Tag Archives: fleetwood mac

The Neon Knight Bows Out

The much-admired Woking, Surrey music producer and sound engineer MARTIN BIRCH died on 9 August 2020.

Martin “the farmer” Birch was closely associated with British rock acts such as Deep Purple, Rainbow, Fleetwood Mac, Whitesnake, Black Sabbath,, and especially Iron Maiden.

BIRCH a.k.a. “the headmaster” is considered to have been (along with Tom Allom) a pioneering Metal producer.

Beck ola
Birch gained his first recognition for his work on The Faces 1970 album “The First Step” (producer/engineer.)

He produced ten Iron Maiden albums, from Killers (1981) through to Fear of the Dark (1992).

His “Piece of Mind” by Iron Maiden (1983) is often cited as the best produced metal record of all time.

He began his career as an audio engineer with Jeff Beck, Fleetwood Mac and Deep Purple, and went on to produce and engineer eleven albums for Deep Purple. In fact, he gained his first recognition for his work on The Faces 1970 album “The First Step” (producer/engineer.)

He began at the old De Lane Lea Studios in London where Deep Purple’s Fireball (1971) was recorded (he worked as an engineer on the project) and later worked at the Battery Studios in Willesden, London (aka Zomba) where he worked on Killers, Iron Maiden (1981) among many other projects.

As a musician, Birch played rhythm guitar on Adam Faith’s “I Survive” (1974) , and he provided backing vocals for Roger Glover’s “Elements” (1978) and tape techniques for Maiden’s “Somewhere In Time” in 1986. He earned writing & arrangement credits for several recordings including: Maiden’s “Live After Death” (1985) and Whitesnake’s “Don’t Break My Heart Again” (1981).

Iron Maiden’s first album to feature vocalist Bruce DickinsonThe Number of the Beast” ( recorded in 1982, at Battery Studios) is often described, by rock ‘n’ metal cognoscenti, as “Metal’s Sergeant Pepper”. During the recording,      Birch was involved in a collision with a mini-bus transporting a group of nuns. According to legend, after the crash he was presented with a repair bill for £666!

Since his semi-retirement in 1992, and after producing Maiden’s Fear of the Dark, Birch had been mainly working on preparing box sets and re-releases.

Engineer & Producer Martin Birch
Engineer & Producer Martin Birch

Selected discography

1969 – Beck-Ola, Jeff Beck (engineer)
1970 – In Rock, Deep Purple (engineer)
1972 – Argus, Wishbone Ash (engineer)
1973 – Penguin, Fleetwood Mac (producer, engineer, mixing)
1975 – Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow (co-producer, engineer, mixing)
1980 – Heaven and Hell, Black Sabbath (producer, engineer)
1982 – Saints & Sinners, Whitesnake (producer, engineer, mixing)
1982 – Assault Attack, Michael Schenker Group (producer, engineer)
1983 – Piece of Mind, Iron Maiden (producer)
1984 – Powerslave, Iron Maiden (producer, engineer, mixing)
1992 – Fear of the Dark, Iron Maiden (producer, engineer, mixing)

5 Things – This Week in Staines

1.

Pop / Folk in Staines

David Gibb at Staines

David Gibb
Apr 19 2009
Hobgoblin
Staines

Off the back of an astonishing Rockgoblin festival Summer 2008, Buckle David Gibb – (Guitar, Piano, Keyboards, Harmonica, Vocals) plays his invigorating and enjoyable folk songs along with a cheeky threesome including Julian Butt – Accordion, Piano; Elly Lucas – Violin and Ben Dew – Percussion.

Links:

www.myspace.com/davidgibb

Buckle Up Staines


http://www.buckleuppromotions.com

2.

