I am learning to face the fact that sooner or later all of my musical inspirations, and even heroes, will be passing. One by one. Day by day. Until there are none left. Man, that is a sobering thought. I’ve been ‘profoundly’ inspired by music from a very young age. Man, I heard it all, bought it all and saw it live as many times I was afforded. Or could afford. The glam movement was my tween introduction to rock. My early teens soundtrack. Radio had glam in heavy rotation, and by heavy I mean that glam was near the only music you heard. So God bless that. The Sweet, were one of my favourite bands. Still reside in my top ten. If you are looking for a band to epitomize the glam movement and the style then yes, The Sweet. They were the poster boys of glam and the protégés of Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman, the master hit makers of Glam.
Sure, there were a ton of glam bands to choose from (TRex, Hello, Mud, Gary Glitter etc) but the Sweet had the hits that related to me and the sound I most identified with. “Ballroom Blitz” anyone? Brian Connely had an iconic voice ,without which the Sweet may not have reached the heights they did, but Steve Priest held the Sweet sound together. The Priest ‘Sweet spot’ centered around his incredible bass dexterity and his range of vocals. What Queen did for harmonies, Sweet did just as well. What Freddie did for style, well Steve Priest was already walking that catwalk. Steve Priest was a beast on the bass and even though it seems easy to set glam off as style over substance... don’t. That shit was tough to play and the job of these glam bands was to make it look all too easy. The Sweet could rock as hard as any band in the day. Listening to “Set Me Free” or frankly any of their live album(s) cuts and you cannot deny that they were a band of far more substance over style.
Steve Priest (and Brian Connely) I will miss you and what you gave to me back in 1973-74 as a junior high kid looking to rock stardom. “And the music was soothing... and they all started grooving... Yeah, yeah, yeah-yeah-yeah”. RIP Steve Priest. #stevepriest #thesweet #glam #glamrock #chinnchapman #ballroomblitz #foxontherun #bassguitar