Get this crazy baby off my head!



Them - Shut Your Mouth - 1979 - Strand/Teldec

Bassist Alan Henderson had been using the name,Them in the USA with moderate success but, in 1977, three of the original members of the Irish 60's soul/R&B band Them (Keyboardist, Eric Wrixon, bassist Alan Henderson, and guitarist Bill Harrison), reunited briefly in Hamburg, joined by vocalist, Mel Austin, and Billy Bell (as a late replacement for John Wilson). Eric Wrixon had brief spells in some good Irish '60s bands, and initiated "Shut Your Mouth" while living in Hamburg. The album was produced by Frank Dostal, and recorded for the Strand/Teldec company. "Street walkin Lady" was released as a single, and got some good reviews, and a lot of airplay. However, while the band were warming up for a a promotional tour, Billy Harrison decided to pursue a solo career as a singer songwriter, and was replaced by guitarist Jim Armstrong for the short German tour. Allegedly, Eric Wrixon was fired before the tour. Them were known for their sometimes eccentric behaviour, and recording line-ups in the studio. (Read more in Wikipedia). N.B: this album was reissued in 1996, and 2000, entitled "Reunion Concert", which gives the impression of being a live album. However, both albums are the same and contain studio tracks, only. Eric Wrixon still occasionally tours, using the band name Them- Belfast Blues Band. However, promoters usually just bill the band as the original name, Them. "Shut Your Mouth" is not a great album, but the band on this album can really play well, and Mel Austin's vocals are great. At times there are shades of the original R&B early Them sound. Listen to Billy Harrison & Eric Wrixon playing an excerpt of "Baby Please Don't Go" on You Tube @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QOH_xbneGU Try and listen to the British edition of Them's first album,"The Angry Young Them". Van Morrison had a major input into this album, penning six of the tracks. However, Van The Man's career is a separate story


Hamburg connection - Campbell, Harrison
I'm a lover not a worker - Harrison
Shut your mouth - Harrison
Needed on the farm - Harrison
Street walking lady - Campbell, Harrison
Firewater - Harrison


Child of the sixties - Harrison
Slow down - Harrison
Losing you - Campbell, Harrison
Weekend entertainer - Campbell, Harrison
Holy roller - Campbell, Harrison
Cincinnati dice man - Campbell, Harrison


Mel Austin - vocals
Bill Harrison - guitars
Alan Henderson - bass
Eric Wrixon - keyboards
Billy Bell - drums


Not strictly a British group, but packaged as part of the British Invasion, Them forged their hard-nosed R&B sound in Belfast, Ireland, moving to England in 1964 after landing a deal with Decca Records. The band's simmering sound was dominated by boiling organ riffs, lean guitars, and the tough vocals of lead singer Van Morrison, whose recordings with Them rank among the very best performances of the British Invasion. Morrison also wrote top-notch original material for the outfit, whose lineup changed numerous times over the course of their brief existence. As a hit-making act, their résumé was brief -- "Here Comes the Night" and "Baby Please Don't Go" were Top Ten hits in England, "Mystic Eyes" and "Here Comes the Night" made the Top 40 in the U.S. -- but their influence was considerable, reaching bands like the Doors, whom Them played with during a residency in Los Angeles just before Van Morrison quit the band in 1966. Their most influential song of all, the classic three-chord stormer "Gloria," was actually a B-side, although the Shadows of Knight had a hit in the U.S. with a faithful, tamer cover version. Morrison recalled his days with Them with some bitterness, noting that the heart of the original group was torn out by image-conscious record company politics, and that sessionmen (including Jimmy Page) often played on recordings. In addition to hits, Them released a couple of fine albums and several flop singles that mixed Morrison compositions with R&B and soul covers, as well as a few songs written for them by producers like Bert Berns (who penned "Here Comes the Night"). After Morrison left the group, Them splintered into the Belfast Gypsies, who released an album that (except for the vocals) approximated Them's early records, and a psychedelic outfit that kept the name Them, releasing four LPs with little resemblance to the tough sounds of their mid-'60s heyday. © Richie Unterberger, All Music Guide © 2010 Answers Corporation http://www.answers.com/topic/them-band