6 Piece Classic Soul & Funk Live at Ascot

Raging Horns - Jagz Ascot

Raging Horns
Apr 18 2009
Jagz
Ascot




The Raging Horns (oooh matron!) is a  fantastic six-piece horn section, four great singers and a magnificent rhythm section, playing classic soul, funk and pop covers with a raw energy guaranteed to get everyone up on their feet. For over a decade, The Raging Horns have brought the house down at weddings, parties, special events and corporate functions right across the UK. The band’s mix of enthusiasm, youth and professionalism continues to leave audiences pounding their feet and screaming for more.

Here is their Funk Manifesto:

What We Do
It’s simple – we entertain, and we’re very, very good at it.
There’s really nothing quite like having brilliant musicians on stage playing songs you somehow know every single word to and we do this with an energy and style that’ll leave you breathless.

Why?
Because we love doing it. For us, nothing matches the excitement of having an audience in the palm of our hands – the sheer thrill of performing live is what we enjoy and what we’re all about.

Who We Are
We’ve been performing right across the UK for over a decade and having started young, have established a unique mix of youth and experience.
Great musical skill combined with varied backgrounds in professional careers leave us with all the right tools to deliver an evening to remember.

What We Play
Classic soul, funk and pop are what we love and that’s what we play. From Tom Jones to Robbie Williams, there’s genuinely something for everyone.

Upcoming shows

Saturday, 18th April  JAGZ ASCOT
Show will start at 8.45
Ticket cost: £8.00
Doors open from 7.30pm. £26 for 2 courses and entrance (£30 for 3 courses). Entrance for the bands is £8 but is strictly limited and on a first come first served basis. Entrance for dining or just the band INCLUDES free entrance to the nightclub

Link:

http://www.raginghorns.co.uk/


3.

Exciting Classic Rock – Live in Hampton

Brainchild at Royal Oak Hampton


Brainchild
Apr 17 2009
Royal Oak
Hampton

THE BRAINCHILD have just completed & Mastered their outstanding Debut album ‘Conversational Tennis’, produced by the brilliant Martin Smith (Electric Light Orchestra), Which will soon be previewed to National Radio and TV prior to its
release early in April 09. The Brainchild�s ecstatic reception @ The Cornbury Music Festival this year (Beverley Knight, Toots & The Matals, Paul Simon) has led to an invitation for them to return on the main stage next year. The Festival Director said they were one of the best bands he had seen for many years with disparate elements akin to the Small Faces, Tom Petty & The Blockheads  but overall totally original.

The Hairy Bikers, Si King & Dave Meyers have asked them to headline some special dates in the new year and hope to use them as their surprise �house band� on some of their forthcoming new TV series in 2009.

Links:

www.myspace.com/brainchild44

4.

Outstanding Vocals & Guitar –  East Molesey

Ian Hunt The Poyntz, East Molesey: Duo with Dean Barnes

Ian Hunt
Apr 17 2009
The Poyntz
E Molesey

IAN HUNT has long been regarded as one of the finest male rock vocalists in the UK. His vocal and guitar style are much in demand from the large advertising corporations such as Nescafe, Rover, Bounty, Rock Circus, National Express, Suchard, American Express, Cadbury’s and numerous others. Ian currently divides his musical works between live gigs in and around London and hosting a guitar class and a Jam Night/Open Night. He has released two CD albums, the most recent in 2007. CD’s are available at Gigs.

On Friday 17th April he is playing The Poyntz, East Molesey: Duo with Dean Barnes

Link:

www.myspace.com/ianhuntguitarpicker



5.

Fine R&B –   in Godalming

Pete G_The_Magnitones at SCRATCHERS (THE THREE LIONS),Meadrow, Farncombe, Godalming,

Pete G and The Magnitones
Apr 19 2009
The Scratchers
Godalming

Pete G And The Magnitones have gained recognition as one of the very finest R’n’

B bands currently playing the Southern UK blues scene.  Catch ’em live nearby at The Scratchers, (Three Lions) Godalming…

Apr 19 2009      9:00P
At The SCRATCHERS (THE THREE LIONS), Meadrow, Farncombe, Godalming,

Links:

www.myspace.com/petegandthemagnitones

Wishbone Ash Tickets

Visit AdPontes-Staines Regularly for Staines Arts

5 Things – This Week in Staines

1.

