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John Tobler

John Tobler

A key chronicler of American music for ZIGZAG, NME, and numerous other magazines, Tobler has also supplied liner notes for countless reissues. He currently runs the Road Goes On Forever label in Tyneside, England.

Pic: Ray Dobson

The Road Goes On Forever

List of articles in the library by artist

10cc: The Original Soundtrack

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, August 1975

IT'S VERY difficult to express a feeling of disappointment in such a medium as this. Like probably many of you, I'd been looking forward to ...

10cc: How Dare They!

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1976

Abbreviations:GG ... Graham GouldmanLC ... Lol CremeES ... Eric StewartKG ... Kevin GodleyHL ... Harvey Lisburgh (manager) ...

David Ackles: Just A Handful Of Songs

Interview by John Tobler, Melody Maker, February 1974

DAVID ACKLES has got a great house in Pacific Palisades, a few miles west of Los Angeles, and thereby close to the ocean, although the ...

Argent: In Deep (Epic)

Review by John Tobler, Let It Rock, June 1973

WHEN I INTERVIEWED Colin Blunstone for Let It Rock one of the points that he made several times was that Argent were just about the ...

Aztec Two Step: Second Step

Review by John Tobler, NME, May 1976

A MEANINGFUL title. Three years ago, the duo of Rex Fowler and Neal Shulman made a very good album for Elektra, which received critical acclaim ...

The Beach Boys: 14 Minutes With Beach Boy Mike Love

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1976

ONE OF THE great omissions of Zigzag's entire life thus far has been a piece on the Beach Boys, who I consider to be the ...

The Beach Boys: David Leaf: The Beach Boys and the California Myth (Grosset and Dunlap)

Review by John Tobler, Blank Space, 1978

I SHOULD FIRST of all put into perspective my particular connection with the Beach Boys, which is not quite as simple as merely being a ...

The Beatles: George Martin

Profile and Interview by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, The Record Producers (BBC Books), 1982

IN MUCH THE same way as Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller were the first American record producers, that accolade in Britain belongs to the man ...

The Beatles: George Martin: From Comedy Records To Rock Classics

Profile by John Tobler, History of Rock, The, 1982

While the man himself might deny it with typical modesty, there's little doubt that George Martin is one of the most celebrated record producers of ...

Jeff Beck

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, The Guitar Greats (BBC Books), 1983

AN AMERICAN JOURNALIST once described Jeff Beck as having an oversized heart and soul, which elevates him above most other guitarists and compared him in ...

The Bellamy Brothers: Let Your Love Flow

Review by John Tobler, NME, May 1976

YOU MUST have heard the single which gives this its title, and there's little doubt that the Bellamy Brothers are a distinctly classy addition to ...

Blondie, Mud, Suzi Quatro, Sweet: Chinn and Chapman

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Record Producers', 1982

THE YEARS BETWEEN 1971 and 1975 were tucked between psychedelia on the one hand and punk rock on the other, and while they featured country ...

David Blue: Rambling through with David Blue

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1974

Everyone in any way interested in rock music and its development knows that Bob Dylan spent some of his formative and pre-star years in Greenwich ...

Colin Blunstone: One Year After

Interview by John Tobler, Let It Rock, February 1973

Nowadays, degrees and A levels are almost as common rock musicians as they are among aspiring rock critics. But it was headline news back in ...

David Bowie: Secret Secret Never Seen: An Interview with David Bowie

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1978

THE LAST couple of albums, which is really what you're here to talk about, have been, to some people, somewhat inaccessible. I think you said ...

David Bowie, T. Rex, Thin Lizzy: Tony Visconti Talks

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Record Producers' (BBC Books), 1982

IN MUCH THE same way that George Martin is known for his work with the Beatles, anyone who has ever inspected the small print on ...

Boxer: College Of Food Technology, Weybridge

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, February 1976

BOXER'S WARM-up gig, one of a few, prior to their major tour which starts shortly…and the hall was about a third of the size which ...

David Bromberg: How Late'll Ya Play Till?

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1977

AT A TIME WHEN instrumental virtuosity seems to be undervalued, and is to some extent replaced by skull-numbing mindlessness disguised rather shabbily as "revolution", a ...

