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Neil Innes and The Rutles

The Rutles

 

The Rutles 2008

THE RUTLES
Barry Wom' [John Halsey]
a nd 'Ron Nasty' [Neil Innes]
reflect on Ollie's contribution
to The Rutles


The Rutles 2008


THE RUTLES
Get Up and Go

It's Ollie doing Eric Idle's
vocal here and playing
the lead guitar solos.



THE RUTLES
Shangi La

 

Th Rutles get back

Reunion in Hollywood 2008

Rutles Uncut

June 1977: Innes, Fatso drummer Halsey, South African bassist/drummer Ricky Fataar and ace guitarist Ollie Halsall are rehearsing Innes' 20 Rutles songs and trying not to collapse in laughter.  Halsall, left-handed and similar to Macca in vocal range hopes to land the Dirk role in the film.
"We had Ollie", says John Altman, "who could reproduce anything, play it upside down and make it funny all at the same time."
To Halsall's disappointment, the part of Dirk has gone to Idle.  Everyone who works with him later raves about Halsall's contributions as guitarist and singer,  and he gets a 3-second cameo in the film as Leppo, the fifth rutle.

Uncut magazine
December 2008

 

Los Angeles Times, March 19, 2008
Thanks to David Baxendell

[c;ick image to enlarge]

The Rutles 2008

Rutles reunited in Los Angeles, 2008. L-R: Barry Wom (John Halsey), John Altman (Musical arranger), Ron Nasty (Neil Innes), Dirk McQuickly (Eric Idle), Stig O'Hara (Ricky Fataar)

A Brief History of The Rutles for Beginers

The Rutles first appeared in 1975 as a sketch on Eric Idle's BBC television series Rutland Weekend Television. The sketch presented a mini-documentary about the 1960s band the Rutles, and featured Neil Innes (formerly of the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, and a frequent Monty Python collaborator) fronting the band singing "I Must Be In Love", a pastiche of Lennon and McCartney's 1964 style.

One year after their initial BBC appearance, on 2 October 1976 Idle appeared on the American NBC show Saturday Night (later Saturday Night Live), and showed videotape extracts from Rutland Weekend Television – including the Rutles clip. That led to a suggestion by SNL executive producer Lorne Michaels to extend the skit into a one-hour mock documentary. This proposal led to the 1978 mockumentary All You Need Is Cash, directed by SNL film director Gary Weis, with Idle credited as co-director.

On 23 April 1977, Idle made another appearance on Saturday Night Live, bringing along Neil Innes as a musical

guest. A running theme for this episode is the "Save Great Britain Telethon", and at one point there is an appearance by "the Rutle who lives in New York, Nasty". Innes appeared as Nasty with a lone white piano, singing a short version of "Cheese & Onions". Later in the episode, as Neil Innes, he performed "Shangri-La", a song subsequently recorded by the Rutles.

Innes wrote, composed, and produced the music. He relied on his memory of Beatles music, and not careful later analysis, to create sound-alike songs. Innes assembled a band (himself, John Halsey, Ollie Halsall, Andy Brown, and Ricky Fataar) and the group played in a London pub to gel.

During Rutles performances and studio recordings, Innes took lead on the songs that resembled Lennon's; Halsall sang on most McCartney-esque tunes; Fataar sang the Harrison songs; and Halsey sang a Ringo Starr-type song. Idle mimed to Halsall's singing and Brown's bass playing in the completed film. Halsall appeared in the film as "Leppo", the fifth Rutle who in the earliest years "mainly stood at the back". Brown did not appear in the film.

Wikipedia

Meet the Rutles 1978

rutles
Goose-Step Mama
Number Two
Baby Let Me Be
Hold My Hand
Blue Suede Schubert
I Must Be In Love
With A Girl Like You
Between Us
Living In Hope
Ouch!
It's Looking Good
Doubleback Alley
Good Times Roll
Nevertheless
Love Life
Piggy In The Middle
Another Day
Cheese And Onions
Get Up And Go
Let's be Natural

Archeology 1998

rutles rutles

Major Happy
Rendezvous
Questionnaire

We've Arrived

Lonely Phobia
Unfinished Words
Hey Mister
Easy Listening
Now She's Left You
Knicker Elastic King
I Love You
Eine Kleine Middle Klass Musik
Joe Public
Shangri La
Don't Know Why Back in 64

2007 reissue also includes:
Baby S'il Vous Plait
Lullaby
My Little Ukelele
Under My Skin

1978 out-takes and updated newer material.

