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Charles Shaar Murray

Charles Shaar Murray

Charles Shaar Murray, "the rock critic's rock critic" (Q Magazine), "front-line cultural warrior" and "original gunslinger" (Independent on Sunday) is the Ralph J. Gleason Music Book Award-winning author of Crosstown Traffic: Jimi Hendrix And Post-war Pop, and Boogie Man: The Adventures of John Lee Hooker in the American Twentieth Century, short-listed for the same award. The first two decades of his journalism, criticism and vulgar abuse have been collected in Shots From The Hip (Penguin).


A founding contributor to Q and Mojo magazines, he made his print debut in 1970 in the notorious "Schoolkids Issue" of underground magazine OZ, and became a frequent contributor to IT and Cream magazines before going mainstream with NME in 1972. Since launching his freelance career in 1980, his work has appeared in newspapers like The Guardian, The Observer, The Independent, The Independent on Sunday, Evening Standard, and magazines including Word, Vogue, MacUser, Guitarist, Prospect and New Statesman. He has written and presented several shows for Radio 3 and BBC World Service Radio, and supplied TV punditry to Channel 4 News and Newsnight, as well as appearing on numerous rockumentary programmes, most recently as series consultant for BBC2's Seven Ages Of Rock. As a musician, he currently terrorises London gig-goers as singer/guitarist for blues band Crosstown Lightnin' , also featuring harmonica maestro Buffalo Bill Smith and the all-female New York rhythm section Queens Of Funk. His first novel, The Hellhound Sample, was published in 2011.

Charles Shaar Murray online

List of articles in the library by artist

10cc: The Original Soundtrack

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

AIN'T NO GETTING round it: 10cc make brilliant records. ...

10cc: The Punk And I or Two Jews Blues

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

...In which two nice young men of Hebraic extraction (LOL CRÈME and CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY) engage in heated debate about 10 c.c.'s collective attitude. Or ...

10cc, Man, Steeleye Span: Man, Steeleye Span and 10cc at Cardiff Castle

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1975

DEKE LEONARD IS getting incoherent. ...

The Adverts: Crossing The Red Sea With The Adverts

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1978

ONCE UPON a time, the fastest way of revealing yourself as an Old Fart Who Didn't Understand The New Wave was to allege – in ...

Willie Alexander and the Boom Boom Band: Willie Alexander and the Boom Boom Band

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1978

AND WELCOME back the Bosstown Sound! That's Boston USA, spelled B-O-S-S-T-O-W-N, home of the J. Geils Band, Aerosmith, The Modern Lovers (sort of) and now…Willie ...

Allman Brothers Band, Fanny: Fanny: Fanny Hill (Reprise)/The Allman Brothers Band: Eat A Peach (Capricorn)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, May 1972

FANNY'S previous album. Charity Ball, may not have been the best album of the last eight months, but it was probably the one I played ...

Angelic Upstarts, Jimmy Pursey: Jimmy Pursey: The Cockney Kid Is Innocent

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1980

So who are you gonna be today then, Jim? The new Messiah or the little boy lost? Robespierre or the Urban Spaceman? An all-round good ...

Aswad: Black Flag: Aswad

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, Summer 1981

WE ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE RAINBOW ...

Aswad, Linton Kwesi Johnson: Aswad/Linton Kwesi Johnson/New Regulars: Hammersmith Palais, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1981

MONDAY NIGHT in the Palais: forward and upful all the way. Aswad's 'Warrior Charge' as featured in Babylon and Brinsley Forde's performance in the principal ...

Pete Atkin: Secret Drinker

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

IT MUST BE something of a bringdown for Pete Atkin that so much of the critical interest in his albums is focused on his collaborator, ...

Brian Auger, Julie Tippetts: Brian Auger and Julie Tippetts: Encore

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1978

AS REUNION albums go, this is considerably better than The Byrds' album, Booker T and the MGs', The Small Faces' or The Animals', but that's ...

Babyshambles: Pete Doherty And The New Decadence

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent on Sunday, February 2005

PERHAPS MARC ALMOND put it best: "To me a star is someone who has something extra, and something missing at the same time – ...

Bachman Turner Overdrive: Bachman-Turner Overdrive - And this isn't all they do

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1975

"WHEN I'M TRYING to do a solo, I'll try and play what Jeff Beck would play, or I'll try and play what Eric Clapton would ...

Baker Bruce Moore, Gary Moore, Ginger Baker, Jack Bruce: BBM: Around The Next Dream (Virgin)/Ginger Baker Trio: Going Back Home (Atlantic)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Guitar World, 1994

WHOEVER FIRST claimed that guitar, bass and drums are the "three primary colo(u)rs of rock and roll" ignored the possibility that some of us might ...

Baker-Gurvitz Army, John Mayall: Baker-Gurvitz Army: Baker Gurvitz Army and John Mayall: The Latest Edition

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

I CANNOT THINK of any legal way in which the Baker-Gurvitz Army can be prevented from Becoming Huge, so maybe there's something to Adrian Ben ...

The Band: Live at Watkins Glen

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, June 1995

"They got their own thing together that takes you to a certain place. Takes you where they want to go... they play their things on ...

Lester Bangs: Jim DeRogatis: Let it Blurt: The Life and Times of Lester Bangs (Broadway Books/Bloomsbury)

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Revolver, Spring 2000

WHO WAS Lester Bangs? He was a rock critic. To be more precise, he was a rock critic like Muhammad Ali was a boxer or ...

Lester Bangs: Joy And Rage Of A Dishevelled Rock Critic

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, September 2003

Mainlines, Blood Feasts And Bad Taste: A Lester Bangs Reader Lester Bangs; ed. John Morthland (Serpent's Tail; £9.99) ...

Carlene Carter, Elizabeth Barraclough: Elizabeth Barraclough: Elizabeth Barraclough; Carlene Carter: Carlene Carter

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

BUFFY SAINTE MARIE used to have this song called 'I'm Gonna Be A Country Girl Again', but you won't find Elizabeth Barraclough or Carlene Carter ...

The Bay City Rollers: The View From Seat A6

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1976

"Then one day I found a perfect plan,I shake my ass and sing in a rock and roll band,From now on there'll be no compromisin'Rock ...

The Beastie Boys: Paul's Boutique

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, August 1989

PRANKSTERS TO THE last, The Beastie Boys slide into their comeback album so quietly and casually that you double check the volume knob on your ...

The Beatles: 1

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, December 2000

Does The Fabs' 'Best Of' Add Up? Packed 27-track single-disc summary of pop's best-loved repertoire, but no Please Please Me? Strawberry Fields Forever? Hello-o-o-o-o? ...

The Beatles: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, July 1987

AND ONCE THE tumult and the shouting have died, and life returns to something resembling normality... Sgt. Pepper remains a central pillar of the mythology ...

The Beatles: Silly Charlie and the Not-So-Red-Hot Pepper

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1974

Will Ringo get the mums? Can George hold the mystics? Who was the Walrus? Is Charles Shaar Murray a loony? Only the last question need ...

Be-Bop Deluxe at Aylesbury

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

THE FIRST THING that hits you when you see Be-Bop Deluxe in their current incarnation (or, for that matter, listen to said incarnation's Futurama album ...

Be-Bop Deluxe: 1974 was Last Year’s Thing

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1974

...so what about the Sound of ‘75, man? Could it even be BE-BOP DELUXE, already? (We knock ‘em down and then we build ‘em up ...

Jeff Beck: Jeff Beck Group

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, July 1972

SINCE HIS LAST album, Beck has brought in an outside producer, Steve Cropper, no less. Unlike Rough and Ready, this one features some real songs, ...

Jeff Beck: Who wants to be a guitar hero?

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, September 2002

WHEN FRANK ZAPPA'S son Dweezil showed up in London recently toting – or touting – the Fender Stratocaster torched by Jimi Hendrix at the 1968 ...

Jeff Beck: The Jeff Beck Interview

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, April 1999

WHEN JEFF BECK WALKS INTO A PUBLIC SPACE, PEOPLE TURN and stare. They're seeing a fit-looking 50-something with stubble and an archetypal rock'n'roll haircut, wearing ...

Jeff Beck The Dare-Devil

Profile by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1973

WHEN HE'S playing nice, you couldn't possibly hope to hear more creative or more exciting rock guitar playing than that of Jeff Beck. He was ...

Jeff Beck: Music And Cars And Sex…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1974

A DIGESTIVE BISCUIT is poised, somewhat uneasily, a few inches away from Jeff Beck's celebrated nasty leer. ...

Jan Hammer, Jeff Beck, Mike Bloomfield: Jeff Beck/The Jan Hammer Group: Live; Michael Bloomfield: If You Love These Blues, Play 'Em As You Please

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1977

BECK IN Ongoing Fusion Situation (he blows it). Bloomfield Simply Plays The Blues (he makes it). ...

The Edgar Broughton Band, Jeff Beck, Pink Floyd: British Psychedelia: More Zits Than Hitz…

Guide by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1975

It's dream-time in Compilationsville once again, amigos. This week CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY does his worst to induce EMI into issuing Volume Two in his discocartography ...

The Faces, Jeff Beck, Rod Stewart: Rod Stewart: The Scarecrow Harlequin

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

STRANGE AS it may seem, there was a time when Rod Stewart used to hide behind Jeff Beck's amplifiers and only come out front if ...

Jeff Beck, The White Stripes and friends: Royal Festival Hall, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, November 2002

THE SHORT version: Jeff Beck is still the champ. The long version: American humorist Fran Lebowitz once wrote words to the effect that vegetables do ...

Beck, Bogert and Appice

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

THE BECK, BOGERT and Appice album is completed and virtually upon us, and it leads us to two inescapable conclusions. The first is simple: man ...

Beck, Bogert and Appice: Rock 'n' Roll Vandals

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

"HEY," SAID Jeff Beck a trifle slyly, tilling his head to one side and allowing a patently nasty leer to edge its way across his ...

Beck, Bogert and Appice: The Axeman Cometh

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1973

IT JUST GOES to show that things ain't always what they seem. Bopping down Savile Row in the general direction of Apple Studios (ah, Apple! ...

Beck, Bogert and Appice, Steeleye Span: Great Caledonian Express Festival, Grangemouth, Scotland

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1972

Mr. Beck we salute you ...

Beck, Bogert and Appice, Vanilla Fudge: Vanilla Fudge: From Pizza to Fudge

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

SO WHAT did happen to Beck, Bogert and Appice?Well, the mean moody and magnificent one is being mean, moody and magnificent in various studios and ...

Maggie Bell, The Pretty Things: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

OKAY, FIRST things first. When Maggie Bell's done a few more gigs (and maybe even a couple more rehearsals) with her new band, then there's ...

Chuck Berry: Big Red Cars, Little White Chicks And The Chuck Berry Lick

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, March 1972

It was singalong night at the Coventry Locarno. Difference was that it was Chuck Berry we were singing along with. The Brown Eyed Handsome Man ...

Black Oak Arkansas: Hot And Nasty

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

ACTUALLY Atlantic are taking a hell of a chance with this album. In case you haven't yet glommed the cover in your local, it's a ...

Black Oak Arkansas, Black Sabbath: Black Sabbath/Black Oak Arkansas: Black Power

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1974

IF JIM DANDY'S PANTS were any tighter they'd have hair growing out of them.Fringed suede jacket, fringed suede boots, and those white satin pants. Now, ...

Black Sabbath: Satan, The Bomb And Geezer's Dreams

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1972

CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY looking for flames ...

B.B. King, Bobby Bland, John Lee Hooker: Talkin' Blues: John Lee Hooker/B.B. King/Bobby 'Blue' Bland

Retrospective and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1982

THE BLUES speaks haltingly at first, haltingly and quietly in a darkened room. The curtains are drawn to shut out whatever passes for daylight during ...

Blondie, David Johansen, Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers, The Ramones, The Shirts, Talking Heads, Television, Tuff Darts: New York: The Sound Of '75

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

"BEAT ON the brat, beat on the brat, beat on the brat with a baseball bat..." ...

Graham Bond: The Death Of Graham Bond

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1974

TWENTY-FOUR HOURS before his death two weeks ago, Graham Bond phoned the NME offices. He sounded purposeful, optimistic, enthusiastic, and full of energy. ...

David Bowie: David at the Dorchester: Bowie on Ziggy and other matters

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1972

THREE CHANGES of dress and a kiss from Lou Reed. The waiters were horrified. ...

David Bowie & The Spiders from Mars: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

ZIGGY PULLS THE SQUEALERS ...