Jimmy Buffett, Steve Goodman: Steve Goodman: Jessie's Jig And Other Favourites; Jimmy Buffett: Havana Daydreamin'

Review by John Tobler, NME, May 1976

JIMMY BUFFETT and Steve Goodman seem to have a lot more in common than the fact that their names have the same number of letters. ...

James Burton

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1976

IF ANY OF YOU missed seeing Emmylou Harris and the Hot Band on their recent tour, you were either very unlucky or very foolish. I ...

Elvis Presley, Emmylou Harris, James Burton, Rick Nelson: James Burton

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Guitar Greats' (BBC Books), 1983

ONE OF THE GREAT rock'n'roll guitarists of the 1950s, but a man who remained virtually unknown to all but the cognoscenti until comparatively recently, is ...

Paul Butterfield Blues Band: The Butterfield Blues Band

Report and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1970

THE MEMORY WILL never fade for me of a freezing night near the end of 1966. It was a Friday, and a more-joyful-than-Christmas event was ...

The Butts Band, The Doors: The Life And Death Of The Butts Band

Report and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, December 1974

DEFUNCT GROUPS are not normally my stock in trade, or that of ZigZag in general, but very occasionally the opportunity arises to learn something of ...

Camel: Guildhall, Portsmouth

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, April 1976

IT'S MY IMPRESSION that Camel are becoming a band to reckon with. ...

Barbra Streisand, Captain Beefheart, Carly Simon, Harry Nilsson, Leo Sayer, The Pointer Sisters, Ringo Starr, Tiny Tim: Richard Perry

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Record Producers', BBC Books, 1982

IF ANY PRODUCER could be said to have an instantly identifiable sound, aside from the obvious case of Phil Spector, it would be Richard Perry. ...

Clancy: Kingston Polytechnic, London

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, February 1976

FOR A BAND which has been going for something like two-and-a-half years, which has survived the pub circuit and come out the other side, and ...

Eric Clapton

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Guitar Greats, BBC publications, 1983

Out of the long list of potential candidates for this book, very few names were obvious and automatic choices, but one certainty for inclusion was ...

Eric Clapton: EC Was Here

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1976

TWO THINGS occur to me. Firstly, if I continue to review every Clapton album and concert, maybe one day I'll get the interview. Join me ...

Eric Clapton: There's One In Every Crowd

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1975

A NEW CLAPTON album is a treat at any time, and this is no exception to that personal rule. ...

Eric Clapton: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1975

IT'S ABOUT half past eight, the lights go down, the curtains go up, and we can all see a dimly lit stage, with the drums ...

Guy Clark: Old No. 1

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, May 1976

THIS RECORD is a positive gem. However, unless some large quantity of record buyers pick up on it, it is destined to languish in the ...

Clover: Unavailable

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1977

AS FAR AS anticipation goes, this album has been high on my list ever since that memorable Roundhouse gig where Clover were sandwiched between a ...

Joe Cocker: Part Three of the Joe Cocker Story

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, Blank Space, May 1979

PICKING UP THE threads, the time is 1976, and between albums Joe Cocker was reported to have wanted to make a film about violence. Is ...

Joe Cocker: Part Two Of The Joe Cocker Story

Retrospective and Interview by John Tobler, Blank Space, 1979

PICKING UP FROM last time, we left Joe and the Grease Band about to part company, and go home to England for a holiday. Now ...

Ry Cooder

Interview by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Guitar Greats', BBC Books, 1983

IT MAY BE that American readers of this book may wonder ‘Why?’ And even perhaps, ‘Who?’ It is an unfortunate fact that Ry Cooder, a ...

Ry Cooder Part 1: Into The Purple Valley Of Romance And Adventure

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1977

"Everything I know, I know from records. I don't live in a place where the neighbours are playing fiddles, I live in the city."When Ry ...

Ry Cooder Part 2: The Prospect Before Us

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, March 1977

Since the first half of this interview was written, there's been an opportunity to see Ry and the Chicken Skin Band in action, which was ...

