Roger Coulam (organ) (born 26 April 1944) formed the band in the autumn of 1969, with Madeline Bell (vocalist), Roger Cook (vocalist), Herbie Flowers (bassist), and Barry Morgan (drummer) (born November 1944, London died 1 November 2007). Most of the songs were written by Cook and Roger Greenaway.
Flowers, Morgan and the guitarist Alan Parker all worked with Coulam at London's Morgan Studios. The four of them recorded several backing tracks, with which Coulam approached soul singer Bell and Greenaway (who had been half of David and Jonathan) as vocalists. Greenaway declined, but put forward Cook (the other half of David and Jonathan).
|Blue Mink 1970|
The band's second album and their third single released on Philips in September 1970 were entitled Our World (the album was released as Real Mink in the U.S.). The band's next single release was "The Banner Man" on Regal Zonophone in the spring of 1971. It reached #3 in the UK chart. The members' other projects now took priority until January 1972 when Blue Mink played two weeks at The Talk Of The Town club in London. Recordings from this engagement were released that March as the album Live at the Talk Of The Town simultaneously with the studio album A Time Of Change (renamed from Harvest to avoid confusion with Neil Young's new LP).
Ray Cooper (drums) and Anne Odell (keyboards) joined the band that summer and played on the single "Stay With Me" which charted at #11 in November 1972. By the time of Blue Mink's fourth album, Only When I Laugh, glam rock was supplanting the lighter pop sound of the previous few years. The associated single, "By The Devil (I Was Tempted)", written by Guy Fletcher and Doug Flett, only reached #26 and the Top 10 single "Randy" in June 1973 was their last success.
Their final album, Fruity, (January 1974) and the singles "Quackers" (January 1974) and "Get Up" (July 1974) failed, and the band split up that autumn after a farewell tour of the United States. Elton John was among the celebrities present to say goodbye, introducing the band onstage at The Troubadour in Los Angeles, California.
As a footnote, it is worth recording that when Capital Radio, one of the UK's first two independent local radio stations took to the air in London in 1973, the station identity jingles were written by Cook and Greenaway, performed by Blue Mink and orchestrated by George Martin. Appropriately, Madeline Bell had also sung the original jingles for Radio Caroline, the offshore pirate station that first went on-air in 1964, in the end successfully challenging the BBC's monopoly of British radio broadcasting.
|Madeline Bell & Roger Cook|
Was Blue Mink's 1970 song 'Melting Pot' racist?
(Phil Curtis, Life long love of music)
Not necessarily racist (I don't think in the song any particular race is privileged) , but to a modern listener, perhaps distinctly odd and rather disagreeable.
I remember in the early 1970s being played this song in school assemblies by earnest, politically correct and well-intentioned teachers. The “melting pot” hypothesis was regarded at the time as an enlightened solution to racial problems. The lyrics espouse how the world should become one big melting pot where different races and religions would be be mixed, "churning out coffee coloured people by the score", This refers to the supposed pigmentation of children after such racial mixing.
Its funny how things change. The thought of us all being the same fills me with the horrors. The benefits, or even the possibility, of a multicultural society had not been considered at this time. In 2017, we can rightly champion and celebrate diversity, and can recognise that being different need not stop us living happily together for our mutual benefit, so long as we apply a bit of mutual respect and toleration.
On a less serious note, you'll laugh your head off at the 'bogus news report' published in the New Biscuit Newspaper entitled "melting-pot-mass-killers-face-life-in-jail". Had me fooled for a brief moment ! Very clever and worth a look..
This post consists of MP3 (320kps) ripped from vinyl, and includes artwork for both Vinyl and CD
As an extra bonus, I've included 3 B-side singles "Good Morning Freedom", "Blue Mink" (an Instrumental) and "Our World" to add to the melting pot.
01. Melting Pot 3:54
02. Gidda Wadda Wobble 3:50
03. Gimme Reggae 3:13
04. But Not Forever 3:02
05. Chopin Up Stix 4:21
06. I Can Feel It Baby 4:32
07. Country Music 4:33
08. Mary Jane 3:19
09. Over The Top 6:23
Bonus B-Side Singles
10. Good Morning Freedom 2:54
11. Blue Mink 3:48
12. Our World 4:02
Roger Coulam - Keyboards
Madeline Bell - Vocals
Roger Cook - Vocals
Alan Parker - Guitar
Herbie Flowers - Bass
Barry Morgan - Drums
Blue Mink Link (110Mb)