-= 7-FLOOR =-

Thursday, March 05, 2009

McKenna Mendelson Blues - Selftitled (1968)





















Mike McKenna, who played for Luke and the Apostles, took out an ad in The Toronto Star looking for a blues musician. Joe Mendelson replied to that ad and the basis for McKenna Mendelson Mainline was formed in the summer of '68.

Former Pauper bass player Denny Gerrard joined the band with Tony Nolasco on drums. In the fall of '68, the band recorded what were thought to be demos for Allied Records. Gerrard left the band and was replaced by Mike Harrison from Grant Smith and the Power in October of that year. The original line up was in place.

In December of '68, when the wave of English bands were coming to North America, the group moved to England to pursue a record deal. They signed with Liberty / United Artists in the spring of '69 and started working the English circuit, following acts Fleetwood Mac and Led Zeppelin. They opened for major acts such as Rod Stewart, Jeff Beck and Jimi Hendrix. In April of '69 they recorded 'Stink' and returned to Canada shortly thereafter. Allied Records released the demos completed in September of '68, promoted as 'McKenna Mendelson Blues'. It became Canada's first 'major label' act to be bootlegged. Mendelson left the band in January 1970. They fulfilled their final engagements and split up.

In the spring of 1970, Mendelson, Nolasco and Zeke Sheppard started a trio called MAINLINE. They brought the novelty of a heavy blues / rock band playing 'sittin' down music' and premiered at The Hawks Nest. McKenna joined the band for the large outdoor festival 'Scarborough Fair.' The impact was huge. MAINLINE became a four piece.

In 1971, they signed with GRT Records and recorded the first of two albums in San Francisco with renowned engineer Fred Catero and the Tower of Power horns, Adam Michell of the Paupers fame produced. That summer they toured Australia with one hit wonders 'Fridgit Pink' and their remake of House of the Rising Sun. MAINLINE blew them off stage and were taken off the tour for the last five dates.

The band's music and stage antics became raunchier. By this time, Ted Purdy had joined the band as the new bass player. They recorded their second album for GRT (with strippers) - 'The Mainline Bump 'n' Grind Revue Live at the Victory Burlesque' in Toronto,1972.

In March of '73, McKenna, Nolasco, Harrison & King Biscuit Boy (Richard Newell) got together and performed at several selected venues. They opened for Rory Gallager at Toronto's Colonial and headlined a sellout crowd of 10,000 at Ontario Place. In June, Mendelson replaced King Biscuit Boy for their second Australian tour, this time as a headliner. It was wildly successful.

(info by: CGR)

01 - Drive You - 3.03
02 - RamblinĀ“ On My Mind - 3.42
03 - Toilet Bowl Blues - 2.04
04 - Bad Woman Are Killing Me - 11.23
05 - Pretty Woman - 3.39
06 - Born Under Bad Sign - 5.55
07 - Help Me - 10.27

















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4 Comments:

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At 9:05 PM, Blogger 7-Floor said...

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At 10:08 PM, Blogger 7-Floor said...

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