Country Joe & The Fish: Country Joe MacDonald: The Essential Country Joe McDonald

Review by John Tobler, NME, August 1976

ALTHOUGH THERE have been three compilations of his work with the Fish, this is the first collection covering Country Joe's seven solo albums. ...

Kevin Coyne

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, July 1971

"When I was very young, a fat-arsed bingo club manager said: 'You're going to the top, right to the top, and I am going to ...

Kevin Coyne: Heartburn

Review by John Tobler, NME, April 1976

THIS IS KEVIN COYNE'S seventh album in as many years, and I find it the most satisfying record he's made since the second (and final) ...

Kevin Coyne: Matching Head And Feet

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1975

READERS WHO have survived from the Golden Age of ZigZag will probably know that I'm a bit partial to the outpourings of Mr Coyne. However, ...

The Darts: Getting To The Point With The Darts

Profile by John Tobler, ZigZag, December 1977

THIS IS GOING to be a two part feature. This is the first part, as the more astute among you have probably already worked out, ...

Deep Purple, Rainbow: Ritchie Blackmore

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Guitar Greats' (BBC Books), 1983

ONE REASON for the selection of ace heavy metal guitarist Ritchie Blackmore as one of our subjects relates to a previous, slimmer and somewhat inferior ...

The Dillards: Finally Catching Up With The Dillards

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, June 1976

THOSE OF YOU who possess that rare back number with Family on the front will perhaps also recall a lengthy treatise of mine about the ...

The Dillards: Herb Pederson & The Dillards

Retrospective by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1973

PERCEPTIVE READERS, which I'm sure you all are, will have noticed my enthusiastic reports of a press reception I attended, actually on May 24th this ...

Dion: Born To Be With You, Greatest Hits and Streetheart

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1976

THE THREE most recent albums to come on to the British market, and as a measure of my own commitment to the artist, the 16th, ...

The Doors Come Full Circle

Review by John Tobler, Let It Rock, October 1972

ROCK JOURNALISTS ARE not born. Probably they’re not made either – it doesn’t work to tell someone that they’re a rock writer, although people do. ...

The Doors: "I Looked Into Her Eyes And Pretty Much Felt That Jim Was Dead"

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, July 1977

FOR SOME YEARS now, I've had this big problem. One which often leads to incredulity in those to whom I explain it. It concerns my ...

The Doors: Stoned Immaculate

Review and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, March 1979

"The man's been dead for seven years — or gone for seven years — and he's still causing trouble!" — Ray Manzarek ...

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show: Dr Hook: Bankrupt

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1975

ONE OR TWO of you (not enough, anyway) may be aware that I compiled a kind of 'Best Of' album of these loonies recently, and ...

Les Dudek: Les Dudek

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1976

FOR THE uninitiated, Les Dudek has been connected in various ways with the Allman Brothers (he was one of the guitarists on 'Ramblin' Man'), Steve ...

The Eagles, Joe Walsh: Bill Szymczyk

Interview by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Record Producers', 1982

THERE CAN'T BE too many people whose surnames have eight letters, none of which is a vowel, but it hardly needs to be said that ...

Yvonne Elliman: Rising Sun

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1976

WELL, IF YOU'RE expecting some kind of Claptonian continuation, you'll very likely be somewhat disappointed in this, the third Elliman album, each, I might add, ...

Joe Ely: I’m A Honky Tonk Man…

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, Country Music People, October 1992

The career of Joe Ely, one of the most dynamic performers in the world and a leading light of the Texan singer/songwriter genre, has largely ...

The Everly Brothers: Looking Back with the Everlys

Retrospective and Interview by John Tobler, Let It Rock, December 1972

SOME OF THE earliest rock’n’roll to capture my imagination was purveyed by the Everly Brothers. "Whatcha mean?" mutters a Brylcreem-encrusted voice, emerging from a Neanderthal ...

The Everly Brothers: An Interview with Don

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, May 1970

THE EVERLY BROTHERS first single 'Bye Bye Love' was released in 1957 and their records have been consistently good since then. Don Everly, now 33, ...

Fairport Convention, Ian Matthews, Matthews' Southern Comfort: Goin' Back With Ian Matthews, part 1

Retrospective and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1976

IT CAME AS no great surprise to me that Ian Matthews should come quite so high in the recent poll concerning who you'd like to ...