David Bowie: Aladdin Sane

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

Bye-bye, Ziggy. It was nice seeing you, and I hope you'll keep in touch. Hello, Aladdin Sane, make yourself at home. David Bowie's new album ...

David Bowie: David Live

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

IS THERE life on Uranus? Dunno. Things were pretty quiet last time I looked. On the other hand, Tony Defries' little redhead has a new ...

David Bowie: Let's Dance

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1983

"Put on your red shoes and dance the blues to the song they're playing on the radio..." ...

David Bowie: Low

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1977

AND YOU'RE profile to profile with The Man Who Fell To Bits. Against an incandescent orange background, the cover of David Bowie's new album reprises ...

David Bowie: Outside

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, October 1995

"Fuck art, let's concept," suggests former Dame to his chrome-domed chum. "Umpteenth comeback is a corker!" cries a passing Charles Shaar Murray ...

David Bowie: Scary Monsters (RCA)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1980

LEARNING to live with somebody's depression: the man in the clown suit stops running, finds self in back-against-wall situation, attempts to deal with same. Scary ...

David Bowie: Station To Station

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1976

"A sixty thousand word novel is one image corrected fifty-nine thousand, nine hundred and ninety-nine times"– Samuel R. Delaney ...

David Bowie: Aladdin Seine

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1973

ANGIE BOWIE is a gas. She really is. She's sitting between Cherry Vanilla and an ice-bucket at a table in the colossally elegant main dining ...

David Bowie: Bowie-ing Out at The Chateau

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1973

CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY WITH THE MAIN MAN IN FRANCE. WORK ON NEW PROJECTS, REPORTS MURRAY, IS GOING AHEAD DELICIOUSLY IN THE DEAD OF NIGHT ...

David Bowie: Did We Use Him? Did We Abuse Him?

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

Well, he's acting like we did, so maybe there's something in it. Two recent and much-maligned Bowie albums are herein re-evaluated for your reading pleasure... ...

David Bowie: Gay Guerillas & Private Movies

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

ALRIGHT, so you're a rock singer out of Beckenham, Kent called David Bowie and you're hotter than a stolen atom bomb packed with pictures of ...

David Bowie: Sermon From The Savoy

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1984

When David Bowie recently visited Britain he agreed to do one ‘official’ interview — with NME’s Charles Shaar Murray. In this exclusive story he gives ...

David Bowie: The Byronic Man

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Face, The, October 1984

"WHAT WE'RE DOING here is bringing back the talkies," David Bowie announces self-mockingly. His livid mask recalls the white-faced clowns and demons of the Commedia ...

David Bowie: Tight Rope Walker At The Circus

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1973

THE CHATEAU D'HEROUVILLE is probably the only recording studio in the world boasting a resident chef who does Charlie Chaplin impressions at suppertime. Trouble is, ...

David Bowie: Total Sensory Overload

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1973

Following the controversial London Earls Court gig, Charles Shaar Murray and photographer Joe Stevens check out Bowie on tour – and find a riot goin' ...

David Bowie: Who Was That (Un)masked Man?

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1977

CHRIST, HOW LONG has it been? Four years, man, and I set up the tape machine – Bowie attempting to balance the microphone on top ...

David Bowie: Goodbye Ziggy And a big hello to Aladdin Sane

Review and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

Two days in the life of David Bowie - A rare interview and a preview of his new album... ...

David Bowie: Live Bowie!

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1983

David Bowie: Brussels Voorst National, Belgium ...

David Bowie: Lookin' Back Part 2, in which Murray looks at Hunky Dory and Ziggy Stardust

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

AFTER MAN Who Sold The World came Hunky Dory (RCASF 8244), with its Garbo cover-pose and its extraordinary range of mood and sound. The hard ...

David Bowie: Lookin' Back, David Bowie: Sinister Odyssey Through a Treacherous Landscape

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

RIGHT NOW David Bowie's albums are the subject of more close and obsessive study than anybody else's since the days when hippies all over the ...

David Bowie: The Bowie Experiment

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1973

THIS IS ONE OF those restaurants where quiet good taste just screams its presence. You just know that they have pheasant under glass, and that ...

David Bowie: Tin Machine: Versus

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1991

PICTURE THIS: you are in a sex shop in Sydney (for whatever twisted reasons people have for patronising such institutions), and this scholarly-looking gent with ...

David Bowie: Ziggy Played Guitar (But Never Took His Eyes Off The Business)

Profile by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, June 2002

"TIME," AS DAVID BOWIE once sang. "is waiting in the wings." As far as Bowie himself, who turned 55 last January, is concerned, time seems ...

David Bowie, Roxy Music: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1972

GOING TO THE Rainbow these days is definitely an outing, an excursion, something of a treat. Unfamiliarity breeds respect, and though the cheerful hippies who ...

David Bowie, The Troggs: David Bowie: Zigs and Troggs and Backless Nuns

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1973

IT DOESN'T MATTER who's playing. The Marquee's always a drag on Saturday nights. It's hot, crowded, uncomfortable, and noisy, and it poses a severe visibility ...

Brewer's Droop, Brinsley Schwarz, J. Geils Band: The J. Geils Band, Brinsley Schwarz, Brewer's Droop: Lyceum, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1972

WHEN THE J. Geils Band team up with Brinsley Schwarz and Brewer's Droop for a night's rockanroll, you can be sure that you're going to ...

The Brides of Funkenstein, Parliament: The Brides of Funkenstein: Funk Or Walk; Parliament: Motor Booty Affair

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1978

IF ROCK stars had the kind of union that insisted on overtime bans and frowned on over-productivity, George Clinton would undoubtedly be the subject of ...

Brinsley Schwarz, Gnidrolog, Lou Reed: Lou Reed, Brinsley Schwartz, Gnidrolog: King's Cross Cinema, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1972

THIS WAS one of the few gigs I can remember where all the acts deserved a full-length review to themselves. The teaming of Reed, Gnidrolog ...

The Edgar Broughton Band: Edgar Broughton

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1974

SHED A TEAR or, if you will, a small sympathetic whimper, for The Edgar Broughton Band. ...

Arthur Brown - Dance

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1975

LET'S GET ONE thing straight right up front. ...

Arthur Brown: Live at Speakeasy, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1976

THE LAST time I saw Arthur Brown work he perpetrated one of the most numblingly embarrassing performances I can recall, one that still festers in ...

James Brown: Star Time

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, May 1991

AN ASSEMBLAGE of 71 tracks and slightly less than five hours of music, weighing in at four CDs or cassettes (committed vinylists are, unfortunately, totally ...

James Brown: Roots Of A Revolution

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1984

YAAAOOWWW . . . Witchaw bad self! A few years ago Polydor issued a deluxe double album commemorating the first 21 years of James Brown's ...

James Brown: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

SOUL BROTHER Number One's in town, and the James Brown Revue's gettin' down and gittin' it on at the Rainbow. Bop through to the stalls ...

James Brown: Sweat, Power And Expensive Perfume

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1979

TALKIN' 'BOUT The Venue...and people, it's bad. There is no way that something the size of a small theatre can pretend to be an intimate ...

Burning Spear: Man In The Hills

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1976

NEXT TO THE current crop of wild-eyed wired-op weird-asses coming out of JA these days, Burning Spear sound almost conservative. ...

Kate Bush: The Palladium, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1979

TWO MEMORIES: recalled first are the days when rock and roll was swamped with failed classical pianists and violinists who knew that they could make ...

Paul Butterfield Blues Band: Paul Butterfield's Better Days: Better Days (Bearsville); Original Soundtrack: Steelyard Blues (Warner Brothers)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

IT'S BEEN nearly 18 months since we heard anything new from Paul Butterfield. In 1971 he released Sometimes I Just Feel Like Smilin' which was, ...

The Buzzcocks, The Clash, The Sex Pistols: The Sex Pistols, The Clash, The Buzzcocks: Screen On The Green, Islington, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1976

Our Islington correspondent mingles with the Sex Pistols' portable audience looking for Johnny Rotten's toof. It's incisive stuff… ...

The Byrds, Crosby Stills and Nash, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, David Crosby: David Crosby

Profile by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1975

IT STARTED with trademark objects, really. When The Byrds got their hit with 'Mr Tambourine Man', Jim McGuinn established himself as the one with those ...

Bo Diddley, Ray Campi: This Here's The Review Of Bo Diddley

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1979

Bo Diddley/Ray Campi And The Rockabilly Rebels/Whirlwind: Lyceum, London ...

Captain Beefheart And The Magic Band: Doc At The Radar Station

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1980

IN THE Beefheart Universe, you see everything that you see in other places, but it always seems different. ...

Captain Sensible, Gary Numan: Gary Numan: I, Assassin/Captain Sensible: Women And Captains First

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1982

A PAIR OF FUNSTERS from the charts: Sensible in his new role as the nation's favourite lovable loony and Numan in his old one as ...

Caravan, Climax Blues Band, Ike & Tina Turner, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Soft Machine: Ike and Tina Turner, Caravan, John McLaughlin et al: Startruckin' 75

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

WHERE THE HELL is Lou Reed?Good question, if a trifle academic, but eminently suited for whiling away times in the coach by discussing. ...

Johnny Cash - John R. Cash

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1975

IN WHICH JOHNNY Cash meets up, quite casual-like, with the '70s and discovers that even though they don't really have a whole lot in common, ...

Johnny Cash: Ragged Old Flag

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1974

I'VE ALWAYS HAD me suspicions about Johnny Cash. ...

B.B. King, Johnny Cash: Johnny Cash: The Junkie And The Juicehead Minus Me (CBS); B.B. King: Friends (ABC)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1974

IN WHICH two culture heroes find themselves well and truly on the artistic skids. ...

Michael Chapman: Savage Amusement (Decca)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1976

ABOUT THE only thing that Michael Chapman has in common with Laura Nyro, apart from vast merit, is that a lot of people find the ...

Michael Chapman: Drury Lane, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1976

IT'S TERRIBLE HOW people sometimes get the wrong idea, it really is. ...

Michael Chapman: The Body In The Lake and Other Stories

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1976

SO THERE we were sitting in the studio drinking wine and talking rock and roll talk when Rick Kemp shouldered in, slammed the door and ...

Ray Charles: Brother Ray in Vision

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer Music Monthly, November 2004

AT A RECENT MOVIE screening, I bumped into a publisher friend who specialises in music biographies. Every so often, he told me, some film production ...

Ray Charles: The Definitive Ray Charles

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, January 2002

Forty-six tracks from 48 years – 40 of which are from the '50s and '60s, but them's the breaks – a definitive encapsulation of a ...

Ray Charles: 'As Frank Sinatra Said, He Was The Only True Genius In Our Business'

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, June 2004

FOR ALL PRACTICAL purposes, Ray Charles invented modern soul music. By fusing the sensual and secular preoccupations of the blues and the galvanic fervour of ...

Cher, LaBelle: LaBelle: It Happened In Hollywood

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

IT HAPPENED in Hollywood.To be precise it happened on The Cher Show. ...

Chilli Willi & The Red Hot Peppers: Marquee Club, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1974

CHILLI WILLI and the Red Hot Peppers are gonna save your soul. They're the only band in the country specialising in funky country, an area ...

Eric Clapton: Journeyman

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, December 1989

A CERTAIN self-deprecating irony is evident in the title of Eric Clapton's latest: a journeyman is certainly what he has become in his post-God years. ...

Eric Clapton: Timepieces

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1982

IN A SENSE, it doesn't really matter whether one thinks of Eric Clapton as the man whose pioneering plagiarism helped black artists ranging from B.B. ...

Eric Clapton: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, February 1973

SO THERE'S THIS cat in the white suit smiling diffidently through his beard at the cheering hordes on the other side of the lights. He's ...

Eric Clapton, The Who: Pete Townshend part1: The True Saga Of Clapton's Rainbow Gig

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

IF YOU TURN up at the famous Track office in Soho's historic Old Compton Street, you're sure of a big surprise – there's a glitzy ...

Elvis Costello, John Cooper Clarke, Richard Hell: Elvis Costello, Richard Hell, John Cooper Clarke: Hammersmith Palais, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1979

Are you ready for the fiiinal soluuuuuuuuuuuuuushun (oh yeah)? ...

The Clash: Guy Stevens: “There Are Only Two Phil Spectors In The World And I Am One Of Them”

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1979

Selected tableaux from The Guy Stevens Story. ...

The Clash: London Calling

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1979

"...the wit of the city's urchins is as sharp as the finest conversation of the rural lord; the vulgar speech of the street arabs is ...

