The Slade album "Greatest Hits" - The ultimate Slade album!


1999 - Greatest Hits

  • All songs written by Noddy holder and Jim Lea.
  • Published by Barn Publishing (Slade) Ltd. or Whild John Music Ltd. except 'Get Down And Get With It', written by Marchan, published by Burlington Music Ltd. and 'Look Wot You Dun', written by Jim Lea, Noddy Holder and Don Powell.
  • Produced by Chas Chandler and recorded at Olympic Studios in Barnes, London, unless otherwise stated.
  • THIS ALBUM IS DEDICATED TO THE MEMORY OF CHAS CHANDLER.
  • Remastered by Jon Astley and Andy Macpherson.
  • The copyright in this sound recording is owned by Noddy Holder Music Ltd. & Jim Lea Music Ltd. and Perseverance Ltd., and is exclusively licensed in the UK to Polydor Ltd. (UK) and Universal Music TV. This compilation © 1997 Polydor Ltd. (UK) and Universal Music TV. © 1999 Polydor Ltd. (UK) and Universal Music TV.
  • Album design and artwork by Colors London.
  • Photos: Rex Features (Front); Pictorial Press/London Features International (Inside).
  • The history on the booklet of the album. Text by Chris Charlesworth.
  • You can buy the album used or new at Amazon.co.uk.
  • Playing time: 79:24
  • The same tracklisting as "Feel The Noize - Greatest Hits" (1997)
  • Track Listing:


1.
  Get Down And Get With It (3:50) [Chart Position]

2.

  Coz I Luv You (3:24) [Chart Position]
3.
  Look Wot You Dun (2:54) [Chart Position]
4.
  Take Me Bak 'Ome (3:13) [Chart Position]
5.
  Mama Weer All Crazee Now (3:44) [Chart Position]
6.
  Gudbuy T'Jane (3:31) [Chart Position]
7.
  Cum On Feel The Noize (4:31) [Chart Position]
8.
  Skweeze Me, Pleeze Me (4:29) [Chart Position]
9.
  My Friend Stan (2:41) [Chart Position]
10.
  Everyday (3:10) [Chart Position]
11.
  Bangin' Man (4:10) [Chart Position]
12.
  Far Far Away (3:36) [Chart Position]
13.
  How Does It Feel (5:54) [Chart Position]
14.
  In For A Penny (3:35) [Chart Position]
15.
  We'll Bring The House Down (3:33) [Chart Position]
16.
  Lock Up Your Daughters (3:32) [Chart Position]
17.
  My Oh My (4:12) [Chart Position]
18.
  Run Run Away (3:44) [Chart Position]
19.
  All Join Hands (4:16) [Chart Position]
20.
  Radio Wall Of Sound (3:47) [Chart Position]
21.
  Merry Xmas Everybody (3:26) [Chart Position]
     







History On The Booklet Of The Album

Very few bands in the history of British popular music can boast a run of hits as impressive as Slade. They were by far far away the most successful chart band of the early seventies, chalking up to no fewer than 17 consecutive Top Twenty hits, including six number One's, between 1971 and 1976, and 39 chart entries in all. Three of their albums also topped the LP charts in an 18 month spell between 1972 and 1974.

The group that became Slade came together as The 'N Betweens in 1966. At this time it was still possoble for determined young rock musicans to make a reasonable living solely by performing live, and although it was their ultimate ambition to make records, they learned their craft playing cover versions in their home town of Wolverhampton, building up an enthusiastic live following long before the charts beckoned.

They played anywhere and everywhere together for five years. Then they changed their names to Slade and became managed by record producer Chas Chandler, the former Animal and svengali to Jimi Hendrix. Chas urged them to write their own material and under his guidance they were transformed into a hit making machine. Their songs became the anthems of an era, sung with great gusto on football terraces, in pubs and, of course, at concerts. Their stagecraft honed to perfection from years of experience, Slade toured endlessly, at home and abroad, and they became one of the UK's hottest live attractions, eventually selling out London's Earls Court Arena.

