|July 16, 2008
SKYBAND-By the Mystical Beast 2004
We are Skyband, and we have come from the sky, in our sky-headgear!! (And one of us looks more comfortable in his sky-outfit than the other two.)
As mentioned last Friday, you can draw lines from Skyband to the cult trash movie Satan's Cheerleaders which included Skybander Lane Caudell (who also turned up on Days Of Our Lives in the early 80's); to Christina Aguilera's hit single Genie In A Bottle which was co-written and co-produced by Skybander Steve Kipner; and to the enormous 70's hit Baby Come Back, written by Skybander Pete Beckett for his group Player (which even younger people might know, as it popped up on an episode of The Simpsons).
Pretty impressive for an album that doesn't even credit the band members.
On the other hand, the art director, the photographer, and the guy who designed that beautiful headgear do get credited. And they are...
Cover Photography: Earl Miller
If you read Penthouse magazine (I don't...I googled this), you're probably familiar with the work of Earl Miller. He has a NOT AT ALL WORK SAFE webpage here.
Art Direction: Frank Mulvey
He was RCA's art director at the time (1975) so he did a lot of stuff.
Skyband's Headgear: Jeremy Railton
Is there another album that credits the headgear designer but not the band? Jeremy Railton would go on to do design for a lot of rock 'n' rollers, including Rod Stewart and Cher (you never would have guessed that, right?). He also won an Emmy for his work on Pee Wee's Playhouse.
I'll have more reasons why this album is interesting tomorrow, but maybe it's time for a song. Before you get too excited, Skyband is not a great lost classic, but it is a good lost, um, record. Clearly the people behind the album had heard the advice about putting the best song first. Here's the album opener Bang! Ooh! Ya Got Me! Great title for a great and driving rock song that probably doesn't sound at all like what you were expecting after looking at the cover art (I know it took me by surprise). Note the bubble sound effects during the part about the deep sea diver...you have to love people who sweat details like this.
In connection with this mini-Skyband feature, it occurs to me that there might be a very few readers here who don't know what the Bee Gees sounded like before their disco days. Here's a demo called Mrs. Gillespie's Refrigerator...sorry about the sound quality, but you get the idea.