Mick Farren… Seriously

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1978

ONE of the less predictable events of this year has been the re-emergence of Mick Farren on the productive rather than critical side of rock'n'roll. ...

The Flamin' Groovies: Flaming Groovies: A Thirteen Year Overnight Success Story

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1978

"Right Cyril...left foot forward, two steps back, and then turn around...and when we've finished this old Ike and Tina Turner Review bit we'll go into ...

The Flamin' Groovies

Profile by John Tobler, Blank Space, 1978

"HOW DO these punks stop the bleeding when they stick pins through their flesh?" enquired a somewhat bemused Cyril Jordan, spending a fast three days ...

Lowell George, Van Dyke Parks: Van Dyke Parks

Interview by John Tobler, Hot Wacks, November 1973

...with contributions from Lowell George and Pete Frame. ...

Global Village Trucking Company: Global Village Trucking Company (Caroline)

Review by John Tobler, NME, April 1976

THIS IS not so much an album, more an epitaph; the GVTC disbanded during last summer, largely due, I suspect, to the fact that they ...

Steve Goodman: Jessie's Jig And Other Favourites

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1976

I HAVE an uncomfortable feeling that this is almost exactly the sort of record that the great majority of the critics on the weeklies have ...

Steve Goodman: Words We Can Dance To

Review by John Tobler, NME, June 1976

AFTER A three year gap since his two Buddah albums, this is Steve Goodman's second LP in less than a year, which presumably means that ...

Link Wray, Robert Gordon: Robert Gordon & Link Wray: Robert Gordon with Link Wray; Various Artists: Don't You Step On My Blue Suede Shoes

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1977

THERE'S MORE similarity between these two albums than the fact that they've both got 'Red Hot' on 'em. They're the opposite ends of the rockabilly ...

The Groundhogs: Tony McPhee… Groundhog

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, March 1971

ZZ: Can we talk about your new album first? How did it come to be called Split? ...

Emmylou Harris: Luxury Liner

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1977

A CLASSICALLY CONCEIVED album for one such as myself – two songs by Parsons, one by the Louvin Brothers, a Rodney Crowell, a Mr. Guy ...

Don Harrison Band: The Don Harrison Band

Interview by John Tobler, NME, September 1976

HERE'S A question that's been puzzling me: just how did the Don Harrison Band, who are rather less than a familiar name, get on the ...

John Hartford: Mark Twang (Flying Fish)

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1976

MULTIPLE CAUSE for celebration – the return of the amazing John Hartford, and the start of the long overdue British outlet for Flying Fish. Both ...

Richard Hell: To Hell and Back: Richard Hell

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1978

Richard Hell had just got up, and one of the first things he focused on was John Tobler, looming over him with a tape recorder. ...

Horslips: Guildford

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, March 1976

HORSLIPS ARE CURRENTLY between record companies, apparently by their own choice, but unlike thespians, who rest, the group are doing a series of gigs in ...

Marsha Hunt: an interview

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1969

...

Elton John: Rock Of The Westies

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1976

IT DOESN'T SEEM long since the last EJ album, and in fact, it isn't, which I suppose is more fuel for the fire that says ...

Elton John: Blue Moves

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, December 1976

IN A REVIEW of one of Elton's earlier albums I wrote something to the effect that those who already liked Elton would inevitably enjoy that ...

Elton John: Captain Fantastic And The Brown Dirt Cowboy

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1975

THIS IS PROBABLY the latest review you've read of the record under scrutiny. Having read several other reviews in various weekly and monthly publications, a ...

Elton John: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1975

THE SUBJECT OF this piece is a man who could justly be called one of ZigZag's favourite people, Elton John. ...

Elton John: The Elton John Story: Final Part

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1973

ORCHESTRA ONSTAGE ...

Greg Kihn

Profile by John Tobler, Blank Space, 1978

JUST SO that we understand each other, it might be simpler to detail a few of the things which Greg Kihn (pronounced 'kin', simple as ...