Noddy Holder, blessed with one of the finest rock voices to come out of Britain, had the highest profile. Influenced as much by Al Jolson as he was by Little Richard, Noddy brought a warm-hearted sense of showmanship to Slade's gigs that set them well apart from other bands. Bassist Jim Lea was quiet and creative, a formally trained violinist who, with Holder, wrote the group's many hits. Dave Hill, the fashion conscious Superyob, played lead guitar, and behind the drums was Don Powell, steady, sturdy and capable of reducing his kit to matchwood.

Slade'sinfluence was felt at home and abroad. Their look inspired a host of contemporary acts, while their sound - fat and pounding - would cross the Atlantic and re-emerge a decade later under the guise of Glam Metal. By that time, buoyed by a spectacular appearance at the Reading Festival in 1980, Slade had found a new rock audience and, eventually, their career spanned three decades, two rock generations and several leaps of fashion. Nowhere is this more evident than in Oasis's 1996 note-for-note cover version of one of Slade's biggest hits, 'Cum On Feel The Noize'.

This CD offers the very best of Slade's music: 21 of their 23 Top Thirty hits (a single CD cannot accommodate them all); most of them Top Five, from their raucous Little Richard cover'Get Down And Get With It' in 1971 to 'Radio Wall Of Sound' twenty years later. Finally, inevitably, ther's 'Merry Xmas Everybody', their rousing 1973 christmas chart topper that has gone on to become Britain's best loved christmas song, and one of som many reasons why the spirit of Slade, their music, their energy and their humour, lives on the hearts and minds of everyone. whatever their age.


Chas Chandler






1.    Get Down And Get With It!
       © 1971 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Released in May, 1971, Slade's cover of 'Get Down And Get With It', a Bobby Marchan song originally recorded by Little Richard, reached No 16 in the UK charts, their first Top Twenty placing. On stage featured the song as a barnstorming climax to their shows, and it stayed on the charts for four months. Olympic Studios, were Slade recorded many of their biggest hits, is a converted cinema and the clapping that accompanies 'Get Down And Get With It' was recorded in what used to be the cinema's stairwell. This was to become a trademark of Slade's hits and, together with the echo on Noddy's voice, it established an important musical identity for the band. The success of 'Get Down And Get With It' enabled Slade to appear on Top Of The Pops, the principal weekly TV chart show. This song remained Slade's closing live song throughout their touring days.




2.    Coz I Luv You
       © 1971 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Slade's first No 1 was released in October 1971, and was the first song that Noddy Holder and Jim Lea wrote together. Jim Lea, under pressure from Chandler to write the next single, went over unannounced to Noddy's home with his guitar and violin with an idea for a song with a Django Reinhardt/Stephan Grapelli Hot Club sound. The result, 'Coz I Luv You', was written in half an hour. Thus was the Slade song writing team born out of the desperate need to follow up their chart début. Prior to this time Lea had written with drummer Don Powell and Holder with guitarist Dave Hill. The band thought the sound and title was soft so clapping and stamping was added to the record, and the spelling of the title was changed. The misspelt titles were to become a trademark for Slade, causing a great furore among teachers up and down the country. The trademark drum-beat with shuffle snare and straight, on the beat, bass drum, together with the handclaps and rolling bass, was a feature of virtually all the Slade singles between 1971 and 1974.




3.    Look Wot You Dun
       © 1972 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Released in January 1972, 'Look Wot You Dun' reached No 4, where it stayed for four weeks. Originally written by Powell and Lea, Jim took the basic idea to Noddy for his input. The influence of John Lennon on Slade's writing style is readily apparent. Dave borrowed Peter Frampton's guitar for this recording as his own had been left home and was inaccessible due to bad weather during the christmas holidays. 'Look Wot You Dun' is the only Slade song to feature a Don Powell vocal - the heavy breathing on the chorus.




