Thursday, February 19, 2015

Only In America U.K. Obscurities On U.S. Labels: Steve Marriott's Early Years (The Moments)

THE MOMENTS-You Really Got Me/Money Money U.S. World Artists 1032 1964

One of the more amusing 60's rarities of U.S. only pressings by British groups is this 45 by Steve Marriott's pre- Small Faces band The Moments.

The choice of releasing a cover of The Kink's "You Really Got Me" mere days after the U.S. release of the original (Reprise 0306, August 1964) is baffling but perhaps it was the same type of move that British labels often pulled where they'd release a cover version of an American tune before or at the same time the original was launched over there.  We'll never know.  In my fanzine "Smashed Blocked" in 1985 I compared The Moment's "You Really Got Me" to character Jimmy Cooper's bath house rendition in "Quadrophenia".  That was a bit unfair and impulsive and though it's no match to the brutality and intensity of the original it actually has some merits.  Marriott's vocals are sadly the weakest point, his soulfulness later displayed on The Small Faces "Whatcha Gonna Do About It" almost exactly a year later is not yet evident .  The band play it in a more r&b vein eschewing any attempts to replicate Dave Davies famous blistering guitar solo with a harmonica solo instead and a minimalist production that at times seems to recall Joe Meek with it's subdued drums and tinkling, cheezy piano.

Speaking of Joe Meek..."Money Money" was composed by former Tornando Alan Caddy and Don Charles (who it is alleged founded the World Artists label which launched most of the early Chad & Jeremy U.S. singles as well). It's far superior to the A-side with some nifty combo organ and some very soulful backing vocals and following a simple but tried and tested '64 British r&b formula not unlike The Soul Agents, The Animals etc. Interestingly the number was released in the U.K. on HMV by Hamilton King in November of 1964 (POP 1356).  Strangely there were no U.K. 60's releases by the Moments and Steve eventually went on to form another band with whom we all are well acquainted.....

Some people are on the pitch: The Moments 1964, Steve Marriott 2nd from right

Both sides were issued a number of years ago on a 2 CD Small Faces box set that featured the band's A's and B sides and tracks by band members pre-musical careers and more recently in 2008 Acid Jazz issued a four song 7" (and CD) E.P. entitled "Steve Marriott's Moments" with both tracks and two other unreleased numbers. "You Really Got Me" also was included on the Acid Jazz compilation CD "E.P. Choice: From The Rare Mod E.P. Collection".  Both tracks are also available for download from iTunes.

2008 Acid Jazz E.P.

Hear "You Really Got Me":

Hear "Money Money":

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