How It came about:
It’s lovely for me to have been a part of putting together the Here Today collection for Ace Records. I know that Harvey has really enjoyed it as well. My own connections with Ace go way back to the very early seventies when I first met Ted Carroll at his Golborne Road record stall, from which I managed to get several rare goodies at the time. I had continued contact for a variety of reasons through his soho Market Stall and then the Camden Town shop where hardcore BB/BW fan Barry Appleby worked for a while. Luckily for me I have often got to review Ace releases for various mags over the years, and have done quite a bit of ‘behind the scenes’ writing for them especially for their fabbo website.
I have known Harvey for very many years through the BB Conventions, but I met Mick Patrick many years ago, as a fellow girl group fan. Many will know that Mick is one of the world’s real girl group experts with very extensive and deep knowledge. Our contact has been good over the years and has taken in the great Bob Lind gig a couple of years ago at The Slaughtered Lamb, and tea with the lovely Jackie deShannon at the Wallace Collection. But first and foremost it has always been about the music and records. Mick, who now works at Ace, suggested the Here Today project about two years ago and Harvey and I met with him to discuss possible tracks. The original listing had several tracks that proved impossible to licence, which is one of the main bugbears with a Various Artists comp like this. We tried really hard with several of them, with one major company trying to insist that a particular track had never been issued. This despite our sending label scans that proved otherwise! The tracks gradually came together, with Darian’s being a late but wonderful addition. He came on board really fast, much to our delight. It did help that between the three of us we did know many of the artists involved – always a plus!
Mick did the ordering – a tricky job given the range of the music – and i think he has done an A+ job on it. The booklet is also fabulous – everything you would expect fron Ace. It was designed by Neil Dell at 9thplanet Design, who also did my old Ripples series of CDs, so I know well how good he is at this sort of thing. The whole project has been lovely to be part of: I was pleasently surprised about how good certain tracks came over in this context. It sounds great, looks great…and i hope that everyone will appreciate the love that has gone into it. There is some early talk about possible other projects, so fingers crossed, watch this space…