|Approved History of Hawkwind Part 1 - 1967-75
This, the longest set of sleevenotes ever, was written by Brian Tawn in May 1986 to accompany the
Samurai Records issue of the Hawkwind Anthology albums. I've chopped it into 2 parts
The Hawkwind attitude has always been one of doing what they wanted, in the way they wanted to do it and
at the time of their choosing. Hawkwind has never bowed to the media, never done what was expected of the
band, never leaned to convention. Hawkwind believe in freedom of mind and movement: make your own
decisions and act upon them according to your wishes. The Hawkwind Anthology reflects that ideal.
Normally, an anthology collection would be a 'greatest hits' collection and most bands would stick to that safe
format. Ergo, one might expect the Hawkwind set to consist of 'Silver Machine' plus the most popular couple
of tracks from each studio album and maybe one previously unreleased track to draw in the fans who already
have the other albums. Naturally, the Hawkwind Anthology isn't that.
The constant factor and driving force behind Hawkwind has always been Dave Brock. Musicians come and
musicians go, each adding their own contribution to the sounds and directions of the band, but Dave Brock
remains the one person to be involved with the band at all times and it is from his collection of tapes that this
boxed set has been drawn.
Dave Brock selected the songs to be found here, tracing the history of the band from its pre-Hawkwind
origins through to 1982 and presenting an alternative history to the kind which would have been shown by a
'greatest hits' offering. Just as they did on the Isle of Wight in 1970, Hawkwind have again opted to play
'outside the fence'. This is a history of Hawkwind, covering the highlights and turning points which Dave
Brock recalls as being the most important. Thus, we skip the musically good but non-Hawkwind style of the
Astounding Sounds period while featuring a part of the Watchfield Free Festival tapes, where four members
of the band went straight from a paying gig to play a free show a few miles away. On the Friday night they
headlined at Reading Festival and earned their keep: on the Saturday they played for fun at Watchfield and it is
this gig which Brock considers to be of greater import. Given this viewpoint, it is hardly surprising that when
the 1985 Stonehenge Free Festival was banned Hawkwind still gave a free show a few miles away, at
Westbury, despite having no pay and no lightshow.
Here, then, is the alternative history of Hawkwind: an audio diary of a group of anarchists, free spirits, people
who did - and still do - follow their own path.
Brian Tawn, Hawkwind Feedback March 1986
The Famous Cure: Dealing With The Devil (1967)
Dave Brock - vocals, slide guitar
John Illingworth - acoustic guitar
Pete Judd - harmonica
Rob Hoeker (guest) - piano
A. N. Other (guest) - drums
Since Dave Brock has always been the principal source of energy and direction behind Hawkwind, logic
dictates that our story should begin with his pre-Hawkwind career. After all, it is this chain of events which
led to the formation of the band and to the direction it was to take.
If Dave Brock had never taken up the banjo and played in jazz bands around 1959/1960, Hawkwind may
never have come to be. Fortunately, he did that thing and spent five months playing banjo with a band called
The Gravnier Street Stompers, playing New Orleans jazz. On one occasion, he played banjo with Ken
Collyer's Jazz Band, one of the top bands of the time. Those early days of playing jazz must have planted the
seeds of the free-form music jams which Dave was to encourage in Hawkwind a decade later.
Dave soon switched to guitar and took up busking and playing solo spots in jazz, folk and blues clubs, filling
in between the main acts. When not playing, he was regularly at the clubs with friends, often at Ken Collyer's
Jazz Club or at Eel Pie Island Jazz Club. He also loved to play different kinds of guitars and to experiment with
his own guitars, always in search of interesting sounds. Jeff Watson, a regular companion of Dave's in those
"Dave had a Michigan guitar.... that is a Spanish style with a steel resonator in its belly. He also had a
twelve-string on which he used to use a top banjo string on the second pair of strings. He taught me a very
good way of clawhammer picking, using thumb and first finger instead of thumb and first three fingers."
So Dave Brock was already interested in experimenting with sounds and this Anthology Collection will show
that such an interest has not waned over the years by any means.
Then there is the question of his attitude to the World. In the sixties, he could be found at various
demonstrations and Easter would find him on the Aldermaston March, the principal CND demonstration of the
time. This outlook persists too. He still supports CND and is as likely to lead a demonstration as follow one....
such as playing the alternate Stonehenge event at Westbury in 1985.
In 1964 Dave Brock and Luke Francis began playing as a duo, later to be joined by Mike King and, in time, to
be known as The Dharma Blues Band. They played gigs and recorded some songs, two of which were used
on blues compilations during that period and have also been issued on blues compilations during the eighties.
These songs were Roll 'em Pete and the better known Dealing With The Devil (Blues was known as 'The
Devil's Music'). If you should happen across one of these albums you'll certainly find on it another of Dave
Brock's friends, with whom he spent a lot of time in the sixties, Eric Clapton. In fact their regular
companionship led to a Famous Cure information sheet incorrectly claiming Dave Brock to have once been in
This line-up of The Dharma Blues Band released no records by themselves, though in 1967 Mike King, John
Hillary and Gary Compton released an album called Dharma Blues (Major Minor SMCP 5017). Whether or not
this could be called a Dharma Blues Band album is a matter of opinion since neither of the two founder
members were involved, yet Mike King was a member by the time they took to using that name. Whatever,
the album is certainly built on the material played by the Dharma Blues Band and I think it would have sounded
pretty much the same had the original line-up made it.
Dave Brock and Pete Judd formed another duo in 1966, playing jazz, folk and blues clubs with even a little
radio work, .including a John Peel Show and a show with Clodagh Rogers, both 'very big names' at that time.
They were joined by John Illingworth and in 1967 they went to Holland where they played under the name of
The Famous Cure. Holland, at that time, was the 'in' place to go, just as a few years before it was considered
trendy to have been to Germany.
It worked well. They achieved a measure of success, their name was known and they earned a few articles in
the music press. They played regular gigs and recorded a number of songs including, as might be expected,
Dealing With The Devil, a fitting start to the Hawkwind Anthology. The band came back to England after
playing a series of Spring gigs in Holland. Pete left and Mick Slattery joined and on September 16th the band
signed to a management company before returning to Holland.
The second Famous Cure line-up recorded a single called Sweet Mary which reached number five in the
Dutch charts. The band also recorded a couple of 'live' tracks. Dust My Shoes and one other, the title of
which is long forgotten, and these two were released on an album called Harlem Blues Festival. It also seems
highly likely that other Dutch Blues albums have Famous Cure material thereon.
The Famous Cure now had two future Hawkwind members within its ranks and during 1967 the band joined
a Rock and Roll Circus, Tent '67, where they met Nik Turner, another future member of Hawkwind.
Dave Brock: Bring It On Home (1968)
Dave Brock - guitar, vocals
Session musicians - backing
The Famous Cure came back to England late in 1967 and played a few gigs before splitting up early in 1968.
One of these gigs also had the Deviants on the bill.... the band which led to the forming of the Pink Fairies,
whose destiny was to be closely interwoven with that of Hawkwind during the early seventies.
Brock turned once again to full-time busking. This was the year of the buskers, when Don Partridge came
into the limelight and had a chart-topping success with his single, Rosie. Buskers underwent an upsurge in
popularity and Don Partridge headlined a countrywide buskers tour with a large number of buskers travelling
around in a double-decker bus. The acts were widely mixed, including tap dancers, sand dancers, players of
spoons, guitars, banjos, accordians and various other instruments. The acts, which covered a wide range of
music including cockney songs, folk, pop, blues, etc., included Dave Brock. The troupe also played a gig at
the Royal Albert Hall.
From that period we have Bring It On Home, a typical example of Brock's busking material.
Hawkwind: Hurry On Sundown (1970)
Came Home (1970)
Dave Brock - guitar, vocals
Nik Turner - saxophone
Huw Lloyd Langton - guitar
DikMik - audio generator
John Harrison - bass
Terry Ollis - drums
1969 and buskers everywhere. Brock continued to busk (he did so until 1970) but there were so many
buskers riding the wave of 'busker fashion' that the 'audience' was shared by so many buskers that none of
them could earn as they used to do. It was time to form another group and this time Dave wanted a group
which would perform music that was different to the output of other groups.
While busking along Tottenham Court Road, Dave Brock met John Harrison, who worked in that area, and
they became friends, both interested in getting a band under way. Ex-Famous Cure man Mick Slattery was
also interested and the three of them put an advertisement in Melody Maker. Along came a drummer, Terry
They rehearsed in the basement of a Putney music shop owned by Bob Kerr (ex-Temperence Seven) and
sometimes at the Royal College of Art. They met Nik Turner from time to time (Brock had met him again
while he, Dave, was busking outside the Marquee - seven years later, they would be in offices above the
Marquee, signing a five album contract with Charisma) and since Nik had a van he was taken on as the
Hawkwind roadie. However, his sax soon elevated him to member of the band, where he added a new
dimension to their sound. DikMik, another old friend, also joined and the band continued to rehearse and play
clubs whenever they got the chance. In the absence of a name to call themselves they went under the identity
of Group X.
The most famous of these gigs was a short, ten minute jam they played one Summer evening of 1969 at the
All Saints Hall in Notting Hill Gate, London. It was there that they were 'spotted' by Douglas Smith of
Clearwater Productions. In those few brief minutes Douglas saw that the band had potential and wasted no
time in signing them to Clearwater and securing their record deal with United Artists, on the Liberty label.
Other artists with Clearwater included Tim Blake, Thomas Crimble (in Skin Alley) and Simon House (in High
Tide), all of whom would eventually join Hawkwind for a while.
The band adopted the name Hawkwind Zoo and recorded a demo to gain their United Artists contract, 'Hurry
On Sundown'/'Kiss Of The Velvet Whip' (later changed to 'Sweet Mistress Of Pain'). These two tracks, along
with a 1975 recording of 'Kings Of Speed' were released in 1981 by Flicknife Records (FLHP 100). Soon
after this recording and shortly after the signing with United Artists, Mick Slattery left the band and quit the
music business. A new guitarist was found in the form of Huw Lloyd Langton. As might be expected, Huw
was already known to Dave Brock. Huw used to work at the music shop where Dave bought some of his
equipment and in one day after Mick had left, Dave was in the shop talking to Huw and suggested that Huw
come along and join the band at a gig that night. He did so and joined the band.
These two songs, 'Hurry On Sundown' and 'Came Home' are good examples of that early Hawkwind and
clearly show the curious blend of blues background blended with the pop music style (a hook to catch UA)
and the way in which they played a kind of wild, free-form jazz with electronics (bear in mind that in Brock's
jazz days he played New Orleans jazz, not the tame British variety). What the music often lacked in polish in
those days it made up for in originality of approach: experimental music and unusual sounds mixed into long,
energetic jams with a heavy, driving rhythm. The music was pushed further into the realms of experience
with the aid of a somewhat frantic lightshow and, invariably, chemical substances that shall remain nameless.
By 1970 they were gigging regularly and had even done a session for the BBC. They were now called
Hawkwind (the Zoo part of it had soon been dropped) and had released their First single, Hurry On Sundown
(Liberty LBF 15382) and their first album, Hawkwind (Liberty LBS 83348). Dick Taylor (ex Pretty Things)
produced the album and, anonymously, played guitar on parts of it.
Hawkwind: We Do It (1971)
Dave Brock - guitar, vocals
Nik Turner - saxophone
Huw Lloyd Langton - guitar
DikMik - audio generator
Dave Anderson - bass
Terry Ollis - drums
Shortly after the first album was released, John Harrison left and was replaced by Thomas Crimble (ex Skin
Alley) and when he left in May 1971 (he went on to organise Glastonbury Fayre) his place was taken by Dave
Anderson (ex Amon Duul II). During this 1970-1971 period they played as many gigs as they possibly could
and could be found at just about any benefit gig going, becoming one of the best-known 'underground' bands.
They got coverage in the national music press and constant coverage in the alternate press, where Robert
Calvert and Michael Moorcock, who would later become involved with the band, were regular contributors.