Them were a Northern Irish band formed in Belfast in April 1964, most prominently known for the garage rock standard "Gloria" and launching singer Van Morrison's musical career. The group was marketed in the United States as part of the British Invasion. The band featured Van Morrison on vocals and harmonica, Billy Harrison on guitar (born William Harrison, 14 October 1942, in Belfast, County Antrim, Northern Ireland), Eric Wrixon on piano and keyboards (Wrixon named the band, but never played on any published albums or toured the States), Alan Henderson on bass (born 26 November 1944, in Belfast), Raymond Sweetman on bass (born Dermot Robert Sweetman, 1 January 1948, in Holyhead, Anglesey, North Wales) and Ronnie Millings on drums (born c 1937, in Belfast), with other musicians replacing or contributing during the life of the band. Henderson was the only constant member of the band from inception through their 1972 breakup and 1979 reunion. When Van Morrison formed an R&B club with the entrepreneurs Jimmy Conlon, Jerry McKernan and Jerry McCurvey (known as the "3Js") at the Maritime Hotel in April 1964, he gave notice to the Golden Eagles, the group with which he performed at the time. This left him without a group. With an anticipated opening night for the new R&B club approaching, he embarked on a mission to find his ideal line-up. He had recently been introduced to The Gamblers, a Belfast East group formed by Ronnie Millings, Billy Harrison, and Alan Henderson in 1962. Still a schoolboy, Eric Wrixon had been recruited as piano player and keyboardist. Morrison soon joined up with this group playing saxophone and harmonica and sharing vocals with Billy Harrison. The group rehearsed together in a room over a bicycle shop in preparation for their debut at the Maritime. Deciding the group now needed a new name, they followed Eric Wrixon's suggestion, and The Gamblers morphed into Them after the 1954 sci-fi horror film. In an enigmatic manner, the very first announcement of the band Them transpired on 14 April 1964 with an ad in a Belfast newspaper asking: Who Are? What Are? THEM followed with similarly curious ads and building interest, until the Friday ad before the gig announced that Them would be performing at the Maritime Hotel (Club Rado) that evening. Their initial club attendance in the two hundred capacity venue grew very quickly; within a week, people could be seen queuing well down the street hours before the show. Them performed without a routine, and the act absorbed their fuel from the crowd's energy. Morrison ad libbed, creating his songs live as he performed. Their debut of Morrison's "Gloria" took place on stage here. Sometimes, depending on his mood, the song could last up to twenty minutes. Morrison has stated that "Them lived and died on the stage at the Maritime Hotel." The records and tours never adequately captured the true spirit of Them, as they fed off one another and the energy of the audience. Only the most rudimentary of recordings of the performances survive. One of the fan's recordings of "Turn On Your Love Light" made its way to Dick Rowe with Decca Records. He was notoriously known for having turned down signing The Beatles after listening to a badly recorded demo. Not anxious to repeat this type of mistake, Rowe rushed over to the Maritime to hear Them and then rushed them into the Decca studios to sign away their rights on a standard two year contract. The minors had to have their parents' signatures and when Eric Wrixon's parents refused to sign, he was replaced with Patrick McAuley. The first recording session took place in London England in Decca Records' recording studios in West Hampstead on 5 July 1964. Dick Rowe brought in session musicians Arthur Greenslade on organ and Bobby Graham on drums. Six songs were recorded during this session: "Groovin'", "You Can't Judge a Book by Its Cover", "Turn on Your Love Light", "Don't Start Crying Now", "One Two Brown Eyes", "Philosophy" and "Gloria". This session was remarkable in its employment of two drums tracks, which can be clearly heard in the stereo mixes of "Gloria" and "One Two Brown Eyes". The group released its first single "Don't Start Crying Now" b/w "One Two Brown Eyes", in August, which did not prove to be successful. Phil Solomon, the band's manager, and Dick Rowe then hired session musicians Jimmy Page, Peter Bardens and Bobby Graham to back Morrison on a cover of Big Joe Williams's "Baby Please Don't Go"(though Page contributed rhythm guitar, the lead guitar playing was the work of Billy Harrison). It was released in November, and in December, Them made their television debut on Ready Steady Go!, joining The Rolling Stones on the same bill. Solomon used his connections to have "Baby Please Don't Go" played as the weekly signature tune for the television show and within two weeks it was #26 on the charts. The single, which featured the now-legendary "Gloria" as its B-side, turned into a smash hit in the UK, finally peaking in the Top Ten on the UK Singles Chart. In January 1965, Them toured England for a second time, staying at the Royal Hotel, which disc jockey Jimmy Savile used as his London base. As with many other groups of the time, Savile helped to promote the band with write-ups in his column for The People. At this point, Them needed a dose of positive publicity as they soon had