Friday, December 6, 2019


OK, just a quick one, mainly because I cannot believe we have got this far in a thread themed 'Family' with no mention of Leicester's finest, um, Family. A quick rustle back through the back pages and it seems they don't get any mention in any other category at all. How can this be? Surely the sandpaper gargled vocals of Roger "Chappo" Chapman translate to more than any purely eurocentric vibe? Please tell me so.

So, if in doubt, go wiki, and it looks not, their US peak being with an inwithabullet 177 in the Billboard album charts, with 'Fearless', in 1977. What a shame, what a loss, as, when good, they were very very good. OK, and yes, when they were bad they were horrid, but that wasn't often. We're talking 1968 to 73. Very few bands achieved all killer, no filler.

No time for a history lesson, but I guess one issue was their inability to be pigeon holed within any one genre, hopping from style to style almost song to song, combined with an ever-changing membership that could include standard guitar, bass, drums with violin, vibraphone, trumpet. You name it and they probably did, encompassing rock, folk, jazz, funk, prog. The lot. All carried by the incomparable vocals of Chapman. Have some hits. And, if you can't be arsed, fer chrissakes, at least listen to Burlesque, the dirtiest bit of sleazy funk this side of Sleazyfunktown in Sleazyfunktownshire.

The Weaver/s Answer (1970)

In My Own Time (1971)

Burlesque (1972)

My Friend the Sun (1973)

After they split asunder in the early 1970s, Chapman and guitarist, Charlie Witney, carried on for a while as (Chapman-Witney) Streetwalkers, with, I guess, even less acclaim. Chappo then became, 'big in Germany', that country always retaining an enduring love for the knights in blue denim of 60s into 70s UK rock. ( And, yes, to save your navigation, Family do get a shout.) Astonishingly, after a mere gap of 40 years, a version of the band reformed, Chappo, no Witney, and they play, sporadically to this day, alongside Chappo's solo project, Roger Chapman and the Shortlist. (I wanna ticket!!!)

Burlesque (2013)

At least now if anyone searches 'Family' on this site, up will come the band, and that, say I, is as it jolly well should be.

Burlesque: you know you want it!

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