B.B. King

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Guitar Greats (BBC Books), 1983

IN CONSIDERING the dozens of potential candidates for this book, one essential ingredient was a representative of the blues/R&B heritage, for without the inspiration of ...

Kokomo, The Kursaal Flyers: Kokomo/Kursaal Flyers: Guildford

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, February 1976

A VERY strange billing, Kokomo as support to the Kursaal Flyers. Now that seems to say something about relative popularity and the length of time ...

Al Kooper: The (Almost) Complete History of Al Kooper

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1971

Tell me about the first Supersession.Well the concept came from that Grape Jam album (given free with Wow in the States but not released here), ...

Al Kooper, Lynyrd Skynyrd: Al Kooper: Sweetheart Of The South

Interview by John Tobler, Melody Maker, March 1974

AL KOOPER is presumably in accord with Bob Dylan more often than not, as his playing on some the latter's best albums, like Blonde On ...

Kris Kristofferson: Surreal Thing

Review by John Tobler, NME, October 1976

THERE APPEARS to be a ridiculously large number of "established" artists making records which, were they by an unfamiliar name, would not only sell zero ...

The Kursaal Flyers: The Great Artiste

Review by John Tobler, NME, April 1976

I'VE BEEN PLAYING this album to the exclusion of all else over the last couple of weeks: it comes as something of a shock to ...

The Kursaal Flyers: Brunel University, London

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, January 1976

THE ONLY REASON I KNOW for the Kursaal Flyers not to be as popular as sliced bread is that their first album was so badly ...

Ronnie Lane: One For The Road (Edsel)

Sleevenotes by John Tobler, Edsel, 1995

IN 1995, THE WORLD seems to have finally rediscovered The Small Faces, one of the most significant and respected groups of the British beat boom ...

Led Zeppelin: Physical Graffiti

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, August 1975

NOW I SHOULD make clear in this context that I'm not by nature a fan of this band in the same way that I like ...

Jimmy Page, Led Zeppelin: Jimmy Page

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Guitar Greats' (BBC Books), 1983

THERE ARE CERTAIN guitar players without whom this book could not claim to approach completeness, and, of course, one of our criteria for inclusion was ...

Jimmy Page, Led Zeppelin: Jimmy Page: The Life And Times Of A Guitar Prophet

Interview by John Tobler, Musician, January 1984

JIMMY PAGE was born in Heston, West London, on January 9, 1944, and moved with his family to nearby Feltham during his infancy. He spent ...

Arthur Lee, Love: Arthur Lee: Forever Changes

Interview by John Tobler, Melody Maker, December 1973

REMEMBER Arthur Lee and Love? Love was the first rock band to sign with Elektra Records, which they did in late 1965. In approximately their ...

Arthur Lee, Love: Arthur Lee: Yes Folks, Yet Another Arthur Lee Article

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, March 1975

Oh God, please, no!! I thought old Tobler had just about run out of material on Arthur Lee, but it seems he must have a ...

Arthur Lee, Love: Love Leftovers: 64 Questions With Arthur Lee

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, December 1974

Who was your first manager then, Herb Cohen? ...

Leiber and Stoller

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Record Producers (BBC Books), 1982

ELVIS PRESLEY was the King of Rock'n'Roll – anyone who might care to dispute that should try reading another book, for without Presley, neither we, ...

Love: Prelude To Love

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, February 1973

WHILE CHATTING to Jerry Hopkins, Rolling Stone's man in London, at a press reception, I found that he was involved in the early career of ...

Hank Marvin, The Shadows: Hank B. Marvin

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Guitar Greats' (BBC Books), 1983

TO DEMONSTRATE to any potential unbelievers the importance of Hank B. Marvin, we must go back to 1977, when a TV commercial was screened showing ...

Matchbox

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1978

AS MENTIONED in fab Zigzag 85, this is a feature of their very own concerning Matchbox, who I dubbed the best British rock 'n' roll ...

Ian Matthews: Go For Broke

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, June 1976

I'VE ALWAYS HAD a strong affection for Ian Matthews' music since the Fairports, and just like a lot of other people, I suppose, I've wondered ...