earned a reputation for bad manners and sarcasm in their interviews. Billy Harrison said the attitude problem may have been caused by anti-Irish sentiments on the continent at the time. But, when they were interviewed by a reporter from the Irish Independent, the reporter remarked, "They were the most boorish bunch of youngsters I'd come across in my short career". They even treated an attractive female reporter with arrogance, causing Phil Coulter who witnessed this interview to remark, "They would just sit and mutter monosyllabic grunts to themselves and give her off-the-wall answers". (Van Morrison as a solo artist later raised these tedious and combative interviews to a "negative art form".) Their record label Decca released an EP with a recording of "Philosophy" from an earlier session. They next released Them's biggest hit in the UK, "Here Comes the Night" b/w "All for Myself". Phil Solomon had brought in Bert Berns, an American, who had co-written the hit "Twist and Shout". Berns hired session musicians Phil Coulter on keyboards and Andy White on drums to play on this song, which was one of his own compositions. Three weeks after it was released it charted at #2 in March 1965 in the UK and it went to #24 in the U.S. that same May. Their management promoted Them by scheduling appearances on Ready Steady Go! and Top Of The Pops where rather than performing live, they were expected to mime and lip snyc. Morrison said of this appearance, "It was ridiculous. We were totally anti that type of thing... and we had to get into suits and have make-up put on and all that...". He also revealed how the band had until that time considered the programme a complete joke, and, then, Them had to appear on it. On 11 April 1965 Them made a guest appearance at the NME Pollwinners Concert at Wembley Empire Pool. Jimmy Savile was MC for this event and perhaps was responsible for their appearance, as their newfound fame was too recent to have figured into that year's readers' polls. The 1965 concert remains the finest gathering ever of British pop acts, with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Animals, The Searchers, The Moody Blues, Dusty Springfield et al. The bands had been expected to keep to their current hits but Them audaciously segued from "Here Comes the Night" into a seven minute version of "Turn on Your Lovelight".[11] At the time, Derek Johnson with NME characterized Them's lead singer as generating "more genuine soul than any of his British contemporaries". Them released their next single, "One More Time", chosen by Phil Solomon, in June 1965. This single bombed according to Billy Harrison because it never constituted single material. The band released two albums: The Angry Young Them released by Decca in June 1965 (UK) and by Parrot Records (US) in July 1965, and Them Again released in January 1966 (UK) and April 1966 (US). Later that year "Mystic Eyes" released as a single in the US reached #33. Them Again had charted in the US, and so they began a tour in May 1966. In June of this two-month tour, Them had a three-week run at the famous Whisky a Go Go in Los Angeles. For the final week, The Doors (with lead singer Jim Morrison) opened for Them (which was the first time the Doors played at the Whisky). On the last night, the two bands and the two Morrisons jammed together on a twenty-minute version of "Gloria". Them went on to headline at the The Fillmore in San Francisco, California, and then in Hawaii where things went awry, with disputes erupting among band members and with management over financial arrangements. The band broke apart, with Van Morrison and Alan Henderson returning to Belfast, while Ray Elliot and David Harvey decided to stay in America. Van Morrison has placed the Them break-up in context: "There was no motive behind anything you did [back then]. You just did it because you wanted to do it and you enjoyed doing it. That's the way the thing started, but it got twisted somewhere along the way and everybody involved in it got twisted as well, including me." (1967) "You can't take something like that, put it in a box and place a neat little name on it, then try to sell it. That's what they tried to do. That's what killed Them." (1973). After a brief band break-up in August 1965, Billy Harrison and Pat McAuley (who had both left the group one month previously) formed a rival Them, competing with the Morrison/Henderson line-up and leading to legal action between the two groups. The latter won the rights to the name in March 1966, while the former, now without Harrison, were only allowed to use 'Other Them' in the U.K. The McAuley brothers became, unofficially, The Belfast Gypsies (or Gipsies), who recorded two singles on Island Records (one released under the name Freaks of Nature) and one Swedish-only album, all produced by Kim Fowley. During this time they toured Europe billed as Them, and released a French E.P. under that name; the band never actually performed billed as the Belfast Gypsies. In mid-1966, after Van Morrison left Them, he pursued a highly-successful solo career. The rest of the band regrouped back in Belfast and recruited Kenny McDowell (ex-Mad Lads) as singer. They continued touring and recording steadily after relocating to the USA in early 1967 at the invitation of producer Ray Ruff. Two of these post-Morrison albums, Now and Them and