The Clash: Up The Hill Backwards

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1982

HALF PAST ONE on Portobello Road. Past the chippy, opposite the bookshop, within earshot of a man with an amplified mouth-harp honking and scything through ...

The Clash: Yes It's Strummer In The City

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1979

HOT TOWN! Strummer in the city: walks into the Kings Road pub that serves as his temporary local while he's staying in Fulham dead on ...

The Clash, Joe Strummer: Joe Strummer: Comrade, Goodbye

Memoir by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, March 2003

SOMETIME IN 1979, I WAS interviewing Joe Strummer for the NME in the Worlds End pub on the King's Road. As well as giving me ...

The Clash, Suicide: The Music Machine, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

TIME HAS come today. Third of four Music Machine gigs and – surprise! – the ritual bottling of Suicide appears to have been omitted for ...

Climax Blues Band: Shine On

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1978

THE ONE thing more annoying than a duff album, by a duff band is a duff album by a good band. ...

Climax Blues Band: Stamp Album

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1975

I'M SICK AND tired of bloody good bands. ...

George Clinton: Some Of My Best Jokes Are Friends (Capitol)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1985

IF THERE'S nothing more pathetic than an ageing crazy person, then why is George Clinton still able to make music as passionate, ...

Joe Cocker: Sheffield Steel (Island)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1982

LIFE IN THE upper echelons of Island Records would currently seem to be taking on a pleasingly surreal texture. One can just imagine the dialogue: ...

Cockney Rebel: The Psychomodo

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1974

ONE THING you gotta admit about Steve Harley, and that is that he does the funniest interviews since Marc Bolan. He even opens up Cocky ...

Albert Collins: Blue Guitarist, Singer, Iceman, 1932-1993

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, January 1994

ALBERT COLLINS WAS ROUGH. THAT'S ROUGH AS IN 'NICE 'N' rough', as opposed to 'mean 'n' rough'. He demonstrated the difference to perfection a couple ...

John Coltrane, Miles Davis: Miles Davis: You’re Under Arrest (CBS)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1985

THIS YEAR, Miles Davis is 59 years old. However, if it’s round numbers that appeal to you, it’s worth mentioning that 1985 marks the 40th ...

Ry Cooder: Bop Till You Drop (Warners Import)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1979

RYLAND P. Cooder is a most reliable fellow. Ever since the days when he was laying down that stinging bottleneck guitar behind the likes of ...

Ry Cooder: The Slide Area (Warner Bros.)/The Border – Original Soundtrack (MCA)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1982

THE MORE things remain the same, the more they change: after more than a decade of recording as a featured artist, Ry Cooder has finally ...

Alice Cooper: Muscle Of Love

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1974

WOWEE, that Alice Cooper is certainly a funny fellow an no mistake. ...

Alice Cooper: Welcome to My Nightmare

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

ETHYL'S FRIGID AS an eskimo pie, she's cool in bed/she oughta be, 'cuz Ethyl's dead... ...

Alice Cooper: Madison Square Garden, NYC

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1973

LET'S ASSUME, just for the purpose of arguement, that you're a sensitive soul filled with love for your fellow humans, and that you really get ...

Alice Cooper: The Man Who Ate Alice Cooper

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

Yes, once again CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY, Regius Professor of Logic, Rhetoric, Trash Aesthetics, and Hohner Super Vamper, leaps forth with a mouthful of scintillating verbosity ...

Elvis Costello: Armed Forces

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1979

IN The Devil Finds Work, James Baldwin opined that white people's hatred of blacks is based on terror, while black people's hatred of whites is ...

Elvis Costello: Elvis' Armed Forces

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1979

ELVIS COSTELLO is Superman's fantasy of what Clark Kent should have been. He is Buddy Holly reincarnated as an axe-murderer. He is a nasty Woody ...

Elvis Costello: Holocaust In Microcosm

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1978

"HEY ELVIIIIIS!!!" There's this blonde gumdrop down the front, see, shaking it down in that demure stoned way that hippie girls seem to favour, and ...

Elvis Costello: The Misfit

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, July 1991

"I'M BLOWING MY COVER," Elvis Costello announces mournfully, as the sun, knowing no better, blazes happily down on Notting Hill Gate. ...

Dave Edmunds, Elvis Costello, Ian Dury, Nick Lowe: The Stiff Tour: Stiffs Drugs And Rock 'N' Roll

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1977

"SEX AND drugs and rock and roll...sex and drugs and rock and roll...sex and drugs and rock and roll..." Hot damn, m'man, Leicester University is ...

Country Gazette, David Wiffen, The Dillards, The Kentucky Colonels, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band: Nitty Gritty Dirt Band/Dillards/Country Gazette/David Wiffen/Kentucky Colonels Albums

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1974

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Friends: Will The Circle Be Unbroken (United Artists)Dillards: Tribute To The American Duck (United Artists)Country Gazette: Don't Give Up Your ...

Country Joe & The Fish: Country Joe McDonald: Incredible! Live! Country Joe! (Vanguard)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, June 1972

I like the coffee and I like tea,I like the sweetness that you give to me, Hey woman set your mind at rest,Home cookin' still ...

Cherry Vanilla, Mink DeVille, Pere Ubu, The Shirts, Suicide, Tuff Darts, Wayne County & The Electric Chairs: Various Artists: Live At CBGB's/Max's Kansas City 1976

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1976

YOU KNOW what these albums remind me of: The This Is Mersey Beat collections that Oriole put out after the first wave of Liverpool bands had gotten ...

Robert Cray: The Robert Cray Band: Midnight Stroll

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1990

ANOTHER ROBERT CRAY album: we all know what to expect by now, right? ...

Jim Croce: Photographs And Memories

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1976

JIM CROCE was a witty, adroit songwriter with a dual penchant for sharp, good-humoured barroom-jive badman songs and love songs which ranged from the genuinely ...

Crosby Stills and Nash, Crosby Stills Nash & Young: Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: So Far

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

Gormlessly groping ...

The Damned: The Torments of The Damned

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1978

(a somewhat sobering cautionary tale of our time)Charles Shaar Murray asks, is that a light at the end of the tunnel – or another oncoming ...

Terence Trent D'Arby: Neither Fish Nor Flesh

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, November 1989

"PEOPLE, LISTEN to me," announces Terence Trent D'Arby over the intro of 'I Don't Want To Bring The Gods Down', "this is not a film, ...

Terence Trent D'Arby: Yeau!

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, September 1987

"I'M VERY, VERY self-critical. I'm very critical of others, but I'm also very critical of my own work and there's no-one that could possibly put ...

Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich: Dozy Beaky Mick & Tich: Dingwalls, Camden

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1978

HIPSTER PANTS held up with two-inch-wide white belts, op-art shirts with bloody great monstrous collars that hang down to armpit level and then button down ...

Betty Davis: Nasty Gal

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

THIS IS IT funk y'allThis is it right hereThis is it do ya hear me girlsAnd well they can't do it forya no nastier than ...

Dead Fingers Talk, Fabulous Poodles: Fabulous Poodles, Dead Fingers Talk: Charing Cross Road Astoria, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1978

FIRST OF all: a public service announcement: the Charing Cross Road Astoria is one terrible gig. ...

Deep Purple: Burn

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1974

NEW LINE-UP time, folks. As all you well-informed young people will have been aware for nigh on a full season, Ian Gillan has left to ...

Derek & The Dominos: In Concert (RSO)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

QUESTION NUMBER One: how do you follow up a masterpiece? ...

Rick Derringer

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1974

Take one midget, add a small guitar, wind him up and hear him talk ...

Howard Devoto, Magazine: Magazine: Howard Devoto's Enigma Variations

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1978

HOWARD DEVOTO gives good face. Unlined and triangular, topped with a vast expanse of forehead; the kind that popular folklore maintains is the unmistakeable dead-giveaway ...

Bo Diddley - Bo's a Lumberjack!

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

THE WHOLE THING about Bo Diddley was that he was by far the weirdest and craziest musician ever to come out of either blues or ...

Bo Diddley: Hey! Bo Diddley: The Man Whose Sexuality Was Too Much For America

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1972

Diddley Freak Charles Shaar Murray, in the presence of the main man... ...

Fats Domino: My Blue Heaven: The Best Of Fats Domino (Volume 1)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, February 1991

IN IDLE MOMENTS, it's often mildly amusing to visualise the stars of yesteryear, relaxing backstage at some oldies package show and taking bets on who ...

The Doors: John Densmore: Riders On The Storm

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, April 1991

GOD PRESERVE US from brilliant pricks. John Densmore played drums alongside one in The Doors for six years and he's still attempting to recover from ...

Dr. Feelgood: Dr Feelgood: Looking Back

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, November 1995

It is but one of life’s minor ironies that both Sid James and Lee Brilleaux, two of England’s best-loved and most sadly-missed postwar icons of ...

Dr. Feelgood: Dr Feelgood: Sneakin' Suspicion (United Artists)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1977

Is there a doctor in the house? CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY thinks the FEELGOODS might just need one… ...

Dr. Feelgood: Dr Feelgood: Meanwhile, Back At The Feelgoods

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1982

MADE IT THROUGH another day and here we are! The students of the fair city of Leeds play host to the band that defined British ...

Dr. Feelgood: Dr Feelgood: Pure Essex Voodoo

Retrospective and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, August 1987

ONE OF THE few remaining saving graces of rock'n'roll is that its most compelling legends do not always belong to those who achieve the greatest ...

Dr. Feelgood: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

DEFINITELY a weird one. ...

Dr. Feelgood: Hope & Anchor, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1976

REAL CASE of dejaja vuvu it was, the night the Feelgoods played the Hope. To readers outside London the Hope and Anchor may just be ...

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show: Dr Hook: Sylvia's Mother Meets Durty Cindy Lou…

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1973

WE ALL KNOW the famous American rock venues, don't we? We've all heard of the Forum in L.A., the Academy of Music and Madison Square ...

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show: Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show: Sloppy Seconds (CBS)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

NOW DON'T get me wrong. I ain't no weenybop, but I have to admit that I really dig this Dr. Hook album here. Hell, I ...

Dr. John, The Meters: Dr. John/The Meters: I Been Hoodood

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1984

THERE ARE GROOVES and there are grooves: that which is laid down by the Meters is definitely one of the latter. ...

Bill Drummond, The KLF: Bill Drummond: 45

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, 2000

"POP MUSIC," writes Bill Drummond, "has become like a cancer that has spread through my whole body and is now affecting my brain." Having been ...

Albert King, Big Joe Turner, Champion Jack Dupree, Freddie King, John Lee Hooker, Otis Rush, T-Bone Walker: Various Blues Albums

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1975

If you're a living blues master, are you better off dead? ...

Ian Dury: How Not To Get Lumbered

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1980

IT'S DARK and it's cold and it's raining: a wind with a grudge against warm flesh knifes through the clothing and the matted thing behind ...

Ian Dury: Oi! Oi! Anchors Aweigh

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1980

Ian Dury And The Blockheads: Hope & Anchor, London ...

Ian Dury: The Cuddly Cosy Comfort Of A Tame And Trusted Teddy

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1979

Ian Dury And The Blockheads: Hammersmith Odeon, London ...

Bob Dylan: Slow Train Coming (CBS)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1979

THE RELATIONSHIP between rock and religion has always been fraught and filled with tension: back at its Southern rural roots, there was always a serious ...

Bob Dylan: Under The Red Sky

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1990

ONE EASY WAY of telling who the record industry considers to be this year's hot producer is to check the credits of the latest Dylan ...

Bob Dylan: Plymouth Memorial Hall, Mass. USA

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

BOB DYLAN'S ROLLING Thunder Revue hit the Plymouth Memorial Hall at 8.20 p.m. on Tuesday November 4.That's Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA, by the way, and it ...

Bob Dylan: The View From Seat BB59

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1978

THE FIRST NIGHT it rained, and it seemed that the atmosphere would be nostalgic to the last: all of us in our massed thousands gathered ...

Bob Dylan: Local Jew Boy Makes Good: Bob Dylan’s New Morning

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, 1970

NEW MORNING is a breath of clean air in a darkly polluted musical environment. With the prevailing sound being the grinding urban paranoia of the ...

Bob Dylan, George Harrison: George Harrison et al: Concert for Bangla Desh

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, March 2002

The first hi-profile multi-star benefit concert of the post-psychedelic era. Harrison, Dylan and Shankar strut their stuff alongside Clapton, Ringo and Leon Russell. ...

The Eagles: Desperado (Asylum)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1973

IT IS ARGUABLE that the test of a fine example of any genre is to consider the extent to which it transcends its category. Our ...

