VENUS shaped after a PINBALL WIZARD?
hmcbvba at scarlet.be
Thu May 17 18:02:08 CDT 2007
In a message dated Date: Thu, 17 May 2007 07:10:33 EDT
JOELTLE515 at aol.com writes:
> by the way, have you noticed that that infamous guitar part sounds
> alot like the one in shocking blue's "venus"? does anyone know which
> one was released first?
Interesting thought Joe.
Shocking Blue was a Dutch band. 'Venus', their fourth 45, after one miss
and two minor top 30 hits, entered what was THE leading chart in The
Netherlands at the time, the Radio Veronica Top 40, on July 12th 1969.
Pinball Wizard, which as we all know was put out as a single about six
months before Tommy, entered that same chart on April 5th of that year,
having had some airplay in the two to three weeks preceding that
Saturday, no doubt.
Shocking Blue had had their third single, Long And Lonesome Road, in the
charts since March 8th and it stayed in the top 40 until April 29th.
Typically, bands in that era would compose, record and then release an
new single when the preceding one would be nearing the end of its chart
So, following that line of thought, Shocking Blue's composer of many
great tunes, guitarist Robbie van Leeuwen MAY have been inspired by
Pete's guitar playing in PW and MAY have took some of that into the
composing process for his band's new single.
A listen to some of Robbie van Leeuwen's work with The Motions, the band
he headed before setting up Shocking Blue in 1967, will learn that
influences from British pop (Kinks, Zombies, Who) were never far away,
although he does have a distinctive style of his own.
I was 12yrs old in the Spring of 1969 and living in The Netherlands at
that time meant - for me anyway - having one ear always tuned in to
Radio Veronica's 192 meters band, so as to pick up the hottest new
records whenever they came out.
Buying them was of course another matter. But I knew when to move, when
our local grocer would price off singles that had dropped out the
charts. Pinball Wizard was my 8th ever single, purchased for the giant
sum of 2,95 guilders, equaling nearly two weeks worth of my allowance.
My first ever LP I got that Xmas: Tommy, of course. Neatly followed a
few weeks later by 'Sensational' a retail chain only, expanded version
of Shocking Blue's first LP, that - contrary to their own release - DID
include .... Venus.
By then Venus was already on its (her?) way to being the first ever
Dutch-made Billboard nr 1.
Today, living in Antwerp, I still cherish my old records, play a lot of
60s and 70s stuff, mourn for the loss of Shocking Blue's wonderful lead
singer Mariska Veres and look forward to seeing a bunch of 60yr old
start-ups from Sheperd's Bush when they come to play here June 8th.
Thanks for reviving some nice memories Joe.
More information about the TheWho