Songs Of The Day 2/16/2015: The Alan Bown Set - "Gonna Fix You Good (Everytime You're Bad)" + "I Really, Really Care"

None of the Puns I Came Up With For "Pye" Felt Right: Pye Records started in 1896 in Cambridge University. Well, indirectly. That was when William George Pye started making scientific instruments out of Cambridge’s Cavendish’s Laboratory. Things went well. Skip to 1955. Pye made enough of a name for itself that it branched out into making records. They licensed a lot of records from the United States for consumption in the U.K., mainly R&B and blues music, but they also signed the great skiffle artist Lonnie Donegan, who became the most successful British musician until the Beatles showed up.

Throughout the ‘60s Pye released a combination of admirably square records, and a few that rang very true – but very quickly – with preponderant musical sentiments of the soul, psychedelic and rock music that had gained legitimacy. Yet they still weren’t above throwing out a potential Eurovision Song Contest winner, and don’t even forget that Pye was the first label to unleash “Kung Fu Fighting” upon the world. They were a fascinating catch-all label that had a certain, undefinable flavor, and a lot of very fun music. And worse. This week I’m throwing out six songs from Pye Records’ post-Beatles heyday that I’ve decided to have implanted via microtechnology perfected by – you guessed it, William George Pye.

I knew nothing about the Alan Bown Set when I decided upon this week’s theme; now I’m letting them make the next few major life decisions for me. This was an amazing second-tier R&B and rock band who went through a few permutations, dabbling in everything from Northern Soul to Midwestern psychedelia. Bown was kind of like the Roger Corman of ’70s British musicians: People associated with him went on to play with Supertramp and King Crimson. Another one went on to become Robert Palmer. Well, he was already Robert Palmer when he played with Bown, but later on he was really Robert Palmer. One of their most successful singles was “Gonna Fix You Good (Everytime You’re Bad),” but the B-side “I Really, Really Care” was so galvanizing I decided to throw them both up here today. This is the instant infection Pye Records could hurl at us if they felt in the mood. Unfortunately Bown's jaw-detaching theme to the French movie Jeu de Massacre couldn’t be featured because it wasn’t on Pye, but you can see what I just did there, right?
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