• • The Big Figure • John B Sparks • • • Johnny Guitar • Buzz Barwell • Pat McMullan • Gordon Russell • • Craig Rhind • Dr. Feelgood are a British formed in 1971. Hailing from,, the group are best known for early singles such as ', ', ' and '. The group's original distinctively British sound was centred on 's choppy guitar style. Along with Johnson, the original band line-up included singer and the of John B. Sparks, known as 'Sparko', on bass guitar and John Martin, known as 'The Big Figure', on drums. Although their most commercially productive years were the early to mid-1970s, and in spite of Brilleaux's death in 1994 of, a version of the band (featuring none of the original members) continues to tour and record to this day.
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Contents • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Career [ ] Early years [ ] The band was formed in Canvey Island in 1971 by Johnson, Brilleaux and Sparks, who had all been members of existing R&B bands, and soon added drummer John Martin. They took their name from a 1962 record by the American pianist and singer (also known as 'Piano Red') called 'Dr. Chest Patch Lineage 2 Quest. Feel-Good', which Perryman recorded under the name of Dr. Feelgood & The Interns. The song was by several British beat groups in the 1960s, including.
The term is also a slang term for heroin or for a doctor who is willing to overprescribe drugs. By late 1973, the band's driving R&B had made them one of the most popular bands on the growing London pub rock circuit, and they recorded their debut album,, for in 1974. Like many pub rock acts, Dr Feelgood were known primarily for their high energy live performances honed through constant touring and regular performances, although their studio albums like Down by the Jetty and (1975) were also popular. Their breakthrough 1976 live album,, reached in the (their only ). But after the 1977 follow-up, Johnson left the group because of conflicts with Lee Brilleaux. He was replaced by John 'Gypie' Mayo. With Mayo, the band was never as popular as with Johnson, but still enjoyed their only hit single in 1979, with '.
Johnson never achieved any great success outside the band, apart from a brief spell with and from 1980. Fans always speculated about a return by Johnson that never occurred. Guitarist Steve Walwyn in, 18 March 2009 Later years [ ] Despite Mayo's departure in 1981, and various subsequent line-up changes which left Brilleaux the only remaining original member, Dr Feelgood continued touring and recording through the 1980s.
However, the band then suffered an almost career-finishing blow when Brilleaux died of cancer on 7 April 1994. As Brilleaux had insisted prior to his death, Dr Feelgood reunited in May 1995, initially with vocalist (not to be confused with of and ), and recommenced touring in 1996. Though the band contained no original members at this point, the musicians backing Gage had all previously played as members of Dr. Feelgood for at least five years, and in some cases for over a decade. In 1999 Gage was replaced by Robert Kane, formerly of The Animals II and The Alligators, who celebrated his 1,000th gig as the frontman of Dr. Feelgood in April 2007.
Current vocalist Robert Kane performing in Barcelona, 18 March 2009 Every year since Brilleaux's death, a special concert known as the Lee Brilleaux Birthday Memorial has been held on Canvey Island, where former and current Feelgoods celebrate the music of Dr Feelgood, and raise money for The Fair Havens Hospice in. Fans attended from all over the globe, and the 20th, and final event was held on 9 May 2014. Still based in the UK, Dr Feelgood continue to play across the world, with concerts in 2010 in Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Finland, France, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain and Switzerland. Band manager Chris Fenwick organises an annual walk around Canvey to commemorate Brilleaux's life, as well as additional walking tours during which he points out landmarks from the band's career.
These include the jetty featured in the photograph on the band's first album cover, and venues where they played early in their career, such as The Lobster Smack inn, The Monico Nightclub and The Canvey Club (disguised as 'The Alibi Club' on the sleeve of the album Sneakin' Suspicion). A film by about the early days of the band, Oil City Confidential, premiered at the on 22 October 2009, and received a standing ovation. Guest of honour was Lee Brilleaux's mother Joan Collinson, along with his widow Shirley and children Kelly and Nick.
All the surviving members of the original band were present along with manager Chris Fenwick, former tour manager and boss and other friends and colleagues of the band. The film has its own Facebook page. Reviewing the film for The Independent, Nick Hasted concluded: 'Feelgood are remembered in rock history, if at all, as John the Baptists to punk's messiahs'. On general release from 1 February 2010, the film was critically well received, with Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian describing it as '.a vivid study of period, music and place'. The film was first broadcast on in April 2010. A major exhibition of memorabilia celebrating the band's career ran at The Canvey Club between May and July 2013, having been extended several times. Personnel [ ] Current members [ ] • Kevin Morris (b.
Kevin John Morris, London, 15 May 1955) – drums (March 1983 – present) • P H (Phil) Mitchell (b. Louis Vuitton Mens Wallet Serial Number Location. Philip Henry Mitchell, London, 19 March 1953) – bass (March 1983-March 1991, May 1995-present) • (b. Stephen Martin Walwyn, Southam, Warwickshire, 8 June 1956) – lead guitar (June 1989 – present) • Robert Kane (b. 6 December 1954) – vocals (1999–present) Former members [ ] • (b. Lee Collinson, 10 May 1952,, died 7 April 1994) – lead vocals, harmonica, occasional slide guitar (January 1971-April 1994) • John B Sparks (b.
22 February 1953) – bass guitar (January 1971 to April 1982) • The Big Figure (b. John Martin, 8 November 1946) – drums, percussion (January 1971-April 1982) • (b.
John Wilkinson, 12 July 1947, Canvey Island) – lead guitar, backing and occasional lead vocals, piano (January 1971-March 1977) • – (b. John Phillip Cawthra, 24 July 1951, Hammersmith, died 23 October 2013) lead guitar (April 1977-March 1981; substitute for Gordon Russell March 1989-April 1989) • Johnny Guitar – lead guitar (March 1981-December 1982) • Buzz Barwell – drums (April 1982-December 1982) • Pat McMullen – bass (April 1982-December 1982) • Gordon Russell (born 4 June 1958, Hammersmith, West London) – lead guitar (March 1983-May 1989) • – bass (March 1991-September 1991, May 1992-April 1994) • Craig Rhind – bass (September 1991-May 1992) • (b. Peter Gage, 2 December 1946, St Mary's Hospital, Paddington, London) – vocals (May 1995-September 1999) Substitute musicians • – lead guitar (March 1977-April 1977; following Wilko Johnson’s departure) • Barry Martin – lead guitar (May 1989-June 1989; following Gordon Russell’s departure) Timeline [ ].