You may recognize the name ROGER SCOTT CRAIG from his many bands, starting his career with the MERSEYBEATS then forming his own band LIVERPOOL EXPRESS in England, soon signed to Warner Brothers Records and having many hit records in Europe with three number one hits in South America in the 70s. Roger moved on to California and joined the LA based band FORTUNE with MCA Records in the 80s, followed by HARLAN CAGE in the 90s and finally his own 'solo' band called 101 SOUTH in 2000.
Apart from his successful bands, Roger has also scored many movies and if you've seen 'The Pelican Brief' or 'Wyatt Earp' or even 'Richie Rich' then you have heard his music. He has written music for Boris Yeltsin's re-election campaign in Russia, performed for Prince Charles at a Royal Gala Performance, and also played in front of 350,000 people at Rock in Rio in 1985. Even Sir Paul McCartney has picked one of Roger's songs as one of his all time favourites and Roger continues to score TV and Radio commercials, with almost 3000 under his belt!
Roger teamed up with the excellent singer Gregory Lynn Hall to record this classic album in 2000. The second 101 SOUTH CD "ROLL OF THE DICE" was to follow in 2002. Fans and assorted magazines liked what they heard confirmed by many rock polls:
1. Journey - Arrival
2. Millenium - Hourglass
3. Two Fires - Two Fires
4. Kharma - Wonderland
5. Street Talk - Transition
6. 101 South - 101 South
So if you like great melodies tied in with ethereal keyboard arrangements and killer vocals then check out the 101 South S/T CD.
Read review below:
101 South is basically Roger Scott Craig's solo project who must be known to some of you as the keyboard player of Harlan Cage. This album is probably more Harlan Cage than the original, although it's not L.A. Greene singing but Gregory Lynn Hall, a previously unknown singer who delivers an outstanding performance all through the album. His vocals can be compared to David Coverdale's more polished songs. The vocal harmonies must have been written by Roger Scott Craig too, since there are parts that build from exactly the same patterns as used in Harlan Cage. However there's one big difference that I was glad to recognize. Harlan Cage was a bit too melancholic for me but 101 South songs have a lot more diverse arrangement, and wonderful keyboard sounds all through the album. Add a bombastic drum and guitar sound, great choirs and a very balanced mix to that and you get what an up-to-date AOR album has to sound like. 101 South could be used as compulsory literature in a sound engineering school.
Harlan Cage fans will love "Run Like A Tiger", "The Wrong Road", "Nowhere to Run", or "So Cold", they all sound as if taken out of "Forbidden Colors". However my personal favorites are the opening "Freeway Ride", a positive sounding uptempo rocker with awesome guitar riffs and one of the songs that fit into the "road/driving/freedom concept" suggested by the name of the band, and "She Walks On Water", a haunting ballad with electric piano and string synth pad arrangement, a wonderful, tasty guitar solo, and an extraordinary vocal performance with lots of feel.
AND another review:
This an excellent example of what a rock album could sound like. Note the word “could”. â€˜Cause I’m not saying all rock albums should be like this. But once in a while this is quite refreshing. It really stands out because or some of it’s original aspects. Singer Gregory Lynn Hall is one of these aspects. With his very characteristic voice he is the kind of singer you’d pick out of a thousand. This, as opposed to being a good thing to me personally, could well turn away some listeners, cause if you don’t like it you’ll probably hate the album. Gregory Lynn Hall manages to be very profoundly “there” across the album, demanding a lot of attention. Somehow the listeners attention (read: mine) is drawn to the vocals and away from the other fine musicians. Another aspect is the material performed on the album. With kind of a theatrical pompous touch to the songs it’s sometimes as if you’re listening to a musical or rock opera instead of individual tracks.
Michael Turner (guitars) and Roger Scott Craig (keyboards) complete the band line-up. Guest musicians fill up the missing bass and drum slots and add more guitars to the album. Of these people Roger Scott Craig deserves some special attention. This Irish native has done lots of different things in the past (bands: Liverpool Express, Fortune, Harlan Cage) but what I noticed in particular is his work for television and movies. This can be heard in at least half of the 12 songs offered on the album. Most tracks build up to a climax (some even more than once) which gives the listener the sensation of being part of something. Songs like “Boat Out On The Water” for example, or “She walks On Water”. (It’s hard to explain. If you want to know what I mean just check it out for yourself).