Eddie & The Hot Rods

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1978

What do all these bands have in common? ANSWER: They're all EDDIE AND THE HOTRODS, slidin' on the moment and trying not to fall off. ...

Dave Edmunds: "The Human League? Which Ones Are They?"

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1982

"IT WAS a very weird thing that happened in 1954 or '55 or whenever it was. It was very special and I don't think I'll ...

Dave Edmunds: Never Say Dai

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1978

Mister DAVE 'Are You Sure Chuck Played It Thaat Way?' EDMUNDS, the celebrated Welsh lickologist, persevered and learned those classic solos note for note. So ...

Electric Light Orchestra, The Move, Wizzard: The Move: California Man; Electric Light Orchestra: Showdown; Wizzard: See My Baby Jive

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1974

IN WHICH it begins to look disturbingly like influences are dangerous toys indeed. ...

Emerson Lake And Palmer: Emerson, Lake and Palmer: Pictures at an Exhibition

Film/DVD/TV Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, June 1972

ONCE again, rockanroll culture heroes hit the big screen, and, predictably enough, this week’s lucky winners are Emerson, Lake and Palmer. Like all other rock ...

Eminem: Mean, Moody And Magnificent: Eminem

Profile by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer, The, May 2002

IT'S BEEN too damn quiet, Carruthers. With the upper echelons of the pop scene currently dominated by the industry's endless cavalcade of squeaky-clean teen puppets, ...

The Faces: Rod Stewart & The Faces: Live Coast To Coast/Overture And Beginners (Mercury)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1974

LADIES AND gentlemen, a study in disintegration.When the Faces began their current incarnation, their boozy looseness helped to add some riotous vibes to a tight, ...

The Faces: Ooh La La (Warner Bros.)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

FIRST THERE'S this rolling piano lick, then in comes Ronnie Wood's guitar. Nice tough chording, anchored down with a bent note descending to the root ...

Donald Fagen: The Nightfly

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1982

AHEM. WHERE were we? Steely Dan go out on the worst album of their entire career, Walter Becker gets involved in one of those stupidly ...

Adam Faith: The Singer and Showman

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, March 2003

LIKE MOST OF his 1950s contemporaries, Terry Nelhams from Acton, West London, received his first taste of the joys of music-making as a member of ...

Marianne Faithfull: Broken English (Island)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1979

BEFORE WE get started on the music... ...

The Fall, Gang of Four, The Human League, Stiff Little Fingers: The Mekons/The Fall/Human League/Gang Of Four/Stiff Little Fingers: The Lyceum, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1979

AND THE STARS look very different today... For all practical rock purposes, we may as well own up that we are now living in the ...

Fanny

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1973

LEON WANTED US TO LIVE IN HIS HOUSE...WE WEREN'T INTERESTED NEEDLESS TO SAY ...

Fanny: Mother's Pride

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

BY NOW, most people know that Fanny are one of the best rock bands currently functioning. Their albums, particularly Charity Ball (their second, but the ...

Mick Farren: Devout Deviant Takes A Trip Down Memory Lane

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, December 2001

Mick Farren: Give the Anarchist a Cigarette ...

Mick Farren: Foreword

Book Excerpt by Charles Shaar Murray, 'Elvis Died For Somebody's Sins But Not Mine', Spring 2013

MICK FARREN IS a man of many parts, an impressive number of which are still working despite the natural wear and-tear incurred by decades of ...

Flo & Eddie: Flo and Eddie: Flo & Eddie

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1973

MR. HOWARD KAYLAN and Mr. Mark Volman are a somewhat literal-minded pair. When they originally left the protectve aegis of Frank Zappa to strike out ...

Flying Burrito Brothers: Sneeky Pete Kleinow

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

SNEEKY PETE KLEINOW looks like you'd expect a veteran pedal-steel player to look. Green shirt with an elaborate marijuana-leaf motif emblazoned there-on, neatly pressed, white ...

Kinky Friedman: Kinky Friedman

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

ONE LEARNS FROM the customary reliable sources-from-which-one-learns things that Kinky Friedman's original ideas for the title of this album included "Come Back Little Kinky" and ...

Danny Gatton, Robert Gordon: Robert Gordon with Danny Gatton: The Humbler (NRG)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, 1997

Designer rockabilly ignited live by squat suicidal Telecaster virtuoso ...

Danny Gatton, Reverend Horton Heat: Timelocked Moments: Danny Gatton and Rev. Horton Heat

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Guitar World, 1993

Danny Gatton: Cruisin’ Deuces (Elektra)Rev. Horton Heat: The Full Custom Gospel Sounds Of Rev. Horton Heat (Sub Pop) ...

J. Geils Band: Live — Full House (Atlantic)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

THERE COMES a time in each man's life when he needs to have his brain tissues reduced to absolute smouldering wreckage. ...

J. Geils Band: Sanctuary

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1978

"TAKE OUTCHA false teeth, mama...I wanna sssssssssuck on your gums!" ...

Shirley Goodman, Sylvia Robinson: All Platinum Records: My Wife, The President…

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1975

IT'S NICE AND cool and dark in the back room of the bar, and you can sit in your booth and nurse a beer and ...

Grand Funk Railroad: Grand Funk - All the Girls in the World Beware

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

...I GOT TAR on my teeth but I don't care/I got dark brown stains in my underwear... ...

Grand Funk Railroad: Grand Funk at Wembley Stadium

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1975

LORD, LORD, WHY hast thou forsaken me? ...

Grateful Dead - How the hell do ya play them five-hour sets without slinkin' off for a leak?

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

Yes, it's an interesting one isn't it? I mean, five hours...that's a long time, and well...camels are different of course, so really it must be ...

Al Green: The Pre-Godlike Genius Of Green

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1985

Let's Stay Together (Hi)I'm Still In Love With You (Hi)Call Me (Hi)Precious Lord (Hi) ...

Peter Green: Still got the Greens…

Review and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, June 1997

The Peter Green Splinter Group: Splinter Group Giant step back to the world for the best of the '60s Britbluesers.CSM meets Peter Green and ...

The Groundhogs: Groundhogs: Groundhogs Best 1969-1972

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1974

FATHER, I HAVE sinned. Though the words may echo through my remaining days on this doomed planet, though I be haunted through eternity by these ...

Buddy Guy, Junior Wells: Buddy Guy and Junior Wells: Why Are These Guys Grinning?

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

...They've been 'between contracts' since 1969, there's hardly any such thing as a black audience for their music and on their recent visit to London ...

Richie Havens: Mixed Bag II

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

ONE DAY WHEN it was raining, I swore a great and terrible oath. ...

Hawkwind: In The Hall Of The Mountain Grill

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

DON'T TELL anybody, but yours adoring thinks that he's finally got this bunch sussed. ...

Isaac Hayes: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

ISAAC HAYES, they tell me, is the leading light of the new black life-style. Black Moses, yet. ...

Curtis Mayfield, Isaac Hayes, Jimi Hendrix: Isaac Hayes' Black Moses and other albums

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, 1972

TO CLAIM to have found a representative selection of black music on four records is patently absurd, but as a random cross-section of what’s approximately ...

Jimi Hendrix

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1975

On the fifth anniversary of his death (Sept. 18, 1970) a personal view of the Titan Axeman ...

Jimi Hendrix Albums: A Guide

Guide by Charles Shaar Murray, Guitar World, 1999

ARE YOU EXPERIENCED? (MCA) HENDRIX AS superstar-in-waiting, UK-style. Rough, raw, crunchy, funky and designed for maximum impact, this ...

Jimi Hendrix: South Saturn Delta

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, December 1997

IN WHICH the new management of Planet Hendrix takes its first steps into the marginal, semi-canonical hinterlands of the Great Man's recorded legacy and returns ...

Jimi Hendrix: Blues (MCA)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Guitar World, 1998

Let’s get the paradoxes out of the way right up front: the blues was a musical space to which Jimi Hendrix would always return in ...

Jimi Hendrix: Experience – Original Soundtrack/Isle Of Wight/Rainbow Bridge – Original Soundtrack

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, January 1972

A CONSIDERABLE amount of Hendrix material has surfaced over the last six months. In addition to these three albums, there’s a side each on Woodstock ...

Jimi Hendrix: First Rays Of The New Rising Sun/Are You Experienced?/Electric Ladyland

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, June 1997

HAVE WE BEEN HERE BEFORE? WE CERTAINLY HAVE. In 1993, the dilapidated Hendrix CD catalogue was overhauled by Alan Douglas, then artistic director of the ...

Jimi Hendrix: Midnight Lightning and For Real

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

AND THE GHOST walks once more. ...

Jimi Hendrix: The Cry Of Love

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, March 1971

"Well I'm sitting here in this womb/lookin' all around, I'm looking out my belly button window/and I see a whole world frowns, And I wonder ...

Jimi Hendrix: Street Fighting: Jimi Hendrix

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, November 1999

Your starter for ten: what do Jimi Hendrix and George Orwell have in common? ...

Henry Cow: Gerroff An' Milk It

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1974

CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY wanted to call it 'How I listened to HENRY COW – and lived' ...

The Hollies: 20 Golden Greats

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

OVER THE years, The Hollies' records have tended to fall into one of three categories: the bright, snappy early '60s pop put together from the ...

Buddy Holly: Never Mind The Lubbocks, Here’s Buddy Holly & The Crickets : 20 Greatest Hits

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1975

THE ROCK and roll of the ‘50s produced three incomparable all-rounders equally adept and influential as signers, composers and guitarists. ...

John Lee Hooker: Mr Lucky

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1991

TALK ABOUT COOL: it's as if John Lee Hooker is so relaxed he can afford to be late for his own album. ...

John Lee Hooker: The Boogie Man

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, August 2001

JOHN LEE HOOKER DIED peacefully in his sleep on June 21, 2001, two months and one day short of what would have been his 84th ...

John Lee Hooker: The Voodoo Guru

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, February 1990

ON 74TH & BROADWAY, the Gotham fog freezes your lungs with every breath, but inside the Beacon Theatre, Van Morrison has just spent something under ...

Hot Chocolate: Chocolate Brown

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1973

THERE IS absolutely no getting away from the fact that it was an excessively hot and sticky afternoon. Sweaterama incarnate. Clothing stuck unpleasantly to the ...

B.B. King, Howlin' Wolf: Various Artists Sun Records: The Blues Years 1950 — 1956

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1986

"The blues is a chair, not a design for a chair, or a better chair… it is the first chair. It is a chair for ...

The Human League

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Vogue, May 1982

The Human League are widely acknowledged as this minute's perfect pop group. The following is an account of their perfectly romantic rise in the charts. ...

The Human League: Crash

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1986

THE CAREER OF The Human League – from Sheffield art-school beginnings to their current miraculous return from the dumper – has been a comedy of ...

The Human League, The Rezillos: The Rezillos, The Human League: Music Machine, Camden, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

REZILLOS CAN'T STAND THE AUDIENCE And that goes for all you liggers in the bar, too ...

Ian Hunter - Ian Hunter

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

IAN? IAN? ...

Ian Hunter: An American Alien Boy

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1976

THERE EXISTS A subtle difference between a tax exile and an expatriate. ...

Ian Hunter: Welcome To The Club

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1980

THIS IS a double live album and as such is prone to all the problems that such vinyl is heir. Problem (1): the cover is ...

Ian Hunter: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1977

Mutton dressed as lamb ...

Ian Hunter: What A Hunter He Turned Out To Be

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1977

ONE THING YOU GOTTA HAND to Ian Hunter: the old bastard knows how to make an entrance. ...

Joe Jackson: I'm The Man

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1979

SUCCESS success success! (Does it matter?) ...

Joe Jackson: Look Sharp!

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1979

JOE JACKSON is a contender: he's fast, tough and he doesn't mess around. At a time when the orthodox powers-that-be in the rock business are ...

Joe Jackson: Crisp. In A Huge In America Sort Of Way

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1979

THE HANDS spell nerves: balled into fists and rammed into the pockets of the pinstripe jacket. The elbows jerk and the knees twitch, the face ...

Joe Jackson: Just Joe

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1979

EYES RIGHT! Talking Heads are playing the Electric Ballroom tonight, and clearly visible above all the twitching cerebella is one head, as instantly noticeable as ...

Michael Jackson: Thrills Before The Spills

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, December 2003

IT'S THAT PHOTO, the official police mugshot taken when Michael Jackson finally turned himself in to answer charges of child molestation, which looks so scary. ...

Millie Jackson: Caught Up /Still Caught Up

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1985

MILLIE JACKSON is an astonishingly powerful and resourceful singer. It is easy to overlook her immense vocal skills particularly in the light of her current ...