Ian Matthews, Plainsong: Ian Matthews: Goin' Back With Ian Matthews, part 2

Retrospective and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1976

LAST MONTH WE left Ian moaning and groaning about the Best Of Ian Matthews' Southern Comfort album, which MCA chose to thrust upon an unsuspecting ...

Steve Miller

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, NME, May 1976

"I WASN'T disturbed by having a hit – I was exhausted! Before The Joker became successful we'd done 220 concerts in the previous year. Then ...

Steve Miller

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Guitar Greats', 1983

WHEN WE MET Steve Miller in the Seattle studio where he mostly works these days, he was planning to make more than one album – ...

Bruce Springsteen, Mink DeVille: Bruce Springsteen: Darkness On The Edge Of Town; Mink DeVille: Return To Magenta

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, July 1978

THE RETURN of the street people, which should be a good thing. First, Springsteen, whose scenario of misfortune has been so well publicised that there's ...

Michael Nesmith, The Monkees: Michael Nesmith: On The Road To ‘Rio’

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, May 1977

IT WAS INEVITABLE that when Michael Nesmith returned to London recently to promote jet lag and his single, 'Rio', we should meet again. My vibrant ...

Keith West, Moonrider: Moonrider's Keith West

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, August 1975

MOONRIDER have had tenuous ties with ZigZag since before they were born. John Weider forecast their birth in ZZ42, the group played a short set ...

Elvis Presley, Scotty Moore: Scotty Moore

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Guitar Greats' (BBC Books), 1983

THERE CAN BE few more graphic illustrations of the fact that rock'n'roll music is no longer some here-today-gone-tomorrow speck of lint in the wind than ...

Van Morrison (part 1)

Interview by John Tobler, Blank Space, March 1979

Talking to Tobler ...

Van Morrison (part 2)

Interview by John Tobler, Blank Space, April 1979

IT WOULD BE shrewd to note at this point, the start of the second part of this documentary, that there is no intention here to ...

Van Morrison out of the music

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1973

"YOU COULD FORGIVE him anything after you've listened to his music." (Nicola Hugen-Tobler after first straining to hear the great man's words through the clinking ...

Mickie Most

Profile and Interview by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, The Record Producers, 1982

THERE HAVE been numerous record producers who have started their own label, including Phil Spector, Richard Perry, Tony Visconti and Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman. ...

Rick Nelson: The Rick Nelson Story

Retrospective by John Tobler, ZigZag, August 1974

Part 1: The Imperial Years ...

Michael Nesmith

Discography by John Tobler, ZigZag, September 1977

It's more than a tragedy that Mike Nesmith’s 'Rio' wasn't a bigger hit single. Not for me, because I've seen the amazing film about which ...

Michael Nesmith: 283 Reasons To Like Michael Nesmith

Retrospective by John Tobler, ZigZag, March 1974

THE STORY so far: Michael Nesmith, a Texan singer and guitar player, has left the Monkees, the manufactured group brought together to make television series, ...

Michael Nesmith: Mike Nesmith: From A Radio Engine To The Photon Wing

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1977

NO, I HAVEN'T the faintest idea what it means, but I do feel well chuffed that the task begun in November 1973 has finally made ...

Michael Nesmith: Mike Nesmith: Monkee in the Countryside

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, Melody Maker, January 1974

Do me the gracious favour of not pointing me out as the most talented Monkee ...

Don Nix: Donald Nix: Of Shoes & Sticks & Donald Nix

Retrospective and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1973

NOW THIS here's the story 'bout the Rock Island Line... no, that's not true at all, because it's actually a story about a legendary figure, ...

Robert Palmer

Profile by John Tobler, Blank Space, 1978

HANDS UP those who think Robert Palmer’s an American – it’s by no means a complete misapprehension if all you have to go on are ...

Elvis Presley: Elvis: The Goldman Factor

Essay by John Tobler, 'Aspects of Elvis', 1994

ELVIS PRESLEY WAS THE UNKNOWING centre of controversy in his quite short life: only being screened from the waist upwards on TV so that his ...

John Prine: Regent's Park, London

Live Review by John Tobler, NME, July 1976

IT MUST have been a terrible choice between seeing John Prine (and perhaps Steve Goodman?) at Regent's Park, and checking out the first British gig ...