Their most famous gig of this period was when they played for a week outside the site of the Isle of Wight
Festival in August 1970...a protest against the high price of admission. Jimi Hendrix came outside to sit and
talk with the band (later Hawkwind member, Lemmy, had once roadied for Hendrix) but was too depressed to
jam with the band. It's ironic that their protest was against the price of entry to the festival since the band
knew the security staff and were thus able to enter for nothing. They did so and Nik, with his face painted
silver and stars on his clothes was much photographed and could shortly be seen in such publications as
Vogue, Paris Match, Telegraph Magazine and the Daily Express. During his set, Hendrix dedicated a song to
'The cat with the silver face'.
Soon after the festival, Huw left to play in a number of bands, the most notable of which was Widowmaker.
Robert Calvert, although not a member of the band, appeared at some gigs with them as poet. When Dave
Brock and Dave Anderson were too ill to play at the June 1971 Glastonbury Festival, Thomas Crimble stepped
in on guitar and Robert Calvert took over on vocals. Stacia also joined the band to do her first Hawkwind
performance at that event. She had first met Nik at the Isle of Wight Festival in the previous year.
We Do It sang the band in 1971...and indeed they did. Their support grew, as did their entourage and their
music underwent a gradual change, developing all the while. They continued to play long instrumental pieces
but now with more concentration on maintaining a powerful, driving rhythm. They moved on to songs instead
of instrumental pieces although the vocals were usually placed at either end of lengthy jams. Alternately, as
with We Do It, the vocals were more along the lines of chants, used to complement the rhythm rather than
dominate it. This repetitive music, combined with a very bright and fast-moving lightshow had an hypnotic
effect on the audience, often aided by the fact that the audience was as stoned as the band. Hawkwind also
experimented with electronics to create sounds which could not be heard, yet produced vibrations which
registered on the brain. The band attempted to assault as many senses as possible. You could walk into a
concert and have to be carried out...and not be quite sure why.
Shortly after the Anthology version of We Do It was recorded, Del Dettmar left his position at the mixing
desk and joined the line-up on stage, initially to cover the departure of DikMik, who kept leaving and rejoining.
DikMik played on In Search Of Space (United Artists UAG 29202) which was recorded in the Summer of
1971 and released in October, and then left before the cover was made. He came back again after the cover
was done which is why his picture appears on the sleeve as part of the background instead of in a 'frame' like
the others. The album was released in a colourful and complex fold-out sleeve along with a 24 page booklet
called 'The Hawkwind Log' which had been put together by Robert Calvert and Barney Bubbles, who was
soon to be looked upon as the Hawkwind artist.
Following her appearance at Glastonbury, Stacia became a regular member of the band, bringing the line-up to
Hawkwind: Born To Go (1972)
Space Is Deep (1972)
You Shouldn't Do That (1972)
Seeing It As You Really Are (1972)
Earth Calling (1973)
1972 and 1973 were great years for Hawkwind, giving them a single which reached number three in the
charts and an album which reached number nine, with packed venues all the way.
The build-up to this period of success began in the Summer of 1971, when Dave Anderson left. Although an
exciting bass player, Dave Anderson did not easily fit in with the band. Their attitudes clashed and a typical
example of how this caused resentment in minor matters lay in the rest of the band being angry to see
Anderson turn up to a gig in his flashy car when the rest of them arrived packed into an old van. Years later,
when guesting at a couple of Hawkwind gigs in 1984, Dave was to once again completely outclass them with
Dave Anderson's bass was a loss to the band but compensation came in the form of his replacement, an old
friend of DikMik's...Lemmy. It must have been something of a headache, trying to keep the wild bassman in
order and to ensure that he got to gigs and was able to play when he got there but it was worth it for the
energy he injected into the band, both audibly and visually.
In January 1972 Terry Ollis left the band and Lemmy's friend, Simon King was brought in to fill the spot.
Three years earlier, Lemmy and Simon had played together in Opal Butterfly and so were familiar with each
other's playing styles. Simon's drumming was fast and powerful and this, combined with the aggressive bass
style of Lemmy, served to make the Hawkwind sound even heavier than before. The extensive use of
electronics to create unusual sounds running through the music had always set Hawkwind apart from other
bands and with the arrival of Lemmy the music itself took on a new slant. Lemmy was a guitarist who
switched to bass in order to join Hawkwind and instead of playing bass in the conventional way he played it as
though it were a rhythm guitar, thereby producing a much more solid sound.
