive energy across the globe. If we at Gonzo can help him do that - why not?"

with love,care and attention.Mendicants mending
Doctors doctoring.Wounds stitched and grief expressed-
in prayers and love ,invocations and affirmations shared..
This is always after the event and is rarely preventive
Bandages applied to open wounds-of trust,of peace,of safety
Spaces between us need to be re-consecrated-to be holy again
Not guarded with guns but with love and prayers
No Mars nor Jove nor Jupiter-more laughter,smiles,goodwill
To know that all beings present have our best intent in hand
And to live  with all who value life,love and the pursuit of happiness


THE GONZO TRACK OF THE DAY: Badfinger 'Come And Get It' HD)


Say No More
CD - £9.99

Thursday, 23 March 2017



Ant Bee di William James, PR per passione

His  passion for progressive rock and avant garde music, combined with a strong expertise in the field of public relations in music, makes William James one of the most creative and original characters from the world stage. With his company Glass Onyon PR William, a native of Charlotte in North Carolina, has worked with many famous artists in their careers and even managing to express himself as a musician thanks to ANT-BEE project, full of different influences and inspirations.

Currently William, who has also written successful rock biographies, is currently doing publicity for Jon Anderson, original frontman of Yes, and recording background vocals for a new cd by Jon called Zamran, a psychedelic new age music project on which James is especially keen. We interviewed him to learn more about his music career and his promoter activity ...

Let's start from the name of your musical project: ANT-BEE: What does exactly mean and when did you get the inspiration?
The name came from 2 different sources – one was from Capt. Beeheart's song “Ant Man Bee” from the “Trout Mask Replica” album – one of the most innovative and avant garde albums of all time. Also there was a very popular TV show in the US from the 1960's called “The Andy Griffith Show” where the story was based in North Carolina. The show had a matronly auntie called Aunt Bee – I was born in North Carolina so it's a bit if a play on that.

For your four albums you had very prestigious guests, including Daevid Allen and Gilli Smith from Gong, members of Mothers of Invention, Jan Akkerman...What were you able to learn from those musicians?
Most the guest artists that have appeared on my albums through the years were music heroes of mine when I was growing up and so it has been a great honor to work/record with them! I've had the tremendous fortune to have such legendary music artists record on my albums like Deavid Allen, Gilli Smyth, Peter Banks, Jan Akkerman, Michael Bruce, Neal Smith, Don Preston, Bunk Gardner, Jimmy Carl Black, Zoot Horn Rollo, Napoleon Murphy Brock, Moogy Klingman, and others. It would take a book to discuss all I have learned, but each artist has brought an exciting and interesting new element to my work. A lot of the material was written with the guest artist in mind – not just them recording a part on one of my compositions like a session player. For instance the Daevid Allen and Gilli Smyth material is very Gong-inspired. With Jan Akkerman's piece “Mannah”, I tried to keep the flute part (which was actually played on mellotron) similar to what something Thijs Van Leer would have done on a Focus piece. Peter Banks's tracks are sort of YES-ish in spirit. Tracks with Don Preston, Bunk Gardner, Jimmy Carl Black and Motorhead Sherwood are very Mothers-esque... and so on.

Peter Banks from Yes collaborated with you for the song Endless Journey. What was your impression of him and did you always like Yes music?
It was a great honor to work and know the late Peter Banks. He was very suppotive of my music – possibly more than any other well known artist I have worked with. He sincerely enjoyed my music. So to have him record on 2 tracks on my last album “Electronic Church Muzik” was fantastic! I also helped him write his autobiography called “Beyond & Before” (Golden Treasures, USA)
I have been a major YES fan since 1972 when “Fragile” came out. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would record with Peter Banks, and for that matter Jon Anderson. I have also been very fortunate to do publicity for many of the members of YES – Jon Anderson, Rick Wakeman, Tony Kaye, Billy Sherwood, Geoff Downes, Patrick Moraz and Peter Banks!
One of the greatest honors has been recording some vocals and percussion for Jon Anderson. It is a dream come true for me – something I would have never imagined in a million years! I did some background vocals for an epic piece by Jon called “OPEN” in 2011. Since then I have also recorded some background vocals and percussion (tablas, african drums etc) on a piece called “Day of Days” which is unreleased at present. I also contributed background vocals to another unreleased track called “Spirit Grounding”. I am currently recording vocals for a large form piece called “Zamran”, which is the follow-up to Jon's first solo album “Olias of Sunhillow”. Again this is a great honor and truly one of the the highlights of my music career!

Your most recent cd, Electronic Chruch Muzik, was out in 2011. Do you plan to make another album soon and which guests would you like to have?
I have some ideas floating around for another album – it could be a meditational album call “OM” or a jazz-fusion-avant garde album of ANT-BEE covers of Sun Ra, Coltrane, Miles and Pharoah Sanders tracks – it would feature Don Preston and Bunk Gardner of the Mothers of Invention. I am putting together a “Best of” album for release on GONZO Multimedia UK – which will feature different mixes and edited previously released material – still thinking on a name.

The style of your music is certainly very bizarre. What is your ideal audience for it?
I believe that my audience has to have some sort musical education or at least an open mind about adventurous music. Plus having some appreciation for the music artists that have influenced me through the years – Frank Zappa, YES, The Beatles, Beach Boys, ELP, Capt. Beefheart, GONG, Grand Funk, Alice Cooper, Santana, John McLaughlin, Miles Davis, 10cc, Focus, Sun Ra, Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd, T. Rex, Bowie, Faust, Can, Popol Vuh, Magma, King Crimson, Le Orme, on and on and on – all are influences on my music – you can take one or more of these artists' influences, put them in my musical blender and out comes ANT-BEE muzik!