Queen: Brian May

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Guitar Greats (BBC Books), 1983

AT THE START of the 1980s, the rock band which was generally accepted, if not as the most popular group in the world, then as ...

Radio Stars: The Radio Stars STORY!

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1977

GREAT NAME, and both their records so far have also been pretty neat. There's an imminent album, and a third 45 coming out about the ...

Bonnie Raitt: At Home with Bonnie Raitt

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, June 1976

On examining her albums, of which there are five to date, I drew various conclusions about Bonnie Raitt's recording career. ...

Jonathan Richman: The Modern Lovers: The Modern Lovers Live

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, December 1977

WELL, I think that's the title, but anyway you should know that this is the vinyl result of Jonathan Richman's quite unforgettable concerts here a ...

Todd Rundgren

Interview by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, 'The Record Producers' (BBC Books) , 1982

WHEN SIFTING through the potential candidates for a book such as this, it is obviously essential to reflect the present and future, as well as ...

Todd Rundgren

Profile by John Tobler, History of Rock, The, 1983

THERE ARE FEW FIGURES IN ROCK AS versatile as Todd Rundgren. A skilled producer and engineer, a gifted songwriter and a talented multi-instrumentalist, proficient on ...

Santana: Carlos Santana

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Guitar Greats' (BBC Books), 1983

CARLOS SANTANA has continuously led the band that bears his name for nearly fifteen years, and maintained a substantial worldwide popularity, something which requires an ...

Neil Sedaka

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1973

How Neil Sedaka Added An Extra Chin And Sang His Own Songs Again ...

The Sex Pistols: Radio Fun!!

Guide by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1978

JUST FOR A CRACK HERE IS ONE OF THE LAST U.K. INTERVIEWS THE PISTOLS DID ...

Shoes

Interview by John Tobler, Blank Space, 1979

AND DON'T forget that title – it’s not The Shoes, but simply the plural of the footwear without the definite article. There are four Shoes, ...

Patti Smith: 15 Minutes with Patti Smith

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, October 1978

DOUBTLESS, many of you will have noted a small item in NME's scandal section recently, which referred to the fact that Patti Smith had broken ...

Patti Smith: High on Rebellion: Patti Smith Speaks, Part 2

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, June 1978

We join Patti Smith and John Tobler mid-conversation one day last October, when Patti was on her way to Europe to do her annual poetry ...

Patti Smith: Horse Latitudes: The Possession of Patti Smith

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1978

This interview with Patti Smith took place last October when she stopped off in London for a day en route for Europe. We were saving ...

Phil Spector

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, The Record Producers (BBC Books), 1982

WHENEVER THE subject of record producers is discussed by anyone born before 1960, one name will always surface, that of Phil Spector. ...

Phil Spector, Ronnie Spector: Ronnie Spector Says Goodbye To Hollywood

Interview by John Tobler, Hot Wacks, Spring 1979

PHIL SPECTOR......aah, the magic that name still evokes, but what of the former Mrs Phil Spector. Veronica Benett, better known as Ronnie Spector, this is ...

Spirit

Sleevenotes by John Tobler, Sony Records sleevnote, 2000

THE TRAGIC AND unexpected death (from drowning) on the second day of 1997 of guitarist and vocalist Randy California effectively silenced Spirit, described by Billboard ...

Steeleye Span

Retrospective and Interview by John Tobler, Sing Out!, 1994

THE TERM "folk-rock" appears to have different meanings in the UK and the US – American folk/rock means The Byrds, The Lovin' Spoonful and The ...

The Stranglers: IV Rattus Norvegicus (United Artists)

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, June 1977

THERE'S LITTLE DOUBT that while the first batch of British new wave albums were by the more outrageous elements, and somehow seemed to rely on ...

Suicide

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, August 1978

It is to be hoped that some of you lemmings may have taken a little time out from adoration of the Clash on their current ...

Suicide

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, May 1980

NEW YORK'S a lonely town when you've never been there before, and you really don't know too many people (although being there is a problem ...

Television: Life After TV: An Interview with Richard Lloyd

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, November 1978

TELEVISION were one of my ultra-favourite groups of the past couple of years. The music they made has always seemed to me to combine the ...