Robert Calvert joined on a regular basis, completing the famous Space Ritual line-up, which lasted throughout
1972 and up to August 1973, when DikMik finally left for good. In November, Calvert left too and the Space
Ritual period was over. Meanwhile, it lasted for eighteen months, a long time by Hawkwind standards, and
enjoyed huge success.
The starting point to this was without doubt the thirteenth of February 1972 when Hawkwind headlined at the
Roundhouse on the occasion of the Greasy Truckers Party. It was an event which went well for Hawkwind.
The audience were in good humour and so were the band: the ideal atmosphere for a good time. They were
preaching to the converted and could do no wrong and as such could relax and give a magical performance.
They managed to combine their usual manic pace blended with a dash of humour in the electronics, most
noticeable in a rousing version of 'Master Of The Universe'. This song, along with 'Born To Go', appeared as
one side of a double album of the event released by United Artists (UDX 203/4). Also recorded at that gig
were 'Silver Machine' and 'Welcome To The Future' and these appeared on the Glastonbury Fayre triple album
(Revelation REV1A-3F), though it must be said that these two lacked the magic of the two tracks on the
Greasy Truckers Party album. Nonetheless, 'Silver Machine' was taken into studio to be smoothed, polished
and released as a single (United Artists UP 35381), a much cleaned-up recording of the Roundhouse
performance. Calvert's vocals, none too clear on the original tapes, were removed and since he was not
available to re-record them (he was temporarily away from the band due to mental health problems) the vocals
on the record were those of Lemmy. Perhaps this was a good thing. Certainly Lemmy's singing was more
powerful than Bob's and this may have been the thing which tipped the balance and boosted sales, for sell it
did. Number three in the British charts and soon released all over the World in just about every record-making
Suddenly, Hawkwind was a household name and 'Silver Machine' was on every juke-box (it still is in many of
them!). Hawkwind even appeared on Top Of The Pops but, as might be expected of them, they refused to go
to the studios and mime the song...they insisted that the BBC attend a Hawkwind gig and film the band playing
it for real and the demand for Hawkwind was such that the BBC agreed. The performance was shown three
times on Top Of The Pops and half of it was later used in a programme about Michael Moorcock.
For once the band had money at their disposal and they used this to mount their ingenious Space Ritual tour, a
riot of colours, dance and music, with lights, slides, films etc. It was a truly adventurous and spectacular
rock show, lasting a couple of hours and it earned them much respect and admiration in the music business.
At last it was clear that they were a force to be reckoned with and not just a bunch of Notting Hill Freaks
playing at being a band. Of course, it was a two-edged sword, as is often the case. The Space Ritual was so
impressive and its greatness must have grown in the telling and in fading memories that for years the band had
to work hard to compete with the image of its own past. What the show did achieve, riding hard on the
success of 'Silver Machine', was to take Hawkwind across the Pond to America and give them the chance to
break new ground. This they did in 1973, being the first British band to go there to headline on their first tour
instead of starting out as a support act.
Before they did this, they took the tour to Europe, where it also met with much success.
For the 1972 British tour and the early 1973 tours, the Space Ritual was used to promote their third studio
album, Doremi Fasol Latido (United Artists UAG 29634). This rather heavy, rather spacey album, mixed by
Dave Brock while he was somewhat stoned must have come as something of a shock to fans who bought it
on the strength of hearing 'Silver Machine'. Likewise, the concert halls held an interesting combination of
long-term fans who knew what to expect of the band and fans who expected to hear songs sounding more or
less the same as 'Silver Machine'.
In May of 1973 United Artists released the classic Space Ritual Alive (UAD 60037/8) double album. The tapes
had been cleaned up but still retained the 'live' quality and the atmosphere of the gigs and it is hard to imagine
the band ever presenting a better 'live' double. Without doubt, it captures the complete flavour of the tour and
one only has to close ones eyes and picture the dancers and Liquid Len's amazing liquid lightshow to relive the
'Born To Go', 'Space Is Deep' and 'Earth Calling' come from the main set. 'You Shouldn't Do That' and
'Seeing It As You Really Are' were part of the encore.
