Riff Raff — Riff Raff 1973 (UK, Progressive/Jazz Rock)

  • 2 years ago
Riff Raff was a British progressive rock band formed by keyboardist Tommy Eyre in 1972. The band was a continuation on the back of drummers (and Harrow School of Art friends) Rod Coombes and Joe Czarnecki’s (aka Joe Peter)’s project originally called ‘Crikey’ which started in 1969 and completed in 1970, when Coombes had to accept growing tour commitments with Juicy Lucy. These sessions comprised half of the Riff Raff album Outside Looking In, in which Coombes wrote half the songs.

Riff Raff later went on to release two albums to lukewarm response; however, their use of jazz and hard-edged rock garnered them a large underground following. Riff Raff also released the single «Copper Kettle».

Riff Raff was practically Eyre’s own band and in part was a continuation of previous projects. By mid-1974 they had released a handful albums, culminating in Original Man. A gentler, more temperate offering and not overly successful at the time, Riff Raff’s music has lasted well. Despite being somewhat unconventional, it portrays high calibre, soothing blues-tinged progressive rock with occasional splashings of jazz. Eyre showcased his talents on “Goddam The Man”, where a Wurlitzer, Fender Rhodes, Grand Piano and Hammond can all be heard playing in one solo on the song!

Riff Raff guitarist Peter Kirtley recalled his first meetings with Eyre. “I first met up with Tommy Eyre and Rodger Sutton on the gig and session scene around London. They were looking for a guitarist/songwriter and Tommy put me through my paces at his house in Grove Park, South East London.

Kirtley also remembered Eyre’s enthusiasm at the time for performing, wherever and whatever the audience. “We had just been to another fruitless meeting with a record company and headed straight for the pub, mostly full of city business types. There was a piano in the corner. Tommy headed straight for it, playing whatever came into his head. One of these suits came over to enquire if this scruff could play any Chopin. Tommy promptly asked him which particular piece and then rattled it off, followed by several others. The gent stood flabbergasted. Tommy had a vast catalogue of music stored in his ever curious mind.”

Riff Raff ultimately disbanded and by the end of 1974.

(00:00) 01. Your World — 7:43
(07:43) 02. For Every Dog — 3:50
(11:33) 03. Little Miss Drag — 3:16
(14:49) 04. Dreaming — 4:37
(19:26) 05. Times Lost — 4:17
(23:43) 06. You Must Be Joking — 7:30
(31:13) 07. La Même Chose — 12:12

Tommy Eyre — organ, Fender Rhodes piano, 6- & 12-string guitars, flutes, vocals
Roger Sutton — Fretless Fender bass, double bass, 6- & 12-string guitars, vocals
Pete Kirtley — Fender Telecaster guitar, vocals
Aureo De Souza — drums, percussion
Bud Beadle — saxophones