Superb Beatles pastiches. For the first album, Ollie not only contributed guitar, bass and keyboards but also sung the vocal parts of Eric's Idle's character Dirk McQuickly (slightly speeded up). As far as I can tell he features only on We've Arrived & Hey Mister from the Archeology set.


Rehearsal tapes 1978
I Must Be In Love
Let Me Be
Blue Suede Shubert
Number One
Double Back Alley
Get Up And Go
Betweem Us
Now She's Left You
Baby Let Me Be
It's Looking Good
Let's Be Natural
Living In Hope
Goose Step Mama
Good Times Roll
Love Life

Digital versions sourced by Joerg Reinick

<

All You Need is Cash [video] 1976

cash

The best Beatles parody ever and, bizarrely, more accurate than the real Beatles Anthology


Rutles 2 - Can't Buy Me Lunch [video] 2003

rutles 2 rutles 2

Somewhat less than successful 'sequel'. Described as 'embarrasing' by Barry Wom [John Halsey]


Ollie Halsall: guitar keyboards vocals. Rikki Fataar: guitar bass sitar tabla vocals.
John Halsey: percussion/vocals.
Andy Brown: bass.
John Altman: orchestral arrangements.
Cliff Haines: piccolo trumpet.
Dave Spence, Martin Drover, Pat Kyle, Steve Gregory, Malcolm Griffiths: horns. Strings led by Christopher Warren-Green.

Ollie played guitar and probably some keyboards] on all the original Rutles' recordings and movie soundtracks, played the part of Leppo [the 5th Rutle] and sang Dirk McQuickley's parts, slightly speeded up - which Eric Idle mimed to in the films

In a 1992 interview, Ollie states that Ricky Fataar was not allowed to play on the recordings due to Musicians' Union rules. The bass was played by Andy Brown.

However, John Halsey says, "Before we went into the studio to record the Rutles music for film and LP, we were in a demo studio in a house in Hendon, it was called Hendene i think. Some of the tracks from those sessions were used. Also some tracks on Archaeology were from those sessions as well, and the bass player was Riki Fataar."

"John Altman is the George Martin of The Rutles" - Neil Innes

John Altman interview

Ollie & Ali - John Altman

The Rutles website

 

John Altman's comprehensive run-down of the largely uncredited Rutles recording personnel:

Produced by Neil Innes. Engineered by Steve James. Neil Innes and Ollie Halsall.

 

rutles

Ollie [far right] as 'Leppo' [Stuart Sutcliffe] in the Rutles movie, 'All You Need is Cash'

Neil Innes  

How Sweet to be an Idiot 1973

idiot

Momma Bee

Immortal Invisible

Topless a Go Go

Feel no Shame

How Sweet to be an Idiot

Dream On

L'Amour Perdu

Song for Yvonne

This Love of Ours

Singing a Song is Easy


Recycled Vinyl Blues 1994

cycled

Complilation including all of How Sweet to be an Idiot plus:

Angelina

Come Out into the Open

Lie Down and be Counted

Age of Desperation

Fluff on the Needle

Bandwagon


The Rutles official website

The Neil Innes official website

neilinnestube

Recollections 2014

3x CD Box Set.
Vol 3 includes this gem from The Innes Book of Records TV show

[not yet documented]


Off the Record 1978
Libido
City of the Angels
Them
Time to Kill
Rock of Ages
One Thing on Your Mind
The Worm and the Angel
Not Getting any Younger
Takeaway
Happy Ending
Stoned on Rock
Spaghetti Western
Mr Eurovision
Ungawa
Godfrey Daniel
Fortune Teller
Mother
Burlesque
Down That Road

[not yet documented]


 

 

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