Grand Union (album)

Grand Union (album)

Infobox Album
Name = Grand Union
Type = studio
Longtype =
Artist = Frank Tovey

Released = 1991
Recorded = 1991
Genre = Folk, Rock & Irish
Length =
Label = Mute Records
Producer = Mass produced
Reviews =
Last album = Tyranny & the Hired Hand
This album = Grand Union
Next album = Worried Men in Second Hand Suits

"Grand Union" was released in 1991. The album was recorded at Sawmills Studio in Cornwall and at WW1, Harrow Road, London.

Background History

Grand Union was written by Frank Tovey as an autobiographical album based on a set of coincidences that happened within his life. Frank described the album as a ‘metaphoric vehicle’. He found that people and places involved in his music were located around the Grand Union Canal in London; including Mute Records, whose premises back on to the Grand Union Canal in the Harrow Road. [Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey, 2006] All the songs were written by Frank on acoustic guitar becoming rockier when recorded with additional bass and drums. Pressure was taken off of Frank through working with other musicians. Frank would turn up at rehearsals with an acoustic guitar and completed songs. The other musicians would then just join in; Frank never had to tell them what to play. He found this way of working really refreshing. [Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey, 2006] At the time Frank had began working with the Pyros. Originally from Ireland they had moved to London they began working with Frank after meeting up at Hermes Point (near the Harrow Road), where the Pyros were then living, they used to sit down and play some songs from Frank’s Tyranny and the Hired Hand album. After getting on well they worked with Frank for the next couple of years. This was the beginning of what became Frank Tovey and the Pyros. [Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey, 2006] All the time they worked with Frank, the Pyros became more electric while Frank became more folky. Acoustic instruments were used to form the basis with some traditional Irish music used to serve the whole recording. Frank was full of ideas, one being the building of a solid body, electric five string banjo for the recording of the album. Somewhere in the middle the ideas and influences met and made the Grand Union album. [Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey, 2006] The songs included stories and ideas from the area around the Grand Union canal including ‘Bad day in Bow Creek’ which runs adjacent to the River Thames; and ‘Passing Through’ about the building of a motorway through an area where Frank lived whilst growing up. ‘Bethnal Green tube disaster’ tells his Mother’s story of when during the Blitz of London her father had taken her to the underground station to shelter from the bombing. In the blackout one of her shoes fell off and while searching for it avoided a terrible event that occurred that night. The panic stricken crowd who were rushing underground tumbled on the stairs and many people were crushed to death. Frank lived in Bethnal Green until he was five years of age. IKB (RIP) tells the story of Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s death. Brunel is buried at Kensal Green next to the Grand Union canal. The main single released from the album was ‘The Liberty Tree’. The video of ‘The Liberty Tree’ was filmed at Mudchute Farm on the Isle of Dogs. This is the same location where the cover artwork was shot of Frank riding a horse in front of Canary Wharf. The video was directed by Frank Tovey and Derrek Santini. [Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey, 2006] ‘The Liberty Tree’ throws up a couple odd coincidences. The history of The Liberty tree comes from America. The British made the Liberty Tree an object of ridicule. Soldiers tarred and feathered a man named Ditson, and forced him to march in front of the tree. Americans would hang British officers in effigy form from the tree. Frank often appeared tarred and feathered (Gag album cover) and also wrote and sang many lyrics about hanging (Sam Hall) just a coincidence I am sure. [Fad Gadget by Frank Tovey Booklet, 2006]

Track listing

# Bad day in Bow Creek
# When the Victim Takes the Tyrant's Place
# Passing Through
# Bethnal Green Tube Disaster
# Cities of the plain
# Fallen angel
# The Liberty Tree
# One November morning
# The great attractor


Other musicians recording with Frank Tovey were [The Pyros] consisting of:
*Paul Rodden - Solid body 5-string electric banjo, 5-string acoustic banjo and acoustic guitar.
*John Cutliffe - 5-string electric bass, acoustic guitar and strings.

Guest musicians included:
*Charlie Llewellyn - Drums, percussion and harmonium
*Steve Smith - Organ, harmonium, piano
*Tracey Booth - Bodhran.
*Elliot Carnegie - Jaws Harp
*Tozie Lynch - Bones


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Grand Guignol (album) — Infobox Album Name = Grand Guignol Type = Album Artist = Naked City Released = 1992 Recorded = 1989 and 1992 Genre = Free jazz Experimental rock Jazzcore Reviews = * Allmusic Rating|4|5 [… …   Wikipedia

  • Grand Union — may refer to: * Grand Union (dance group), a New York dance group * The Grand Union Canal in England * The Grand Union Flag, the first flag of the United States * Skewbald (band), a band also known as Skewbald/Grand Union * Grand Union (stores),… …   Wikipedia

  • Grand National (disambiguation) — The term Grand National can refer to many things, including:*Grand National, an English horse race *the second name of NASCAR s Sprint Cup series, which was known as the Grand National from 1950 to 1971. *NASCAR s second tier series known as the… …   Wikipedia

  • Union Street — Album par Erasure Sortie 3 avril 2006 Enregistrement 2003 Durée 43:28 Genre chant et musique acoustique Producteur …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Grand Slam — may refer to:In competition: * Grand slam (baseball) * Grand Slam (curling) * Grand Slam (chess) * Grand Slam (golf) * Grand Slam (horse), a graded stakes race winning thoroughbred race horse. * Grand Slam (PBA) of the Philippine Basketball… …   Wikipedia

  • Grand Prix Cycliste de l'Humanité — Infobox compétition sportive Grand Prix Cycliste de l Humanité Création 1927 Organisateur(s) Journal L Humanité et FSGT Éditions 45 Catégorie Course internationale …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna of Russia — Infobox Russian Royalty|grand duchess name = Tatiana Nikolaievna title =Grand Duchess Tatiana of Russia caption = Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna in 1914. imperial house = flagicon|Russian Empire|1858 House of Romanov father =Nicholas II of… …   Wikipedia

  • Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia — Infobox Russian Royalty|grand duchess name = Anastasia Nikolaevna title =Grand Duchess Anastasia of Russia caption = imperial house = flagicon|Russian Empire|1858 House of Romanov father =Nicholas II of Russia mother =Alexandra Fyodorovna of… …   Wikipedia

  • Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Russia (1890–1958) — Infobox Russian Royalty|grand duchess name = Maria Pavlovna title =Duchess of Södermanland Princess Sergei Mikhailovich Putiatin imgw = 180px caption = Maria Pavlovna photographed in 1912. spouse = Prince Wilhelm, Duke of Södermanland Prince… …   Wikipedia

  • Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna of Russia — For other people of the same name, see Grand Duchess Olga of Russia. Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna Spouse …   Wikipedia