When The Seekers disbanded in 1968, the Australian folk-pop group left behind a legacy of hit songs including "There'll Never Be Another You" and the Academy Award-nominated "Georgy Girl." Guitarist Keith Potger, however, wasn't ready to leave behind the group he had co-founded in 1962. In 1969, he announced the formation of The New Seekers. This iteration was based in Britain and decidedly more contemporary in sound than its predecessor. More surprisingly, Potger wouldn't perform in the group, but rather serve primarily in a behind-the-scenes capacity. Cherry Red's 7Ts imprint has brought the final two albums from the first version of The New Seekers to CD with the double-disc release of Together and Farewell Album, both originally issued on Polydor in 1974.
Together arrived in stores in March 1974 ironically just weeks after The New Seekers had announced their intentions to break up after an upcoming tour. The group had matched or arguably even surpassed the success of the original Seekers with such hits as "Never Ending Song of Love," "Beg Steal or Borrow," "Circles," a medley of The Who's "Pinball Wizard" and "See Me Feel Me," and especially the international smash "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing." But with the departure of Peter Doyle in June 1973, the group had begun to splinter. Doyle's replacement Peter Oliver joined Marty Kristian, Paul Layton, Lyn Paul and Eve Graham for "You Won't Find Another Fool Like Me," a U.K. chart-topper in early 1974. Penned by the hitmaking team of Tony Macaulay and Geoff Stephens, it was followed by another top five hit from the duo, "I'm Getting a Little Sentimental Over You." Both songs appeared on Together, itself a No. 12 entry on the U.K. Albums Chart.
The New Seekers' bright harmony sound was in abundance on Together, not only with the Macaulay/Stephens songs but with numerous covers of popular songs such as Blue Mink's "Melting Pot" (written by another distinguished team of British songwriters, Roger Cook and Roger Greenaway), Neil Diamond's "Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show," The Beatles' "Here, There and Everywhere," and medleys of Bette Midler's "Friends" with "With a Little Help from My Friends," and James Taylor's "Fire and Rain" with George Harrison's "My Sweet Lord" and the Godspell hit "Day by Day." Though not released in the U.S., Together was helmed by the American team of Michael Lloyd and Tommy Oliver. (The group's U.S. and U.K. releases would frequently diverge.) Four bonus tracks have been appended to Together: three non-LP singles, and the Albert Hammond/Mike Hazelwood-written "Down by the River" from the U.S.-only album Come Softly to Me.
The second album on 7Ts' new two-fer, Farewell Album, was released in August 1974 (three months after The New Seekers' break-up) and had less of an emphasis on familiar pop hits but the same big, bright, harmony pop sound. It was preceded by the single release of its opening track, Tony Macaulay and Keith Potger's "Sing Hallelujah." Macaulay (co-producer with Tommy Oliver) also supplied the pretty ballad "Somebody Warm Like Me" (sung by Marilyn McCoo on The 5th Dimension's Soul and Inspiration LP), a co-write with Roger Greenaway, "Oh My Joe," and one with Geoff Stephens, "All Put Together Kind of World." Two songs were culled from Paul Williams' songbook: "Inspiration" (co-written with Kenny Ascher) and "Perfect Love," which The New Seekers had previously cut on a U.S.-only LP and slightly reworked for Farewell. Four bonus tracks have been added to Farewell: two from the cheekily-named splinter group Peter, Paul and Marty from 1973-1974, and two from the solo Peter Doyle, also from 1973.
Various versions of both The Seekers and The New Seekers have proliferated over the years, but these two albums represent the close of the original chapter of the latter group's history. 7Ts' reissue of these long-unavailable albums includes a 20-page color booklet with new liner notes from Nic Culverwell, and images of the back covers of the original albums as well as related 45s and picture sleeves. James Bragg has remastered all tracks. Together /Farewell Album is available now at the links below!
CD 1: Together (Polydor LP SUPER 2383 264, 1974) and bonus tracks
- Friends Medley (Friends/With a Little Help from My Friends)
- You're the One
- Cryin' Time
- The Greatest Song I've Ever Heard
- I Get a Little Sentimental Over You
- Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show
- You Won't Find Another Fool Like Me
- Melting Pot
- Fire and Rain Medley (Fire and Rain/My Sweet Lord/Day by Day)
- Here, There and Everywhere
- Brand New Day
- Come On World
- Vado Via
- Dedicated to the One I Love
- Goodbye Is Just Another Word (Polydor single 2058 368, 1973)
- We've Got to Do It Now (Polydor single 2058 397, 1973)
- Song for You and Me (Polydor single 2058 421, 1973)
- Down by the River (from Come Softly to Me, MGM/Verve MV 5090, 1972)
CD 2: Farewell Album (Polydor LP SUPER 2383 293, 1974) and bonus tracks
- Sing Hallelujah
- All I Wanna Do
- Everybody's Song
- Somebody Warm Like Me
- Old Fashioned Song
- All Put Together Kind of World
- Love and Sunshine
- Perfect Love
- I Wanna Be the Star of the Show
- Sad Song
- Oh My Joe
- Me and My Guitar - Peter Paul and Marty (Polydor single 2058 368, 1973)
- Ride a Horse - Peter Paul and Marty (Polydor single 2048 439, 1974)
- Rusty Hands of Time - Peter Doyle (Polydor single 2058 384, 1973)
- And So in Life - Peter Doyle (Polydor single 2058 384, 1973)