4.    Take Me Bak 'Ome
       © 1972 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Slade's second No 1 hit was released in May, 1972. Around this time the band appeared at the Great Western Festival near Lincoln which was promoted by the actor Stanley Baker. Slade triumphed before a large crowd despite a line-up of more serious, 'progressive' acts. Before this gig Chas Chandler told the band: "You'll write a new chapter in rock!". Their long experience held them in good stead and they walked away with the festival, appearing on the front page of Melody Maker the following week under the headline 'Nice One'. Dave, incidentally, wore an all-silver leather outfit for the first time on stage at Lincoln: his sartorial touch would influence british fashion for the next few years. 'Take Me Bak 'Ome' was at number 13 during the festival. The following week it reached number 1. With this single and the festival triumph, Slade had lost their tag as a pop act, and gained credibility as live performers. During the recording of 'Take Me Bak 'Ome' Noddy ad-libbed over the riff in the middle of the song. Jim asked him to change the ad-lib because it had given him an idea for their follow up...




5.    Mama Weer All Crazee Now
       © 1972 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Slade's third No 1 hit was released in August, 1972. Some months before the band had played a real gig at the Boston Gliderdrome in Lincolnshire. A bouncer had told them about another act who'd appeared there drunk - "crazy with whiskey" - and this gave Nod the idea for the lyrics, and the word 'crazy' in the title. Jim wrote the melody alone, thus establishing a pattern where Noddy would write the lyrics to Jim's melody. The record entered the charts at No 2 and was No 1 the following week. All involved decided it was possible to make their next record enter at No 1.




6.    Gudbuy T'Jane
       © 1972 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

'Gudbuy T'Jane' reached No 1 in the New Musical Express charts and No 2 in the national charts in November, 1972. The band were on tour in America when a follow up to 'Mama Weer All Crazee Now' was needed and the idea for the song came to Jim while he was sitting by a pool in San Diego. He completed it in the toilet in the plane on the flight back home. Portable tape-recorders were not available so everything had to be remembered. Nod's lyrics came from a TV show he saw in San Francisco on which the band had appeared, and on which a girl called Jane demostrated a sex machine!! Nod completed his lyrics just prior to the session, and the loose feel of the record is proably explained by the fact that this was Take 2, and the band had never played the song before until that day.




7.    Cum On Feel The Noize
       © 1973 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Released in February 1973, 'Cum On Feel The Noize' went straight into the UK charts at No 1, the first record to do so since The Beatles' 'Get Back'. In 1983 a cover version by Quiet Riot became a No 5 hit in the US, and Oasis released a cover of the song in 1996, as well as featuring it as the climax to their concerts. This was the first Slade song in which they attempted to recreate - and write about the atmosphere at their gigs. Noddy's 'Baby baby' introduction was actually just a microphone test. At this stage in their evolution Dave Hill's stage costumes were becoming more and more outrageous, so much so that on occasion Dave would change in the dressing room toilet to avoid j okes from the rest of the band. Moments before Slade appeared on Top Of The Pops promotion 'Cum On Feel The Noize', Dave emerged in his spectacular 'Metal Nun' costume. Faced with Jim Lea's open-mouthed amazement, Dave retorted: "You write 'em. I'll sell 'em."




8.    Skweeze Me, Pleeze Me
       © 1973 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

'Skweeze Me, Pleeze Me' became the second successive Slade single to enter the UK charts at No 1, a feat that remained unsurpassed for over twenty years. Because they were on tour in the US, this was recorded at AM Studios in Los Angeles, on a lot that had once served Charlie Chaplin's film studio. Jim got the idea for the call and response chorus at the Trumpet pub in Bilston where local pianist Reg Kierle was playing piano. Unfortunately Don Powell had suffered serious injuries in a car crash when this single was released and was in hospital when it reached No 1. The producers of Top Of The Pops wouldn't allow a three man Slade on the show and, unlike today, wouldn't show a clip from a previous week. Dancers were shown instead. Jim's brother Frank stood in on drums for a few gigs until Don recovered. Around this time Dave Hill débuted his 'Superyob' custom-built space-ship styled guitar which he used both on stage and in the studio, and not just as a stage-prop. It was featured triple-tracked on the intro to 'Skweeze Me, Pleeze Me'. The B-side 'Kill 'Em At The Hot Club Tonite' was briefly considered as a novelty single but the idea was scotched after Don's accident.