Millie Jackson: Dominion, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1984

WHY IS this woman not in the movies? ...

The Jam: All Mod Cons

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1978

THIRD ALBUMS generally mean that it's shut-up-or-get-cut-up time: when an act's original momentum has drained away and they've got to cover the distance from a ...

The Jam, The Vapors: Apollo Theatre, Manchester

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1979

FIRST NIGHT out on tour: welcome back to another edition of So Who Really Is The Best Group In The World? Down in Manchester Apollo ...

Skip James: I'm So Glad

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1978

SKIP JAMES scares me. ...

Jefferson Airplane: Jefferson Airplane Takes Off

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1974

Birth-pangs of the acid monster ...

Jefferson Airplane: Don't Just Do Something, Stand There…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

UP GOES the window and out comes the head. ...

Jefferson Airplane: Just An Exercise At Being Repulsive?

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1973

"WE ARE all outlaws in the eyes of America," sang Grace Slick from the stage at Woodstock. God, it must be fun to be a ...

Jet (UK): Jet: Jet

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1975

AT LAST the 1972 show! ...

Jethro Tull: The House That Jethro Built

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1973

IT NOW SEEMS rather incongruous to think back on Jethro Tull as veterans of the Great 1968 Blues Boom, right out of the same scene ...

Elton John: The Life And Times Of Elton John, part 1

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

Part one: how the sand kicked in his face turned to gold-dust after all ...

Elton John

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1974

THERE WAS a curious smell in the Belle Vue Hall, Manchester. ...

Elton John part 3: Maybe It's Because I'm A Socialist…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

TELL US, El, what is Rock all about? Having a bloody good time. When I was a kid and went to see those Larry Parnes-Billy ...

Elton John, part 2: They Laughed When I Stood Up To Play The Piano

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

NME: Earlier, you said that when you first met Taupin his lyrics were somewhat influenced by the Flower Power fad. It was a period when ...

Elton John: Caribou

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1974

Take a holiday, Elton. Take two. ...

Elton John: Don't Shoot Me, I'm Only the Piano Player (DJM)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

WELL, WHADAYA know – another fine Elton John album. Despite sneers, calumny and general foulness, the former Reg just keeps on writin', playin', singin' and ...

Elton John: Rock Of The Westies

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1975

FACT: ELTON JOHN is one of the nicest people ever to touch ground while walking. ...

Elton John: Sundown, Edmonton, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

I WAS counting the number of fainting chicks pulled up out of the audience. After the 38th, I gave up. ...

Elton John: The Short Hello

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1974

OL' COCONUT Bonce is back. Elton Schmelton himself in the too, too solid flesh, still opening up interview sessions by walking into the room at ...

Elton John: They Laughed When He Played The Piano

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1973

FOR MANY MOONS it has been ever-so-chic to take pokes at Elton John. To admit to a considerable admiration for the man and his work ...

Elton John: Step Right Up And Feel The Man’s Muscles: Honky Chateau

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, June 1972

THESE DAYS you have to get fashionable before you get successful or else you get resented, and, if you get too successful without first being ...

Robert Johnson: Robert Johnson: The Complete Recordings

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, December 1990

And the days keeps on worryin' me There's a hellhound on my trail ...

Robert Johnson: Peter Guralnick: Searching For Robert Johnson

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, September 1990

THE POWERFUL FASCINATION which the legend of Robert Johnson still exerts over virtually all blues fans is derived, in almost equal proportion, from his genius ...

Robert Johnson: Turning Points: Robert Johnson

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, Daily Telegraph, November 1999

THE LEGEND OF Robert Johnson was a long time in the building, and it was forged by the fusion of his brilliance and his obscurity. ...

Wilko Johnson — To Hell And Back Via The M1 Caff

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1978

THE MARQUEE'S jammed up jelly tight; foot on foot, elbow in kidney, spilled drinks and apologies – or not, as the case may be – ...

Quincy Jones: Back On The Block

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, January 1990

ON THE FACE of it, this is where the man who was called 'Q' even before this magazine generously allows his address book to make ...

Quincy Jones: Mr Jones, I Presume!

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, April 1990

THE THREE DUMBEST questions you could possibly ask this month are, "Do the ambulance workers deserve more pay?", "Is Mike Gatting a pillock?" and "Does ...

Judas Priest: Killing Machine

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1978

"YOU ARE not in touch with the modern world, sucker," hissed the obnoxious little voice in my ear. 'Today's kids don't give a flying one ...

Speedy Keen - Interview

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

"BASICALLY, YOU'RE TALKING about a lorry driver who was thrust into it because he had a number one for seven weeks." ...

Speedy Keen: Y'Know Wot I Mean?

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1976

ONE IF THE many things of which any court of law would instantaneously acquit Speedy Keen (along with singing in a thunderous bass voice and ...

Albert King: I Wanna Get Funky

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

I WANNA GET Funky is the best album I've heard all year. ...

Albert King: Truckload Of Lovin'

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1976

HOT DAMN! Way it looks to this white boy, Albert King just has to be to the blues what John Wayne is to cowboy movies, ...

B.B. King: Blues 'N' Jazz

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1983

A FEW years ago, B.B. King let it be known that there were three albums that he had always wanted to record: one album of ...

B.B. King: There Must Be A Better World Somewhere

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1981

IN 1966, B.B. King put out a live album entitled Blues Is King, and – as far as the major U.S. labels are concerned – ...

B.B. King: Uneasy Lies The Head That Wears The Crown

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, February 1993

From the no-horse town of Ita Bena, Mississippi, to the planet's most prestigious culture palaces, Riley "Blues Boy" King has spent half a century as ...

B.B. King: Love Me Tender (MCA)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1982

"HE HAS one musical ambition as yet unfulfilled: to make a series of classic albums. These consist of one album with a big band, one ...

Jonathan King: Is Jonathan King A Monster, Or Is He Being Monstered?

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, November 2001

PUBLIC MONSTER NUMBER ONE: the space in the media landscape currently occupied by Jonathan King effectively renders him the missing link between Osama bin Laden ...

Jonathan King: A Rose in a Fisted Glove

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

WHEN JONATHAN KING first manifested his presence upon this already sufficiently troubled planet he was able to masquerade as a genuinely provocative presence, mainly because ...

The Kinks: Kinks, Kinda Kinks, The Kinks Kontroversy and Face To Face

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1984

NOT THAT any of this is actually important, but the kurrent kinks reissue programme abounds with small ironies. ...

The Kinks: Low Budget (Arista)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1979

The Kinks and the ‘70s have not enjoyed the most harmonious of relationships. ...

The Kinks: The Kinks Live at Kelvin Hall

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

IT'S AMAZING. BY now, Pye must've incorporated virtually every track The Kinks ever cut into one or other of their multifarious compilation albums, and in ...

The Kinks: Tales of Drunkenness and Cruelty

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, September 1989

REAL LIVE EARLY '60's beat combos don't just grow on trees. As the greenhouse summer of '89 wears on, The Who and The Rolling Stones ...

The Kinks: The Rise And Decline Of The Kinks

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1979

A CUT PRICE PERSON IN A LOW BUDGET LAND ...

The Knack: …But The Little Girls Understand

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1980

When the little girls do understand, you boys have had it ...

Al Kooper - Al's Big Deal and Unclaimed Freight: An Al Kooper Anthology

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1975

AL KOOPER IS good at lots of things. ...

The Kursaal Flyers - Chocs Away

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

THE KURSAAL FLYERS' entry into the Wonderful World Of Wax is neat, tidy, restrained, unobtrusive, and extremely well-behaved, more like a third album than a ...

LaBelle: Labelle: Phoenix

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1975

FOR ALL PRACTICAL purposes, Phoenix is Labelle's third album. Forget anything prior to Pressure Cookin': those albums were by some other people and are of ...

LaBelle: Voulez-Vous Coucher Avec Moi Ce Soir?

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1975

"THE RE-VO-LU-SHUN...will not be televaaaaaazed," declaims Patti LaBelle, staring into the audience from the stage of the Congressgebouwe in the Hague. ...

Led Zeppelin: Presence

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1976

M'lawds, ladies 'n' gennelmen, presenting the new album by... ...

Led Zeppelin: Robert Plant — And That Below-The-Belt Surge

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1973

A HOT AND sticky Friday afternoon in L.A. Nine stories over Sunset Boulevard, Robert Plant takes Roy Harper's Lifemask off the stereo in his hotel ...

Led Zeppelin: Zeppin' Out

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1973

"I DON'T EVEN like Led Zeppelin," the girl in the black velvet jacket and hotpants said petulantly as she bummed a cigarette off an acquaintance ...

John Lennon: Shaved Fish

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

SHAVED FISH is all of John Lennon's post-Beatle singles scooped up and dumped onto one album, spiced up with a few relevant album tracks and ...

John Lennon: Walls And Bridges

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

IT'S A FINE, warm day here in London, Johnny. What's the weather like in New York? ...

John Lennon, Yoko Ono: John Lennon & Yoko Ono: Double Fantasy (Geffen)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1980

IN THE cocoon, something stirs. John Lennon – one of the people who used to be in The Beatles, a group reckoned to be hot ...

Little Feat

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1975

ONCE UPON a time in the early '60s when everybody suddenly started getting paranoid about advertising men, and half the people you met were convinced ...

Little Richard: "I Am The Rill Thang!"

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, December 1986

GOOD GOSH A-MIGHTY...it's Little Richard. A little fuller in the face, a little thicker in the waist, but there he is in a Mayfair Hotel ...

Living Colour: Stain (Epic)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Guitar World, March 1993

WHAT’S YOUR favourite colour? Between the death of Jimi Hendrix in 1970 and the arrival of Living Colour’s 1988 debut album Vivid, the hard rock ...

Living Colour: Time's Up

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1990

LIVING COLOUR'S CHOICE of guest stars for their debut album Vivid was a significant one: Mick Jagger (who had produced their original demos and virtually ...

Loudon Wainwright III: Attempted Mustache (CBS)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1974

LOUDON WAINWRIGHT'S a mean son of a bitch. Maybe his bark is worse than his bite, but his bark is still pretty nasty. ...

The Lovin' Spoonful: Golden Spoonful (Polydor Twosome)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1973

JOHN SEBASTIAN was the best P.R. man that hippies ever had. ...

Nick Lowe

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1978

EVERYONE GETS that glazed marzipan look in make-up. Maybe it's some weird chemical that they put in the booze in the Artists' Bar at Television ...

Nick Lowe: Labour Of Lust

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1979

PERSONS FAMILIAR with Nick Lowe in his recent incarnation as cynical-old-Basher, the man who'll steal any lick that isn't nailed down, disguise himself as anything ...

Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Marshall Tucker Band, Wet Willie: Lynyrd Skynyrd: Lynyrd Skynyrd/Wet Willie: Drippin' Wet/The Marshall Tucker Band: The Marshall Tucker Band

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1974

EVER SINCE the Allman Brothers came howling out of Macon, Gorgia, and Texas graciously gave Johnny Winter and Janis Joplin to the world, Southern rock ...

Taj Mahal at Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, September 1997

HENRY ST. CLAIR FREDERICKS named himself Taj Mahal with good reason: he's a monument who can dance with an easy grace and joyful lightness delightfully ...

Taj Mahal: Music Fuh Ya (Musica Para Tu) (Warner Brothers); A Taj Mahal Anthology Vol. 1 (CBS import)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1977

Taj Me In The Morning ...

Man: The Welsh Connection

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1976

IRRATIONAL SCHMIR-RATIONAL; it still don't seem right to see a Man album without a United Artists logo on the label. ...

Man: Apollo Theatre, Glasgow

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1976

THE KID was good. I have to hand it to him: he was good. ...

Man: This Is The Man Band. In 6 Years They've Had Six Lineups. It Looks Like This One May Do It

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1974

TRANSLATED FROM THE HERO'S TONGUE BY CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY, WHO'S ABOUT AS WELSH AS A NICE JEWISH BOY CAN GET THESE DAYS... ...

Bob Marley & the Wailers: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1976

RIOTS LAST NIGHT they said, marauding hordes of smart, mean kids swarming around getting illegal all over the place with property and the concession stands ...

Bob Marley & the Wailers: The Lyceum, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1975

"HEY, MON... WHAT are all these whites doin' here? They not here last time the Wailers play..." ...

Bob Marley & the Wailers: Bob Marley: Talkin' Blues

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, March 1991

IT IS A popular truism that the obsessiveness with which popular culture picks through the bones of its most illustrious dead is the sign of ...