Television: T.V. Tube Heart: An interview with Tom Verlaine

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, July 1978

I get the impression that the first album was the album that the record company wanted you to make and the new album is more ...

George Thorogood & The Destroyers: George Thorogood: The Delaware Destroyer!

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, April 1979

IF RECENT REPORTS are to be believed, Beserkley Records may be in some kind of difficulties, at least as far as their English office is ...

Steve Tilston's An Acoustic Confusion

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, 1971

THERE IS SOMETHING very satisfying about listening to live music in small smoke-filled rooms. It creates an intimacy between artist and audience that cannot exist ...

Toto

Profile by John Tobler, Virgin Yearbook, 1982

A THEORY was circulating during the last two or three years to the effect that the acts dominating the US album charts, and therefore the ...

Pete Townshend

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, The Guitar Greats (BBC Books), 1983

PETE TOWNSHEND NEEDS little introduction – he is, although he would perhaps reject the term, a celebrity. Pete was born on 19 May 1945, in ...

Pete Townshend, The Who: Can You Believe It? Chatting with Pete Townshend

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, June 1974

I bet you'd given up all hope of seeing the second part of this little epic, eh? How many of you even remember the first ...

Ultravox

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1979

ZZ: THE MATERIAL on your first album strikes me as not being as unconventional as some of your later stuff, it's pretty straightforward. Does that ...

Ultravox

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, December 1978

I HOPE you're sitting comfortably, because this could be quite long... ...

Joe Walsh

Interview by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Guitar Greats (BBC Books), 1983

In 1969, The Who toured Britain, dragging around a support act who were, to say the least, an unknown quantity to all but a very ...

Clifford T Ward: Escalator

Review by John Tobler, ZigZag, August 1975

THE FIRST thing to say about Clifford is that it is a crime that he isn't yet the big star he inevitably will eventually become. ...

West, Bruce & Laing: West Bruce & Laing: Why Dontcha

Review by John Tobler, Let It Rock, March 1973

I DON'T WANT to be boring, but there's a whole heap of over obvious things to say about a band like this, just a couple ...

Brian Wilson: Interview with Don Was

Interview by John Tobler, Record Hunter, August 1993

After 32 years together The Beach Boys are one of the longest-lived bands in rock. They've recently performed a string of stadium dates, and Capitol ...

Jesse Winchester

Profile and Interview by John Tobler, NME, June 1976

CERTAIN QUALITIES seem to be needed for a musician to become a hero to the man in the street who buys a lot of records ...

Pete Wingfield: The Wheel Goes Full Circle

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, January 1976

IN THE EARLY DAYS of ZigZag, when Frame and I were young lads, Childs wasn't even born, and San Francisco was where it was at ...

Link Wray

Report and Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, 1971

FOR ELDERLY rockers like me, it’s pretty incredible to be able to talk to those who were around at the start of their musical interests. ...

List of genre pieces

Chris Thomas

Book Excerpt by Stuart Grundy, John Tobler, The Record Producers (BBC Books), 1982

THE END OF 1981 sees Chris Thomas, ex-student of the Royal Academy of Music and also producer of the earliest (and best) Sex Pistols' records, ...

Glyn Johns

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, 'The Record Producers' (BBC Books), 1982

WHILE THE NAMES of George Martin and Mickie Most are probably the best known among British record producers, Glyn Johns was making hit records with ...

Jac Holzman Then and Now

Interview by John Tobler, ZigZag, May 1973

If ever I've identified with a record company, the nearest thing in my mind to an ideal would be Elektra Records, for many reasons, not ...

Roy Thomas Baker

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Record Producers (BBC Books), 1982

RUNNING NORTH off Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood is a steep road which twists and turns upwards into the Hollywood Hills. ...

Teenage Rampage

Essay by John Tobler, History of Rock, The, 1983

Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman orchestrated a British bubblegum revolution ...

Tom Dowd

Book Excerpt by John Tobler, Stuart Grundy, The Record Producers, 1982

CAREERS IN POPULAR music are often notoriously short, particularly in the most creative areas of activity, therefore it is of more than passing interest to ...

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