Following their superb acoustic inauguration in Britain’s fertile 1960s world of traditional folk, the innovative music of the Strawbs, as exemplified by the band’s resourceful and inventive leader and writer Dave Cousins, had to open out to develop a richer, electric framework to accommodate ambitious new compositions.
By expanding their soundscape with the addition of such luminaries as keyboard wizard Rick Wakeman, their catalogue took on a new grandeur, resulting in sales of over three million for albums such as Hero and Heroine, Grave New World and Bursting at the Seams. In fact the whole effect, sales-wise, was electric, as seven consecutive Strawbs LPs featured in the US Billboard top 200 chart. Rick Wakeman left his mark before decamping to the ranks of Yes, but two other classically trained Wakemans were lured by the Strawbs talent – Adam, winner of the ‘Best New Talent’ award in the American Keyboard Magazine, and his brother and Oliver Wakeman. It says something for the Strawbs prestige that they’ve had three Wakemans in the line-up!
As ever, the resourceful and imaginative Dave Cousins fronts the show, and in addition to long-time regulars Dave Lambert and Chas Cronk, the electric Strawbs are proud to have Tony Fernandez on drums, and Dave Bainbridge on keyboards. All in all, this is an impressive combination of terrific talent to showcase some enduring compositions. With their deep roots and immense creativity, the electric Strawbs offer a show just too good to miss.