Bob Marley & the Wailers: Bob Marley: The Lost Prophet

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, Word, The, May 2012

A new documentary presents Bob Marley in the raw, in the round, in close-up and in perspective. CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY recalls their weed-scented encounter in ...

Bob Marley & the Wailers: Timothy White: Catch A Fire: The Life Of Bob Marley Stephen Davis: Bob Marley

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1983

YES MI FRIEND, mi good friend, them set me free again... ...

MC5: Kick Out The Jams (Elektra)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1977

‘BROTHERS AND sisters...the time has come for each and every one of you to decide whether you are going to be the problem or whether ...

MC5: Kick Out The Jams

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, January 1992

DETROIT'S ECLECTIC, MILITANT-HIPPY combo MC5 were the ultimate in late '60s punkadelia. Though they never sold any significant quantity of records, the influence of their ...

MC5: Teenage Outrage in Croydon: the MC5

Review and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, March 1972

THE Fox in Crydon, Surrey, is a very long way indeed from the Grande Ballroom in Dee-troit, Michigan, and the MC5 were a very long ...

Paul McCartney: He Loves Her Yeah Yeah Yeah

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer, The, July 2001

PAUL McCARTNEY has always been known for his broad, boyish smile, but the ear-splitting grin he sported last week while announcing his engagement to Heather ...

Roger McGuinn: Cardiff Rose

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1976

ABOUT EIGHT OR nine months ago I was preposterously drunk in the Bottom Line club in New York watching the Roger McGuinn Band. ...

Neil Merryweather: Space Rangers

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

THIS GUY'S got to be kidding. ...

Metallica: Monster Mash

Film/DVD/TV Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer Music Monthly, September 2004

Metallica: Some kind of Monster (Released: October 1) ...

George Michael: Who's a Cheeky Boy?

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer, The, July 2002

'WITH THE RELEASE of his George Bush and Cherie Blair-referencing new single,' snickers the Popbitch website, 'we would like to commiserate with George Michael on ...

Joni Mitchell: A Tender Dignity

Guide by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

ONE DAY, many years ago, Al Kooper went home with a blonde Canadian chick who used to hang out with the Blues Project. In the ...

The Modern Lovers: Modern Lovers Live (Beserkley)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1977

JONATHAN RICHMAN reminds me irresistibly of Fotherington-Thomas in the old Nigel Molesworth books: forever skipping about burbling "Hello sun, hello trees, hello sky." ...

Motorhead: Various Artists: Long Shots, Dead Certs And Odds On Favourites (Chriswick Chartbusters Vol. 2) (Chiswick)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1978

NO MORE GOOD GUYS ...

Mott The Hoople: Ian Hunter: 'I Have Nothing To Say'

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

THERE IS a certain poetic irony in the fact that Saturday Gigs and Mott The Hoople Live turned out to be Mott's farewell recordings anyway, despite the addition of ...

Mott The Hoople: All The Young Dudes — The Anthology

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, October 1998

Triple-decker sandwich of hot Mott. All the hits, all your faves and all the other stuff too. Odds’n sods included Bowie’s guide-vocal version of 'Dudes'. ...

Maria Muldaur: The Effect Is Underwhelming

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1975

Maria Muldaur: Ronnie Scott's, London ...

Michael Nesmith: Tantamount To Treason, Volume One

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, November 1972

IN THE DAYS when he was the young generation with somethin' to say (though he was too busy singin' to put anybody down), Mike Nesmith ...

New Barbarians: A Tale Of Two Rock 'n' Roll Addicts

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1979

AWWWWWW MAMA! I wanna tell ya 'bout Texas radio and the big beat. ...

Randy Newman: The Back Room Boy

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, August 1987

"There's no excuse at all. It's just bad career planning, bad work habits, bad discipline...and I keep doin' it." ...

New Riders of the Purple Sage: Home Home On The Road

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1974

IT WAS Greil Marcus who founded what has since become known as the "What-is-this shit?" school of rock criticism. ...

Harry Nilsson: Pussy Cats

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1974

Rock verite — the Beatrix Potter way ...

Nirvana: With the Lights Out (DGC)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer Music Monthly, December 2004

THE DOMINANT MOTIF of Nineties rock was backward time travel. In the UK, the likes of Supergrass and Oasis seemed to have discovered The Beatles ...

Gary Numan: Telekon

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1980

AH, THE shimmering dust-free corridors, the pleasure machines, the limitless possibilities opened up by microtechnology, the disturbing effects of cybernetic leisure upon the fragile human ...

Laura Nyro: Smile

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1976

LAURA NYRO: fringed red velvet shawl over a lamp, candlelight, one line of cocaine on a mirror, a half-empty glass of red wine on the ...

Oasis: Be Here Now

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, September 1997

WHAT ARE Oasis for? They were Built To Be Big. Their Long-Awaited-All-Important-Third-Album, Be Here Now, is about as big as a rock record can get. ...

The Osmonds: Ever Thought Of Stringing Jimmy Up On Stage?

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

HAVE YOU heard? Donny Osmond's in town – along with big brother Alan – and the secret weeny bopper jungle telegraph knows where he's going ...

The Osmonds: The View From Seat T39

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1973

He thought it would be good clean fun… Safe family entertainment. He was wrong. Now Charles Shaar Murray reveals the full horror of the night ...

Robert Palmer: Sneakin' Sally Through The Alley

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1974

I ALWAYS felt more than a little sorry for Robert Palmer when he was in Vinegar Joe. ...

Graham Parker: Another Grey Area

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1982

OH, DEAR. Talk about unfortunate titles... ...

Graham Parker: Journey To The Centre Of Your Spine

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1979

A CONCRETE BARN with a stage at one end: cables, cases, dust. A hyper-active dog in the grip of irresistible sexual forces is scooting around ...

Graham Parker: Gram Parker: The Parkerilla

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1978

YEAH, WE know: just what the world needs is another double live album, right? ...

Graham Parker, The Rumour: Graham Parker: Shades Of The Pink Parker

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1977

NINE WAYS TO AVOID THE HEAT TREATMENT ...

Jaco Pastorius, Weather Report: Jaco Pastorius

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, 1998

AS JOHN LENNON proclaimed in the 1970 Rolling Stone interview which effectively announced his final break with the Beatles, "Genius is pain". What he neglected ...

Charley Patton: The Definitive Charley Patton

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, June 2001

THERE'S 'DEFINITIVE', and then there's definitive. This complete collection – 58 performances on three CDs – of the recorded works of Charley Patton certainly earns ...

Annette Peacock: The Perfect Release (Aura)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1979

ANNETTE PEACOCK is, I am reliably informed, very well thought of in bohemian circles. This is unsurprising, the surprise being only that her work is ...

Annette Peacock: A British Rail Breakfast With The Artbreak Kid

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1979

TIMING: a while ago someone asked Bob Geldof — famous vocalist and composer with the extremely well-known Boomtown Rats pop group — for his definition ...

The Persuasions: Street Corner Symphony (Island)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, International Times, June 1972

THE PERSUASIONS are a five-strong black vocal group who perform acappella. Their album Street Corner Symphony is just what it says: a set of songs ...

The Pogues: The Best Of

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1991

SHANE MACGOWAN HAS set himself a truly heroic task: in the seven-year lurch of The Pogues, he has distilled an aromatically personal poetic myth from ...

Elvis Presley: The Promised Land

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

IT HAS ALWAYS been accepted as an article of faith by ladies and gentlemen in the critical profession that Elvis Presley is not dead. ...

Elvis Presley: Presley/Clinton: Bill Has Left The Building

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, November 2000

Double Trouble: Bill Clinton and Elvis Presley in the land of no alternatives by Greil Marcus (Faber & Faber, £9.99, 248pp) ...

The Pretenders: Packed

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, June 1990

CHRISSIE HYNDE CAN certainly never be accused of flooding the market: barring a Best Of, Packed is only The Pretenders' fifth album in 12 years. ...

Prince: Chaos and Disorder

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, August 1996

ALTERNATIVE TITLE: GROINHEAD GOES TO FLORIDA. A sort of musical honeymoon, one presumes: flushed with post-nuptial bliss after snatching mighty Mayte, the abdominal show-woman ...

Prince: Sleazy Grandeur

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, July 1990

He began making records as a control-fixated 18-year-old studio rat from Minneapolis. Ten albums later Prince had become the definitive pop icon of the '80s. ...

Suzi Quatro : You Don't Have To Be A Dyke…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1973

I FIRST ran into Suzi Quatro late last year. She was a nice, bouncy little American chick who played bass, wrote songs, was forming a ...

Suzi Quatro: Aggrophobia (RAK)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1977

FOUR AND A HALF YEARS since Suzi Quatro scored jackpot and replay with 'Can The Can', and it's only now that she's made an album ...

Suzi Quatro: For Your Information, She Happens To Be A Lady

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

"ALISTAIR...CAN YOU go through your solo again and count exactly how many bars you need for it?" ...

Suzi Quatro: Quatro Lib

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1973

"WE GOT a great new single comin' out," says Suzi Quatro from the depths of a rather predatory-looking brown armchair in Mickie Most's office at ...

The Ramones: Ramones Go Gold?

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1978

TOMMY RAMONE don't wanna be a pinhead no more (that's assuming you thought he was a pinhead in the first place – in which case ...

Lou Reed: Coney Island Baby

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1976

ARGUABLY, THERE IS no more exciting rock artist to listen to than one whose time has come; one whose art (not to mention attitude, appearance, ...

Lou Reed: The Bells (Arista)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1979

AH, THE BELLS, the bells…somehow I don't think this is what Victor Hugo had in mind all those years ago. However, what Slick Vic had ...

Lou Reed: Transformer (RCA)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1972

LOU REED WITH COLOURED GIRL DAVID BOWIE... ...

The Righteous Brothers - Give it to the People

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

ANOTHER ILLUSION SHATTERED. ...

Smokey Robinson, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles: Smokey Robinson & The Miracles: 35th Anniversary Collection

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, July 1994

AS FAR AS I KNOW, Smokey Robinson and Frank Zappa never met. However, if they had, five'll getcha ten they'd have ended up talking ...

Tom Robinson Band: Across Our Grey And Troubled Land

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1979

HERE HE COMES now just-a-walkin' down the street. From street-level upwards: white plimsolls, faded levis, fawn sweater with the collar-points of a white shirt peeking ...

The Rolling Stones: Mick Jagger: Sympathy for the Old Devil

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent on Sunday, July 2003

"YOU'RE A FUNNY little fella," the gangster played by James Fox tells the reclusive rock star played by Mick Jagger in Donald Cammell and Nicolas ...

The Rolling Stones: Rolling Stones: Black And Blue

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1976

"THE ROLLING STONES are a really good band, but, like, I consider them like a boys' band because they don't play mens music. They don't ...

The Rolling Stones: Rolling Stones: The Rolling Stones And The Death Of The Sixties

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, January 1991

THE HISTORIES of the legendary rock bands and movie stars have been told so often that they have not so much achieved the status of ersatz ...

The Rolling Stones - Made in the Shade and Metamorphosis

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1975

ECONOMICS: When a famous big-time rock and roll band reaches that particular special point in its year when it's time to pack the clean socks ...

The Rolling Stones: Aftermath

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1976

AFTERMATH CATCHES the Rolling Stones in transit: somewhere in between pissing on garage walls and the mass dope busts, after their first long spell on ...

The Rolling Stones: Dirty Work

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1986

IN THE 1970s, The Rolling Stones were a distinctly unlovely proposition: fronted by a jet-setter and a junkie and churning out a series of tedious ...

The Rolling Stones: Some Girls

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1978

THESE LAST two or three years, the Stones haven't really been that important to rock and roll. ...

The Rolling Stones: Ol' Rubber Lips Isn't Telling...

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, August 2003

According to The Rolling Stones (Weidenfeld and Nicholson)The Rolling Stones' history is wild and controversial, full of sex, drugs, bust-ups, scandal and death. Disappointing, then, ...

The Rolling Stones: Too Rolled To Stone

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1976

THE NICE THING about the law of gravity is that it applies to everybody. ...

Mick Ronson - Play Don't Worry

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

DUNNO ABOUT YOU, but from where I'm sitting it seems as though you can't go on saying that someone has potential for too long unless ...

Linda Ronstadt: Living In The USA (Asylum)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1978

LINDA RONSTADT – oh my God, she's so hunky. Those long, bronzed legs, that Ms Piggy face, those capable fingers – is it any wonder ...

Diana Ross: Red Hot Rhythm And Blues

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, August 1987

Miss Ross: not exactly on the front burner, but cooking nonetheless. ...