Their third single, 'Urban Guerilla' (United Artists UP 35566) was released in August 1973. Strangely, over a
year had been allowed to slip by since the release of 'Silver Machine' and this must have removed any chance
they had of riding on the crest of the 'Silver Machine' wave in order to secure a second hit single and thereby
make their success more secure. Nonetheless, 'Urban Guerilla' reached number 39 in the charts on the week
of release and was promptly withdrawn as it was felt that the urban warfare lyrics were less than tactful in
view of the outbreak of terrorist activities at that time.
Logically, another single would have been in order but none was forthcoming, though 'Lord Of Light'/'Born
To Go' was released in Germany (United Artists 35 492). In effect, Hawkwind abandoned the singles market
without capitalising on their success.
Their American tour, which started in November, minus Bob and DikMik who had left and minus most of the
lighting rigs which were too expensive to take, marked the end of the main Space Ritual era. They had done
well from it, having toured England, Europe and America with it, performed an hour of it for the BBC radio
concert (broadcast in August 1973) and produced their best-selling album from it. It also yielded one of their
curio items, a promo disc in the form of a one-sided single of 'Sonic Attack' (United Artists - no catalogue
number) presented in a cloth bag.
Hawkwind: Motorhead (1975)
Dave Brock - guitar, vocals, synth
Lemmy - bass
Alan Powell - drums
1974 brought more changes. The band toured the United Kingdom in January and February and returned to
America in March. Simon House went with them, as a guest only because he had no work permit, but still
jammed in with the band during the tour. When they got back to England, Simon joined full-time, presenting
keyboard work of a much more musical nature than had previously been associated with the band. His deft
playing of the violin and powerful, sweeping chords on keyboards gave Hawkwind a somewhat grand and
majestic sound on their Summer 1974 album, Hall Of The Mountain Grill (United Artists UAG 29672), and
their single, Psychedelic Warlords (United Artists UP 35715), giving the band added credibility with the music
press. Del Dettmar continued to play synthesizer but instead of being on stage with the band he now
performed from the mixing desk because from that vantage point he could get a better idea of how the sound
was coming over and thereby offer the best in improvisation and sound effects. In June, he left the band and
emigrated to Canada, having bought a plot of land there on their previous North American tour.
Hall Of The Mountain Grill featured more Barney Bubbles artwork on the front but it is perhaps the rear cover
which is more noteworthy because this is the only Hawkwind album cover to feature the artwork of David
Hardy, whose planetscape and spacescape slides were used during the Space Ritual tour and were still in use
by Hawkwind in the eighties. The title of the album came from the Mountain Grill Restaurant (a photograph of
it can be seen on the printed inner sleeve), a cafe on Portobello Road which was regularly frequented by
Hawkwind in those days...some years later it became a fish and chip shop and the name was changed.
Solo albums and albums by people associated with Hawkwind are too numerous to slot comfortably within
this short history but it is appropriate to note that Dave Brock, Nik Turner, Lemmy, Simon King, Del Dettmar
and Paul Rudolph (who was to join Hawkwind in 1975) all guested on the Robert Calvert album Captain
Lockheed And The Starfighters (United Artists UAG 29507) which was released in May 1974. Calvert also
released a single called Ejection (United Artists UP 35543) on which appeared Nik, Paul, Lemmy, Del and
In July 1974 Simon King broke some ribs while playing football and Alan Powell was taken on to cover for
Simon's absence. When Simon was again fit to rejoin the band it was decided that they should retain Alan and
present a line-up with two drummers.
The departure of Bob Calvert had left the band without a poet and so their old friend, Michael Moorcock, had
begun to do regular gigs with the band. He had first appeared with the band one Saturday afternoon three
years earlier when they were doing a free concert under the Westbourne Flyover in London. Mike wrote some
material for the band, including 'Power Armour' and 'Sonic Attack', and took it along to the gig, whereupon
Dave Brock suggested that Mike should perform the poems with them. Thus it was that Michael Moorcock
was the first person to narrate 'Sonic Attack'.
