bluesers whatsoever, but to me Roger
Chapman and Family embodied the whole psychedelic scene at the wonderful late 60's era. Roger threw himself into the song and sometimes into the audience in epileptic
fits, shouting the lyrics in his unusual timbre. Thin, stubblecheeked;
a deranged man on a mission. John Whitney's guitar flowed freely
(just like the oil projections) and Jim King's saxophone added to
the mood. "The Weaver's Answer", "Observations From a Hill" and "Hung Up
Down" (all on the "Family Entertainment" album) made a perfect row of songs.
To some, the vocals of Roger Chapman might be controversial. To me they
were habitforming and I keep picking up his albums to this very day.
N.M.E. reviewed their single "Second Generation Woman" REPRISE RS 23315
on Nov. 9 1968:
"Charges along at a fair old pace, with a heavy beat and resonant twangs
supporting the solo vocal - which, by the way, is encouraged by some spirited
chanting from the other members of Family. The drive, the tension and the
volume build to a palpitating climax.
In my singles box I found
You could hardly wish for a stronger beat - and the lyric is well thought
out, too. But there's virtually no melody at all, and that's its main handicap."
"No Mule's Fool" (Whitney/Chapman)/"Good Friend Of Mine" (Whitney/Chapman)
REPRISE RS.27001 (1969)
A-Side: Vocals, acoustic guitar, tambourines - and a persistent violin
riff which shapes the song. Great!
B-Side: I guess N.M.E. would have said "no melody here". A bit impersonal
but nice atmosphere.
For a list of Family's albums I recommend any good rock dictionary.
Parts of Family incl. Mr. Chapman founded The Streetwalkers:
a hard rock band with successes in the U.S.
Roger Chapman then began a long and impressive series of solo
albums in 1979 (1st album: "Chappo").
A page of
Family info and Family links
Page on Roger
Chapman and Family
Strange Band: The
Family Home Page
Roger Chapman Official