Wednesday, January 27, 2010

PAUL GAFFEY - Mephistopheles (1975)

An symphonic album from '75 that are a concept album . Dark, haunting and tasteful, filled with mellotrons, acoustic / electric guitars, painful and majestic musical songs.

*Paul Gaffey/vocal
*Stan Wilson/organ, piano
*Peter Harris/mellotron
*Doug Gallagher/drums, conga
*John Young/bass
*Mark Punch/acoustic guitar, electric guitar
*Jim Kelly/acoustic guitar
*Simon Heath/moog
*Tony Buchanan/sax
*Don Wright/sax

*The Singers Of David/choir

So Sad
Dreamer of Dreams
Dear People

see the comments for words from Paul Gaffey and Simon Heath


skids said...

Paul Gaffey said...

Hi Skids!
This is the PAUL GAFFEY. Thanks for the great wrap! Just setting a few things straight, however:
1. Simon Heath took all writing credits on the album-cover, where they should have been shard with me. I sued and won, but the damage had been done. Last I heard from Wyn, the engineer, in 1979 there was a contract out on Simon.
2. Stan Wilson played moog, Simon did not. Simon conceptualised some things and left it to Stan and me to arrange and perform the entire album.
3. I wrote 'So Sad' and 'Paradise' and played piano on 'Paradise', both in recording and on stage.
But yes, all in all, it was a brilliant album, light-years before its time.
Warm Regards......PAUL GAFFEY
August 26, 2007 8:32 PM
Paul Gaffey said...

I wasn't so much wanting to change your review, just setting the record straight for your interest. There were so many people hurt by Simon Heath....Stan, Wyn Wynyard, The Singers of David, me....that his actions caused the all-too-early demise of the album. Simon had no knowledge of composition and/or arranging....Stan and I did. He couldn't play piano if his life depended on it.
But, he took the album's both our the international music fair in Midem, France, scrubbed my name off it by means of a xerox machine, then sold the sole performing rights to Lou Reisner, the US-producer of Tommy. Reisner promptly buried it in favour of Tommy. These were the days before APRA. Simon was not too affectionately dubbed Hustler Heath!
But it did remain on JJJ's top ten album list for over a year. The entire episode caused me to leave Australia at the height of a promising rock-music career as composer/musician/performer. I lived and worked in Asia for 20 years.
It's great to know that the album developed something of a cult following in my absence. I'm 60YO now and still make a living as a writer....but I'm over the music thing. You can catch my musings on

skids said...

The only other thing I'd like is to own a CD copy of MEPHISTOPHELES. Do you have any for sale?

Warm regards,
PAUL (or Jack as I'm now known.)
August 30, 2007 7:54 PM
Simon Heath said...

Hello Skids,
I’m writing to let you know that the comments by Paul Gaffey currently displayed on your blog pertaining to the Mephistopheles album should be removed since they contain some seriously false statements.
The album of songs, music and lyrics were written by me. The music was wonderfully orchestrated by Stan Wilson. APRA did indeed exist in those far off days and there never was any lawsuit by Paul Gaffey, or anyone else, to challenge the fact that I wrote the entire work. I simply did not orchestrate it.
I had written the album with the fabulous Maureen Elkner in mind, after writing and producing some singles for her at Festival. When it came time to record Maureen, unfortunately she had serious vocal problems and we had to find someone else. I had just written and produced a single for Paul entitled The Band Played Oom Pah Pah Pah so we asked him to come in and try out.
Paul sang the vocals on the LP, Stan Wilson played piano and orchestrated the recordings, including Paradise.
When the US movie studio MGM purchased the rights to the album in 1976, via Lou Reizner post his Tommy producing period, the intent was to transform it into a rock opera and they requested that Festival stop selling the LP. The MGM plans faultered when Lou died suddenly from stomach cancer. However, as some are aware, this was not before he included both the Paradise and Mephistopheles tracks on an album he produced with the London Symphony Orchestra for Ronnie Charles.

The likes of MGM and Lou Reizner and their legal staff did not purchase the rights to projects if those rights were in dispute.

I’m aware, from his blog, that Paul has had his share of difficulties over the decades since he sang on the Mephistopheles album but the fact is the music and lyrics were written by me. He did a terrific job with the vocals and we all worked hard to try to create something worthwhile. It’s a shame he feels the need to make claims that simply go against the facts.
All the best,
Simon Heath

Jaiia Earthschild said...

I was once Judith Downs - changed my name 25 years ago.
Looked for you often.
Realised this is you because you mentioned Singers of David
I live on Maui - can find me on Facebook
Maui Mystery School
would love to reconnect

Jaiia (25 years that name!)