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Anthony Post subject:
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Joined: 17 Jan 2004
Posts: 984
Location: Melbourne Australia

I think Blue In The Morning would be brilliant in concert, a great song to open the show

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PostPosted:Wed Mar 07, 2007 13:00 pm
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SpartyScott Post subject:
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Lead Guitar
Joined: 15 Oct 2004
Posts: 661
Location: Gahanna, Ohio USA

My 2 cents on Romany:

It was a very well produced, slick album with fantastic instrumental performances and very good harmony vocals. Wisely, the Hollies did a lot of harmonizing, almost like in the old days, so that Mikael's voice blended in with Terry & Tony and really did capture the "Hollies sound." Ah, if only the group had given the 2/3 of the Distant Light album which failed to use harmonies that kind of treatment. But I digress.

As for the instrumental work, I think it's clear that Rickfors added a lot of punch to their sound. With him, the Hollies could do the dual-lead guitar stuff that, frankly, could previously only be done with Tony double-tracking himself. That obviously can't be duplicated on stage, so Rickfors made the group a much better live act, instrumentally speaking, than the Clarke lineup had. Besides guitar, Rickfors also played the harmonica, keyboards, and bass, making him probably the most well rounded musician the group has ever had.

The Romany album, though, didn't sound like Allan Clarke, and that's probably why a lot of people didn't like it. Ron Richards thought he didn't hear hit singles, so he reportedly passed on producing it. Well, that was all to the good, because the production values sound top-notch.

In the U.S., the featured song was Magic Woman Touch, which is almost perfect rock-pop and if it was a new song released today by a popular group (I mean a popular group with today's teenagers) it would almost surely go straight up the charts and be a big hit. For my taste, it's TONS better than their first single selection, The Baby. Wisely, The Baby stayed in the can in the U.S., because it doesn't sound like a hit to my very American ears. On second thought, I think that The Baby did get a US release, but it failed to become a hit.

I didn't like Courage of Your Convictions, because I don't like like the plethera of Long Cool Woman soundalikes. If Long Cool Woman / Hey Willy had never existed, though, I'd have loved this song.

On the Epic label release, Lizzy And The Rainman isn't included, which is fine. Since I never heard the song until I had owned Romany for a full 15 years, to this day it still sounds strange to me to hear it on the album. It probably should have been a b-side in the US, though, because it's a pleasant enough sounding song and I always like Terry's lead vocals. What's funny is that I burned a custom CD of the Romany album using the U.S. running order, and that's the CD of this album that I'm most comfortable with. I guess I'm just a creature of habit. And besides, most people who've heard both the US and the UK mixes prefer the U.S. version. Epic got it right.

Aside from Magic Woman Touch, the three songs Won't We Feel Good That Morning, Slow Down, and Blue in the Morning are all fabulous rockers and would be highlights on just about any album. Those four songs taken as a group can hold their own with the top four tracks from any artists' early-70's albums (OK, aside from Badfinger's Straight Up album, but that's just because that's my favorite album of all time).

Delaware Taggett and the Outlaw Boys, Jesus Was a Cross Maker, and the title track Romany are harder to embrace, but are worth the effort. These are, to me, the "artsy" songs on the album - they are not commercial pop music, but are instead more folk-oriented. Let's put it this way - when I'm playing the album, I definitely do not skip past any of these tracks as I often do when playing albums.

As for the rest of the LP, I'm not crazy about Touch, Words Don't Come Easy, or Down River. But, that's a matter of personal preference. The three have just never caught my fancy. Perhaps I just don't think that ballads are Rickfors' strength.

People have complained that the record didn't have group-written songs, aside from one track by Mikael. Well, if the group had better songs in the can, they'd have used them. So don't worry about what the album doesn't have, but instead just listen to what the album DOES have. But why aren't there originals? I guess that the group, who in just over three years had lost its two most visible members (to the public, at least), wanted to seek out the very best songs they could find. And obviously, there was to be no Rickfors/Hicks/Sylvester songwriting team. So they tracked down songs they liked and thought that they could perform well, and the Romany album is what they ended up with. What's wrong with that?

Anyway, they did create an album of self-written material immediately after Romany, and that album is just full of great songs. And look what their label did - it put the LP on the shelf, only to release it a couple of years later long after Rickfors' departure and only in Germany, of all places. I've never understood that move by the label.

I love the Romany album, and the album speaks for itself as a fabulous record. It's comfortably in my top 5 list of all-time Hollies LP's.
PostPosted:Wed Mar 07, 2007 15:05 pm

Last edited by SpartyScott on Wed Mar 07, 2007 16:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
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holliesfan Post subject:
Lead Guitar


Lead Guitar
Joined: 17 Jan 2004
Posts: 519
Location: New Jersey, USA

SpartyScott wrote:

Aside from Magic Woman Touch, the three songs Won't We Feel Good That Morning, Slow Down, and Blue in the Morning are all fabulous rockers and would be highlights on just about any album. Those four songs taken as a group can hold their own with the top four tracks from any artists' early-70's albums.


