Links To Peel
Peel was a fan of the group from the time he first heard them, while working in the USA. On KMEN in San Bernardino during 1966, he frequently played their material, especially "The Nazz Are Blue", the US B-side of "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago", which he claimed had reached a high position in what he called his "fraudulent British chart" due to repeated plays on his shows for the station. His high regard for the Yardbirds is clear from the articles he wrote for the station's newspaper, the Kmentertainer, on lead singer Keith Relf and guitarist Jeff Beck - both of them singled out as "Kmentertainer of the Week". The Yardbirds were a major influence on the band Peel discovered and encouraged during his time in California, The Misunderstood.
He also particularly valued the album Five Live Yardbirds - on his Yardbirds retrospective 19 August 1976 show he remarked:
- "I still reckon that’s one of the great LPs of all time, and I’m still tempted to say that’s Eric Clapton’s best recorded work, but I’m sure not many people would agree with that."
On the same show, Peel also mentioned:
- "And most Yardbirds buffs regard Jeff’s greatest work – in fact, the best guitar solo on any Yardbirds record, I’ve heard it said – being his contribution to ‘You’re A Better Man Than I’"
The Yardbirds only did one session for Top Gear, in 1968, when they were on the verge of breaking up - as Ken Garner points out in The Peel Sessions, the band had previously recorded many sessions for BBC radio, starting in 1964.. Yet throughout the decades Peel would often play tracks from the Yardbirds and kept their single "Happenings Ten Years Time Ago" in his special John Peel's Record Box. There were plenty of subsequent sessions and show plays of bands who included ex-members of the Yardbirds - Eric Clapton (Cream, Blind Faith, Derek and the Dominoes and as a solo artist), Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin), Jeff Beck (the Jeff Beck Group, Beck, Bogert and Appice) and Keith Relf, who did a single Top Gear session with Renaissance in 1969 before leaving the band; later he produced some of Medicine Head's records.
- One session only. Recorded 1968-03-06. First TX 10 March 1968, repeated 14 April 1968. All except 'Goodnight Sweet Josephine' available on Glimpses 1963-1968 5xCD, 2011 (Easy Action Recordings Ltd. EARS036), and Various Artists: Radio Tymes: British Pop On TV and Radio Lost And Found, 1967 – 1969 CD, 2011 (Top Sounds Records TSSCD 006).
1. Think About It/Goodnight Sweet Josephine/White Summer/Dazed And Confused
Shows Played(The list is incomplete. Please add further information if known)
- 18 July 1967: The Nazz Are Blue (LP - The Yardbirds/AKA Roger The Engineer) UK Columbia
- 04 October 1969: Louise (LP - Five Live Yardbirds) Columbia
- 14 January 1972: Psycho Daisies (single - Happenings Ten Years Ago b-side) EMI/Columbia
- 14 January 1972: You’re A Better Man Than I Am (LP – Having A Rave Up With…) Epic
- 11 February 1972: Jeff’s Boogie (b-side of single 'Over, Under, Sideways, Down') Columbia
- 28 April 1972: Louise (LP – Five Live Yardbirds) EMI Columbia
- 16 June 1972: The Train Kept A Rolling (LP - ) unknown release
- 24 April 1973: Happenings Ten Years Time Ago (LP - ) unknown release
- 08 May 1973: Psycho Daisies (single – Happenings Ten Years Ago, 1966) Columbia
- 12 June 1973: Good Morning Little Schoolgirl (LP: Spotlight On...) Charley
- 26 June 1973: The Train Kept A-Rollin' (LP: Having A Rave Up With The Yardbirds) Epic
- 03 February 1976: 3 tracks from Yardbirds featuring Eric Clapton.
- 04 February 1976: Tracks from Yardbirds featuring Jeff Beck
- 16 August 1976: 'Louise (LP-Five Live Yardbirds)' (EMI Columbia) (JP: 'If I ever find myself in a group of people discussing Eric's greatest recorded work, I usually advance that, actually, mainly because I like to annoy people by doing that sort of thing, but I do think it is excellent.')
- 19 August 1976: Many songs
- Retrospective Shows August 1976: Many songs
- 21 June 1979: 'Happenings Ten Times Years Ago (7")' (Columbia)
- 14 August 1979: Louise (LP - Five Live Yardbirds, 1964) Charly reissue
- 15 August 1979: Too Much Monkey Business (LP - Five Live Yardbirds) Charly reissue
- 20 August 1979: Pretty Girl (LP – Five Live Yardbirds) Charly reissue
- 04 February 1980: The Nazz Are Blue (LP - The Yardbirds) Columbia
- 11 November 1985: Psycho Daises (LP - Roger The Engineer) Edsel
- August 1987 (Rockradio): The Nazz Are Blue (album - The Yardbirds (Roger The Engineer)) Columbia
- 24 December 1989 (BBC Radio East Anglia): 'Steeled Blues (7 inch-B side of Heart Full Of Soul)' (Columbia)
- 16 July 1994: ‘Louise (LP - Five Live Yardbirds )’ Columbia
- 23 July 1994 (BFBS): Louise (album - Five Live Yardbirds) EMI Columbia
- 26 May 1996: ‘The Nazz Are Blue (LP – Roger The Engineer )’ EMI
- 23 February 1999: A Certain Girl (LP - For Your Love) Repertoire
- 10 January 2001: The Nazz Are Blue (LP: The Yardbirds) Columbia
- 10 October 2001: Psycho Daisies (7" b-side of 'Happenings Ten Years Time Ago') Columbia
- 18 September 2002: 'The Nazz are Blue (LP - Roger the Engineer)' (Edsel Records)
- 09 January 2003: 'Louise (LP: Five Live Yardbirds)' (Columbia)
- 17 April 2003: 'Over, Under, Sideways, Down (LP: The Yardbirds)' (Columbia)
- 03 August 2004: 'Happenings Ten Years Time Ago (7") - (Columbia)
- Radio Luxembourg Tracklistings 4: Smokestack Lightning (LP - Having A Rave Up With The Yardbirds) Epic
- Radio Luxembourg Tracklistings 6: Unknown
- Peeling Back The Years 2 (Transcript): The Nazz Are Blue
- Radio Radio: The Nazz Are Blue