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Big Blue (almost live) 1988

'Big Blue' were a diverse accumulation of some of the most versatile musicians perhaps ever to come together as a group and adhere to a rigid schedule of rehearsal producing a sound which was literally hailed as the 'Next Fleetwood Mac' 

Big Blue were:  Mark Tucker: Guitars  Stuart Russell: Guitars: Joy Mulholland: Vocals Keyboards  Robert Darnell: Vocals Percussion Flutes and an accumulation of other 'jingles' Rob James: Bass Guitar  Pete Coleman: Percussion  Dave Roberts: Saxaphone Flutes and  Nigel H Seymour: The main songwriter  Vocals Acoustic Guitars and  Keyboards.

It all began in a small room in Joy and Stuarts home. Pete had his drums set up there so Mark and I turned up to talk to them all with a prospect of beginning a new band.  Our first rehearsal together told us that Pete on percussion was 'rock solid' and could produce the drum sounds to the sort of music I was writing.

Over the weeks the band seemed to increase in numbers. First it was Rob James Marks old colleague from the 'Silent Movie' days

Rob was a great looking guy and had that simple and effective 'way' of producing the right riffs for the bass guitar.  He would stand there with his  elegant style  and 'produce the goods'.

Eventually Robert Darnell decided to commit to the rehearsal schedule. 'Bob' was for me one of the most gifted musicians I have ever met! though his worry about learning his vocal parts would see Bob regularly driving between Bristol and Taunton at variable times of the day and night in order to practise them in the car and perfect them. 

I recall Joy Mulholland arriving at my home to do a vocal session.  Joy was a wonderful vivacious person with the voice to match!  In the years since 'Big Blue' and having listened to copious singers through the world  Joy Mulholland remains the only voice for me.

She walked into my house and sat down. I announced that I had written a new song 'Over you (Like a woman) ' She nodded and joined me at the piano.  I sang the song through phrase by phrase and showed her the lyrics.  After perhaps only two run through's Joy stood up and performed the song in it's entirety.  The recording says the rest!

Without Mark Tucker nothing would have happened. Mark remains one of the most incredible guitarists and producers who I worked with in my younger days and indeed as recently as 2006. 'Tucks' would come up with production and amazing classically influenced guitar riffs. I could sing some obscure tune to him from my head and Mark would simply reproduce it on guitar 'to fit'.

Dave Roberts turned up at Joy's invitation. He arrived with an armoury of foot pedals Sax and flute cases. Dave loved Big Blue material and would always prefer some pretty obscure song we had tried like  'Judah read tonight' Although  I am the writer of this song  don't ask me what it is about because I simply wouldn't be able to tell you.

Dave always looked 'cool' on stage and if any pictures were taken of the band it was usually Dave who got the limelight because of all the saxes dangling around him.

Pete Coleman the drummer was as solid as a rock!   I used to think it was nigh on impossible for Pete to play out of time.

Some of my songs were devilish to keep in tempo for a drummer like for example 'Hold You Again'  But Pete seemed to be at ease with this aspect which was something  I always marvelled at.

Stuart Joys partner bought a 'rock influence' to Big Blue. His style of guitar in my view was 'rock' and complemented Marks technical guitar work required for the song.  Stuart would enter a blazing rock guitar solo after Mark had set the scene and the result was 'very exciting'.

At times there would be two blazing guitars each complimenting the other and on occasions like these we were all floating on a different planet.

During the recording of the 'almost Live ' album we had all decided to go to the pub for a break.. I recall we all stayed later than we should have and by the time we arrived back at the studio we were all pretty well 'drunk' .

I'm not sure who's idea it was to record 'Over you (Like a woman)' but the whole thing was done with all musicians set up 'live' on the studio floor.  We all stood there and simply played our parts.  It was one take.  This one particular song remains for me immortal.

Track List

Captain Beakie
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Over you (Like A Woman)
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Could Be Love
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Upset my heart
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Get it together
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