26 May 2010

Jason Cord - I've Got My Eyes On You

Jason Cord - I've Got My Eyes On You

Label: Chapter One
Year of Release: 1968

When you're out and about buying bits of vinyl from the sixties, there are two things you must consider - firstly, if it was a flop and it's got any sort of vague beat, it will be sold as a "mod" record. Sometimes if the dealer is feeling ambitious, they'll label it as a "mod dancer!" And if it at any point, anywhere in the lyrics, it briefly mentions either children's sweets, sunshine, Labradors, looking up to the sky, multi-coloured things, or trees, lo and behold, it's "popsike", no matter how pedestrian the music behind the words. I've yet to encounter a record that mentions multi-coloured Labradors looking up to the sky whilst eating some sweets as some sunshine leaks through the branches of some trees, but I bet that would go for a bomb if it existed. I might even write it myself, get a few copies pressed up on a fake Deram label, artificially age them, then flog 'em on ebay.

The point is - and yes, there is a point - there are only so many desirable sixties obscurities to go around, and you shouldn't always believe what the traders tell you. Take me, for example. I forked out a disproportionate amount of money for this rather scratchy single in the belief that it was a sterling piece of mod pop. It's really not, y'know. It could be that this is a mod artist having a one-off excursion into balladsville, but I suspect it's unlikely.

In fact, there's really not much I can honestly say about this record except that it exists. Jason Cord appeared to hail from Wolverhampton and was active on the gig circuit at the same time as Slade's salad years, but beyond that I can find no information on the man. Both sides of this record show Mr Cord in loverman mode, and there appear to have been hundreds of records released with similar weeping string arrangements throughout the sixties, most of which remain uncompiled. The likes of Bam Caruso and Sanctuary Records have seemed unbothered about the croonier end of the sixties circuit.

Once again, there's nothing objectionable about this single, but nothing particularly memorable either. It whooshes by on a bed of silky strings. The fiver I paid for the damn thing is the only thing that really sticks in my mind, plus the fact that it was apparently produced by David Balfe, who I can only assume isn't the Teardrop Explodes manager and founder of Zoo Records.


The Confused said...

Hmmm... Chapter One is on my list of "suspicious" labels since almost all releases I've encountered from that label have been MOR in nature... Les Reed, Gerry Monroe and even Russ Conway. Not heard the Simon Dee single they released though judging by it's title it's probably some ballad drek. Only decent disc I can think of was their one off release by Episode Six... "Lucky Sunday" and then for the killer B'side "Mr Universe."

But yes, you're generally right about how 60's discs get branded and pigeonholed usually under false pretence as an excuse to whack up the price. Been misled far too many times on so called "Psych" records because of their titles!

23 Daves said...

I think somebody uploaded Simon Dee's single to YouTube recently - provided their account hasn't been deleted in the present copyright cull, it should still be there. Your worst fears will be realised.

Regarding Jason Cord, it's only after watching the Eurovision semi-finals last night that I realised this has something of the Euro-ballad about it. That said, the Netherlands entry (which failed to qualify) ticked so many popsike boxes I almost lost count, so who am I to judge?

Carrmusic said...

Jason Cord was on the Wolverhampton Circuit with the First Chapter named, as , i believe, the first signing to Chapter One records.
A bit of ego stroking by the out dated and anachronistic manager of the band. JC was being groomed to be a new Tom Jones hence the selection of song and arrangement.
As a five piece band the were much better before the "star grooming "started. It was a waste of an opportunity. In an earlier version of the band they had quite a good following on the B circuit of venues.

23 Daves said...

Thanks for the information, Nelly. Sounds like yet another ill-advised piece of music industry tampering, which leaves me wondering what we might have ended up with if they'd left well alone.

Carrmusic said...

23 daves.
Just as now, there was a lot of cookie cutters around. Same ole same ole...everyone wanting the next big thing to happen so the could copy it and very few really ready to start the next big thing.
The music world owes a lot to George Martin at Parlaphone but initially you could see the establishment veneer on him.
Fortunately he realised what he had got his hands on very early and morphed along with the beatles

Pete Smith said...

Hi - the B side of the Jason Cord record is called "I can take no more of your lies" - I only just found this out after years of looking, reason being that it's known by a US singer called Ted Wilson as a super-rare Northern Soul 45 on the Sierra label, and despite knowing the writer credits, nobody could find out who did the UK version (until recently). The last copy of Ted Wilson that I saw went for £2000 but I think 2 more copies have turned up since.
I love your website and wish I could contribute more, I just forget!

tyre builder said...

jason cords real name is derek gibbs he was an area manager in goodyear tyre factory in wolverhampton in the truck tyre division. i don't think he sings anymore

Carrmusic said...

Like a lot of Band members from the Wolverhampton scene, despite buckets of talent, economic necessity dictated, I guess.

23 Daves said...

Thanks for the updates, everyone.

steve hewitt said...

I agree with your review of this record , & those of similar ilk. I think you might find a lot of this type of stuff has since been put under the banner -- Baroque !! ( strings / vocal verging on easy listening ). Each to thier own . I try to find something about one of these records , that could be slightly Scott Walker , and then it makes me feel a bit better !!

Steve Hewitt.

Anonymous said...

Jason Cord's real name is indeed Derek Gibbs. Derek now works as a guard for the MOD Guard Service in the West Midlands area.

Anonymous said...

just got a copy of this 45 single from a op shop the track I believe got some airplay here in Australia but not a big hit shame not a lot known about the label or the song or artist

Carrmusic said...

Hi anonymous... 8th oct 201 and 3 May 2014.

I can fill you in with more details if you ask specific questions..

Michael Alden said...

His follow up single, Why Shouldn't It, just got posted on youtube, and its great.