Small Outfit, Big Sound Ideas at Staines

2 Sick Monkeys at Staines

29th JAN 2009  8:00P at HOB STAINES £3 2 SICK MONKEYS

2 Sick Monkeys formed in December 2000, as a live two piece bass and drums, primarily to support Darrin Mooney (Primal Scream) at a drum event in Swindon.
They have now played over 400 gigs (270 in the last 3 years) including 4 European tours.

They describe themselves as tight, melodic and percussively in your face.
Basically……small outfit, BIG SOUND!!

2 Sick Monkeys are with:

Page Not Found

Page Not Found are a punk rock group form Slough Berkshire UK.

Formally known as Ollie Impossible, Page Not Found play their own style of Fast paced skate punk. After the change the band along with new bassman have wasted no time and headed straight into the studio to record some material.

Links:

http://www.myspace.com/2sickmonkeys

www.myspace.com/pagenotfoundrock

2.

High Quality Funk & Groove – Ascot

Mimosa at Jagz Ascot

Jan 30th 2009 8:45P at Jagz Ascot MIMOSA £5

Whisk together smooth soul, funky grooves and a hint of rock, fold in a combination of catchy brass riffs, fat bass, creative guitar as well as watertight drums and percussion. Heat for 2 hours with probably the best vocal talent in the south and you have the unique sound of Mimosa.

Some people have said – “it’s a bit like being attacked by a shark wearing a woolly jumper” “best served hot with Mango Chutney a cold beer!” “You’ll drive through an
amber light to see them!” “Just like the Brand New Heavies, only not as famous!” The band have spent the last year putting together a high quality varied mix of songs to give a great show, keeping people grooving well into the night. Gigging since April 06, this band will definitely impress and leave you wanting more. Time to find out what you have been missing……

Links:

ww.myspace.com/mimosaband


3.

Stripped Down Classic Rock – Shepperton

Firewater at Shepperton


Jan 30 2009      9:00P Kings Head-Shepperton FIREWATER


The ED HUDSON project “Firewater” was formed in 2000 and has been regularly gigging around London and the South East since then. The early blues
material gave way to more classic rock songs as time went on and the duo format lends itself to a stripped down approach to the songs, showcasing the considerable talents of singer Ed Hudson and lead guitarist Tim Scopes.

If you like blues and classic rock (and don’t like being deafened in the process of hearing it!) go and see ’em -you will not be dissappointed….

Links:

http://www.myspace.com/firewaterduo

4.

80’s & 90’s  Hits – Live Band – Live in Windsor

!Daft!

Fri 30 Jan Old Ticket Hall, Windsor £3 !Daft!

!daft! are a party rock cover band comprising 5 professional standard musicians who perform high energy and dynamic gigs across the Home Counties and West London to consistently excellent responses. Our sets and gigs are designed
to be fun, enthusiastic and crammed with recognisable anthemic tracks from artists including Queen, Guns N’ Roses, The Killers, The Fratellis, Green Day, Elvis, Bon Jovi, Madness, Kaiser Chiefs, Oasis, Michael Jackson… even ABBA and Take That, plus many more legendary groups.

Random quote: “It’s like going to see all your favourite rock bands in one night!!”

Links:

http://www.daftonline.co.uk




5.

Aerosmith to ZZ Top Covers – in Hampton

Prezence

Jan 31 2009      9:00P  The Cardinal Wolsey Hampton Court PREZENCE

Prezence are fast becoming a STAINES and area fafourite covers band… playing a huge mixture of classic rock from way-way back to much more modern material from the likes of Rage Against The Machine, Metallica, Foo Fighters etc. A thoroughly enjoyable evening is guaranteed…. also coming to venues in Staines, Hampton, Walton-on-Thames soon (keep checking our ADPONTES music pages for updated GIG GUIDE)

Link:

myspace.com/prezencerock

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Visit AdPontes-Staines Regularly for Staines Arts

5 Things – This Week in Staines

1.