Diana Ross: Rapping with Lady D

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

THE DISTINGUISHED-looking old gentlemen in the red braided uniform accepts my coat with an expression of mild distaste and ushers me into the Pine Room ...

Diana Ross: The Gospel According To Miss Ross

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, October 1987

"I'VE BEEN HERE so many times before," murmurs Diana Ross as she sweeps, surrounded by a clucking entourage, through the foyer of the EMI Records ...

Roxy Music: For Your Pleasure

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

THERE ARE A large number of people in the music business who would be delighted to hear that Roxy Music had blown it. Their sudden ...

Roxy Music: The Man Who Put Sequins into Middle Eights

Interview by Nick Kent, Ian MacDonald, Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1973

The BRYAN FERRY interview, in which the Roxy mastermind meets IAN MacDONALD, CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY and NICK KENT ...

Sade: Sophisticated Lady

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Rolling Stone, May 1985

Sade's elegant look and cool sound have made her pop music's most stylish female star ...

Buffy Sainte-Marie: Sweet America

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1976

IT TOOK ME a while to figure out where Buffy Sainte-Marie was at with Soldier Blue. ...

Buffy Sainte-Marie: The Best Of… (Vanguard)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

BUFFY SAINTE-Marie is one of the special ones. She's one of the few performers guaranteed to move me to tears, and side two of She ...

Buffy Sainte-Marie: Never Argue With A Pregnant Indian: Buffy Sainte-Marie

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1976

CARL PERKINS looks glazed. Teeth, eyes, toupee, rhinestoned double-knit denim-look casuals: all veneered with the same hospital-tile finish as the off-white Tele-caster that Perkins is ...

Gil Scott-Heron: Moving Target (Arista)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1982

GIL SCOTT-HERON is one of the most quietly effective performers currently working in popular music: his cool, firm underplaying makes the listener want to move ...

Scritti Politti: Songs To Remember (Rough Trade)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1982

HERE IT IS: Scritti Politti's greatest hits. Let me assure you that this isn't a problem (I like albums with lots of singles on) and ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: Alex Harvey - Thou shalt have no other punk before me…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1975

AND NOW, ALEX Harvey, your starter for ten. What is rock and roll? ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: Alex Harvey: Delivered From The Jaws Of Death

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1975

...We proudly present the intrepid ALEX HARVEY, fresh from being restrained from swimming in the shark tank and currently engaged in entertaining the young people ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: Alex Harvey: 'Ladies And Gentlemen, This Is What A Rock'n'roll Band Is All About'

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1974

NEVER UNDERESTIMATE the importance of ritual.Most rock bands have a certain schtick that's always part of the show, something the audience knows that it's gonna ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: Alex Harvey: The Meat Of The Matter

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1977

A discussion of the respective virtues of sheep's brains, raw mince, or monkey's brains sucked through a straw. Plus a bit about ALEX HARVEY. ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: The Faith Healer

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1982

"Good evening, boys and girls. My name is Harvey..." ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band in Edinburgh

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1975

THOUGH IT'S UNDOUBTEDLY a contradiction in terms, the Sensational Alex Harvey Band are both slicker and rougher than they used to be. ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: SAHB Stories

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1976

ROUND ABOUT THE third revamp of Captain Marvel (that's Marvel's Captain Marvel, not the other one), they changed his billing from The Sensational Captain Marvel ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: The Impossible Dream

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

ALEX HARVEY has just released the first rock and roll comic book. ...

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band: Usher Hall, Edinburgh

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1975

Slicker and rougher ...

The Sex Pistols: Jon Savage: England's Dreaming

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, November 1991

EVEN THOUGH 15 YEARS have passed since the release of 'Anarchy In The UK', there has never been a book which has satisfactorily documented Britain's ...

The Sex Pistols: Sex Pistols: Some Product: Carri On Sex Pistols (Virgin)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1979

THIS IS getting silly. ...

The Sex Pistols and Friends: Finsbury Park, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, August 1996

IS THERE ANYTHING WHICH THE RECONSTITUTED Sex Pistols – freeze-dried, just add money – could possibly have done at their "comeback" show which would have ...

The Sex Pistols: The Social Rehabilitation of the Sex Pistols

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1977

THE PROSPEROUS CYBORGS at the next table in the backroom of this expensive Stockholm eating-place are sloshing down their coffee as fast as they possibly ...

Slade: Sladest (Polydor)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1973

THE FIRST TIME I saw Slade I thought they were dreadful. It was that memorable night at the Lanchester Arts Festival when Chuck Berry cut ...

Sly & Robbie: Sly ‘n’ Robbie on Drum ‘n’ Bass

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, 1999

Drum ‘n’ bass: it’s the foundation of popular music, the engine which drives rock, pop, soul, funk, jazz, reggae and anything else you care to ...

Patti Smith: Horses

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1975

FIRST ALBUMS THIS good are pretty damn few and far between. ...

Patti Smith: Radio Ethiopia

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1976

NOW HERE'S what you do for openers. You get someone to blindfold you, put boxing gloves on your hands, tie a maddened rhino to your ...

Patti Smith: Trampin' (Columbia)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer Music Monthly, March 2004

NINE ALBUMS IN just under thirty years: no-one can accuse Patti Smith of chronic overproduction or artistic profligacy. ...

Patti Smith: Welcome To The Monkey House

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1976

"IT'S LIKE...I'm not ever gonna be a hundred per cent cool, y'know...I mean, for you to like even try to be a hundred per cent ...

Patti Smith, Television: Down In The Scuzz With The Heavy Cult Figures

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1975

C.B.G.B. is a toilet. An impossibly scuzzy little club buried somewhere in the sections of the Village that the cab-drivers don't like to drive through. ...

Smith, Perkins & Smith: Smith, Perkins & Smith (Island)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, International Times, June 1972

I THINK I'M going crazy. Crosby, Stills, Nash, Young, Kossoff, Kirke, Tetsu, Rabbit, Fishbaugh, Fishbough, Zorn, Brewer, Shipley, Demick, Armstrong, Seals, Crofts, Scott, Ethridge, Barbata, ...

Dusty Springfield: Dusty In Memphis

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1986

ONE OF THE pleasures of the recent rerun series of Ready Steady Go Starring The Dave Clark Five was the opportunity to be reminded that ...

Bruce Springsteen - The brilliant, the awful and the bumfluff shuffle

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN IS an excellent rhythm guitarist, which just about compensates for the fact that he grows a terrible beard. ...

Bruce Springsteen: Born In The USA (CBS)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1984

IN BRUCE Springsteen's 1984, America – the original big country where dreams stay with you – has contracted; it is now a very small country ...

Bruce Springsteen: The Sprucing Of The Springbean

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1975

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN: Man, Myth or Monster? CHARLES SHAAR MURRAY reports from Houston, Texas ...

Ringo Starr, Wings: Paul McCartney: Band On The Run/Ringo Starr: Ringo

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1974

RINGO STARR is a wonderful person. His new album proves it. ...

Status Quo: Hello (Vertigo)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1973

I GUESS I ought to be grateful to Status Quo. If I hadn't heard this album, I wouldn't have thought of writing the "Heavy Metal" ...

Steeleye Span

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

"ON OUR first American tour," says Ricardo Kemprini, famed Italian bass player, "the agents put us on the bill with everybody and his dog, right? ...

Steeleye Span A Wooing Wend

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

BACKSTAGE at Bristol, and everything is panic and turmoil. Steeleye Span's support act hasn't arrived half-an-hour before show-time. Jo Lustig, Steeleye manager, is standing with ...

Steeleye Span Versus The Time Warp

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

SOUND TECHNIQUES studios in Chelsea is not exactly the most luxurious of settings for musical activity. Boards, speakers and tape reels are scattered fairly haphazardly ...

Steeleye Span: Below The Salt (Chrysalis)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1972

THERE'S A very select coterie of bands who give off an aura of total peace. Listening to their performance gives you a sense of security ...

Steeleye Span: Parcel of Rogues (Chrysalis)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

IT WOULD be considerably more than a pity if Steeleye Span, that most English of bands, have to become superstars in the States before really ...

Steeleye Span: So Who ARE These Limeys Playing Folk Music?

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1973

IT TAKES approximately 11 hours to fly from London to Los Angeles. You get off the 'plane, and the heat fills your lungs like a ...

Rod Stewart, T. Rex: Rod Stewart: Never A Dull Moment/T. Rex: The Slider

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1972

TEENAGE TEARDROPS... Or, would you buy a used riff from these men? ...

Stone The Crows: Ontinuous Performance

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, November 1972

I STILL CAN'T BELIEVE that this album hasn't sold 87 million copies. The Crows are one of that select handful of red-hot live bands who ...

Supergrass: Supergrass (Parlophone)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Daily Telegraph, September 1999

WE HEAR AN awful lot about how Oxford is still the gateway to eminence in thrusting new young Britain, but what about Wheatley Park Comprehensive? ...

Talking Heads: Cents and Sensibility: Talking Heads

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1984

You may find yourself...the leader of a rock band (of sorts)! ...

Thin Lizzy: Dedication

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, March 1991

FOR A FEW good years in the mid-'70s, Dublin cowboys Thin Lizzy bought the pop virtues of literate, evocative wordplay, danceable, funky grooves and a ...

Thin Lizzy: Gobi Gobi Hey!

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1977

AN ANECDOTE: hopeful young Irish band up in London for the first time. Their bass player – Philip Lynott by name – is exploring the ...

Third World: Third World (Island import)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1976

THIRD WORLD were the support act at Bob Marley and The Wailers' Lyceum concerts last summer, where they provided the kind of pleasant surprise that's ...

George Thorogood & The Destroyers: Move It On Over

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1978

THE BOTTLENECK that ate Delaware returns to your hearts and turntables: no steps forward, no steps back. Move it On Over is this or any ...

George Thorogood & The Destroyers: Ain't Nuthin' But The Blues Band

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1978

LOOKED AT MY watch and it was almost one, and George Thorogood And The Destroyers are just sloping on stage for their third set of ...

Three Dog Night: Greatest Hits

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1975

IT WOULD BE an amusing little taskenheimer indeed for some rock-oriented socio-anthropologist to work out exactly why Three Dog Night were at one time The ...

Pete Townshend: All The Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1982

HERE IS Pete Townshend: born again. And again, and again, and again, and again... ...

Pete Townshend: Cooltalkingsmoothtalkingstraightsmokingfirestoking (Atlantic)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, June 1996

DEAR DEAR PETE, ROCK'S leading luvvie: it's been so temptingly easy to take the piss out of him for his earnestness, his artistic ambition and ...

Pete Townshend: The Lifehouse Chronicles

Review and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, December 1999

Some day all music will be made this way. In 1970 it seemed so barking mad the band asked him to drop it. Now, Pete’s ...

Pete Townshend, The Who: Pete Townshend: Conversations With Pete

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1980

On an up with britain's longest serving honest man of rock ...

Pete Townshend, The Who: Pete Townshend: Who's Jimmy?

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1973

IN THE SECOND LEG OF THE TOWNSHEND-MURRAY TALKABOUT, PETE TELLS ALL...AND MORE. ...

T. Rex: T.Rex: Electric Warrior

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, October 2001

REMEMBER LITTLE Richard's immortal comment on the tragic trajectory of Elvis Presley? That wonderful epigram – "he got what he wanted, but he lost what ...

T. Rex, Tyrannosaurus Rex: T. Rex: Where Now, Elemental Child?

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1973

ONCE UPON A time there was Tyrannosaurus Rex. In the days immediately following flower-power, rockanroll music was getting very sweaty around the edges. What with ...

Big Joe Turner: Exit BIg Joe

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1985

LAST WEEK we lost Big Joe Turner: he died in California at the age of 74 after decades of contributions to the popular music of ...

Tina Turner: The Long Goodbye

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, April 1988

THE BIGGEST FOOTBALL stadium in the world is the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro: a big game such as a World Cup Final can pack ...

UB40: UB44

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1982

CAN I TELL you something? I don't want to depress you by dumping my current state of mind on you, but I feel really awful ...

Ultravox: Lament

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1984

The Vox Pox ...

Upp: Upp

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1975

THE VERY Famous Tony Williams once included on one of his albums a track entitled 'Some Hip Drum Shit'. ...

Bunny Wailer: Tribute (Solomonic import)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1982

"...and we know we shall win because we are confident of the victory of good over evil." ...

T-Bone Walker: The Complete Imperial Recordings, 1950-1954 (Imperial/EMI)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Guitar World, 1991

CONTEMPORARY BLUES guitar starts here. True enough, everything has its origins in something else: Aaron Thibaux "T-Bone" Walker (1910 – 1975) had hung out in ...

