Heads Hands & Feet

[vc_promo_box style=”light-2″]HiddenMasters is privileged to confirm we are working on the first-ever full-scale career retrospective for HH&F which will not only include all of the group’s original albums but also previously unreleased live material as well as demos, outtakes, alternative mixes and other previously unheard music. The set will be presented as a 12″ book-edition and contain exclusive interviews with the surviving members of HH&F.

Currently untitled, the set is expected for release early 2017[/vc_promo_box]

Heads Hands & Feet began before they began.

The six who comprised the (original) line-up had a collective pedigree that dated to before the Beatles era of rock ‘n roll.

* Albert Lee (guitar / vocals) – was barely 16 when he toured Scotland as part of the backing bands for early Brit rockers such as Duffy Power and Dickie Pride. He became a mainstay of the house-band at the Two Is coffee bar in Soho, moved to Hamburg and then joined Neil Christian’s Crusaders before moving on to Chris Farlowe’s Thunderbirds (who he left in 1968) and then briefly hooking up with Steve Gibbons’ band…

* Chas Hodges (bass / violin / banjo / vocals) – in 1960 he joined Joe Meek’s studio band, The Outlaws (with whom Ritchie Blackmore also cut his musical teeth), before moving on to Cliff Bennett and The Rebel Rousers…

*Pete Gavin (drums / vocals) – spent the 60s with groups such as The Shades, The Shevelles, The Soul Pushers before joining Long John Baldry’s regular band Bluesology (alongside Reg Dwight before he was known as Elton John), Neil Hubbard, Elton Dean and, for a while, Marsha Hunt before joining Jody Grind with whom he recorded the Far Canal album…

*Mike O’Neill (keyboards) – who can forget Nero and The Gladiators, kings of the twang-bar… Mike was also a member of The John Barry Seven during 1964 when the group was led by Alan Bown. When Barry disbanded the group, The Alan Bown was formed with Jeff Bannister replacing O’Neill…

*Ray Smith (guitar / vocals) – already a highly respected session-player had been working with Tony Colton for a number of years co-composing as well as being central to Tony Colton and The Big Boss Band as well as The Crawdaddies.

*Tony Colton (vocals) – brief solo outings with Pye and Columbia came to little but songwriting and then production (initially with The Shevelles) paid dividends. Behind the glass for Georgie Fame led to Rory Gallagher’s Taste and Yes. From Shirley Bassey to Frankie Valli to Wilson Pickett. Delaney & Bonnie, Richard Harris and Jerry Lee Lewis. And many others.

Throughout, TC was using a band he’d put together with Ray Smith from the Crawdaddy All-Nighter community… Albert Lee… Mike O’Neill… Pete Gavin… Pat Donaldson… and… Jerry Donahue. In studio downtime, they began recording their own LP as Poet & The One Man Band.

Donahue and Donaldson left to join Sandy Denny’s new group Fotheringay (which featured Albert Lee for a few, early, rehearsals). Chas Hodges was brought into the fold as replacement and… using a name picked by Pete Gavin – Heads, Hands & Feet – was born.

The new group were the subject of a major label bidding war and eventually signed to Island for the UK and Rest Of The World and Capitol (US) in 1971.

Three albums followed – Heads, Hands & Feet (1971 – a double album in the US but a single album in the UK); Tracks (1972) although, by the release of 1973’s Old Soldiers Never Die friction had set in; Albert Lee had already left and the band had effectively broken up leaving behind a legacy of extraordinary songs and a history of live gigs best summed up by Colton himself when he says: “You didn’t want to follow Head Hands and Feet, I don’t care who you were. Live, it was an awesome thing to behold.”