Time Out! Time In for Them, found the band experimenting with psychedelia. This line-up then disbanded with Jim Armstrong and Kenny McDowell returning to Belfast and performing as Sk'boo, after which Armstrong, McDowell and Ray Elliot re-united in Chicago in 1969 as Truth and recorded a number of demos and soundtrack songs later released as Of Them And Other Tales. Henderson meanwhile hired session musicians for two later, and much more considered efforts for Ray Ruff's Happy Tiger Records, where Them settled into a hard rock vein not too dissimilar from Uriah Heep: Them (1969) featured Jerry Cole (a session musician who appeared on numerous records including Beach Boys releases); Them In Reality (1970) featured lead guitarist Jim Parker and drummer John Stark (both formerly with the Kitchen Cinq and Armageddon). Sadly for the group, these efforts met with consumer indifference, and by 1972 the band had dissolved. Henderson went on to contribute to the Truth Of Truths rock opera, produced by Ray Ruff in 1971. Them reunited briefly in 1979, without Morrison, and recorded another album, 'Shut Your Mouth', and undertook a short tour of Germany. Van Morrison went on to great success and fame as a solo artist, but Them's combination of garage rock and blues proved a major influence on the next generation of rock musicians, and the group's best-known singles have become staples of rock and roll. Alan Henderson settled outside Minneapolis and runs his own business applying "stucco" plaster to houses. Eric Wrixon had brief spells in seemingly every important Irish '60s band, and initiated the '79 LP while living in Hamburg; he returned to Northern Ireland and played with the Belfast Blues Band which included John Wilson. Wilson gained some fame as drummer for Rory Gallagher's Taste and then for Stud in the late '60s. He later went on to become an in-demand drummer on Belfast studio and radio sessions in all genres of music, even reuniting with Jim Armstrong (and Kenny McDowell) several times in the '70s, '80s and '90s. Billy Harrison works as a maritime electrician outside Belfast, turning up at the occasional gig in town. Jackie McAuley formed The Cult in Dublin with Paul Brady before forming folk duo Trader Horne with Judy Dyble (ex-Fairport Convention), wrote songs (one a hit for Status Quo!), spent four years touring with Lonnie Donegan and later issued a CD by Jackie's "Celtic R&B" band The Poormouth in 1992 - one that included ex-Jethro Tull drummer Clive Bunker. Jackie's brother John "Pat" McAuley met an unfortunate and premature death while on holiday in the Irish Republic on the June 25th, 1984. Peter Bardens alternated between solo career and Camel gigs, plus recorded and toured with Van Morrison in 1978/79. Drummer David "Harvey" Tufrey - who in fact gave way on most of the sessions for the second 'Tower' LP to sessionman (and future Byrd) John Guerin - settled down in California, though recent accounts have him back home in London. Ray Elliot eventually went to Canada and is rumoured to have played in bar bands in the Toronto area. Jim Armstrong joined the Civil Service and became a part-time musician, playing with (and at times without) Kenny McDowell in a series of Belfast bands such as Spike, Bronco and Sk'boo. In 1977 Jim split with Kenny to lead Light, which released a progressive LP on the local 'Mint' label. After Jim did the brief '79 Them reunion tour in Germany, Jim and Kenny eventually came together for another stint as Sk'boo. They released an EP in '81 on the local 'Cuecomber' label. By the end of the '80s Jim and Kenny parted musical ways again, and since then Jim has led The Jim Armstrong Band fronted by singer Jim Gilchrist, and Kenny McDowell went on to front Hensteeth in Belfast. In January 2007, "Gloria" by Them was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. "Gloria" by Them was rated at #69 on Dave Marsh's 1989 book, The Heart of Rock and Soul, The 1001 Greatest Singles Ever and "Mystic Eyes" was rated at #458. "Gloria" by Them was #208 on the 2004 Rolling Stone magazine's feature, The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time


A.O.O.F.C said...


p/w aoofc

vilstef said...

my computer's security won't let me access ultrashare-would it be possible to put it on another server? I've been looking for Post-Van Them for a long time

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,vilstef. Check ultrashare. You will see "If your download does not start, click here to download". Try that.I haven't got the album available to re-upload. Sorry about that, & thanks

vilstef said...

I guess I'm just out of luck then. It's a security issue on my computer. It will not allow me to go onto the site at all. It simply goes to a security warning page.

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi, Vilstef. Are you using a Mac pc? Is your antivirus blocking site. What antivirus are you using. Are you using a pop-up stopper. There may be a way around this. TTU soon

vilstef said...

Hi, after a long absence, I tried this again. I have a different computer and different security, and it went right to the page. I was a little surprised the link was still good. Thank you, thank you!

A.O.O.F.C said...

Hi,vilstef. That's good news. Thanks for letting me know. ATB...P

Anonymous said...

Great! Thanks.

A.O.O.F.C said...

Thank you...Paul