Dionne Warwick: Best Of

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1975

ONLY ONE OBJECTION to this album, so let's put it right up front. ...

Muddy Waters: Chess Records Round-Up

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, April 1990

THE NAME OF Chess Records spells "Chicago Blues" just as clearly as Levi's spells jeans, Zippo spells lighters and Special Brew spells headaches. ...

Muddy Waters

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, 1970

MUDDY WATERS has been my favourite singer since I was twelve years old, and since that time one of my primary objectives has been to ...

Muddy Waters: Dingwalls, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1978

FAST TALK/hard bargain: as Mr Muddy Waters was spending a few days of his 64th year in Great Britain in the faintly congruous role of ...

Muddy Waters: The Blues Had A Baby… And They Called It Rock 'N' Roll

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, April 1977

"THE KIND OF BLUES I play there's no money in it. You makes a good livin' when you gets established like I did, but you ...

Johnny Winter, Muddy Waters: Muddy Waters: I'm Ready

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1978

"If you're watching me and Johnny Winter, the show is MEANT to be in black and white." ...

Tony Joe White: Tony Joe, Elvis, and Polk Salad Annie

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 1970

TONY JOE WHITE was one of the first of the new school of Southern singer/songwriters – along with Jerry Reed, Joe South, Leon Russell, Dough ...

Tony Joe White: Home Made Ice Cream

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1973

I'VE HAD a healthy respect for the work of Tony Joe White for quite some time now, and it is because of the excellence of ...

The Who: Pete Townshend part 2: If The Who Split We'd Really Have To Own Up

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1973

PETER TOWNSHEND is an amiable sort of dude. He sits in Track Records' office, with booze and dog to hand, and talks about anything that ...

The Who: Quadrophenia

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1978

The Department of Cryptic Headlines presents a retrospective view of THE WHO's Quadrophenia, noting that Mr Pete Townshend's Mod vision is as valid now as ...

The Who: The Kids Are Alright (Polydor)

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1979

"The whole thing about rock and roll dynamism, in many ways, is the fact that if it does slow down, if it does start to ...

The Who: Exorcizing The Ghost of Mod

Review and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Creem, January 1974

The Who: Quadrophenia ...

The Who: Four-Way Pete

Review and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1973

TOWNSHEND'S Quadrophenia is a rather daunting proposition. Another Who double-album rock opera? About a kid called Jimmy? With a massive booklet of grainy monochrome tableaux ...

The Who: Rock On, Tommy!

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, November 1989

That deaf, dumb and blind kid is back, along with all the unsavoury characters – Cousin Kevin, Uncle Ernie, the Acid Queen – who made ...

The Who: Who: Who Are You

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1978

Say Goodbye To Angry Songs For Kids Say Hello To Angry Songs For Grown-Ups ...

The Who, The Yardbirds: The Who, Yardbirds books

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, January 1984

Before I Get Old: The Story Of The Who by Dave Marsh Yardbirds by John Platt, Chris Dreja and Jim McCarty ...

Wings: Paul McCartney: …No Not Really In A Way Actually As It Happens…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1975

VENUS AND MARS ARE LATE. The sandwiches don't care, though. Even though they're the same day's vintage – fresh, soft white bread-triangles housing excerpts from ...

Edgar Winter's White Trash: Roadwork

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Cream, July 1972

EDGAR WINTER’S White Trash are advanced cases of the Live Album Syndrome. Their line-up allows them to tackle soul, gospel, blues and rock, depending on ...

Johnny Winter

Profile by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, June 1972

THE BEST NEWS of last week was that Johnny Winter, after a year in medical exile, was once again alive and functioning, and due to ...

Bobby Womack: The Mystery Man

Profile and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, March 1987

NEW YORK CITY 1985. The Rolling Stones are holed up in the studio cutting tracks for Dirty Work, their first album under their new deal ...

Ronnie Wood - Now Look

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1975

MY H.A.L. PRINT-OUT on Ron Wood sez that his guitar-playing veers from the sublime to the ridiculous (i.e., his playing on Rod Stewart's solo albums ...

Robert Wyatt: I Played Robert Wyatt At 78rpm And Saw God

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

THERE'S SOMETHING extra special about green suede boots. A certain devil-may-care attitude, a touch of fearless dandyism combined with a sense of the earthy and ...

Robert Wyatt: Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1974

EVEN THOUGH the gig was due to start at 8.30, Drury Lane had started to clog up with earnest-looking hippies nearly two hours before the ...

X-Ray Spex: Poly Styrene Is Still Strictly Roots

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, May 1978

SUNDAY NIGHT in Croydon, and Poly Styrene's voice is shot. Flu goes for the throat like a cornered rat: when the victim's a singer, the ...

X-Ray Spex: X-Ray-Spex: Germ Free Adolescents

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1978

SMASH THE barriers and the truth shall make you free (as long as stocks last, anyway): barriers between humans and objects, between the natural (sic) ...

The Yardbirds: The Yardbirds Featuring Eric Clapton, The Yardbirds Featuring Jeff Beck

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1976

STRANGELY ENOUGH, the thing that hits you first about these albums is not so much the excellence of the two gentlemen named in the titles ...

Neil Young: On The Beach

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, July 2003

IT USED to be said of performers like country legend Jimmie Rodgers and Delta bluesman Skip James that they had "that high lonesome sound". No ...

Frank Zappa - One Size Fits All

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1975

THE FIRST WORD of this review is "deteriorate." It means to Lose Your Magic. ...

Frank Zappa 1940-1993

Obituary by Charles Shaar Murray, Daily Telegraph, December 1993

A FEW YEARS AGO, Gail Zappa, wife and business partner of the late Frank Zappa, was shopping for groceries in Los Angeles when the cashier ...

Frank Zappa: Roxy And Elsewhere

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

CAPSULE REVIEW for the Busy Reader: if you like Apostrophe and Over-Nite Sensation better than any of Uncle Frank's other efforts, then ooze into your ...

Frank Zappa: Zoot Allures

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1976

THIS ALBUM is neither Bizarre nor DiscReet, but that's neither here nor there. ...

Frank Zappa: God Mother

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, August 1973

"ZAPPA'S IN TOWN," they said. "Wanna go along and talk to him?" Oh sure, sez I, always glad to have a chat with Frank. So ...

Frank Zappa: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1978

"FRANK ZAPPA is the leader and musical director of the Mothers Of Invention. His performances in person with the group are rare. His personality means ...

Frank Zappa: Penguins in Bondage and Other Perversions

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1973

WHERE WERE WE? Oh yeah, Frank Zappa. Anyway, ol' Frank is sitting in his hotel room above Kensington, discoursing on this and that and demonstrating ...

Frank Zappa: Relax, Frank. We Ain't No Liggers. A Few Of Us Just Came To Join In…

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, October 1974

WHY IS Stephen Stills not smiling? To be more precise, why are those noble, rugged features sporting an expression roughly equivalent to that of a ...

Frank Zappa: The Mother Of All Reinventions

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, November 2003

IF CIGARETTES AND COFFEE are available in the afterlife, the shade of Frank Zappa is probably allowing himself a wry smile from beneath his formidable ...

Frank Zappa: How To Complete The Subbing And Layout Of A Very Long Frank Zappa Lookin' Back, Part 3

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1974

THE ALBUM and movie of 200 Motels erupted late in 1971. Both received near-unanimous critical meat-axe jobs and both were ignominious commercial failures. United Artists, ...

Frank Zappa: How To Sub And Lay Out A Frank Zappa Lookin' Back Part 2

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1974

"PERHAPS THE most unique aspect of the Mother's work is the conceptual continuity of the group's output macrostructure. ...

Frank Zappa: How To Write, Sub, And Lay Out A Frank Zappa 'Lookin' Back', part 1

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, November 1974

"LEMME TELL YOU SOMETHING. You've got our recordings, you've seen us work a few times, you interviewed me three or four times, you've read a ...

ZZ Top: Billy Gibbons: Texan Rabbi From Hell

Report and Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, MOJO, March 1994

QUICK! APART FROM long beards, grotesque guitars and cheap sunglasses, what do ZZ Top and our dearly beloved and highly respected Prime Minister have in ...

ZZ Top: Welcome To Weirdsville…

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, November 1990

ROBERT CRAY'S favourite ZZ Top story: the last time the Robert Cray Band played San Antonio, Billy Gibbons called up and requested tickets. Come show-time, ...

List of genre pieces

Lennon, Lenin, The Oz Schoolkids Issue And Me

Retrospective by Charles Shaar Murray, Word, The, April 2011

In 1970 Charles Shaar Murray answered an ad in furry freak magazine Oz for a bunch of juveniles to edit a Schoolkids issue. Next thing ...

The Equals: Born Ya!

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, September 1976

Support your local Spades!! ...

Almost Famous: 1973 and all that

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, Guardian, The, 2000

1973 AS A rock and roll annus mirabilis? Six thousand miles away from the old Rolling Stone office in San Francisco, it felt more like ...

Last Night A DJ Saved My Life: Tale Of Turntable Wizards Misses Several Beats

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, January 2000

Last Night A DJ Saved My Life: the history of the disc jockey by Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton (Headline) ...

A Short History of the Rock Guitar

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, History of Rock, The, 1981

BEFORE THE ADVENT OF ROCK, guitars were just guitars. Amplification made guitars more flexible, more assertive and more prominent, but even so the electric guitar ...

Cryin' the Blues

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer Music Monthly, November 2003

In September 2002, the US Congress officially designated 2003 as 'The Year Of The Blues.' Why this year of all years? ...

Hilly Kristal (CBGBs)

Interview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1978

"CBGB & OMFUG" is what it says over the door of Hilly Kristal's rock and roll dive down on New York's Bowery. That's the club ...

Moogers And Shakers

Film/DVD/TV Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Observer Music Monthly, January 2005

THE NAME ACTUALLY rhymes with 'vogue,' but the incorrect phonetic pronunciation somehow seems more appropriate to the noises made by the eponymous instrument created in ...

Music: The Key To Getting Rich, High And Laid

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, April 2001

Black Vinyl White Powder by Simon Napier-Bell (Ebury Press, £16.99) ...

Peter Guralnick: Sweet Soul Music

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, July 1986

FA-FA-FA-FA-FA-FAB ...

Punk: I Fought The Biz And The Biz Won (How We Got Here From There)

Overview by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1986

PUNK: IT MADE OUR DAY...It's been ten bleak winters since...well, we look back in hunger at the years youth reclaimed rock and for a while ...

Purple Prose From The Many Voices Of The Blues

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, February 2001

David Dalton: Been Here And Gone: A Memoir Of The Blues (Methuen, 386pp; £10.99) ...

Rock at the Movies

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, Guardian, The, July 1991

FASHIONS IN FOLK devils, like all other fashions, are subject both to painless expiry and to unexpected and possibly incongruous resurrections. ...

Rock Bottom: The Music Industry In Trouble

Comment by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, April 2002

WHEN ROLLING STONES manager Andrew Loog Oldham founded his own company, Immediate Records, in the 1960s, the paper sleeve of each and every single bore ...

Satanic Majesties' Bequest

Book Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Independent, The, July 2000

I'm a Man: Sex, Gods And Rock'n'roll by Ruth Padel (Faber & Faber, £12.99, 409pp) ...

Sex, Drugs And Violence In Rock: The Sexual Language Of Rock Part 1

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, February 1976

"Eddie please write me one line,Tell me your love is only mine,Please Eddie, don't make me wait so long,You left me last September,To return to ...

Sex, Drugs And Violence In Rock: The Sexual Language Of Rock Part 2

Essay by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, March 1976

"I'm gonna pick you up nowAnd carry you away,So you'd better pack up now, baby,Packin' up today,Here I come, just a big bad man,When I ...

The First Great Rock Festival Of The Seventies

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Ink, October 1971

Isle of Wight/Atlanta — a CBS 3 record set ...

The Rap Machine Turns You On

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, December 1982

Various: Rapped Uptight (Sugarhill) ...

Universal Exhibition: The Bickershaw Festival

Report by Charles Shaar Murray, Oz, May 1972

"FESTIVALS," SAID Tommy Chong, leaning up against the RCA caravan at Bickershaw, "are just camping out with a light show." ...

Various Artists: The Blues Guitar Box

Review by Charles Shaar Murray, Q, January 1991

FORTY-THREE tracks featuring 39 guitarists for over three hours of music: if this bouncing, bulging blue box demonstrates anything other than the blues' current high ...

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