Back to 1974 and Hawkwind headlined Harlow Free Festival, with Moorcock in the line-up, Stacia danced,
Nik dressed up in a frog mask and frog suit and everyone had a good time.
Later on that year, Hawkwind's credibility with the media took another step forward when a track from the
Hall Of The Mountain Grill was used as backing music throughout a television programme. The track was a
short Del Dettmar composition called 'Goat Willow' and it was played a number of times during a
documentary programme concerning some monks who relied heavily upon their bee-keeping activities as a
source of income.
This was the first time that Hawkwind music had been used in this way and it didn't happen again until the
early 80's when television documentaries made use of 'You Shouldn't Do That' and 'Motorway City'.
In September 1974, Hawkwind began another tour of America, only to have it curtailed at Hammond, Indiana
when federal agents impounded the band's equipment directly they finished the gig. It seemed there was
confusion over taxes and the band owed 8,000 dollars from their previous tour. They didn't have the money
to clear the bill and regain their equipment and so had to return to England while the matter was sorted out.
They went back to America in October to play re-scheduled dales before mounting another huge British tour.
Early 1975 saw Hawkwind spending much time in studios, recording their March release single 'Kings Of
Speed' (United Artists UP 35808) and their May release album 'Warrior On The Edge Of Time' (United Artists
UAG 29766), which featured the line-up of Dave Brock, Nik Turner, Simon House, Simon King, Lemmy,
Alan Powell and, guesting on two tracks, Michael Moorcock. Typical of the UA days of Hawkwind, the
album was issued with illustrated inner sleeve and an outer sleeve which could be opened out to form a shield.
At the same time, Michael Moorcock was recording his album, 'New Worlds Fair' (United Artists UAG
29732) for May release and Hawkwinders Simon House, Simon King, Alan Powell and Dave Brock were
among the musicians performing on the album.
One of the songs recorded during this period was Motorhead, which appeared on the reverse side of the
Kings Of Speed single and which turned out to highlight a significant point in the history of Hawkwind for this
was the last song Lemmy wrote for the band.
It was in May that Hawkwind were once again touring North America and it was vital that the tour should be
a success if the band was to be a force to be reckoned with over there. Unfortunately, while crossing the
American/Canadian border, Lemmy was found to be carrying a quantity of amphetamine sulphate and
arrested. In fact, the officials mistook it for cocaine, a much more serious offence. Worry about the success
or failure of the tour led the band to sack Lemmy and replace him with Paul Rudolph in order to ensure that
they had a bass player for the rest of the tour.
Lemmy flew back to England and formed his own band, Motorhead, and the chances are you may have heard
of them. This wasn't the end of Lemmy's contact with Hawkwind. In 1977, Motorhead were the support act
for the Hawkwind Spring tour and to this day Lemmy still joins the band for a song or two whenever they
play gigs in London, unless Motorhead business prevents it.
The originally released version of Motorhead featured the full band line-up with Lemmy on vocals but we
present here an alternate version whereon Dave Brock sings and we have some synthesizer instead of Simon
Hawkwind: Watchfield Festival (1975)
Dave Brock - guitar, vocals
Nik Turner - sax, vocals
Alan Powell - drums
Paul Rudolph - bass
August 1975. Hawkwind headlined on the first night of the Reading Festival. This was the last gig for Liquid
Len (Jonathan Smeeton). It was also the final gig for Stacia, who got married the next day and moved to
Reading Festival was a major event and Hawkwind must have been paid well for headlining, yet the following
day saw the band driving a few miles along the road to Watchfield, where a free festival was being held.
Brock's feeling was that Reading paid their wages and Watchfield was where they would have some fun.
Simon King and Simon House were not with them at Watchfield and Jonathan and Stacia had left, so
Watchfield got only half of the Hawkwind team which had entertained Reading on the previous night.
Nonetheless, the gig was highly successful and by means of plenty of improvisation the band managed a set
which ran on for a couple of hours without flagging. The music press were present and were impressed by
the way the four members were able to adapt songs to suit the abbreviated line-up.... also by the fact that a
headlining band was still happy to turn up at such an event and play for free, something which Hawkwind still
do, as those who go to Stonehenge in June will know.