Nutz Reform - new live and new studio albums?

When I started this Nutz page, you could key Nutz into Google and it came up with absolutely nothing....well nothing concerning the boys from Liverpool anyway! If you scrolled through about four pages of rubbish you eventually found my web page, and a link to Mott the Dog in Pattaya who was obviously a fan, and that was pretty much it.

Not that there weren't any Nutz fans around. I had emails from enough of them, who, like me, were trying to find either news of the boys on this new world wide web thing, or trying to get hold of CD copies of the early albums. I had emails from people who supported Nutz at gigs, I had emails from DJ's who worked at the clubs Nutz played, I had emails from the band members relatives, I had emails from guys at the studios, who sent me the photos here so that the rest of the world could attend the memorial reunion gig for John Mylett, even though they might be in Australia or South America (there are Nutz fans in both - I had the emails!)

Look on the guest book - Steve from Peterborough saying thanks to someone who's details he'd lost who sent him a copy of Live Cutz! Everyone wanted the music and couldn't get it! Messages from guys that used to drink with them in Liverpool, old school mates of the band, people trying to find the albums on CD. My favourites - the guy who says he did the whistle on the intro to RSD on Live Cutz, the guy who told me they renamed a bar in Liverpool after John Mylett, and Alan who told me John was there at his birth! And Deborah - Dave Lloyd's daughter who said her little brother was named after John. But the best of all Ignacio from Mexico who said that he and his brother fought and knocked over all their albums and broke their copy of Nutz first album. I emailed Alan who arranged for Mike to burn a copy for him onto CD, and he then emailed Dave Lloyd and Keith Mulholland to let them know about their fan in Mexico, copying Ignacio in! How must Ignacio have felt to see that email!

Now you can find them on Classic Rock, and Wikipedia and Myspace and Facebook and at last a new CD, a promise of reunion, sadly without John of course and another live CD and new album! The live CD was due out on August 9 2010, recorded in Nottingham in 1977 and called Tightened Up-a whole previously unreleased show. Also, the three surviving members are back in the studio working on new songs with a new drummer which hopefully will be released as a new studio album.Hopefully, some live dates will follow.

Links to the more details about the band and albums are here on Myspace and here at Market Square Records

There's so much information on MySpace and Facebook now you probably don't need this page any more....but it's going nowhere! It stays as a tribute to Nutz and especially to John Mylett. Although if you checkout this link you can now leave your own tribute to John

Terry McManus got in touch with me via the website and sent me this picture of Nutz in 1977. Terry's band played support to Nutz at UCD Dublin around 1977 and he remembers them as being a bunch of great guys. They were also very impressed by their music - thanks for the photo Terry!

Have a look at Kim's life of Nutz on the Mott the Dog website in Pattaya. He's a big Nutz fan and Mott the Dog has all those albums from all those bands you'd forgotten about! It's worth going up to his homepage to have a look at them all....

Now for those of you who used to come to the Boat with us in the mid seventies you must have seen Nutz! Four boys from Liverpool, rock music with lots of drums and the famous Nutz ending to most tracks...drums, bass and guitar all going on for about 2 minutes.

This is more than an account of them and their music - this is a story with an unexpected and sad ending that I'm sure most of you won't know about.

They were more than a band - from the very first time we saw them they were friends. It was at the Boat and I think it was the night that Bert had his acceptance letter from Salford University so we were celebrating. This band called Nutz were on and we loved them. Brought up on a diet of live rock music they had just the right mix of seventies drum solos and guitar solos for us.

Somehow I got talking to John Mylett, the drummer and what a nice bloke he turned out to be. I found myself in the dressing room with the boys after the gig, chatting about music and stuff and drinking the obligatory bottles of Newcastle Brown!

Then Bert appeared at the doorway with a toilet roll draped around his neck and a girl on each arm, so we all ended up having a laugh with the boys.

We must have seen them 20 or so times after that. We unloaded and loaded their gear for them at the Boat, we played them at table football at the Golden Diamond in Sutton in Ashfield, watched them from backstage in Worsley near Manchester, encouraged everyone we knew to go and see them. They were all nice guys but all the time I think we were closest to John Mylett, the scouse drummer who'd been the original one to talk to us.

They released four albums, notable for their seventies sexist album covers! "Nutz" has a rear view of a rather nicely shaped lady, while "Nutz Too" has all four of the guys draped around another rather nicely shaped young lady wearing a rubber dress! In those days of low budgets, the model was Linda Halpin, who I believe was the wife of the sleeve designer and photographer. If you look closely you'll see her nipples have been airbrushed out - this was the seventies remember! The boys pupils have all been enlarged and coloured red but according to Dave LLoyd, vocalist, they'd been up all night before the shoot so didn't need any extra colouring!

