“The Pretty Things”? - One of the greatest “R&B” bands of all time - real wild.” Said VAN MORRISON (July 1995). The band that made The Stones look tame in the 60's make their way to Australia with TWO great Caravan Shows. Special Guests: THE BREADMAKERS.
The Pretty Things have had a seminal influence on rock music, which is more far-reaching than any casual observation would suggest. Their story runs deep and is one that is often unfortunately overlooked. Their diverse and unexpected history has spawned countless imitators, many of whom have seen greater commercial success, but The Pretty Things remain the original and the best. Arguably amongst the first ever “garage” bands, glowingly acknowledged by Iggy Pop, The Ramones, The Sex Pistols & Nirvana as a primal influence and guiding light.
It is no surprise that guitarist Dick Taylor chose to leave The Rolling Stones, which he had formed with Mick & Keith, to pursue a more raw level of energy with The Pretty Things with songs like ‘‘Rosalyn’’, “£.S.D.” and “Midnight to Six Man”.
At the height of his career, David Bowie covered not one but two Pretty Things songs “Rosalyn” and “Don’t Bring Me Down” for his Pin-Ups album.
The Pretty Things were responsible for the world’s 1st ever Rock Opera. Recorded in 1967 alongside The Beatles at Abbey Road – “S. F. Sorrow” was the acknowledged template for The Who’s ‘Tommy’. Following ‘S.F. Sorrow’ the band recorded the remarkable album – ‘Parachute’ which was voted Rolling Stone magazine’s first ever, Record of The Year in 1970, outclassing Neil Young, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones.
Berry Gordy & Tamla Motown, had signed The Pretty Things the year before, specifically to access the emerging and influential rock and roll album market and were the first UK act that the label had ever signed. “Parachute” was recognised by Pink Floyd as the inspiration for “Dark Side of The Moon”.
In 1974 The Pretty Things were the first band to sign to Led Zeppelin’s new label – Swansong. This association re-kindled a long-standing relationship with the band’s old friend Jimmy Page (who played with them on record in 1965) A raft of tours and shows with Zeppelin were a tribute to the band’s US status during the 70’s…. and their new profile spawned a lifelong friendship with Aerosmith’s Stephen Tyler – who acknowledges Phil May, the band’s singer, as his primal influence….
Throughout the 1990’s the band undertook the huge task of attempting to get all their recorded copyrights back from their original record companies. Undaunted by the massive undertaking of suing EMI, they became the first of the 1960’s bands in history to gain control of all their work. In 1999 The Pretty Things performed ‘S.F. Sorrow’ in its entirety at Abbey Road, with Dave Gilmour guesting on guitar.
The band have continued to be active in the last 10 years, releasing two acclaimed 5 Star Albums ‘Rage Before Beauty’ & ‘Balboa Island’. In 2012 they were awarded the first ever Mojo Magazine Hero’s Award and played with Bruce Springsteen at Hyde Park (at his request) The band continue to headline festivals across Europe as well as the coolest and most influential of all the UK’s summer offerings.
Through their entire career, The Pretty Things have written, performed, and created informed, intelligent, groundbreaking, and original music, enabled by powerful, melodic writing that has kept this incredible band alive for more than 45 years….. This should be a secret that everyone knows……
VAN MORRISON – “one of the greatest R&B bands of all time, real wild.”
JOEY RAMONE – “The Pretty Things’ were the biggest influence on us…they invented garage bands.”
JOHN PEEL – “The Beatles” were cute, “The Stones” were students, but “The Pretty Things” were plain frightening”