Man would I love to see these 4 songs make it to a DVD!
PostPosted:Wed Mar 07, 2007 16:06 pm
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Dennis Post subject:
Lead Guitar


Lead Guitar
Joined: 17 Feb 2004
Posts: 773
Location: Los Angeles

SpartyScott wrote:
My 2 cents on Romany:

It was a very well produced, slick album with fantastic instrumental performances and very good harmony vocals. Wisely, the Hollies did a lot of harmonizing, almost like in the old days, so that Mikael's voice blended in with Terry & Tony and really did capture the "Hollies sound." Ah, if only the group had given the 2/3 of the Distant Light album which failed to use harmonies that kind of treatment. But I digress.

As for the instrumental work, I think it's clear that Rickfors added a lot of punch to their sound. With him, the Hollies could do the dual-lead guitar stuff that, frankly, could previously only be done with Tony double-tracking himself. That obviously can't be duplicated on stage, so Rickfors made the group a much better live act, instrumentally speaking, than the Clarke lineup had. Besides guitar, Rickfors also played the harmonica, keyboards, and bass, making him probably the most well rounded musician the group has ever had.

The Romany album, though, didn't sound like Allan Clarke, and that's probably why a lot of people didn't like it. Ron Richards thought he didn't hear hit singles, so he reportedly passed on producing it. Well, that was all to the good, because the production values sound top-notch.

In the U.S., the featured song was Magic Woman Touch, which is almost perfect rock-pop and if it was a new song released today by a popular group (I mean a popular group with today's teenagers) it would almost surely go straight up the charts and be a big hit. For my taste, it's TONS better than their first single selection, The Baby. Wisely, The Baby stayed in the can in the U.S., because it doesn't sound like a hit to my very American ears. On second thought, I think that The Baby did get a US release, but it failed to become a hit.

I didn't like Courage of Your Convictions, because I don't like like the plethera of Long Cool Woman soundalikes. If Long Cool Woman / Hey Willy had never existed, though, I'd have loved this song.

On the Epic label release, Lizzy And The Rainman isn't included, which is fine. Since I never heard the song until I had owned Romany for a full 15 years, to this day it still sounds strange to me to hear it on the album. It probably should have been a b-side in the US, though, because it's a pleasant enough sounding song and I always like Terry's lead vocals. What's funny is that I burned a custom CD of the Romany album using the U.S. running order, and that's the CD of this album that I'm most comfortable with. I guess I'm just a creature of habit. And besides, most people who've heard both the US and the UK mixes prefer the U.S. version. Epic got it right.

Aside from Magic Woman Touch, the three songs Won't We Feel Good That Morning, Slow Down, and Blue in the Morning are all fabulous rockers and would be highlights on just about any album. Those four songs taken as a group can hold their own with the top four tracks from any artists' early-70's albums (OK, aside from Badfinger's Straight Up album, but that's just because that's my favorite album of all time).

Delaware Taggett and the Outlaw Boys, Jesus Was a Cross Maker, and the title track Romany are harder to embrace, but are worth the effort. These are, to me, the "artsy" songs on the album - they are not commercial pop music, but are instead more folk-oriented. Let's put it this way - when I'm playing the album, I definitely do not skip past any of these tracks as I often do when playing albums.

As for the rest of the LP, I'm not crazy about Touch, Words Don't Come Easy, or Down River. But, that's a matter of personal preference. The three have just never caught my fancy. Perhaps I just don't think that ballads are Rickfors' strength.

People have complained that the record didn't have group-written songs, aside from one track by Mikael. Well, if the group had better songs in the can, they'd have used them. So don't worry about what the album doesn't have, but instead just listen to what the album DOES have. But why aren't there originals? I guess that the group, who in just over three years had lost its two most visible members (to the public, at least), wanted to seek out the very best songs they could find. And obviously, there was to be no Rickfors/Hicks/Sylvester songwriting team. So they tracked down songs they liked and thought that they could perform well, and the Romany album is what they ended up with. What's wrong with that?

Anyway, they did create an album of self-written material immediately after Romany, and that album is just full of great songs. And look what their label did - it put the LP on the shelf, only to release it a couple of years later long after Rickfors' departure and only in Germany, of all places. I've never understood that move by the label.

I love the Romany album, and the album speaks for itself as a fabulous record. It's comfortably in my top 5 list of all-time Hollies LP's.


