Procol Harum: They Improvise
Dave Finkle, Record World, 11 November 1967
NEW YORK—There is a cat tripping the light fandango somewhere in England named Procol Harum.
The distinction this cat has is that a rock group was named after it, and now it has something to tell its grandkittens.
In the meantime the Procol Harum, now out on A&M with Homburg, is creeping around the world on little cat feet ‘trying to establish a group’, as Gary Brooker, co-founder of the Harum, modestly told Record World last week.
The group is presently concluding an introductory tour in the States and will return to England for their first tour in their homeland. And then back to the states in February for an extended college turn.
Group Modus Operandi
The group modus operandi as voiced at Record World offices is, ‘We don't record specifically for singles or 'B' sides or albums; we record generally and then decide how we'll release it. We don't think about the record we recorded last week. That was last week. What we're interested in is of the moment.’
Of this moment the group is trying to get in a Smothers Brothers TV spot and a Johnny Carson show before disappearing behind the whiter shade of the Atlantic ocean.
And, although listeners to Procol Harum music could swear they hear echoes of classics like Bach fugues, etc., the group contends it is not influenced by the classics. Other co-founder Keith Reed [sic] said, ‘We just improvise. What you hear is what the organist is thinking. Not classical music.’
(thanks, Paul Wolfe, for the scan)
More PH history in print