Mar 232011

Vaccination day?

Patto, “Air-Raid Shelter”

[audio:|titles=Patto, “Air-Raid Shelter”]

Patto was produced by Muff Winwood, former bassist for Spencer Davis Group, Steve’s brother, and later an A&R man overseeing the production of records by The Clash, as I just learned while reading the 8,000,000-page making of London Calling tome Route 19 Revisited. But that’s not even close to all, nor is the fact that Halsey played drums on Lou Reed‘s Transformer! Patto members were cursed by early death by cancer (Patto himself, in 1979), heroin overdose (Halsall, in 1992), and if memory serves some near-death van accident that left Halsey, I believe, in very bad shape. (Patto fans, feel free to set the record straight!)  Following is Halsall with Kevin Ayers and a member of one of our past Mystery Date bands!

That’s a lot, for a band that few of us could identify and that existed for a short time, but believe it or not, that’s not all!

No, following the demise of Patto, the band’s namesake and Halsall would give it one more go in a new band with a “racy” album cover that I bet you never forgot if you ever saw it in its time:


  5 Responses to “Mystery Date Revealed: Patto, Featuring Members of The Rutles and So Many More Connections That Will Surely Delight Those of Us Who Frequent the Halls of Rock!”

  1. BigSteve

    I liked it this afternoon when I first listened to the long song. It seemed like a combination of Hendrixian guitar and Dylanesque lyrics. I knew there was that new boxset of Hendrix playing with other people that I hadn’t heard, but Halsall obviously didn’t get Hendrix’s taste with his influence.

    The piano sounded very Leon Russell, which is why I wanted to guess Benno, but Russell was so influential around this time that I think all piano players wanted to sound like him. He was a big influence on early Bill Payne, and this song has some of Little Feat’s burnout humor. Now that I’ve read more about these guys, the lyrics I thought were Dylanesque seem more like reportage:

    See I’d taken to wearing sandals and I’d given up watching T.V.
    I was rolling up grass in the American flag and I was sick from snorting “C”
    I blew my mind out on a trip one night and I ran all the way back to town
    But the minute I saw the lights in their faces I freaked and turned right around

    Well my skin turned yellow and my eyes sunk back from my diet of boiled brown rice
    I would shuffle past bright warm houses to my groove pad cold as ice
    I’ve been beaten down and busted and I’ve wound up on my own
    And there’s nothing left that buzzes me so I’m returning home

    Nice legwork btw, Mod. You may have left this out because you had so much else to fill us in on, but Halsall played a lot with Kevin Ayers, and he’s on that Cale/Ayers/Eno/Nico album called June 1, 1974.

  2. I like the way you broke this down. Like you, BigSteve, I liked that first, long song, despite Halsall’s lack of taste. I did mention the Ayers connection and posted a clip of Andy Summers jamming with them. I know there’s a lot I crammed in here. I always like the Kevin Ayers stuff I’ve got, yet I’m almost always left wishing he was a notch better, or should I say better defined.

  3. Ayers never seemed to take his solo career very seriously. Every once in a while he’d trot out a collection of his droll little tunes with a seeming blase offhandedness. I enjoy a lot of his work but you’re right in that it appears he never tried very hard.

  4. misterioso

    Mod, a very interesting entry here; so interesting, in fact, that I temporarily forgot how boring the band itself is (based on the songs posted–maybe you’re holding back their killer songs). But then I listened to “The Man” and was reminded. Anyway, good work and very educational.

  5. No, I wish I could say I was holding something fantastic. I get my kicks out of mediocre, artsy blooz music from this period. Coupled with the band’s tremendous back story I couldn’t resist digging deeper.

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