9.    My Friend Stan
       © 1973 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Released in September, 1973, 'My Friend Stan'saw a return to correct spelling and reached No 2 in the charts. When it was recorded Don was walking with the aid of a stick and had to be lifted on to his drum-kit. Jim was persuaded to complete this song by Chas Chandler who'd heard him playing the melody on the piano at his home. Noddy's lyrics were full of innuendo which was quite risque for the time.




10.  Everyday
       © 1974 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

The first ballad that Slade would release as a single came out in April 1974 and reached No 3 in the charts. The band knew they were taking a risk but 'Everyday' had become a firm favourite on stage when the crowd would sing along - which they never expected. The song was born out of an evening at Jim's house when friends asked how he wrote songs. Jim said: "Anybody can do it" and asked them all to have a go. Jim's wife Louise promptly sang the opening of the verse which Jim later completed. Noddy came up with some unusually sentimental lyrics.




11.  Bangin' Man
       © 1974 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

Released in June 1974. 'Bangin' Man' reached No 3. It was written while on tour in Australia, and once again innuendo was rampant in the lyrics. The song was about being woken up by room maids after partying while on tour.




12.  Far Far Away
       © 1974 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

'Far Far Away', Slade's second wistful ballad hit, was released in October 1974 and reached No 2. Noddy came up with the lyrics while standing on a balcony over looking the Mississipi river in Memphis, hence the line "I see the yellow lights go down the Mississipi". Jim contributed the chorus to Nod's verse. This song was included in the band's 1975 film, Flame, which critics have described as the best British pop film ever made. Co-producer Sir David Puttnam and director Richard Longcrane were delighted with the two songs that were earmarked for single release to promote the movie. They were also amazed at how well the band acted. The movie, praised by Barry Norman for it's "gritty realism", is now reguarly shown at the National Film Theatre.




13.  How Does It Feel
       © 1975 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

'How Does It Feel' was the first song that Jim Lea wrote, back in 1970 on an old out of tune piano with half the keys missing. Released in February 1975, it reached No 15 in the charts. It was brought out of the cupboard to be the theme tune for the movie, Flame, and Nod's melancholy lyrics added an extra dimension to the opening and closing credits. The song also featured members of the band Gonzales on brass instruments.




14.  In For A Penny
       © 1975 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

'In for A penny' was released in November 1975 and reached No 11. Recorded at the Record Plant in New York, where the band were living at the time, this song was chosen as a single because it was reminiscent of the rhythm of 'Coz I Luv You'. While Chas Chandler was mixing Slade tracks in the studio around this time, John Lennon poked his head around the door and said: "The singer's good. He sound like me!"




15.  We'll Bring The House Down
       © 1981 - Perseverance Ltd. Licensed from Perseverance Ltd.

Recorded in haste at London's Portland Studios on a sunday afternoon to capitalise on their barnstorming appearance at the Reading Festival, 'We'll Bring The House Down' was released in January 1981 and reached No 10. It was produced by the band. The idea for the song came while the band were performing in Amsterdam at the Paradiso Club. An enthusiastic audience who wouldn't go home kept repeating the chant heard in this song. Jim, downstairs in the dressing room was, as ever, on the hunt for the next song and realised the potential of the chant. The drums were completely double tracked with Don playing in the toilet on the second track, which gave the echoey sound. Noddy's lyrics reflected Slade's shift towards a heavier sound.




16.  Lock Up Your Daughters
       © 1981 - Perseverance Ltd. Licensed from Perseverance Ltd.

Reaching No 29 in Britain in September 1981, ' Lock Up Your Daughters' was a major European hit. Recorded at Portland Studios and produced by the band, it features a strident guitar riff from Dave Hill. It was released after yet another triumphant live appearance, this time at the Castle Donington Monsters Of Rock event, which consolidated Slade's position among fans of heavy Rock.




