Wednesday, April 29, 2009

George Gently, Martin Shaw and Steve Winwood

The BBC's trailer for the news series of Inspector George Gently uses the introduction from "I'm a Man" by the Spencer Davis Group.

Before all the coffee chains set up store in Market Harborough, I was a regular customer of the first shop here to do frothy coffee. They used to play CDs and one of them was a sixties compilation that included this track.

I had always known the Spencer Davis Group's singles, but listening closely to that introduction was a revelation. It blows your socks off now. It must have sounded even more remarkable in 1967.

That set me off on the enthusiasm for the Spencer Davis Group and Steve Winwood that I have been inflicting on people ever since.

There is another reason why this trailer in interesting. Martin Shaw and Steve Winwood both attended Great Barr comprehensive school in Birmingham. Shaw is three years older, but there is a pleasing trivial connection between them.

According to Alan Clayson's biography of Winwood, Shaw was a protege of the school's head of drama Tom Knowles. Knowles also ran a lunchtime guitar club of which Winwood was an enthusiastic member.


Mickey said...

I have to agree. Steve Winwood is one of the greatest musical talents this country has ever produced. I've been a big fan since I was about 18 and Roll With It just came out. It got me hooked and I ended up buying everything he ever did - SDG, Traffic, Blind Faith etc. Whenever I hear the advert on the BBC my heart skips a beat!

Stoned Love said...

I went to the same school as Martin & Stevie, albeit some 5 years after they'd left but we had the same Drama teacher. Tom Knowles inspired and encouraged me too but I took a different path. Drama and English were the only subjects I got interested/progressed in because frankly, the other subject teachers just didn't measure up! Nice to have been educated at the same place as those great talents though!