Enroute to their Epic contract, a minor 80's hit ("Birth, School, Work, Death"), an avid following, a run of several decent straight-ahead rock albums, and break-up (with rumors of reunions on and off) came this 12" which collects three of the songs from their 1st and independent release Hit by Hit. First appearing as The Sid Presley Experience in suits and ties (a motif they would adopt for many of their shows) and inspired by the entire continuum of rock (as the name suggests) from the 50's to punk, they had legal issues with continuing to use the name so switched to the less descriptive Godfathers. Often compared with early rockers Dr. Feelgood, I hear, at least in their early stuff, more of a mix of American garage-band Nuggets (they ended up on Rhino's new Children of Nuggets comp) and mod-era UK rock (think early Who - whom the band trashed in interviews as "sellouts").
The b-side song "I'm Not satisfied" is more mod than garage while "I Want Everything," while somewhat slick, is more US garage than Quadrophenia. Later they evolved into an even more conventional rock outfit (albeit with two guitars) favoring straight-ahead anthems, a liberal-working class political bent but still with an awareness of rock, both contemporary and past. After the 1991 Unreal World, they went into Greatest Hits mode but released a wan although above par pub rock album in 1995.
The real surprise is the title cut here -- a cool cover of Aussie eccentric Rolf Harris's tribute to Aboriginal music (written in the 60's, I believe) and later covered by Alice Cooper, here reworked as a tribute to Desmond Tutu who is quoted near the end of the song and on the back of the record -- the quotes apparently were made on the same day the song was recorded.
Peter Coyne - vocals
Chris Coyne - bass, vocal
Kris Dollinmore - guitar, vocal
Mike Gibson - guitar, vocal
George Mazur - drums, vocal, percussion
The band last played in the early 2000s and members Peter Coyne and guitarist Kris Dollimore were last heard playing backup for Rat Scabies (2003) as members of The Germans before he quit music and went to go search for the Holy Grail. Second guitarist Mike Gibson is doing acoustic stuff with his City Farm.
- A Godfathers fan page "Cause I Said So" provides a complete discography and updates on the band members - the sounds page includes a rotating MP3 - the current one being from their last not-so-great album
- Trouser Press Godfathers page
- Rolf Harris's webpage is okay but go directly to his Jukebox to play a flash version of "Sun Arise" (alas, it's a pretty low bit rate recording). Here's an index of covers of "Stairway to Heaven" that includes Harris's version. Harris's Wiki entry
- Mike Gibson's webpage has a sounds page with some nice acoustic songs (Flash format)
- I've wondered if the brothers Coyne & Godfathers were inspirations for Charlie and Liam Pace and their fictional power-rock "one hit wonder" band from the TV show Lost - Driveshaft
Update: late link: Rhino's Children of Nuggets