17.  My Oh My
       © 1983 - Perseverance Ltd. Licensed from Perseverance Ltd.

Slade returned to the higher echelons of the UK charts - No 2 - in November, 1983, with 'My Oh My', recorded at RAK Studios in London. This song came from an idea that Jim had while listening to Dave and Noddy tuning up in the dressing room before a gig at a University gig in Wales. "It reminded me of bagpipes," says Jim. "I wrote the melody in my head to the drone of the strings." Slade reappeared on Top Of The Pops performing 'My Oh My' one week and 'Merry Xmas Everybody', which had also charted, the following week. This was the first ever song that Jim and Nod had demoed because for the first time the group was working with a record producer - John Punter -other than themselves or Chas Chandler. The raw demo of Noddy singing over Jim's piano was received with wild enthusiasm by Slade's record label.




18.  Run Run Away
       © 1984 - Perseverance Ltd. Licensed from Perseverance Ltd.

Recorded at RAK Studios and also produced by John Punter, 'Run Run Away' was released in February, 1984, and it reached No 7 in the UK. It also became Slade's biggest ever US hit, with major exposure of the video on MTV. Jim wrote the Celtic sounding anthem on his trusty fiddle and it was recorded during the same session as 'My Oh My'.




19.  All Join Hands
       © 1984 - Perseverance Ltd. Licensed from Perseverance Ltd.

Slade's third hit in 1984, recorded at Angel Studios and again produced by John Punter, was released in November and reached No 15. Another anthem with a nostalgic feel, featuring Jim on double tracked piano, it heralded Slade's effective retirement from stage work.




20.  Radio Wall Of Sound
       © 1991 - Perseverance Ltd. Licensed from Perseverance Ltd.

Slade's unexpected renaissance in October, 1991, saw them reach a very creditable No 21 in the charts with 'Radio Wall Of Sound', recorded at The Basement Studios in London's Wardour Street and Rich Bitch Studios in Birmingham. It was produced and written by Jim Lea. Originally recorded for Jim's solo pursuits, Jim hooked up his demo and recorded the band alongside his original work. When it came to doing the vocal there was a fire in the recording studio in Birmingham. and Nod and Jim had to evacuate very quickly while the fire brigade did their stuff. Even so, it was decided that Jim's original lead vocal would remain intact in the verse as the key was very low for Noddy. The track also features Radio One DJ Mike Read as 'The Voice of Radio'.




21.  Merry Xmas Everybody
       © 1973 - Noddy Holder Music Ltd./Jim Lea Music Ltd.

'Merry Xmas Everybody', Slade's best known recording and a perennial favourite at Christmas, became their third single to debut at No 1 in the UK, in December, 1973. It has also charted consistently ever since, while the number of cover versions are too numerous to mention. The idea for the song came when Jim's mother-in-law asked him: "Why don't you write a song like 'White Christmas' and it'll last forever." In 1973, as ever, the band were on tour, this time in the US. Jim was in the shower when a song came to him, and he quickly joined it to a chorus melody which Noddy had written five years before. The original lyrics for the chorus were influenced by flower power and psychedelia but Jim recalled what his mother-in-law had said and came up with the line "So here it is, Merry Christmas". Nod liked the idea and came up with some nostalgic lyrics for the song. The song was recorded in the Record Plant in New York and the band's massed vocals, which needed an echoey room, were recorded in the lobby of the skyscraper which housed the studio. It was in the middle of September, and a very muggu day in New York, not at all Christmassy. Businessmen coming in and out of the building watched crazy englishmen singing about Christmas in 90 degree heat! The song was recorded as a complete overdub from a piano track which didn't end up on the final record. This was unusual for Slade because during this period they normally recorded live in the studio. Unbeknownst to the band, several other artists had the same idea in 1973 but it was Slade's Christmas record that triumphed, and it remains a party favourite every year.







Dave Bilzen, Belgium.
Click to enlarge.
© Randall, Belgium.

 

Noddy at Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Jim at Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Slade at Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Dave Hill, Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Noddy Holder, Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Jim Lea, Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Dave Hill, Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Jim Lea, Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Dave Hill, Bilzen.
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© Randall, Belgium.

 

Don Powell
Vinstra - Norway
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© Lars O


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Last Updated: 4 November, 2005 5:21