You also work as musical writer. Did you ever think to write a novel?
Before I became a musician I always wanted to be a comedy writer for comedians and movies – but never really pursued it... not sure I would ever write a novel but you never know if the spirit hits me.

For years you promoted many great artist with your publicity company. Which one impressed you the most?
It's been an honor to do publicity for many of my childhood musical heroes through my company Glass Onyon PR. I would say that the two I am most proud of representing is Jon Anderson of YES and Greg Lake of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, who sadly passed away in Dec 2016. Both were my two favorite vocalists when I was a teen in the early 70's. So working with them was/is a dream come true. I had worked many years for Greg Lake and he was a really wonderful person and one of the greatest singers of all time – a true music legend! Greg was always very appreciative of my work for him – I truly miss him. I have had the great honor of being Jon Anderson's personal publicist for close to 6 years now. Jon and his wife Jane are very beautiful and amazing souls! It is always very exciting to work with Jon... he has so many amazing ideas and constantly pushing the boundaries of music!

What do you think of the actual music scene? Are there any bands that you like?
For me there are not many new artists that interest me, but there is so much music already recorded through the ages that I have a lifetime of music to research, discover and listen to – every day I discover on YouTube some new obscured German, Italian or French avant garde/Prog music ensemble from the 70's which I in turn will explore more deeply etc. That being said I do rep several new artists that have a lot of interesting releases like Zero Times Everything, YANG, Ape Shifter, Ben Craven, Leon Alversado, The Raptor's Trail, Stick Men, and several others. 

For more information: 


With My Favourite Vegetables
CD - £7.99

Lunar Musik
CD - £7.99

Pure Electric Honey
SCD - £9.99


... Yes, at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction ceremony and that Geddy Lee of Rush would be filling in for the late Chris Squire on Roundabout.

Alan White played in a giant seashell that would open electronically. Except that one night it didn't. There wasn't much air in there. We could see his ...


Union (2CD)
2CD - £7.99

Album review: RICK WAKEMAN & TONY ASHTON – Gas Tank


Album review: RICK WAKEMAN & TONY ASHTON – Gas Tank

Rick Wakeman & Tony Ashton - Gas Tank
Gonzo Multimedia [Release date 03.03.17]
Where can you hear Rick Wakeman accompanying Rick Parfitt, Alvin Lee and  Phil Lynott  and – no – it’s not at the Pearly Gates.  Back in the early 1980s there was a Channel 4 TV show called ‘Gas Tank’ that ran for six episodes.
Hosted by Rick Wakeman and Tony Ashton (of Ashton, Gardner and Dyke) it was like an eighties “Later with Jools Holland” but not as annoying.  Rick was a far more engaging and certainly less smarmy host.  Wakeman and the house band would accompany any number of rock royalty – including John Entwistle, Eric Burdon and Chris Farlowe – and whilst there was an emphasis on cover versions and “rock and roll” there were a few originals thrown in for good measure.
Wakeman would also interview the artists but these sections are omitted from this strictly music based 3-CD collection although retaining some introductions.  Several of these tracks are priceless: for example Phil Lynott with John Sykes on ‘Growing Up’ and ‘The Man’s A Fool’.
You may well ask: where are the visuals?  Well, last year there was a PledgeMusic campaign when you could obtain a handsome limited edition box set which included the CDs and DVDs, also available separately.  Although signed, the 3-CD set would have set you back the best part of forty quid.
It’s a pity a DVD of the highlights wasn’t included in this latest package which – like many Gonzo Multimedia releases – is terribly packaged.  The inlay is awful with just a selection of photos and the track listing but no backstory.  Where is Malcolm Dome when you really need him?
A quick gander at YouTube reveals several clips including one where Rick Parfitt sheds light on the beginnings of Quo and their ethos, with an amusing interlude when he divulges to Rick the name of his original band.
A curio, and worth checking out for completists and those interested in specific artists.  And, wait a minute, there are even four tracks featuring Steve Hackett, one called “Hackett’s Bogie”, and two when he plays harmonica with Suzi Quatro.  Priceless.  ***
Review by David Randall
David Randall presents ‘Assume The Position’ on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio every Sunday at 22:00 GMT.
Gospels (Deluxe Box Set)
BS - £157.00

Simply Acoustic
CD/DVD - £10.99

Country Airs
CD - £9.99

Rainbow Suite
CD - £11.99

Out There
CD/DVD - £9.99

The Phantom of the Opera
2CD - £19.99

Live at the Winterland Theatre 1975
CD - £9.99

Time Machine
CD - £9.99

The Two Sides of Yes
2CD - £10.99

Made in Cuba
CD/DVD - £10.99

Grumpy Old Picture Show
CD/DVD - £9.99

The Myths and Legends of King Arthur (2CD)
2CD - £15.00

Can You Hear Me?
CD - £7.99

Gole/Almost Live in Europe
2CD - £9.99

Fields of Green/Always With You
2CD - £9.99

Live in Lincoln Cathedral
2CD - £7.99

Live At The Maltings 1976
DVD/CD - £9.99

Caped Crusader- Rick Wakeman in the 1970s
Book - £14.99

Video Vaults
6DVD box - £85.00

Cirque Surreal 
CD - £7.99

The Mixture
CD - £7.99

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