Monday, September 22, 2008

sam gopal, going up

escalator, 1969.

UFO newspaper ad, 1967.

ian willis, centre, 1977.
stiff records.

Named after their tabla player, Sam Gopal were another Ladbroke Grove outfit who hung out and played at London's UFO club in Tottenham Court Road where Hendrix roadie, Ian Willis furnished guitar and vocals to the quartet's trippy mix; an acid blues recipe with a heavy flavouring of middle eastern raga which owed much to Tyrannosaurus Rex's Steve 'Peregrine' Took.

Recorded in 1968, "Escalator" was originally released on Simon Stable's tiny imprint, Stable Records, which also issued The Deviants' "Disposable", and a handful of other LPs including the Victims Of Chance.

According to Ghost Gus, who knew Lemmy fairly well, Willis had an almost supernatural ability to stride into any unscouted bar, skint, and immediately score a round of drinks. While the drinks kept on flowing well past closing time, a hit record would continue to elude him for another decade at least.

Sam Gopal (tabla, percussion); Roger D'Elia (vocals, acoustic & electric guitars); Ian "Lemmy" Willis (vocals, guitar); Phil Duke (bass).

If you want to hear Lemmy sing for his Garam Masala you'll need to buy the album. These two tracks feature Roger D'Elia on vocal duties. Nice.

SAM GOPAL: THE SKY IS BURNING from "Escalator" LP (Stable) 1969 (UK)

SAM GOPAL: GRASS from "Escalator" LP (Stable) 1969 (UK)



bobhowe said...

More chinese whispers, who said that Stable records put out only two records? What about The Victims of Chance and Jaklin?

bobhowe said...

Oh I almost forgot NSU Turn On or Turn Me Down, that makes five Stable releases.

ib said...

Thanks for the clarification, bobhowe. I will amend that.