Roger Scott Craig is the driving force behind this band. Besides playing keyboards and doing background vocals, he wrote all of the material, mixed the album and produced it as well. HIGHLY RATED!
Fresh breezy and exciting, 101 SOUTH features the hugely inspirational talents of LIVERPOOL EXPRESS, FORTUNE and HARLAN CAGE mainman Roger Scott Craig. On this project Craig has teamed up with Gregory Lynn Hall. Greg used to front a band called "Rat Sally" and is a much sought after session musician. Also joining the project are BILLY LIESEGANG , Chris Julian and Hans Geiger.
The album has been lovingly produced by Craig, with the standout tracks coming at you in the shape of "Run Like A Tiger", "Your Razor Is Sharp", "Boat Out On The Water", and the incrediable "We Took The Wrong Road" which bares similarities to HARLAN CAGE. This song at first sounded as if it was going to be a ballad, but then the song explodes into huge keyboard/guitar driven aor that easily ranks along side bands like SURGIN, 8084, SKAGARACK, ARTICA, METROPOLIS, FREELANCE, FERGIE FREDERIKSEN etc.. Greg sings with amazing passion on this song and could very well become the most talked about singer of the year.
Every song he touches on 101 SOUTH is sung with an unbelievable amount of power and emotion, if AOR is truly dead, then 101 SOUTH are certain to become the band guilty of bringing it back to the frontrow, and they will, it has that potential to leap into larger territories, it may take a while but the album is gonna catch on and become a world wide classic, at least I hope it does.
"Boat Out On The Water", is simply delicious, everything is note perfect and that is the key with IOI SOUTH, each song is unique and magnificently played by all the musicians, it's one of those albums that will be used by writers as a reference point for years to come.
The music is pure keyboard/guitar driven aor and melodic hard rock, like "Live For The Moment", the magnificent "Nobody Moves A Mountain" which is like ROBERT TEPPER, the gorgeous and creamy "You're So Cold", the powerful "Casualty Of Love" whch is very much like SKAGARACK and the ballad "She Walks On Water" which suprisngly is like a mix of PHIL VINCENT, RICHARD MARX, MARK SPIRO. and JOURNEY, a huge ballad to die for. This album has it all, treasure it as 101 SOUTH is a timeless collection of pure aor and hard rock.
Rating: 10 (Review by Nicky Baldrian)
COMMENTS FROM FANS:
From: Jez Date: December 14, 2001 at 3:03 Translate: to Spanish | to English
I Love this CD as well, especially the opening track and the excellent ballad Boat Out On The Water. Great A.O.R, Great songs.
From: freddy de keyze Date: October 17, 2002 at 3:14 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Fantastic new band, fantastic CD. And their second is even better. Nuff Said ! Class stuff !!!!!!!!!
From: P@trik Date: November 4, 2002 at 6:15 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Wow,sounds like Hardline, a little bit of Stage Dolls. Great vocals and songs. If you like AOR, this is highly recommended!
From: ARXONTAS Date: January 7, 2003 at 16:26 Translate: to Spanish | to English
If some of you until yesterday thought that Bad English was the best AOR band ever....damn....you must hear them ...When your soul need to rest this CD will lead you to worlds beyond your sacred fantasies...101 SOUTH, Absolutely No Alternative
From: Thanos Date: February 1, 2003 at 4:58 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Excellent work from Roger Scott Craig. This guy is surely a magician!!! This CD has many outstanding songs such as 'Run Like A Tiger' & 'Nobody Moves A Mountain'. A must for the fans of melodic rock/AOR music!!!
From: Hrudet Date: June 30, 2003 at 20:52 Translate: to Spanish | to English
This album is a must have for any Harlan Cage fan. It's passionate, moody and filled with great harmonies and plenty of big pompous AOR.
From: tomcat Date: October 8, 2003 at 5:33 Translate: to Spanish | to English
i remember hearing a song from this band called 'Made up my mind' and i was blown away about the quality of this tune..but on what album is it? Long live AOR!
From: Rycheage Date: February 23, 2004 at 0:03 Translate: to Spanish | to English
This is Melodic Hard Rock at its best, if you are a FORTUNE / HARLAN CAGE fan you'll enjoy this band as well! As you can tell by the cast of musicians listed, this band definitely ROCKS!
