Showing posts from June, 2023

Detroit with Mitch Ryder "Detroit" (1971)

The city of Detroit, Michigan has spawned many a rock legend since the 1960's. Over the last six decades, the Motor City has provided the world with a wild managerie of colorful characters, creative risk-takers, and gritty garage rockers -- some of whom (like Bob Seger and Jack White) evolved into musical refinement and commercial success, while others (like the Stooges and the MC5) are legendary for having been too wild for the mainstream. The man who first put Detroit on the rock and roll map and paved the way for later Motor City rockers was Mitch Ryder (who was born as William Sherille Levise, Jr. in 1945). Influenced by the city's Motown soul scene, Ryder added his own high-energy rock and roll intensity to his brand of blue-eyed soul. With his '60's backing band known as the Detroit Wheels, Ryder scored three Top 10 singles between 1965 and 1967, the best-remembered one being "Devil With A Blue Dress On" from 1966. Ryder never matched that success after

Last Exit...with Sting

The three members of The Police seemed like an unlikely trio to form a reggae-influenced new wave band, when you consider the previous work that each of them had done. Guitarist Andy Summers had a career dating back to the '60's, when he played with r&b outfits (such as Zoot Money's Big Roll Band) and psychedelic bands (such as Dantalian's Chariot). Drummer Stewart Copeland had previously played on two albums with progressive rockers Curved Air. And what about Sting? The singer and bassist, who was born Gordon Sumner in Wallsend, England, had previously been a jazz musician who played with three bands who recorded for the U.K. Wudwink label. In 1972, Sumner played bass on a mostly instrumental album with a British jazz collective called Newcastle Big Band, as well as on a single with a group called the Phoenix Jazzmen (who were fronted by a singer and trumpeter named Ronnie Young). After leaving those relatively old-fashioned jazz bands behind, Sumner then co-fo