Good points. Rickfors also played congas. If you had witnessed him in concert doing "Words Don't Come Easy", I think your opinion of it would be different. It was absolutely breathtaking live. I love the ballads on the album myself.
I dig the "artsy" songs you mentioned, just for that reason. They are deep, resonant, and vivid. Just beautiful. The title track got FM radio play, my longtime Hollies pal tells me, in Connecticut. But they cut the ending off. Mad The album was listed several times in Billboard's FM radio play page.
"The Baby" was issued in the US in a slightly edited form, and was the last Epic 45 with a picture sleeve.
When I visited Europe in 1974, I found both the "Son of A Rotten Gambler" 45 and the "Out on the Road" LP in a record store in Amsterdam. Needless to say, I was very pleased. Smile
PostPosted:Thu Mar 08, 2007 0:03 am
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James Towill Post subject:
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Joined: 16 Jan 2004
Posts: 928
Location: Dunfermline, Fife

'Words' is a gem. Simple as that! Very Happy

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PostPosted:Thu Mar 08, 2007 17:29 pm
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snowflake Post subject:
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Acoustic Guitar
Joined: 02 Feb 2007
Posts: 149
Location: Delaware, USA

"Romany" is one of my very favorite Hollies albums, and "Words Don't Come Easy", with its haunting melody and lyrics, is definitely one of the best tracks on the album.

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PostPosted:Thu Mar 08, 2007 18:32 pm
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Dennis Post subject:
Lead Guitar


Lead Guitar
Joined: 17 Feb 2004
Posts: 773
Location: Los Angeles

snowflake wrote:
"Romany" is one of my very favorite Hollies albums, and "Words Don't Come Easy", with its haunting melody and lyrics, is definitely one of the best tracks on the album.


Without a doubt.
PostPosted:Thu Mar 08, 2007 22:00 pm
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SpartyScott Post subject:
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Lead Guitar
Joined: 15 Oct 2004
Posts: 661
Location: Gahanna, Ohio USA

Regarding the new EMI release of the album with all the bonus tracks on CD:

Well, I've now heard Papa Rain three times, and I must report that it has yet to grow on me. But because I'm all about the release of vintage Hollies recordings, I'm going to refrain from passing judgment until I listen to it a few more times.

As for the rest, it's great to have the Terry lead vocal on Oh Granny. It's not that I love the song, but I do like having it on an official CD release.

Witchy Woman isn't new to me, as I've, uh, somehow had a cassette recording of this song for the last decade. But I do love having it properly digitally mastered.

The other bonus tracks are The Baby (been there, done that), Magic Woman Touch acoustic (I've had it ever since the U.S. Epic Anthology release, but it's always welcome to my ears), Indian Girl, If It Wasn't For The Reason, and I Had A Dream (still kind of rare on CD, so that's a great addition).

Naturally, anyone who doesn't already own the album on CD MUST purchase this release.

For others who already have the CD, say on Magic or perhaps have the 4-disc Hollies box that included the album (sadly, without bonus tracks), you still ought to buy it because the three or four songs that you probably don't have on CD.

This disc immediately has vaulted into my top ten of Hollies CD's in my collection, and that's saying something![/i]
PostPosted:Wed Nov 28, 2007 14:30 pm
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marko661 Post subject:
Banjo


Banjo
Joined: 12 Feb 2007
Posts: 49
Location: Dunstable

I must confess that until recently I had never heard a Rickfors recording: I considered it as not really Hollies, which, was an easy mistake to make, as most Hollies greatest hit albums seemed to ignore this period.

Probably due to promptings on the forum from Dennis, I recently bought Romany , and I must say it is a fantastic album: it has all the Hollies harmonies, and some have said it is Eagles influenced, but for me what makes it better than Eagles in the drums and guitar work from our long standing members.

I do see that the Hollies with Clarke and Rickfors were different: Rickfors being more country influenced, and Clarke perhaps nore rock. Both are good, but pity we could not have had both at same time, ie: when Clarke rejoined, Rickfors remained.
PostPosted:Wed Nov 28, 2007 15:21 pm
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malco Post subject:
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Joined: 14 Sep 2006
Posts: 70
Location: Corrimal (Wollongong), Australia

I have just purchased the British version of 'Romany' just for Papa Rain,Witchy Woman and Terry Sylvester's Oh Granny. This version is my third copy of the album, the other two being from Four More Hollies Originals and the Magic version. It is one of my favourite albums and the British version is a whole lot more superior in sound quality than the the other versions. Magic Woman Touch is my favourite song and Rickfors does a great job on the album both vocally and instrumentally giving a whole new slant for the Hollies at the time..
PostPosted:Thu Nov 29, 2007 2:24 am
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