By "Hard Nutz" the boys had abandoned the calendar cover shots and gone for pictures of their faces, and added a keyboards player, Kenny Newton. Then came the live album "Live Cutz", and although the boys are a band from Liverpool, playing all over the UK and beyond, they chose to record the live album at the Boat club in Nottingham. And yes, we were there for the two nights they recorded it all.

Play "RSD" Live from the Boat (800k mp3 file - 49 secs)

Play "Wallbanger" Live from the Boat (960k mp3 file - 59 secs)

Play "One More Cup of Coffee" (1.4mb mp3 file - 1min 30secs)

Then John Mylett offered me a job as their roadie. This came as a complete shock as it wasn't a career move I'd ever considered, but one of their guys had just left them and they were looking for someone else. I declined, choosing to finish my degree which I was halfway through. So instead of going on a European tour with the likes of the Who, and Johnny Winter, I stayed at home in Manchester doing exams.....hmmmm!

After that we lost touch really. Nutz changed their name to Rage and released a few more albums - I bought "Out of Control" and "Nice and Dirty" and I think there was another album, but they never really made it any bigger, and just seemed to disappear.

But this is where the strange story starts. I went to work in Aberdeen in the early eighties and was stopping at a hotel during my first two weeks up there, when a band I'd never heard of was on at the Capitol Theatre there. I decided to go and see them and the gig was excellent and I was pleased to find they were stopping in the same hotel as me. The bar was quite a party until about four a.m. with the boys from Marillion! I had a chat with Fish, their manager was buying champagne and Guinness for everyone to celebrate the successful gig, and I witnessed an awesome cocktail drinking competition involving Blue Bombers! Needless to say, Marillion became a favourite band of mine through the eighties.

Now switch to the early nineties when I'm living in Basingstoke and a colleague who knows I like Marillion has been given a free copy of "Market Square Heroes - The authorised story of Marillion" by Mick Wall. Excellent - I settle down to read it and three quarters of the way through (page 253 to be exact) I can't believe my eyes. I have to stop and re-read it and then get out my copy of Misplaced Childhood and play it before I can really take in what I've read. The extract is below -

This is Fish speaking -

"Tonight was a wierd one for me," he said. "To come back and play the Marquee - scene of all our yesterdays - and play the whole album for the first time in this country live, and with all the cameras there to capture it as well, it became a very emotional occasion for me. I got very wrapped up in performing the album. And when I got to the "Mylo" section I swear I nearly broke down and cried...

(1.23mb mp3 file - 1min 21 secs)

("Mylo" was written about John Mylett, a good friend of the band's and the drummer for a time in Rage, who John Arnison was also managing when he first hooked up with Marillion. Mylett had been killed in a car crash on a holiday in Greece in June 1984. "Mylo", apart from being the young drummer's nick-name, was written about the moment when Fish heard of his death, by phone, while Marillion were on tour in Canada.)

"As I was singing the words I remembered all the times we'd played at the Marquee, dreaming of the days when we wouldn't have to any more but always knowing that we'd want to come back and do it anyway. And I remembered standing at the bar at the Marquee on so many nights, chatting to Mylo and the boys from Rage, and telling them that one day Marillion would be huge, huge, huge, and then feeling like a prat for talking like that, and buying everyone a drink."

And that's how, sitting in a room in Basingstoke in the nineties, I discovered that one of my favourite artists had been trying to tell me for years that one of my friends was dead. I played the Mylo section of "Blind Curve" on "Misplaced Childhood" again and again and couldn't believe I'd missed for years what he was trying to tell me. And like Fish, I sat and cried for John Mylett, one of the nicest blokes I'd ever met.

Postscript - Fish and Hearts of Lothian

Maybe I have some strange sort of connection with Fish but he keeps popping up in my life in the strangest of circumstances.

When I worked in Aberdeen I used to fly down to Edinburgh for weekends and developed a close friendship with a group of people there, one of whom was a girl called Gillian. By coincidence she and I both ended up surfacing in Basingstoke and due to the Edinburgh connection we went to see Marillion in London with our respective partners. One of the happiest memories I have of Gillian is of us both belting out Hearts of Lothian at the tops of our voices that night. She sadly committed suicide a few years later afterwards as her marriage broke up, and I'm afraid to say that's another Marillion track I can't hear without a tear in my eye!

Then a new director appears at the company I work for, and we eventually discover that he went to school with a certain Derek Dick in Edinburgh. He tells me that Fish once used to be small, so I'm not quite sure he's telling the truth but he seems pretty convincing!

Nutz reunion!

On 28th November 2004 the Nutz boys got back together at Fogerty's in Liverpool and played a gig to remember John Mylett - it was the 20th anniversary of his death. This was a gig I really wish I'd been able to go to, but thanks to Paul Lewis (Rage's front of house sound engineer) who sent me the link to the photographs.

I've now found all the rest of the photos lurking on my PC so here they all are