Joe Cocker - Mad Dogs & Englishmen (1970)

Joe Cocker is a British singer who first came to popularity in the late 60s.

1969 had been a busy and successful year for Joe Cocker, with two massively successful albums, a US tour, a memorable performance at the Woodstock festival, and numerous TV show appearances. However at the end of the year he was unwilling to tour the US again, and dissolved his backing group, The Grease Band.
Nevertheless, a US Tour was already booked, and he had to put together a new band to fulfill his contractual obligations. He turned to his friend Leon Russell, who had worked with him on his second album (and written his #10 hit "Delta Lady"), and had recently finished work on his own solo debut album. Russell put together a massive twenty-piece band to back him, featuring many of the musicians he had worked with through his Delaney & Bonnie and Friends experience. The band consisted of Russell himself (piano/guitar), Chris Stainton (organ/piano), Don Preston (guitar), Bobby Keys (sax), Jim Price (trumpet), Carl Radle (bass), Jim Gordon (drums), Jim Keltner (drums), Chuck Blackwell (drums), Sandy Konikoff (percussion), and a full choir of backing vocalists (including Rita Coolidge). Calling the group Mad Dogs & Englishmen, he went on tour across 48 US cities to great acclaim.
Recordings from the tour were put together into a double live album, which was released in August 1970 and got to #2. It showcased the group's big, bluesy, soul-rock sound, with plenty of diverse covers including The Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women", Arthur Hamilton's "Cry Me A River", Dave Mason's "Feelin' Alright", Otis Redding's "I've Been Loving You Too Long", The Box Tops' "The Letter", and several Ray Charles numbers. Bandleader Leon Russell was also given a chance to shine, most notably on Bob Dylan's "Girl From The North Country", which he sang as a duet with Cocker accompanied just by the piano. Rita Coolidge also got a solo spot, singing "Superstar" (written by Russell and Bonnie Bramlett). "The Letter" was released a single and became Cocker's first US Top 10 hit at #7.
Unsurprisingly the tour was an exhausting affair, and by its end Cocker had become depressed and was drinking heavily. After it ended, Cocker spent a few months in L.A. before returning home to England, where he lay low for over a year.

Joe Cocker! (1969) <|> Joe Cocker (1972)
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1 comment:

Linda said...

For Immediate Release
December 3, 2015

The Joe Cocker Mad Dogs & Englishmen
Memory Book
by Linda Wolf

Go back in time and remember through over 150 never before seen photos from the archives of internationally recognized photographer, Linda Wolf. Get into the personal stories and memories of the legendary musicians in this book, through intimate photos and quotes with the alumni, Joe Cocker, Leon Russell, Rita Coolidge, Claudia Lennear, Chris Stainton,Bobby Jones, Bobby Torres, Bobby Keys, Pamela Polland, Daniel & Matthew Moore, Jim Keltner, Jim Price, Sandy Konikoff, the band, singers, girlfriends, wives, children, and furry friends.

Bainbridge Island, WA.
Just released: The Joe Cocker Mad Dogs & Englishmen Memory Book by official photographer, Linda Wolf. JCMD&E is considered one of the top 10 all-time rock n’roll tours. Linda traveled with the band from the first rehearsals at A&M Studio’s soundstage in April, 1970 through the summer after the Tour ended. She amassed over 4,000 B&W 35mm negatives, which have never been published. This book is a labor of love, created specifically for the 2015 Lockn' Festival’s exclusive tribute concert to Joe Cocker and Mad Dogs & Englishmen, hosted and curated by Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi and featuring the Tedeschi Trucks Band, Leon Russell, members of the famed original Tour, and special guests. The tribute/reunion concert took place on September 11, 2015, in Arrington, Virginia. The JCMD&E Memory Book contains 64 pages, is softbound, 8.5 x 11, 4-color B&W, and is for sale on Linda’s website.

To Contact Linda Wolf: Email:
To order the JCMD&E Memory Book: (merch)

Encomiums for the Book:
“Linda Wolf looks in places the rest of us miss. Her work is like the spaces between the letters, between the words, that give a sentence it’s meaning. The photos she took of this historic tour in 1970 makes me long for a rawness and spontaneity that seems missing from the overly commoditized music industry of today. ”— Peter Himmelman, Big Muse Media

“It’s not just that her photos are iconic. They are so real. Linda Wolf has a way of capturing the essence of the Center of a moment. What else is there to do? You are There. Here. I love stepping into her frame ... there is nothing else. So simple, she makes it look easy. Thank you Linda, from us all.” — June Millington, Fanny

"Linda Wolf's photographs wondrously captured the zeitgeist of Joe Cocker, Mad Dog's & Englishmen. She captured a pivotal time and space of one of the most influential rock and roll singers and bands of all time. It's an extraordinary insiders perspective." – Doyle Bramhall II

For more information about the original 1970 Tour, album and documentary movie:
For Linda’s bio:
For more information about the 2015 Tribute Concert:
To request photo files for PR: