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'Still There'll be More'

The BtP petition to Procol Harum, 18 December 1998

On 18 December 1998 'BtP' handed a dossier of messages from Procol Harum fans to Gary and Keith, expressing the hope that they would write, record and perform again before the year 2000 ... to be read in the spirit in which it was intended. If you want to contribute your own plea, please visit our on-going forum.

Do you wish for more Procol Harum activity in the future? A new record? A new tour? A new major event like Redhill? Should Gary & Co be encouraged to release some of the many recordings in Gary's vault?

Write to this forum at 'Beyond the Pale'. We will make sure the band gets to see the huge demand for more Procol Harum activity in years to come. Maybe we can persuade the band and the record companies ... so that Still There'll Be More.

Jens and Roland


A New Redhill?

31 May 1998

From: Jens Ravnaas <>

1997 saw the celebration of Procol Harum's 30 years anniversary with the wonderful party at Redhill. Thanks to Diane Rolph and John Grayson for making this possible. During our stay at Redhill many of us had several late-night talks about how great it would be to arrange a similar party each year. Maybe the next time in USA? Or Scandinavia? Is there anybody capable and willing to arrange such a wonderful meeting?


How About Australia

10 Nov 1998

From: Dennis Grant <>

I cannot help with USA or Europe but may be able to assist with Australia. I understand GB has never been here. I am willing to assist and would at least pay his airfare. I have a B3 Hammond, Kurzweill PC88 and Roland X50 and sound system and have contacts in the promotional area. How about it !

Regards Dennis


We Have Our Hopes, We Have Our Dreams

01 Jun 1998

From: <>

It is only appropriate that Jens have the first word here. And so it is that the second word will be a simple, obvious plea for a new album and tour.



Let's get Procol back to stage

02 Jun 1998

From: Jose Antonio Rio <>

Maybe there is many people who have had the great joy of watching and hearing Procol Harum perform live. I live in Peru and am a Procol fan since I was fourteen (25 years ago). I never had the chance of going to a concert due mainly to the lack of information (we never got news about non-commercial groups in my country) still I have never lost hope that I will get to see them sometime and when I found out and met Jens Anders through the internet I was amazed to learn that the group had perform only a year ago and I think that if Procol fans join together and try to convince G Brooker of doing a concert we may get him to play again.

I am sure that many people, like me, would travel from all over the world provided there is notice enough in advance and many would be willing to buy the tickets months in advance and that would decrease the 'risk' factor of G Brooker maybe thinking that he would not get the response. All I can do now is give my support to Jens and hope that many other Procol fans will join this forum so shine on !


Let's get Procol back to stage

10 Oct 1998

From: Engels Jean Pierre <>

I saw Gary Brooker with Ringo Starr an the all stars and was a bit disappointed: only Whiskey Train - that I don't like - and AWSoP that I think was bad chosen for this event. Then I saw him again on 9 / 10 in Antwerp and he was great again: doing Willie and the Poor Boys stuff with Bill Wyman and the Rhythm Kings on tour in Europe: you have to see and hear this. He was fantastic doing: Good Golly Miss Mollie, Land Of 1000 Dances, Rockin' Pneumonia and so on; making fun with Georgie Fame: femmes he called him.

He also knew that Antwerp was 'hand werpen', cut off the hand and drew it in the water. Funny, jamming, and at the end getting all the credit for this great event. Gary, keep on doing your thing, be it as Rhythm King, Poor Boy, All Star, John Liquorice, Procol or even as Paramount, did I forget some?

JP Engels Belgium. Greetings and keep your encouragements coming


Open the vault, Gary!

03 Jun 1998

From: <>

To Gary & Keith from a fan of 31 years. Please dig into the store of recordings from Europe (studio version of Blue Danube) and consider putting together a CD release of rare Procol cuts. I remember seeing PH play Drunk Again dressed in tuxedos on the Midnight Special show around the time of Grand Hotel. I haven't heard it since.

I can understand not wanting to make a new Procol recording and not wanting to tour but why not make many thousands of people happy by releasing these old tunes. The concerts that were sung in French would add to the list of desirable yet still unheard cuts. I would give a hundred Westside re-releases for one as yet un-released rarities collection. This CD would let us all rest in peace. I need inspiration, man!

A friend, Jim Krapf from Edwardsville USA.


One more, build on Redhill

Wed, 03 Jun 1998

From: <>

It was obvious at Redhill that there is a tremendous talent pool of former PH'ers to draw from, and that they've all stayed well in practice. Mick G was especially impressive. And surely they could all use some funds at this point in their lives. Why stay so practised if not to use it? I think its time to take one more crack at it, just to go out in glory if nothing else.

What's needed are three ingredients - new, well crafted melodies, significant and meaningful words in the 'old style' (about something more transcendent than relationships) and with some 'bite' to them, and the support of a record label. If the last ingredient could be made available, would GB and KR be up to one and two, just one more time? The trap of trying to fit into a more modern style should be avoided, as it worked only marginally with Prodigal Stranger. Today's audiences appreciate more gritty material, so a back-to-basics approach might just work.

Regarding funding, if so many new bands can get their CDs out, why not one with such a built-in base? The plethora of reissues must demonstrate something, huh?

Again, I just wish they'd go out in glory, with one more great CD, and with no preconceived marketing effort other than to be themselves and play good solid significant music. It'd market itself, I firmly predict. No point accepting the status quo and past glories. Time for one more search for the grail.


More PH? Let's hope so!

03 Jun 1998

From: Bert Saraco <BertSaraco>

Still, there'll be more? ... well, we know that there's more that we've never heard yet - the elusive gems that we remember from concerts long ago: Robe, The Blue Danube, the incredible Adagio, 'alpha,' and so many others! What fan wouldn't purchase such a collection at the drop of a Homburg?! And how about a 'best of' CD featuring live versions collected from band concerts and / or radio shows?

I can't think of a single band that has had as many spine-tingling moments live on stage as Procol Harum! I'm talking about just the band onstage, no frills. If Gazza is a more viable alternative than a major label (you know - the geniuses that brought us The Spice Girls, thank you) then, have no fear - the sales will be there! Another live event?

We all know that there's a built-in audience just waiting for the chance to see them again! Trust me ... they (the fans) will come! Yes! More from the past, more now, more in the future! New material? Rare? Unreleased? Live? Studio? Bagpipes?! Hey, I'm ready for anything!

Shine on! - Bert and Carina Saraco, USA


Leaving for the East Coast

03 Jun 1998

From: <>

Just a practical suggestion here about future concerts: how about somewhere nice on the outskirts of major US coast cities (Washington / new York / Philadelphia) along the lines of Redhill in July 1999. Such a location should maximize the audience potential and such a lead time would give good speed to the organization thereof.

As to opening the vaults (did somebody ask for Drunk Again? It's already on the Exotic Birds CD?). The BBC concert of 74 that was bootlegged seems to have been held up by legal forces and I imagine the same is going to happen to the now fully legal King Biscuit series with the Hollywood Bowl. The finest and most interesting Gary vault opening manoeuvre would surely be the songs done in Miami for Something Magic as I hear they are proper songs not released in any other form and not old blues rejects or try outs.

I've said so much ...


Sam Cameron


On behalf of all Procoholics ...

05 Jun 1998

From: Doug Callowhill <>

An appeal to Gary, Keith, Robin, & Matthew:

It's one of life's truths that we rarely realize how much our own lives affect those of others. As Procol Harum, you were fortunate enough to have recorded some of the finest and best-loved music of my generation, providing an opportunity to collectively influence people around the globe, as evidenced by the many accolades found in the 'Friends of PH' page found at this site.

Matthew Fisher, on his home-page says somewhere 'Stay away from the music business.' Matthew: however jaded you've become, (and I can't blame you), without our having met, you taught me more about playing organ than anyone else, from albums # 1 & 2 alone! I slaved away until I could copy what you were doing in stuff like A Christmas Camel and Salad Days, and my life was so much more enriched for the experience. As well, I acquired better fingering technique learning to play your Shine On Brightly solo than from anywhere else.

Figuring out how Gary got those bluesy 'barbed' solo chords in Something Following Me drove me round the bend, but I got it! Who else at the time was there to challenge me in this genre of music? Of course, there was Rick Wakeman and Keith Emerson, but I was never into 'masturbatory pyrotechnics', if you'll excuse the term. It perturbed me during my high-school years that my friends were so easily impressed with songs like Sunshine of Your Love. and In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida etc. Of course Clapton can play, but he's so predictable (like his writing). Trower has the ability to somehow use solo breaks to gloriously play away in his own ostensibly unmetred but heartfelt time, and emerge triumphant in the end. I've always envied his ability to do that. Most everyone else is positively rigid by comparison.

Keith: Your words are incredible. That line about 'the mirror on reflection, has climbed back upon the wall' amuses me to this day, as does the ominous 'hands both turning backwards, and on meeting will devour both themselves ... ' I love that stuff. To me, it's the imagery, not the meaning - and you're the master. I once coyly took the words of Broken Barricades and Luskus Delph into my very attractive high-school English teacher for her to 'examine and explain to me'. She went out, bought the album, and declared you a poetic genius - told me all about how when dead daughters were born to certain ancient civilizations, it signalled impending doom. She even had the moxie to point out some of the erotic imagery in Luskus Delph. See how much we learned? Countless others too. Despairingly, no one writes like you anymore.

Being a keyboard player since about 10, it wasn't until AWSoP that I truly found something to inspire me. It hooked me, for better or worse, into a life of playing music in a multitude of bands for the next seventeen years. I came to resent AWSoP for being the only song that Procol Harum was recognized for, however. I grew weary of playing it in every band as a personal 'trademark', and tried, with frequent success, to convert fellow musicians into 'expanded' Harum fans.

BTW, when Homburg was released, I was severely disheartened by its lack of success. It was too ahead of its time. What really impressed me (something I'd never heard of before in the rock genre) was Gary's use of ostinato bass in the verse, where the 'F' is maintained through the 'G' and 'Bb' chords. Because of Homburg, this became a hallmark of my own writing. Once again, an enriching influence. Bands like Steely Dan did it later of course, but to the point of overkill. (Recall tunes like Josie, where almost every other chord is played over its 4th.)

The current music situation, with minor exceptions, has deteriorated into a state of laughableness. Recall the recent furore over 'Ginger' leaving the Spice Girls. I felt anxiety when Trower and Fisher left Procol Harum, and these were incredibly gifted musicians of the highest integrity, not merely stage puppets primarily notable for their cuddly looks, tight jeans and dubious dancing ability. Sadly, I was forced to suffer alone in my room without the benefit of school or parental counselling :-)

What I'm inevitably leading up to is this - please produce some more material! There are countless numbers of us who crave more of Gary's melodies, Keith's words, Robin's killer leads and the majesty of Matthew's Hammond playing. The original band was magic - it can happen again, although the loss of BJ is a tragedy that has admittedly been a formidable obstacle to overcome. He was the best - irreplaceable, but we each take responsibility for our own lives, and no-one can be held accountable for his death. I'm only 46, and have lots of listening years left in me - give me more 'real' music to gladden my heart. There are other bands that have earned my respect and admiration (Pretenders, Tull, Kate Bush, Zeppelin, The Police, more recently No Doubt), but the pickings are still pretty slim. If you could all manage to create another CD for the sake of appeasing those who truly loved what you've already done together, and can do again, it would be magnificent!

At this time, I'd like to join with Joan May in encouraging Gary to seek the release of some past live concerts where BJ's performances could perhaps be 'highlighted'. It really shouldn't be that this relatively unrecognized drumming genius slip away unhonoured, and what better way to celebrate the life of one or rock's most inventive, unique drummers? How lucky you all were to be so good at such young ages, and together for as long as you were. Perhaps only the Beatles managed to complement each other to the extent that you four did. I appeal to you, on behalf of those of us throughout the world who grew up with your beautiful music and made it a part of our lives - we really do want more! Enough said.

Doug Callowhill


On behalf of all Procoholics

04 Jul 1998

From: Patrick Puhak <>

Having enjoyed PH's music for 30 years, I would like to see release of live performances. I, like many Procoholics have 2nd, 3rd, 4th generation copies of PH performances on both audio and video. I enjoy listening and watching these tapes despite the poor quality. How wonderful they would sound in CD.

Patrick Puhak, USA.


Procol's BRIGHT Future

Mon, 15 Jun 1998 18:51:05 GMT

From: Joan May<>

Procol Harum deserves to enjoy a very productive and exciting future, and I think that can happen, if they'd correct some oversights and missteps which have been holding them back throughout most of their career:

1. PH is by far the best sounding band I've Ever heard in my Life, and tragically it's also the worst-recorded! Its Phenomenal LIVE Sound has never - yet - been adequately reproduced on albums. The recordings came close only a couple of times: the enchanting tone of Matthew Fisher's Hammond was fairly well captured on A Whiter Shade of Pale, and an inkling of the band's true Power could be heard on the Edmonton album, thanks to the Live performance and Wally Heider's engineering skill, despite the superfluous orchestra. I think it's No Coincidence that THOSE were the records that sold Millions, and it's very possible for future sonically accurate PH albums to sell even more!

2. PH should recognize that their best music is Ageless and Timeless, and that any attempts to fit in with trends are doomed to fail, both commercially and artistically. I think the replacement of Hammond with Synth in 1977 contributed to the sad demise of the band at that time, as the

computerized production and the synths on The Prodigal Stranger detracted from success in the 90s.

' ... See, the synthesizer worries me. Nobody should have ever let 'em out. It should be in the back room for guys to write arrangements and songs on ... and NEVER make a record with. They sound so plastic and inarticulate and superficial - no dynamics, no air, no breath. It's an imitation of an instrument.' - Keith Richards, Musician Magazine, 11 / 97

I don't think synths are even good for writing. Composers derive inspiration from the timbre of their instruments, and when using a cheesy sounding instrument, they're at risk for composing cheesy sounding music.

3. The 90s incarnation of PH hasn't (yet) produced any new songs that compare with their Vintage works. Reasons for this include #2 above, and the participation of Outsiders like Noble and Thompson, but I think more important historical factors are responsible for much of this potentially correctable problem: As can be inferred from articles published at this website and elsewhere, Matthew Fisher left PH in 1969 because of his increasing despondency over not receiving his (co)composer credit for A Whiter Shade of Pale. Those articles also imply that Gary could still be unaware of the real reason for Matthew's departure: why he didn't enjoy his 'freedom' after leaving the band (as Gary expected), but instead - according to Gary and Robin - spent the better part of 3 years in bed, suffering from a depression which only ended in late 1972 when Robin coaxed Matthew into becoming his producer. (As far as I can gather, Robin provided Matthew with the only 'break' he ever got in the music biz, and - quite rightly so - he was richly rewarded for that by Matthew's brilliant productions). Understandably, considering the circumstances of his leaving the band, Matthew never composed much Procol style music after 1969, not even on The Prodigal Stranger, where his ethereal organ lines evoked his old magic, but the songs he co-wrote did not. Those organ parts imply that Matthew is still perfectly capable of writing beautiful new Procol songs, alone and with Gary, IF he were inspired to do so, and I can't think of a better way of inspiring him than by finally acknowledging his co-composership of AWSoP. Other good things can come of this as well: it can provide much-needed media attention for the band - the fascinating human-interest story of how that oversight came about quite innocently, due to the sequence of events in which the song was written, inadequate communication amongst the principals, and the general befuddlement which often afflicts young artists. Modifying those credits might even enable the 3 creators of AWSoP to renegotiate the reportedly inadequate publishing deal that Gary and Keith now have, and all 3 might end up better off. Regardless of specific outcomes, that correction needs to be made simply because Matthew Fisher composed the immortal Organ Melody of AWSoP. I believe there's been a kind of (secular) 'karma' attached to this issue over all these years, and that its resolution would be enormously beneficial to Procol Harum and its admirers.

So in light of the above, here are some ways I think PH can finally do themselves justice:

New creations for the 90s and beyond: here's hoping the 3 creators of AWSoP will soon get together to compose some new timeless Procol Harum Masterpieces!

PH's music composers will need their Real instruments for inspiration. Matthew's lamented Hammond M102, which was lost in the 70s on Gary & Keith's watch, should be replaced, and Gary of course needs his Grand Piano! (Is that ugly little fiendish electric-piano thingy in the Dumpster yet?)

My choices to record the new material - Live, sans orchestra, preferably in a great empty concert hall: Gary, Matthew, Robin or Mick, Graham Broad, Dave Bronze or Matt Pegg.

It was great to hear Mick back with PH at Redhill! Even if Robin decides not to return, Mick can play the tunes with power, artistry and originality. Another Redhill revelation is that Graham has become a credible drummer for PH, demonstrating that BJ's musical legacy did NOT die with him, thanks to all the recordings.

Opening the vaults

(i.e. - Master Tapes from 'Bill Graham Presents' and those Radio & TV Stations!):

Ever since I saw that Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus video - a TV show from 1968 that looks and sounds as if it were made Yesterday on the Best state-of-the-art equipment - I knew that Procol's best Live recordings from the Vintage Years deserved the same treatment, that it was very possible for the masses to Finally Hear - and purchase in Droves - decent representations of the Vintage PH. My Recommendations for LIVE Vintage recordings:

Fillmore East, Easter Sunday, 1969. Electrifying! ... includes 'rarities': Going Down Slow, Stoke Poges and Skip Softly / Zarathustra, plus Killer performances of Conquistador, Kaleidoscope, SOB, Homburg, Wish Me Well and Cerdes. Excellent reproduction of the Hammond Sound, and also showcases the considerable Blues prowess of Gary, Matthew and Robin! BJ isn't prominent in this mix, but he sure is on subsequent tapes:

The following should be tweaked to emphasize the Drums, and could be released as a ** Tribute CD to BJ Wilson ** the finest drummer who ever walked the face of the earth, and the most underappreciated. They could also be included as Bonus Tracks to CD Reissues, especially of Broken Barricades, which is in demand, and Too Short to release without some Hot Bonuses!.

WPLJ-FM / New York (12 April 1971) - Broken Barricades; Memorial Drive; Luskus Delph; Simple Sister; Power Failure; Juicy John Pink. Not only does BJ really Shine here, but this is some of Robin Trower's BEST WORK EVER! All of these performances put the album versions to Shame!

British Biscuit Radio Show (London, 1976) - All This and More; and A Salty Dog - the finest recording of ASD I've Ever heard - brilliant drumming throughout, especially the lovely cymbal fadeout at the end.

Hofstra University, WLIR-FM / NY (May, 1977) - The Unquiet Zone - ending with one of BJ's greatest drum solos!

And then there are the Video Concerts - especially Welcome to the Grand Hotel (Belgian TV, 1973) and Rockpalast (German TV, 1976), where BJ can be SEEN in all his glory. Not only are these extremely enjoyable concerts, but they can be invaluable to new generations of aspiring drummers who can use them for instruction and inspiration.

Enough to keep PH busy well into the 21st Century, methinks ...

Joan May


New Procol Harum music

21 Jul 1998

From: Dick McDermott <>

Procol Harum and Gary Brooker have created some of the best rock music in history. Their comeback in 1991 was sensational. Gary can still deliver the goods musically and it seems a waste if Procol doesn't record a new album. In the meantime we need some live recordings of the various incarnations of Procol released. Even if just through the fan clubs similar to Within Our House. Today's music is boring and repetitive. We need new Procol Harum music.

Shine on again!


We love you

Fri, 31 Jul 1998

From: <unknown>

Let's get Procol Harum back to the Santa Monica civic or the house of blues. Before the end of the year. I can't stand the silence! Shine on!!


Can I have a ticket for the next gig?

Mon, 24 Aug 1998

From: <>

Well let's have another go ... how about an appearance at Cropredy next year of Broad / Pegg or Copping / Fisher / Grabham or Whitehorn and yer man? a ceremonial get together of the faithful could be organised at some appropriate not too distant spot on the night of and prior to such an event



Give the States a chance, too!

Mon, 24 Aug 1998

From: Edward Russo <>

Must wholeheartedly agree with 'Ticket for the Next...'. The line-up of Fisher, Copping & Grabham sounds fine to me! I'm certain there would be sufficient interest for both an East AND West Coast USA gathering along the lines of Redhill.

Every now and then ... we need Procol Harum music!


Gary, Gazza, More!

03 Sep 1998

From: <>

Yes, I'm one of those ... I just can't get enough. Every now and then I just need some Procol Harum music! Back in 'the golden decade' my hunger used to be fed at least once a year, but these days we Procoholics (Procoloholics?) search and wait and hope for that familiar musical oasis that used to be so refreshing and invigorating in days past. Oh sure, we've had a taste here and there recently but - gee, we could use more!

Gary! Gazza! Anybody! Old material, new music (!), live recordings ... anything! Gary, you know that there's a predictable, built-in audience that will snap it up! OK, not the biggest audience in the world, but ... if you record it ... they will come!

Bert Saraco, New York



One More time

Sat, 28 Nov 1998

From: Jeff Levine <>

If Only Procol Harum will do another album and tour the US just 'One More Time'. I always check this site daily for news on my favourite band. Procol Harum has been more than a band for me, they have been part of my life for more than 25 years. 28 to be exact. I always crave for one more tour and album each time they finish a tour. I guess I am reaching asking for one more. When there rennin album came out and they toured, my wish came true. I never saw them with Matthew until then. Then they toured again in 95. What more could I ask for.

Well I am asking for 'One More time'. I know that I am not alone and promise I won't ask again. Yeah right. So we are waiting Gary, Matt, Keith let get in the studio and on the road.


Starved ... adrift on a sea of contemporary radio drizzle ... Heeeeeelp!

Sun, 18 Oct 1998

From: Larry Pennisi <>

Gary, Keith,

The time has come. As we approach the millennium, it would be the ultimate thrill to usher it in with new music from Procol Harum. I have been kept alive for the past 30 odd years, thanks to a greater degree by your words and music. Many of us have. If not for Procol Harum, I may never have embarked on the same path as a keyboard player and would be forever lost. Can we expect a gift of gifts as we approach 2000?

Larry Pennisi



Mon, 19 Oct 1998

From: <>

Alright - Joan May has goaded me into writing (and no, Gary, I'm not one of the same 15 fans over and over again - although I do read the news section of this site almost every day).

So, here goes: of course it would be great to have new albums (er, CDs) and a new tour. Those of us in the States feel particularly deprived. Would any fans out there help to finance a tour? Perhaps by donating a plane ticket, or finding a suitable church which could be hired inexpensively? Putting our money and our time where our mouths are might work ...


Grand Hotel, revisited

Sun, 08 Nov 1998

From: <>

I've just bought Grand Hotel on CD, some twenty-six (?) years after I bought the album.

I'd completely forgotten just how much wonderful music there is here. The sad part is that it's all buried beneath a really muddied sound.

It'd be brilliant if someone got hold of the original masters and polished it up. It doesn't begin to do it justice to see it being issued like this.


Procol Down Under

Tue, 10 Nov 1998

From: Dennis Grant <>

How about a PH Tour in the Land Down Under or at least GB and friends. Keep up the fine work GB, we are interested and watching from far away


Dennis, Australia


A Brooker / Reid solo album

Wed, 11 Nov 1998

From: Gene McSweeney <>

I'd love to see a new solo album with Gary on piano doing some new Brooker / Reid tunes. Sparse kind of stuff ... perhaps just piano and vocals. Growing a bit older brings new perspectives on life and I 'd like to hear those perspectives. I'm a fishing fan as is Gary and well ... a fishing song or two would be sweet as in The Angler.

Shine On



Glad you're visiting

12 Nov 1998

From: Pat Hickey <>

Hey, what great news to hear from the 'father' of Procol Harum himself. Unfortunately, I can't make it to the concert (don't now nor never did have the funds to travel to Europe - oh but how I wish!). Gary, continue your contributions to '90s music. You're just half-way through your life ('is just like a beanstalk, isn't it?'

Pat Hickey Asheville NC


Hey, If PH Comes to the US of A, Don't Forget AMERICA

12 Nov 1998

From: Larry Eskridge <>

Just a note to Gary and all concerned with BtP,

If a revivified PH could be persuaded to come back to these United States for a Redhill-type event(s), all the gravy shouldn't be limited to the folks on the two coasts. Don't forget the Heartland! Even if ONE mere concert was to be considered, a good argument could be made for Chicago both in terms of 1) central US location; 2) prime air connections via O'Hare Airport (the world's busiest airport, nat'cherly); 3) the availability of some classic venues which offer themselves as possible sites.

C'mon, Gar'!

Larry Eskridge


Gary and Keith: If we knew then what we know now!

15 Nov 1998

From: Richard Beck <>

A shameless appeal to Gary and Keith and all PH alumni

Gentlemen, one and all,

Just a few facts from the rank and file of your fans.

Your music touched and captivated us all in a profound way. We bought all of your records and attended every concert within our reach. At each step of the way we felt that your music would finally break through to mainstream popularity and secure proper recognition for its unique and innovative qualities. We sat in awe of the incredible power of your live performances, which surpassed that of all of your contemporaries.

Your songs have stood the test of time and remain as compelling and as engaging as any we shall ever hear. All of us who follow your music here at BtP and elsewhere on the internet can attest to the messages from new fans of all ages who have expressed their delight at discovering your music decades later and they marvel at its timeless qualities.

We bemoan the general artistic wasteland of contemporary music and we wonder where the Procol Harums of the future will come from. Our nostalgia reflects the hunger in our hearts. It is no wonder to us that your music retains its firm grip upon our very souls. As the death of BJ Wilson has left a certain void in the Procol legacy, so has a void persisted in that place that your music has filled in our hearts and minds.

If we had known all of these things, then we would have realized the mortality of Procol Harum 'the band' and would have understood that just buying your records and concert tickets would never be enough to sustain you all in your quest for an enduring artistic and commercial success. We should not have been so secure in our complacency - assuming that your music would be discovered and embraced by everyone within earshot. We should have supported and encouraged and promoted you THEN, with same fervor as we NOW express in promoting your legacy as a band, as well as your solo endeavors.

So here it is, in a nutshell. As you pursue your current careers and leisure activities, (God knows we have ALL worked hard for whatever we have today) Please give a thought now and then to the fact that we miss you. We want to hear whatever you choose to give us. New recordings. Archival performances. Classic live concerts. New songs. Old songs.

For every individual PH fan who posts such internet messages as these, there are a hundred who do not. For every internet fan who visits or observes at this website with silent interest there are thousands more who are not connected to the internet. And as we ALL go about our own respective daily careers and leisure pursuits we occasionally give a thought to immense pleasure and satisfaction that we have derived from the words of Keith, and the music of Gary and ALL of the Redhill gang, then and now. We are your fans. We wish you well. We wish for more. You owe us nothing beyond what you have already given us. But we wonder if Still There'll Be More?

In the heartland there truly IS a dream in every home. I have just shared one of mine.



The Redhill Gang must ride again!

17 Nov 1998

From: Bert Saraco <>

Dittoes and 'amen!' to this posting! As one of the fortunate group of fans that got to see PH live through all three guitarists of the 'golden decade' ... it's not easy going through musical cold turkey! If 'The Threetles' could pick up one of John Lennon's raw demos and come up with a good finished song or two, then why not some new 'old' PH material? That is, beside the release of more live concert material and 'lost' studio gems! To (mis)quote a certain movie about baseball ... if you release it, they will come! Let's face it, this would be irresistible to any PH addict!


Still, there'll be more, (and for Pete's sake don't make me beg)

17 Nov 1998

From: Pierre Godbout <>

What a treat it would be to see and listen to Procol Harum live in concert ... One More Time. Equally so would be to hear either some new recordings or new arrangements of older ones.

As a life long fanatic of PH, I would most certainly appreciate any kind of initiative to kick-start something ... and see it through.

Being most fortunate in having seen the live show at the Spectrum in Montreal 1991, PH was not simply about nostalgia but this show was exemplaire, it was polished, tight, perfected in every sense and above all, the most entertaining live concert I've ever witnessed.

... for the love of God, don't make me beg, give us more!!



Salutations, an invitation, a question, a plea

20 Nov 1998 22:23:19 GMT

From: Xyra <>

For the band, but all eyes, minds and spirits welcome! Warmest Salutations!

First of all, I would like to thank Procol Harum for the wonderful musical achievements they have shared with the world, over the years! The music is still being enjoyed today, by people who remember, and those are discovering the band, anew!

As a Chanteuse / songwriter, with a classical background, I can appreciate how much passion and effort must have gone your compositions!

It must have been a struggle, even when you began, as standard Rock music seemed to rein, even then. I feel there may have more respect and interest for real musicianship from industry, in the 60s / early 70s ... but I would like to know what YOUR recollections and opinions are on THAT!

My band, Xyra & Verborgen, have come forth with a genre I have recently entitled - 'Cabaret Rock Nouveau'. Two years ago, we began as a trio, and have since grown to 7: vocals, piano, Spanish or electric guitar, acoustic or electric cello, drums & percussion, fretless bass, and multiwinds. 'Gulp ...'

My hope is that you might consider allowing us to open for you, should you tour again. We have discovered a venue, possibly suitable, should you find yourselves in the DC metropolitan area.

Regardless, we would relish the opportunity to experience your music, LIVE! Hope you will consider performing again, as the world is in desperate need of more good music - especially over the airwaves, of course! (This is something we humbly (or bombastically) aspire to achieve, in our Anti-Alternative, Alternative way.)

Please check out our website! Thereon, is a link to 3 songs from our latest CD: Where Glass Birds Fly!

Take Care ... and thank you, again!

LOVE ... And Abundant Blessings -

In music,



Writing a simple story: Filling in the discographic gaps

05 Dec 1998

From: Jason M. Scruton <>

Glad to see that Liquorice John Death is making its way to the CD racks of many a Procol fan thanks to Gary and Chris's digging through the vaults. If the sales for this item are indeed brisk and cover all the appropriate cost of manufacture (and a lil' extra pocket money to boot, well ... then this might give Procol in all its incarnations substantive incentive (MONEY :)) to unleash more items waiting in the archives. I think the natural progression from LJD (not to mention the Paramounts EMI CD a while ago) should be something like this:

0. Liquorice John Death was a well known and oft bootlegged piece of the Procol history: ought to be great if I can afford it.

1. What every fan drools for, something live from the Fisher era ... I wonder where the master tapes are for the slightly less well known Fillmore show (a.k.a. Easter Island / Sunday boot?)? If those could be processed with the care they deserve, that would make a great thingamabob. Not to mention the liner notes could have that pic of Procol at the Fillmore seen in the yet-to-be-completed - Whiter Shade of Pale video by Irving Scott-Levine. Or some short comments on the material from the surviving members - (I wonder what Trower would think of those performances these days?)

2. Or a more esoteric out-takes CD, with that 'Forgotten EP' mentioned in the tribute to BJ by his friend which kicked off the website - almost everyone singing a ditty if I believe.

3. A Compilation of the best live performances by the Grand Hotel (incl. Ball) / Something Magic line-up if the tapes for something like that exist. Could even throw in the This Old Dog from the latter's live shows in particular and the great Pandora's Box / Robe of Silk / Piggy Pig Pig medley as heard on the Felt Forum Boot

Also, do any outtakes exists from GH / EBF / P'sN / SM sessions? Personally, I appreciate the courage to put out re-issues of the 1st Procol disc w / extra tracks and others, but my budget, nor my sense of disliking redundancy in a collection, just cannot handle the duplications. Gadzooks! Sigh ... Mayhaps, all 3 of the above possibilities could make a very nice 3 / 4 CD boxed set for next December.

Quite rightly so, Jason


Fill(more)-ing in the gaps - YES!

Date: Sat, 05 Dec 1998 22:21:43 GMT

From: Bert Saraco <>

Good thoughts, Jason! I'm sure all PH fans agree ... and we need to keep saying it! I guess that's what this page is all about, isn't it? Gee, I'm glad that somebody else remembers the Pegasus / Robe / Piggy medley! I thought that Robe was a particularly 'signature' composition for PH in style and lyric. A great song, for those of you who never had the chance to hear it, that had all of the kind of chord progressions, mood and playing that define what Procol Harum is / was all about. A real showpiece, if you ask me! This needs to be out in some format for us all to enjoy. Hey, all you fans that have ever heard this song - let's get behind it and let the boys know that we're ready to hear it be done justice! If Robe isn't an instant CLASSIC ... well, it is.


... taking turns in trying to pass them on

08 Dec 1998

From: Mel Tullgren <>

Dear Gary, Keith:

Sitting staring at my 1500+ CD collection, and reflecting on my 10,000 or so LP collection of years past, I often play games of what's best, etc. Best is quite a relative idea. I DO know what is always there and will always be there, both in the CD changer and in my head. House of the Rising Sun, Strawberry Fields Forever, Whiter Shade of Pale, etc. Of all the music I've listened to over the years, I always come back to Whiter Shade of Pale, and Procol Harum as a whole. Old friends for over 30 years. I DO listen to music of today {at least the few good things you can find.} But I do listen to music of yesterday also, I listen to music of long ago, and music of tomorrow, I listen to everything.

The point is yes, there needs to be more. A new CD of tunes would be fantastic. Also, anything from the archives is a must also. Just continue to give us your incredible voice Gary, and your insights Keith, the Millennium {I know this is overdone} is approaching, and if ever there was a time to pass something on, while as corny as it sounds, this is the time.




Thanks for your autograph

Mon, 14 Dec 1998

From: Gerry York <>

Mr Brooker:

I had the delight of seeing Procol Harum in Pompano Beach Florida in the summer of 1995. A fishing buddy of yours was kind enough to let me backstage, and I got your autograph and Matthew Fisher's. Thank you! Then I drove 5 hours back home to Orlando!

I've seen PH in 1974 and 1995, and it is my earnest hope there are more concerts and recordings to come. Thank you for all the music you've done so far! God Bless You and yours this Holiday Season.

Gerard York Box 10714 Tallahassee, Florida 323022714


Greetings and a thank you

Wed, 16 Dec 1998

From: Joe Crachiola <>

To Gary B. and company: What a thrill it is to have found this website and, through the magic of the cyber world, to come in contact with so many people who have appreciated your wonderful music all these years. I have many good memories of your concerts at the Grande Ballroom in Detroit, and at Meadowbrook Theatre at Oakland University (north of Detroit). That show in particular will be forever etched in my grey matter as one of the finest musical experiences of my life.

Enough with memories. The music is still relevant. A lot of the music of the sixties sounds like 'oldies'. Your music sounds as new now as it did thirty years ago. It truly is timeless. It takes me to a higher spiritual / intellectual plane. Keith Richards once said that rock and roll should be listened to from the neck down. In many cases that is true, but your music appeals to that which is above the neck, as well as the rest of the body and soul. So, this is a rather wordy attempt at saying 'thank you' for all that you have given us. If there is a PH reunion, and I hope that there will be, don't forget Detroit.


Joe Crachiola

Detroit, Michigan


Hoping ...

16 Dec 1998

From: Kerry W. Holloway <>

Hi Gary and all, I'm looking forward to seeing you at the Mohegan Sun in February. I will not try to duplicate all the previous messages and requests to you, They speak for themselves and reflect the thoughts and feelings of many. But I am truly hoping ...

After all, Procol Harum and their music are a cornerstone of my existence!

Kerry W. Holloway Quaker Hill, CT, USA



Wed, 16 Dec 1998

From: <unknown>

Along with so many others you release new material and old footage, remember there are a lot of your fans who were too young to see you the first time around. And your 'prodigal' tour was wonderful (even the non-Procolites were amazed). Thanks for all the great years of music, if there is more I certainly would love to hear it.

endless thanks for the timeless music


A World Without Procol

16 Dec 1998


A world without Procol is not a world I would desire to exist in. The profundity of the work, both in lyric content, and its wonderful contrapuntal musical forms have added real art to the world. If you have more to offer please share it with us. It is so rare.


New Generation Procol Fan

16 Dec 1998

From: Robert McCarthy <>

Mr Brooker Sir, I've got my dad to thank for getting to know your music - he says he's got every recording! He took me to Redhill last year and we have two 'Within our house' CDs in the house now (mine is signed though). Dad is taking me to Guildford on Friday and I hope you will arrange more concerts soon, as I think I'm now a bigger fan than even my dad!

Robert McCarthy, aged 13, Chessington, Surrey.


It would mean so much ...

Wed, 16 Dec 1998

From: Larry Pennisi <>


A new Procol album would be one of the most joyous events to end this century with. It would be fitting and just soooooo right.


Procol Harum Alive!

16 Dec 1998

From: <>

Hats off the Commander! We can still buy many Procol's best compilations but many of us would like to see the best Procol compilation but in live version! Procol Harum has never recorded non orchestra live album. It is intelligible that such recording is the best compilation, additionally that Procol sounds gorgeously during every concerts. I was witness of this four times in my life and always me and my friend regretted that there is not any new live Procol album [I think Procol Harum Alive is a good title]. Of course we all are still looking forward to a new original album with impatience, and we do hope it will be soon. I believe this new album will see the light of the day before 2000 year. But in meanwhile it would be great surprise to see Procol on stage and buy desired live album . We need no heroine but new Procol music! Merry Christmas and Happy New (Album) Year!



Procol for those of us who missed them the first time around

17 Dec 1998

From: Annabel Gill <>

Given that the average Procol Harum fan tends to be a middle aged man, I'm quite an exception. I'm a sixteen-year-old girl, who's been acquainted with the band since A Christmas Camel was my favourite song at the age of four. I now own all of their albums many times over, as well as a number of bootlegs, singles, and random vinyl compilations, not to mention a Paramounts LP.

Since I'm so young, I've never had the opportunity to see the band live, although I did see Gary with Ringo's All-Starr Band in 1997, and they were great. It would be a huge thrill for me if some incarnation of Procol were to come around to near where I live (North-eastern coast of the U.S.). Like most of the fans here, I'd obviously love to see a new album, as well, but if nothing else it would be great if the band were to release some live material from the sixties / early seventies. I have the bootleg The Elusive Procol Harum on vinyl, and some of the material on there is sublime, so it'd be wonderful to see a legitimate CD release of such stuff.

From all these messages, I'm sure the band can see that they have a sizeable fan base, and any new efforts would be met with great enthusiasm. Also, in my opinion, a new album that is classic Procol quality and is promoted properly could easily gain new fans of a younger generation, not to mention adding a sorely needed spark of greatness to a vacuous and pathetic music industry.

Annabel Gill


Blue 'bout Danube

17 Dec 1998

From: <>

To Gary who keeps the key. Today I stopped by the St. Louis (Missouri USA) Main public library to return a book. They were having an open house with coffee, cookies and a piano player, singer. These ladies were playing Christmas songs with class and taste. I sat down to listen and after a few nice ditties the piano started up Blue Danube. It was a sweet, gentle version and warmed my heart on a cold winter day. It reminded me of another recording of that waltz that I heard on a now defunct bootleg record album I bought in Seattle WA. in 1979. Procol Harum in 5 piece regalia. Never sounded better except the quality of the record was poor.

If it's in a can somewhere and you can find it (I read somewhere it was recorded once in a studio in Austria), let it out so we can hear it. Who will search for treasure trove? Merry whiskers and pints!

An old friend from Edwardsville, Jim.


Blue Danube - and more

17 Dec 1998

From: Matthew Cottrell <>

Just days ago, I received a tape which included Blue Danube (British Biscuit version) from another respondent to this site. It never ceases to amaze me how many people around the world keep and treasure recordings of highly variable quality, just because the music means so much to them. Yes, a new tour would be wonderful - but it really only serves such a few fans. New Procol Harum material: wonderful also. But to close out the millennium with clean, legal, royalty-bearing releases of wonderful material like Blue Danube (and scores of others) would perhaps be the best. Another copy of AWSoP is always a good thing, of course, but let's hear the rest of the glorious repertoire!


Thanks for the music ...

17 Dec 1998

From: Alan Semok <>

To Gary and Keith, and all the other Procols ... Without a doubt, the best holiday gift of all to your legion of fans would be news of a new Procol project, be it a CD of new material, a live CD, or best of all, a tour. I've been a fan since the very beginning, but most especially after seeing the band on the Smothers Brothers Show around 1970 or so. That rendition of A Salty Dog sent shivers up my spine and had me hooked.

I managed to catch the band several times during the '70s and was delighted and surprised when I was once again afforded the opportunity to hear my favorite band live during the 1995 tour. The show I saw at Westbury Music Fair was not only a treat because of the chance to hear my favorites live once more, but even more so a treat because of the quality of what I was hearing. I went to the show with some dread, thinking that it could never be the same as the classic years ... but how wrong I was; what I saw was a Procol Harum that equalled (and in many ways surpassed) the best shows I saw in the 1970s.

Please reassure us that Redhill was not Procol's swan song!!


I just poured my heart out and ...

17 Dec 1998

From: Bert Saraco <>

Commander, Keith & Company,

I just poured my heart out about you guys (in the Procol Harum context, mind you - I'm not that way) and my connection to the net got severed! Down the drain! So let me say it in a more direct way - What you see on this site is the tip of the iceberg. I just barely made it to computer semi-literacy myself - I know that there are a lot of PH fans that have never touched a computer and they would all join in and say ...

MORE, MORE, MORE! Live vintage recordings! Studio work, new or old! As time passes, Procol's place in popular music history is becoming more and more obvious! Because you never caved-in to trendiness, the recognition comes in retrospect. I suppose it's good to be part of the 'society of fans' that always knew and recognised the greatness of the band!

Well, we're waiting, Gazza! We're out here.

Gee, the stuff that I lost to cyber-space was a lot more articulate than this. Trust me. We love you guys.


Nothing but the truth

17 Dec 1998

From: captain eyes <>

You can add my voice to those who request Mr. Brooker and company to release new material. Like everyone else it is hard to count the number of people I have 'turned on' to Procol Harum and Mr. Brooker's solo albums. There is indeed a market for your music here in the U.S. and with the information available on the net fans can find out about new releases and performances, instead of relying on the mass media or pure happenstance for information. Therefore I suggest if you were to release a new album it would probably be more successful than ever. Certainly all us hard-core fans will drag some non-Procolites along with us. Its ok they always turn into neo-Procolites after the second or third song actually I am still introducing people to Procol music. Most again turn into neo-Procolites, going out to 'get the collection'.

Anyway Mr. Brooker with the state of the music machine these days I am sure any new release would be a breath of fresh air and there is a large following of otherwise rational people who will support what new offerings you have to give, and probably travel a ridiculous amount of miles too see you live. Speaking of which so many people were just too young to see you live to appreciate that experience. I think you would bolster new support of the younger people if they were to hear you live. No gushing praise intended but you are one of the very few vocalists who sounds better live than in a studio with all its gadgetry. Whatever you do, thanks for the mountain of music. and rest assured it is being passed along to the next generation.

All of the above is nothing but the truth.


I sat me down to write a simple request ...

Procol people everywhere ...

Here I am again, even though the words that I use are pretentious and make me cringe with embarrassment (this must be some kind of sickness - call Dr. Robert!). 'Notice the phrases that crop up again and again? 'Breath of fresh air,' 'best live band ever,' etc. Guys, by now I'm sure you realize that there's a bunch of half-crazed people out here that can only be medicated by some Procol Harum!

By the way, my three children (9, 13 and 17) have all come to appreciate your music! My oldest son just let me know that we'd better have some Procol ready to go for his trip to college! 'Mighty proud of that boy!

You see, great music isn't tied to a particular decade. That's why there will always be new Procol fans ... and why the old ones stay.

Oh, did I forget to add? ... Commander! We're lost at sea! Toss us a musical life preserver every now and then!

Ahoy! - Bert Saraco


Too much sea between us ...

17 Dec 1998

Marvin <>


I won't be able to make it to the Guildford / Southend shows, a little obstacle called the 'atlantic ocean' being in the way. But I hope to attend one of the upcoming Ringo shows in NYC.

Still, it would be better to see a show in which you sing more than 4 Procol songs



New Procol

18 Dec 1998

Mike Lee <>

With the talent that the Procol boys have - ie Redhill, a virtually live undubbed showcase has got to be worth the investment surely - even a line dance number with Pete Solley on fiddle - the talent is endless - please utilise it.



A Message in the Numbers

18 Dec 1998

From: Roland Clare

The messages in this forum, urging Procol back into activity on stage and on disc, are a telling testimony to the passion and dedication of a few literate, online fans.

But this must represent only a tiny proportion of the true Harum fan-base.

The most reassuring and encouraging message for Brooker, Fisher and Reid must surely be in the huge sales of recent compilations and reissues.

Though many of us undoubtedly have the early albums on CD in several versions already, those Westside records continue to sell and sell: 20,000 copies of the triple Anthology CD, 5,000 each of the re-issued Procol Harum and Shine on Brightly '... plus!' albums.

Surely this is an indication of the level of sales that might be expected for a new record or a judicious 'exhumation' of a classic live set or collage of rarities, provided it were given adequate promotion (which The Prodigal Stranger emphatically didn't receive in Europe).

For what it's worth, Procol Harum can rely on the continuing energy and commitment of the 'Beyond the Pale' team to promote and extol, worldwide and instantaneously, any future activity of the band that has meant so much to so many of us.

So if you read this far, Gary ... Happy Christmas! ... and please make it happen in 1999 !


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