From: Rocker76 Date: March 11, 2004 at 17:46 Translate: to Spanish | to English
This is awesome AOR thru & thru - good keyboards, good vocals, big fat choruses, etc. Fans of Journey, Foreigner, Asia, or Survivor should approve.
From: rocketron Date: March 17, 2004 at 11:08 Translate: to Spanish | to English
I think this is even better than the follow-up. Absolutely BRILLIANT !!
From: Melodiker Date: May 15, 2004 at 13:41 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Brilliant CD !!! Brilliant Band !!! An Masterpiece of AOR ! 9,5 10 Check it !
From: Hard Rocker Date: June 29, 2004 at 22:31 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Tomcat... It's hard to tell which album is the best between this one and 'Roll Of The Dice'. Both are excellent pieces of melodic rock music!!!! Enjoy good music dudes!!!!
From: Kip Date: August 30, 2004 at 23:54 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Typically I don't buy much into music like this. I need it to rock hard and long at least half the time. But something about this band has me hooked. This CD is a little like Bon Jovi's debut. The clean AOR sounds, the high energy, and the focus given to each song's growth is wonderful. Highlights here include 'Boat Out On The Water', 'We Took The Wrong Road', 'Your Razor Is Sharp', and the best was saved for last with 'Live For The Moment'. I can't wait to hear more from these guys.
From: Max Date: October 15, 2004 at 18:04 Translate: to Spanish | to English
This is a fantastic album. I hadn't noticed though that the train's 'face' is an indian face. Funny I just noticed that.
From: ThomasCoastline Date: October 16, 2004 at 8:19 Translate: to Spanish | to English
I just have to say what a great album this is! Classic AOR that stands the test of time very well. The song 'You're So Cold' is just brilliant, all the trademarks of good songwriting are there and it reeks of class. A must have in every self respecting AOR fans collection.
From: Chad Date: December 25, 2004 at 23:30 Translate: to Spanish | to English
This is a very good album. Lots of soaring vocals and superb musicianship. Not sure that I can describe this music, but I know what I like and I like this album. Check it out for yourself. AOR at its finest.
From: Erik Date: February 7, 2005 at 3:37 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Freeway Ride is an absolute masterpiece of a song. One of my all time favorites.
From: jos1 Date: February 25, 2005 at 14:23 Translate: to Spanish | to English
The master of AOR is Roger!! All his productions are over the top!! Fortune - Harlan Cage & 101 South are the AOR CD's every AOR fan must have. Unfortunately too many free downloading mp3 are killing the music & Roger won't produce any more CDs. So bad! 101 South & Roll of the dice are KILLER CD'S! Mega thanks for the dreams you bring to us.
From: AOR freaky Date: February 26, 2005 at 4:17 Translate: to Spanish | to English
I really couldn't have said it better, jos1 ! PHENOMENAL talent, our Mr. Roger Scott Craig ! Please come back, Roger ! The AOR/pomp world and fans need you ! And indeed, people : STOP DOWNLOADING ! It's KILLING MUSIC ! Within a few years not one single artist or band will have the courage to spend time and money on music, cause it's for free ! Musicians deserve to be paid for their hard work and creativity ! Support the acts and bands and artists you like by BUYING their stuff !!!!!!!!
From: Rafo Phoenix Date: April 30, 2005 at 20:06 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Good AOR release, para el 2000 sin duda un buen album, Freeway Ride, Run Like a Tiger quiza muchos momentos lentos pero despues de todo esta bueno el album, mucha melodia.
From: AOR freaky Date: September 8, 2005 at 5:16 Translate: to Spanish | to English
Fantastic AOR from start to finish ! TOP AOR, just like the mighty Harlan Cage and the all-time classic Fortune ! RECOMMENDED !
From: Kip Date: September 15, 2005 at 14:47 Translate: to Spanish | to English
When I first heard this one I wasn't too impressed but this may be the biggest grower I've come across. I like it more with each new spin. The songwriting is consistent and fresh. They don't rock hard enough for some, but I'll say they sure have moments, particularly in 'We Took The Wrong Road' and 'Live For The Moment'. The vocals, keyboards and lyrics are this album's strong points and I prefer this to Roll of the Dice. Highlights here are tracks 12, 3, 6, 4, 8 and 1 in that order.