--- Rock ‘n roll --- the big beat. The music of the nifty fifties. It’s the music of youth --- your youth. The age of innocence, of simpler times, of simpler sounds. Of black-pointed shoes, and iridescent socks, of rolled-up jeans and strapless dresses in crinoline. Bright red lipstick and pony tails --- greasy hair tonic and duck tails, spin the bottle while the grown-ups weren’t watching --- in other words, FUN.
It was only last night, wasn’t it; we were all a day less-sophisticated, less cynical, less likely to force feed our fantasies. Nostalgia --- remembering the fun without recalling the pain.
If you were a teenager then, we know that this record will recapture those magical years. If you are a teenager now, forget today’s hassles and imagine you are back in those happy, uncomplicated times.
Lead and Rhythm Guitar --- Freddy (Feelgood) Asmanas, Bass ---Rick (The Trick) Pointon, Drums ---Bruce (Supermac) McIntyre, Rhythm Guitar --- Phil (The Singing Butcher) Jones, Reeds --- Brian (Smiling Eddie) Edwards, Piano --- John A. Benny, Lead Vocals --- Rick The Trick and The Singing Butcher, Backing Vocals --- They just happened. Brass arrangements on Let The Good Times Roll, Boogie Man Boogie and Alright by John battersby, Reeds on Love Potion No. 9 and We Put The Bomp --- Graham Lamond.
All songs for this album were initially selected by The Jets and then rejected outright by their producer --- David Gibson, who persuaded The Jets to record a some-what different selection.
Benny and The Jets would like to thank Don and Lesley Graham of the Star Hotel, Newcastle, Copperfield for their tremendous patience and terrible coffee over the past few months and the manufacturers of Brylcream who allowed the use of their Brylcream commercial on this album.
Benny and The Jets travel by F.J.Holden and stay at a friend’s place. All clothes supplied by St Vincent De Paul and their hair styles by Brylcream.
Benny and The Jets are managed hopelessly by themselves.
NOTES SUPPLIED BY RICK POINTON
In 2009 Australia has more Rock’n’Roll Revival bands than The Everly Brothers had Reunion Concerts or Jerry Lee had wives – but in 1974 there was only one – BENNY & THE JETS.
BENNY & THE JETS made Newcastle’s Star Hotel famous long before the infamous Star Hotel riot in 1979 (but that’s another story). The very same Star Hotel that Cold Chisel sang about on their “East” album. The Jets say that if you can remember The Star – then you weren’t really there !!
They mainly played around Newcastle, The New South Wales Central Coast and Hunter Valley, but were very popular in Sydney at Uni shows and countless pub gigs. They even headlined at the legendary Bondi Lifesaver and one night their support was Dragon (but that’s another story).
They packed out venues 3-4 hours before showtime and around Newcastle it was common to have the police called to clear punters from neighbouring streets. They performed on Mike Walsh’s “Midday Show” and Donnie Sutherland’s “Sound Unlimited” and the ABC sent Bernie Cannon and a crew to film a GTK program with the band at The Star. (where is that footage ??)
They get a goodly mention in Johnny O”Keefe’s biography by John Bryden-Brown and Chris Spencer’s “Who’s Who Of Australian Rock”
From 1974 (apart from a well needed rest in the 80’s) BENNY & THE JETS rock’n’rolled all the way into the new millennium – only calling it a day in late 2006. (but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them back on stage one day).
They shared the stage with the cream of Australia’s bands of the era – including Sherbet, Hush, Dragon, Stylus, Billy Thorpe, Keystone Angels, Tommy Emmanuel, Ian Moss– even the legendary Radio Birdman (can you imagine Benny & The Jets and Radio Birdman going at it set for set at a uni gig…..but that’s another story !!)
This album features:-
Rick Pointon – lead vocals, electric bass, backing vocals
Bruce McIntyre – drums
Phil Jones – lead vocals, rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Fred Asmanas – lead guitar, rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Brian Edwards – reeds
With Graham Lamond - reeds on “Love Potion No.9” and “We Put The Bomp”
John Bird – Piano
John Battersby – Brass arrangements on “Let The Good Times Roll”, “Boogie Man Boogie”, “Alright”.
As you can imagine, over a 32 year career (along with Rick and Bruce as the constants), some excellent musos donned the leather jacket and motor cycle boots – Dennis Bourke, Greg Carter, Bill Watson, John Gilchrist, Wayne Holstein, Dennis Butler, Steve Cobourn, Ian Lines, Peter Harrison.
*On its day of release their LP “Hey Rock And Roll” shipped more copies than any previous Oz album on the day of release.
BENNY & THE JETS actually kept ABBA from the No.1 position in Newcastle – probably the only market that this would have happened.
The vinyl release has become very collectable and after many requests, Copperfield Records have re-mastered the album and it certainly sounds great – so here it is – and not before time !!
The cover was the subject of a massive art competition – what a brilliant marketing idea.
There were hundreds of entries covering most of one floor at the then “Newcastle Store” in Hunter Street West. The winner was an 18 year, old high school student Gregory Ryan, who went on to work with different Jets in the RAAF.
NOSTALGIA - remembering the fun without recalling the pain – Yes, this album IS fun – I remember !!