See Some Art at the Sunbury Art Trail Weekend

Sunbury Art Trail

Surrey Open studios, Riverside Arts Centre, Sunbury – Art Trail

Friday 13th June to Monday 16th June

The Studio & Craft Centre, Riverside Arts Centre, Sunbury

Featuring the work of artists:

Malcolm West
Hildegarde Reid
Robert Shaw
Freda Anderson
Sue Munson
Robin Lee Hall
Douglas & Pauline Burnett
Annie Shaw
Mary Shanahan

2.

Get the Prog-Rock Sound with Pendragon

Pendragon


Jun 14 2008 8:00P The Peel, Kingston, Pendragon

Back in 1978, Stroud, Gloucestershire, four friends got together and decided to form a band. Zeus Pendragon consisting of Nick Barrett [guitar/vocals], Julian Baker [guitar/vocals], Nigel Harris [the most sought after drummer in the Stroud area] and Stan Cox [bass] was born.

Young and full of ambition Zeus Pendragon started out playing cover versions of classic rock tunes by Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Fleetwood Mac, and Santana and their first gig was ironically the same day that Nick left school, burning his maths text book and picking up his guitar on the way… The future had been determined.

The Zeus part of their name was later dropped when the logical and visionary Julian decided it was far too long to fit across a t-shirt, and this ridiculous cross pollination of Arthurian and Greek mythology just seemed plain silly.

Fast Forward to 2005 …. the release of Believe, the 7th studio album by Pendragon which reflected a renewed youthful exuberance and fresh approach both musically and visually for the band.Once again a line up change reared its ugly head, and after 20 odd years with the band Fudge Smith was replaced by 26 year old whipper snapper Joe Crabtree on drums. The band now had a real firecracker of a drummer underpinning the rhythm section which brought a renewed need to fight and the passion and energy of the band was almost like they were 17 years old again for the upcoming Believe tour.Pendragon undertook the biggest tour of Europe they had ever done and followed it with a release of the brilliant And Now Everybody To The Stage dvd.

2007 sees the 21st anniversary of The Jewel dvd release called Past And Presence which includes most of the musicians from those early days and shows how this tenacious band can still thrill, evolve and capitalize on its strengths over a 28 year period where so many others have failed.

So to the future, a new album is on the cards and a year full of festival dates just goes to show that in this hurly burly world of fickle pop music….some ships were built to last.

http://www.pendragon.mu/


3.

Go rock with Rough Justice – Staines

Rough Justice - Staines

Rough Justice Fri 13th June Staines Riverside Club, Laleham Road £3

Sensational rock covers band with a huge local following,

Not to be missed

http://www.myspace.com/roughjusticerocks

4.

Get your Dancing Shoes On… dancing in the aisle

Dancing in the Streets

Dancing in The Streets Monday 9 – Saturday 14 June 2008 – Woking Theatre

The Hit West End Show

Dancing In The Streets

Experience the energy, emotion and electricity of Motown in Dancing in the Streets, the spectacular celebration of classic music from the heart of Detroit!

Featuring legendary Motown classics including I Heard It Through The Grapevine, My Girl and Dancing in the Streets and a full supporting company of singers, dancers and an amazing live band, Dancing in the Streets re-creates the energy, style and music of all your favourite Motown stars!

Box Office: 0870 060 6645



5.

Join in the celebrations at Egham – Magna Carta day

Magna Carta Day at Egham

HMagna Carta Celebrations – High Street Egham Sat June 14th 11:00 to 4:00P

FTo celebrate the ‘signing’ of the Manga Carta (check the facts here) this years event at Egham will include Morris Dancers. live bands, brass band, dancing irish vocals, a belly dancer and lots & lots of fun

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