Today we continue with David Suff’s November 2006 notes, covering material discussed in this blog at great length some years ago:
“1969’s splendid Unhalfbricking featured a similar mix of material and reached number 12 in the charts. Si Tu Dois Partir their cover of Bob Dylan’s If You Gotta Go, go Now was a top twenty UK hit. The album contained Denny’s classic ballad Who Knows Where The Time Goes which she had originally recorded with the Strawbs [actually, even earlier than that].
In May 1969, returning to London after a gig in Birmingham, Fairport’s Transit van crashed on the M1, killing Martin Lamble and their friend and noted dressmaker Jeannie Franklyn. Unhalfbricking had also featured guest musician, folk fiddle maestro, Dave Swarbrick. Fairport Convention retreated to a country house in Wiltshire, recruited Dave Swarbrick full time, added dance-band drummer Dave Mattacks, and began rehearsing material for their next album. Where A Sailor’s Life had pointed the way the resulting album, Liege And Lief, took giant strides as they moved their music into a whole new category – electric folk-rock was born in spectacular style. The album quickly reached number 17 in the charts. Despite the album’s acclaim, Hutchings departed to form Steeleye Span and Denny left to form Fotheringay. Dave Pegg from Birmingham was recruited on bass and Dave Swarbrick began handling some lead vocals on 1970’s Full House. At which point, Richard Thompson chose to leave before the recording of the next album to embark on his illustrious solo career. Simon Nicol was the only rermaining original member on 1971’s Angel Delight, but it was to be their highest charting album, reaching number 8. Nicol only appeared on one more album. 1971’s Babbacombe Lee, before leaving to form the Albion Country Band with Ashley Hutchings.”
More next time.