Exposé Online banner

Fuchsia — Fuchsia, Mahagonny & Other Gems (1975-1978)
(Night Wings NWRCD 04, 1978/2005, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2014-06-23

Fuchsia, Mahagonny & Other Gems (1975-1978) Cover artThis is a collection of odds and ends from 1970 – 1978 compiled after the demise of Fuchsia. The first two songs are unreleased demos recorded on a primitive ¼ track about nine months after the release of Fuchsia: “Ragtime Brahms” and “The Band,” which happens to be the track Me and My Kites elected to cover on FdM. The third track, “Ring of Red Roses,” is from the original Fuchsia demo acetate and consequently the sound quality is not up to par. In 1975 Tony Durant began work on the “Mahagonny” project that was his interpretation of Berchtolt Brecht and Kurt Weill’s music. This project combined the themes from both The Threepenny Opera and The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny. Tony recorded five demo songs, which are included on this disc. The music is quite a bit different from that on Fuchsia, but you can trace it back. If you are familiar with Brecht and Weill’s music you will know that it is dark and edgy. In fact their music has been covered many times, the most notable being the Doors’ version of the “Alabama Song.” By contrast, Tony’s interpretations are upbeat and melodic songs with some progressive jazz elements thrown in for good measure. Unfortunately, despite the quality of these songs, timing was everything. In 1976, progressive music started to tank and be replaced by punk rock. After the Mahagonny demos are a couple of great songs by Bob Chudley, who co-wrote “Another Nail” from the Fuchsia album. These demos were Bob’s last attempt at serious songwriting. The disc closes with a wonderful folk rock song “I’ll Remember Her Face” that was recorded in 1978 and sung by John Tams who was currently in the Albion band along with Fuchsia’s drummer Michael Gregory. This song was composed for a film production titled The Golden Medallion. And for those of you unfamiliar with John Tams, he has received numerous BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards over the years, as well as writing the theme song for and acting in the Sharpe TV series. John has a unique voice and hearing him on this disc was quite a surprise. Though not quite up to the quality of Fuchsia, this companion disc of extra material demonstrates that the band could have done well if they had been better managed.

Filed under: Archives, 2005 releases, 1978 recordings

Related artist(s): Me and My Kites, Fuchsia

Latest news

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more

2020-04-23
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Happy Family - "Flying Spirit Dance" Live – It's rare that I'll devote an extensive review to cassette, let alone to a demo cassette - but this band is so special that I feel compelled to sound out their praise far and wide. Happy Family are...  (1993) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues