Category Archives: Be-Bop Deluxe

Bill Nelson and John Leckie Interview with Mix

Classic Tracks: ‘Ships in the Night’ by Be-Bop Deluxe

MATT HURWITZ – UPDATED ON MAY 7, 2019

By 1975, British rockers Be-Bop Deluxe had recorded and released two albums on EMI’s Harvest label without much notice in the States. The first, Axe Victim in 1974, produced by Ian McClintock and recorded at AIR Studios in London, was succeeded by Futurama in June 1975, recorded at Rockfield Studios. Produced by the prolific Roy Thomas Baker, the album, which yielded two hit singles in England, “Sister Seagull” and “Maid in Heaven,” had little impact here.

But with Bill Nelson, the group’s leader/mastermind guitarist, taking the producer’s chair for the first time, alongside Abbey Road engineer (and now co-producer) John Leckie, at Abbey Road Studios in 1975, they were poised to break the ice worldwide with the recording of their third LP, Sunburst Finish, and its hit single, “Ships in the Night.” The song set the stage for fans to be introduced to Nelson’s complex songwriting and production, evidenced by another standout track, “Sleep That Burns,” which closed the album’s first side.

The album was recently reissued by Esoteric Recordings in England in a deluxe edition, featuring both stereo and 5.1 surround remixes by Stephen W Tayler. It also includes early versions of several of the album’s songs.

Drummer Simon Fox and New Zealand-born bassist Charlie Tumahai had joined the band the year before, with guitarist Nelson tracking keyboards himself during the Futurama sessions. For touring, a true keyboardist was required, so a young player, Simon Clarke, from a band in Sheffield called Mother’s Pride, was added to the lineup (after being asked to adopt his middle name, Andy, under “We already have a Simon” band rules…).

“We advertised for a keyboard player, and Andy turned up,” Nelson recalls. “He had been a church organist at one time, and was the most technically able. He was very much into bands like Emerson, Lake and Palmer and King Crimson—prog was his bag. The only problem we had with him was that he looked like a stereotypical hippie—very, very long hair, mutton chops and an Afghan coat! We said, ‘C’mon, Andy, get a haricut, smarten yourself up,’” he laughs. “He refused. He said, ‘I’m a musician. I’m not dressing up.’”

For the rest of the interview, please visit the Mix website!

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Be-Bop Deluxe FUTURAMA 3CD/1DVD Limited Edition Deluxe Boxset To Be Released May 3, 2019

For Immediate Release

Be-Bop Deluxe FUTURAMA 3CD/1DVD Limited Edition Deluxe Boxset To Be Released May 3, 2019

• A DELUXE 4 DISC LIMITED EDITION BOXED SET OF THE CLASSIC 1975 ALBUM BY BE BOP DELUXE
• NEWLY REMASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES
• FEATURING AN ADDITIONAL 36 BONUS TRACKS DRAWN FROM NEW 5.1 SURROUND SOUND & STEREO MIXES FROM THE ORIGINAL MULTI-TRACK MASTER TAPES, BBC RADIO SESSIONS FROM 1975 (INCLUDING A PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED “LOST” BBC IN CONCERT PERFORMANCE FROM MAY 1975), PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED OUT-TAKE FROM THE ALBUM SESSIONS, AND A PREVIOUSLY RELEASED 1975 HARVEST RECORDS PROMO VIDEO OF “MAID IN HEAVEN” & A BBC TV OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST APPEARANCE FROM JULY 1975
• INCLUDES A LAVISHLY ILLUSTRATED 68 PAGE BOOK WITH MANY PREVIOUSLY UNSEEN PHOTOGRAPHS &
NEW ESSAY BY BILL NELSON
ALSO INCLUDES A REPLICA RECORD STORE POSTER, POSTCARDS AND ALBUM TRACK SHEETS

Esoteric Recordings is proud to announce the release of a new re-mastered four disc deluxe expanded boxed set limited edition (comprising 3 CDs and a DVD) of FUTURAMA the legendary 1975 album by BE-BOP DELUXE.

Recorded in the first two months of 1975 at Rockfield studios (with some sessions also taking place at SARM studios in London), FUTURAMA was the second album by Be-Bop Deluxe and the first to feature the line-up of BILL NELSON (vocals, guitars, keyboards), CHARLIE TUMAHAI (bass, vocals) and SIMON FOX (drums). Produced by Roy Thomas Baker (who at the time was also working with Queen), FUTURAMA was an album of immense musical inventiveness and creativity and was a huge leap forward in creative terms for Bill Nelson.

The album gained much praise thanks to Bill Nelson’s composition skills and his highly innovative guitar playing. Featuring such wonderful material as ‘Maid in Heaven’, ‘Sister Seagull’, ‘Music in Dreamland’, ‘Sound Track’, ‘Between the Worlds’, ‘Jean Cocteau’ and ‘Swan Song’, the album would see Be Bop Deluxe heralded as one of the most accomplished acts of 1975.

This expanded reissue has been newly re-mastered from the original master tapes and features an additional 36 bonus tracks drawn from a stunning new 5.1 surround sound & stereo mixes from the original multi-track tapes by award winning engineer Stephen W. Tayler, a previously unreleased out-take from the album sessions, a previously unissued BBC Radio “In Concert” performance from May 1975 (thought “lost” for some years), a rare John Peel Show session from March 1975, along with a previously unreleased 1975 Harvest Records promotional video for ‘Maid in Heaven’ and a session for BBC TV’s “Old Grey Whistle Test” show from July 1975.

Another highlight of this limited edition boxed set is the lavishly illustrated 68-page book with many previously unseen photographs and an essay of recollections by Bill Nelson. Additionally, the set includes a facsimile Record Store poster for FUTURAMA, replica track sheets, and postcards. This special deluxe limited edition boxed set of FUTURAMA is a fitting tribute to a fine band, the creative vision of Bill Nelson and a wonderful album.

DISC ONE: CD
FUTURAMA
THE ORIGINAL ALBUM REMASTERED:

1. STAGE WHISPERS
2. LOVE WITH THE MADMAN
3. MAID IN HEAVEN
4. SISTER SEAGULL
5. SOUND TRACK
6. MUSIC IN DREAMLAND
7. JEAN COCTEAU
8. BETWEEN THE WORLDS
9. SWAN SONG
BONUS TRACKS
10. BETWEEN THE WORLDS (SINGLE VERSION)
11. LIGHTS

DISC TWO: CD
FUTURAMA
THE NEW STEREO MIX:

1. STAGE WHISPERS (NEW STEREO MIX)
2. LOVE WITH THE MADMAN (NEW STEREO MIX)
3. MAID IN HEAVEN (NEW STEREO MIX)
4. SISTER SEAGULL (NEW STEREO MIX)
5. SOUND TRACK (NEW STEREO MIX)
6. MUSIC IN DREAMLAND (NEW STEREO MIX)
7. JEAN COCTEAU (NEW STEREO MIX)
8. BETWEEN THE WORLDS (NEW STEREO MIX)
9. SWAN SONG (NEW STEREO MIX)
BONUS TRACKS
10. BETWEEN THE WORLDS (SINGLE VERSION) (NEW STEREO MIX)
11. LIGHTS (NEW STEREO MIX)
12. MUSIC IN DREAMLAND (PHONOGRAM STUDIOS VERSION)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
13. BETWEEN THE WORLDS (ALTERNATE SINGLE VERSION)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)

DISC THREE: CD
BBC RADIO ONE “JOHN PEEL SHOW” SESSION
11th MARCH 1975:

1. STAGE WHISPERS (BBC SESSION MARCH 1975)
2. SISTER SEAGULL (BBC SESSION MARCH 1975)
3. MAID IN HEAVEN (BBC SESSION MARCH 1975)
4. LIGHTS (BBC SESSION MARCH 1975)

BBC RADIO ONE “IN CONCERT”
23rd MAY 1975 – PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED:

5. STAGE WHISPERS (BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
6. THIRD FLOOR HEAVEN
(BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
7. ADVENTURES IN A YORKSHIRE LANDSCAPE
(BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
8. SISTER SEAGULL (BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
9. PIECE OF MINE (BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
10. MAID IN HEAVEN (BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)
11. AXE VICTIM (BBC IN CONCERT MAY 1975)
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED)

DISC FOUR: DVD
FUTURAMA
THE NEW 5.1 SURROUND SOUND MIX, NEW 96 KHZ / 24-BIT STEREO MIX AND 96 KHZ / 24-BIT ORIGINAL STEREO MIX

1. STAGE WHISPERS (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
2. LOVE WITH THE MADMAN (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
3. MAID IN HEAVEN (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
4. SISTER SEAGULL (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
5. SOUND TRACK (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
6. MUSIC IN DREAMLAND (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
7. JEAN COCTEAU (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
8. BETWEEN THE WORLDS (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
9. SWAN SONG (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
BONUS AUDIO MATERIAL
10. BETWEEN THE WORLDS (SINGLE VERSION) (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
11. LIGHTS (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
12. MUSIC IN DREAMLAND (PHONOGRAM STUDIOS VERSION) (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
BONUS VIDEO MATERIAL
13. MAID IN HEAVEN (OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST)
14. SISTER SEAGULL (OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST)

BBC TV “OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST” SESSION
19th JULY 1975

15. MAID IN HEAVEN
(PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED PROMO VIDEO)

1975 HARVEST RECORDS PROMOTIONAL VIDEO

Released May 3, 2019

To pre-order Be-Bop Deluxe FUTURAMA 3CD/1DVD:
https://www.amazon.com/Futurama-BE-BOP-DELUXE/dp/B07P2JBRKD

Also Available As a 2CD Expanded & Remastered Edition

Bill Nelson’s official website: www.billnelson.com

Press inquiries (North America): Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158 (US), glassonyonpr@gmail.com

Distribution is being handled in the US exclusively by Amped Distribution www.ampeddistribution.com and wholesale inquiries can be made to Alex Jimenez at alex@ampeddistribution.com


New BE-BOP DELUXE “SUNBURST FINISH” Documentary Featuring Bill Nelson and Producer John Leckie

For Immediate Release

New BE-BOP DELUXE SUNBURST FINISH Documentary Featuring Bill Nelson and Producer John Leckie

Esoteric Recordings has recently released a new re-mastered four disc deluxe expanded boxed set limited edition (comprising 3 CDs and a DVD) of SUNBURST FINISH the legendary 1976 album by BE-BOP DELUXE. Founding band member, guitarist and songwriter Bill Nelson and legendary producer John Leckie, who co-produced the album with Bill, are featured in a new documentary about the SUNBURST FINISH sessions. Filmed in York, England at Bill’s residence, the documentary was researched & directed by Matt Bristow. Filmed & Edited by Mark J. Freeman (markjfreeman.co.uk) for Cherry Red Records.

Watch the documentary here: 
https://www.goldminemag.com/features/goldmine-premiere-of-be-bop-deluxe-documentary

Recorded in the Autumn of 1975 at Abbey Road studios (with some sessions also taking place at AIR studios in London), SUNBURST FINISH was the third album by Be-Bop Deluxe and the first to feature the line-up of BILL NELSON (vocals, guitars, keyboards), CHARLIE TUMAHAI (bass, vocals), ANDY CLARK (keyboards) and SIMON FOX (drums). It was also the first BE-BOP DELUXE album to be co-produced by BILL NELSON and JOHN LECKIE. An album of immense musical inventiveness and creativity, SUNBURST FINISH was one of the finest albums of its era, a perfect cohesion of ten classic songs written by BILL NELSON (featuring his highly imaginative guitar playing) and a stylized and striking artwork package. Featuring such classic material as “Heavenly Homes”, “Crying to the Sky”, “Sleep that Burns”, “Life in the Air Age”, “Crystal Gazing” and “Blazing Apostles”, the album also spawned the hit single “Ships in the Night” and launched BE-BOP DELUXE as one of the major breakthrough acts of 1976.

This expanded reissue has been newly re-mastered from the original master tapes and features an additional 39 bonus tracks drawn from a stunning new 5.1 surround sound & stereo mixes from the original multi-track tapes by award winning engineer Stephen W. Tayler, previously unreleased out-takes from the album sessions, a BBC Radio “In Concert” performance from January 1976, a rare John Peel Show session from February 1976 (unavailable on CD for over twenty years), along with an unissued and previously unreleased 1976 Harvest Records promotional video for “Ships in the Night” and a session for BBC TV’s “Old Grey Whistle Test” show from January 1976.

Another highlight of this limited edition boxed set is the lavishly illustrated 68-page book with many previously unseen photographs and an essay of recollections by Bill Nelson. Additionally, the set includes a facsimile of the 1976 SUNBURST FINISH tour programme, postcards and a replica poster. This special deluxe limited edition boxed set of SUNBURST FINISH is a fitting tribute to a fine band, the creative vision of Bill Nelson and a wonderful album.

Released November 23, 2018.


To order BE-BOP DELUXE SUNBURST FINISH 3CD/1DVD Limited Edition Deluxe Boxed Set:
https://www.amazon.com/Sunburst-Finish-BE-BOP-DELUXE/dp/B07GRM8SQ7

Also Available As a 2CD Expanded & Remastered Edition

Bill Nelson’s official website: www.billnelson.com

Press inquiries (North America): Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158 (US), glassonyonpr@gmail.com

Distribution is being handled in the US exclusively by Amped Distribution www.ampeddistribution.com and wholesale inquiries can be made to Alex Jimenez at alex@ampeddistribution.com


Esoteric Recordings To Release BE-BOP DELUXE SUNBURST FINISH 3CD/1DVD Limited Edition Deluxe Boxed Set – November 23, 2018

For Immediate Release

Esoteric Recordings To Release BE-BOP DELUXE SUNBURST FINISH 3CD/1DVD Limited Edition Deluxe Boxed Set – November 23, 2018

NEWLY REMASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES

FEATURING AN ADDITIONAL 39 BONUS TRACKS DRAWN FROM NEW 5.1 SURROUND SOUND & STEREO MIXES FROM THE ORIGINAL MULTI-TRACK MASTER TAPES, BBC RADIO SESSIONS FROM 1976, PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED OUT-TAKES FROM THE ALBUM SESSIONS, ALONG WITH A PREVIOUSLY RELEASED UNISSUED 1976 HARVEST RECORDS PROMO VIDEO OF “SHIPS IN THE NIGHT” & A BBC TV OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST APPEARANCE FROM FEBRUARY 1976

INCLUDES A LAVISHLY ILLUSTRATED 68 PAGE BOOK WITH MANY PREVIOUSLY UNSEEN PHOTOGRAPHS & NEW ESSAY BY BILL NELSON. ALSO INCLUDES A FACSIMILE OF THE 1976 SUNBURST FINISH TOUR PROGRAMME, POSTCARDS AND A REPLICA POSTER

Esoteric Recordings is proud to announce the release of a new re-mastered four disc deluxe expanded boxed set limited edition (comprising 3 CDs and a DVD) of SUNBURST FINISH the legendary 1976 album by BE-BOP DELUXE.

Recorded in the Autumn of 1975 at Abbey Road studios (with some sessions also taking place at AIR studios in London), SUNBURST FINISH was the third album by Be-Bop Deluxe and the first to feature the line-up of BILL NELSON (vocals, guitars, keyboards), CHARLIE TUMAHAI (bass, vocals), ANDY CLARK (keyboards) and SIMON FOX (drums). It was also the first BE-BOP DELUXE album to be co-produced by BILL NELSON and JOHN LECKIE. An album of immense musical inventiveness and creativity, SUNBURST FINISH was one of the finest albums of its era, a perfect cohesion of ten classic songs written by BILL NELSON (featuring his highly imaginative guitar playing) and a stylized and striking artwork package. Featuring such classic material as “Heavenly Homes”, “Crying to the Sky”, “Sleep that Burns”, “Life in the Air Age”, “Crystal Gazing” and “Blazing Apostles”, the album also spawned the hit single “Ships in the Night” and launched BE-BOP DELUXE as one of the major breakthrough acts of 1976.

This expanded reissue has been newly re-mastered from the original master tapes and features an additional 39 bonus tracks drawn from a stunning new 5.1 surround sound & stereo mixes from the original multi-track tapes by award winning engineer Stephen W. Tayler, previously unreleased out-takes from the album sessions, a BBC Radio “In Concert” performance from January 1976, a rare John Peel Show session from February 1976 (unavailable on CD for over twenty years), along with an unissued and previously unreleased 1976 Harvest Records promotional video for “Ships in the Night” and a session for BBC TV’s “Old Grey Whistle Test” show from January 1976.

Another highlight of this limited edition boxed set is the lavishly illustrated 68-page book with many previously unseen photographs and an essay of recollections by Bill Nelson. Additionally, the set includes a facsimile of the 1976 SUNBURST FINISH tour programme, postcards and a replica poster. This special deluxe limited edition boxed set of SUNBURST FINISH is a fitting tribute to a fine band, the creative vision of Bill Nelson and a wonderful album.

Released November 23, 2018.

DISC ONE:
SUNBURST FINISH
THE ORIGINAL STEREO MIX RE- MASTERED:
1. FAIR EXCHANGE
2. HEAVENLY HOMES
3. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT
4. CRYING TO THE SKY
5. SLEEP THAT BURNS
6. BEAUTY SECRETS
7. LIFE IN THE AIR AGE
8. LIKE AN OLD BLUES
9. CRYSTAL GAZING
10. BLAZING APOSTLES

BONUS TRACK
11. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (SINGLE VERSION) A-SIDE OF SINGLE

DISC TWO:
SUNBURST FINISH
THE 2018 STEREO MIX:
1. FAIR EXCHANGE (NEW STEREO MIX)
2. HEAVENLY HOMES (NEW STEREO MIX)
3. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (NEW STEREO MIX)
4. CRYING TO THE SKY (NEW STEREO MIX)
5. SLEEP THAT BURNS (NEW STEREO MIX)
6. BEAUTY SECRETS (NEW STEREO MIX)
7. LIFE IN THE AIR AGE (NEW STEREO MIX)
8. LIKE AN OLD BLUES (NEW STEREO MIX)
9. CRYSTAL GAZING (NEW STEREO MIX)
10. BLAZING APOSTLES (NEW STEREO MIX)

PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED BONUS TRACKS
11. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (FIRST VERSION)
12. BEAUTY SECRETS (FIRST VERSION)
13. THE MYSTERY DEMO
14. CRYSTAL GAZING (ALTERNATE VOCAL VERSION)
15. CRYING TO THE SKY (FIRST VERSION)
16. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (ALTERNATE VOCAL VERSION)

DISC THREE:
BBC RADIO RECORDINGS
1. LIFE IN THE AIR AGE (LIVE)
2. SISTER SEAGULL (LIVE)
3. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (LIVE)
4. MAID IN HEAVEN (LIVE)
5. THIRD FLOOR HEAVEN (LIVE)
6. BLAZING APOSTLES (LIVE)

BBC RADIO ONE “IN CONCERT” 15TH JANUARY 1976
7. CRYING TO THE SKY (BBC JOHN PEEL SESSION)
8. PIECE OF MIND (BBC JOHN PEEL SESSION)
9. BLAZING APOSTLES (BBC JOHN PEEL SESSION)
BBC RADIO ONE “JOHN PEEL SHOW” SESSION 10th FEBRUARY 1976

DISC FOUR: DVD
SUNBURST FINISH
THE NEW 5.1 SURROUND SOUND MIX, NEW 96 KHZ / 24-BIT STEREO MIX AND 96 KHZ / 24-BIT ORIGINAL STEREO MIX
1. FAIR EXCHANGE (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
2. HEAVENLY HOMES (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
3. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
4. CRYING TO THE SKY (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
5. SLEEP THAT BURNS (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
6. BEAUTY SECRETS (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
7. LIFE IN THE AIR AGE (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
8. LIKE AN OLD BLUES (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
9. CRYSTAL GAZING (5.1 SURROUND MIX)
10. BLAZING APOSTLES (5.1 SURROUND MIX)

BONUS VIDEO MATERIAL
1. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST)
2. FAIR EXCHANGE (OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST)
BBC TV “OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST” SESSION 13TH JANUARY 1976
3. SHIPS IN THE NIGHT (UNRELEASED PROMO VIDEO) 1976 HARVEST RECORDS UNISSUED PROMOTIONAL VIDEO

To pre-order BE-BOP DELUXE SUNBURST FINISH 3CD/1DVD Limited Edition Deluxe Boxed Set:
https://www.amazon.com/Sunburst-Finish-BE-BOP-DELUXE/dp/B07GRM8SQ7

Also Available As a 2CD Expanded & Remastered Edition

Bill Nelson’s official website: www.billnelson.com

Press inquiries (North America): Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158 (US), glassonyonpr@gmail.com

Distribution is being handled in the US exclusively by Amped Distribution www.ampeddistribution.com and wholesale inquiries can be made to Alex Jimenez at alex@ampeddistribution.com