…here’s something he was doing in August 1970, with the Humblebums, on BBC’s ‘Sounds of the Seventies’, which I’ve just transferred from a reel. Three songs: Cruising (Billy Connolly vocal), Keep It To Yourself (Rafferty vocal, prog-rock epic), My Singing Bird (Rafferty again).
I skimmed through the whole of the year 1970’s issues of Melody Maker a couple of days ago, scanning a few Quintessence concert ads (as you do), and I was struck by one name – among the many before-they-were-famous listings and had-their-moment names and fleeting ‘who they?’ names: Writing On The Wall.
The name was utterly unknown to me and yet they were working solidly throughout that year, supporting some big acts, headlining shows of their own, and obviously doing well enough for promoters to take out ads with the name in large font.
As I’ve been typing this Maha Dev from Quintessence happened to phone and I asked him, ‘Have YOU heard of Writing On The Wall?’ Answer: No! Even their contemporaries seem to have had no idea of this hiding-in-plain-sight Scottish progressive behemoth.
After a year’s worth of MMs I leafed through a Nov 7 1970 ‘Sounds’ that I’d just acquired, for its two-thirds of a page feature on Quintessence, and there, as if by magic, on the other third of the same page is a short feature on WOTW.
It’s 18 months since their debut LP ‘Power Of The Picts’, and they’re talking about a » Continue Reading.