Free Will


Band members                             Related acts

  line up 1: (album credits)

- Phillip Evans -- vocals, bass

- Mitchell Faulkner -- vocals, guitar

- Richard Paris -- vocals, guitar

- Lennon Thomas -- drums, percussion, sax

 

  line up 1 (1967) (as Free Will)

- John DeMaso -- bass

- Mark Doyle -- lead guitar, vocals, keyboards

- George Egosarian -- rhythm guitar, slide guitar

- John Glaister -- drums, percussion

- Joe Whiting -- lead vocals

 

  line up 2 (1967)

NEW - Chuck Baron -- rhythm guitar (replaced George Egosarian)

- Mark Doyle -- lead guitar, vocals, keyboards

- John Glaister -- drums, percussion

NEW - Barry Maturevity -- bass (replaced John DeMaso)

- Joe Whiting -- lead vocals

 

   line up 3 (1967)

NEW - John Dean -- bass (replaced Barry Maturevity) 

- Mark Doyle -- lead guitar, vocals, keyboards

- John Glaister -- drums, percussion

NEW - Bill Irwin -- rhythm guitar

- Joe Whiting -- lead vocals

 

   line up 4 (1967-68)

- John Dean -- bass 

- Mark Doyle -- lead guitar, vocals, keyboards

NEW - George Egosarian -- guitar

- John Glaister -- drums, percussion

- Bill Irwin -- rhythm guitar

- Joe Whiting -- lead vocals

 

  line up 5 (1968-69)

- John Dean -- bass 

NEW - John DeMaso -- bass 

- Mark Doyle -- lead guitar, vocals, keyboards

- John Glaister -- drums, percussion

- Bill Irwin -- rhythm guitar

- Joe Whiting -- lead vocals

 

  line up 6 (1969)

- John Dean -- bass 

- John DeMaso -- bass 

- Mark Doyle -- lead guitar, vocals, keyboards

NEW - George Egosarian -- guitar (replaced Bill Irwin)

- John Glaister -- drums, percussion

- Joe Whiting -- lead vocals

 

 

 

 

 

- Backbone Slip

- The Dean Brothers

- Doyle and Whiting

- Jukin' Bone Band

- The New Ridgewoods (Mark Doyle and Joe Whiting)

- The Ridgewoods (Joe Whiting)

 

 

 


 

Genre: progressive

Rating: 3 stars ***

Title:  Here's Free Will

Company: Guinness

Catalog: GNS 36041
Year:
 1976

Country/State: Syracuse, New York

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: still in shrink wrap (opened)

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 5727

Price: $200.00

 

Wow ...  a Guinness release that actually includes performance and writing credits !   Now if  the credits are real, or totally fictitious is a totally different issue.  

 

Based on the liner notes "Here's Free Will" showcased the talents of bassist Phillip Evans, guitarists Mitchell Faulkner and Richard Paris, and drummer  Lennon Thomas.  No idea what their background was, or how they came into contact with Guinness, but judging by the slightly under produced sound, these may have been demos that the company somehow latched on to.  Musically the album offered up a mixture of five originals; three penned by Faulkner, two by Evans, rounded out by a decent jazzed-up cover of Graham Gouldman's 'Heart Full of Soul' and a not so impressive Chuck Berry medley ('Berrying').  Overall these guys were quite impressive, sounding like they had some time and mileage under their collective belts.  With a little bit of publicity, these guys would have had a chance ...

 

And now the reality ... This was actually the Syracuse, New York band Free Will, who morphed into Jukin' Bone.  These seven tracks were recorded in 1969 when the band featured rhythm guitarist John Dean, lead guitarist Mark Doyle, bassist George Egosarian, drummer John Glaister, and singer Joe Whitling.  

 

As Free Will, the band played dances, college campuses, and locals clubs throughout the Syracuse area.  In late 1969  the band went to Connecticut where they recorded a series of demos, including a Chuck Berry medley (which had been a live standard) and original material such as the song 'Are You Gone?' and 'State Police Boogie' which appeared on the album under the title 'I Just Love That Man'.  See any coincidences here ?   Just speculation on my part, but it seems the demo tapes were sold to Guinness which curiously kept the band name, but used pseudnyms for the performance credits.   Since very few copies of the abum were printed, I'm guessing Guinness simply wasn't worried the original band would ever see a copy of the album.  Besides, by 1971 the band had morphed into Jukin' Bones, signing with RCA Records, where they recorded a pair of mid-'70s  albums before calling it quits.

 

 

 

"Here's Free Will" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Heart Full of Soul   (Graham Gouldman) - 6:04  rating: **** stars

Graham Gouldman's 'Heart Full of Soul' is such a classic that it's in almost every garage band's repertoire.  That also makes it hard to come up with an original rendition of the song.  I'm not saying this beats The Yardbirds' original, but slowing it down,  giving the song kind of a bluesy-jazz vibe (complete with Thomas sax solo), and lysergic-tinged vocals made for a surprisingly enjoyable effort.

2.) I Just Love That Man   (Mitchell Faulkner) - 3:29   rating: *** stars

'I Just Love That Man' offered up a catchy slice of Foghat-styled boogie rock (okay Foghat didn't have a sax player in their lineup).  The song title always struck me as being odd, but it makes more sense when you learn the original title was 'State Police Boogie'

3.) Try To Find a Way Out   (Mitchell Faulkner) - 4:21   rating: **** stars

One of the three Faulkner compositions, 'Try To Find a Way Out' offered up a nifty AOR guitar rocker.  Would have sounded great on mid-1970s FM radio.  The song was originally entitled 'Way Out'.

4.) In My Life   (Philip Evans) - 2:31   rating: *** stars

Evans' 'In My Life' showcased a nice mixture of pop, progressive, and jazzy moves.  Sporting a distinctive UK flavor and bouncing through a number of time changes the results were actually quite commercial.  Nice vocals and guitar work.  One of my two favorite performances.  I think this one was originally entitled 'Step Inside Love'

 

(side 2)
1.) Are You Gone?   (Mitchell Faulkner) - 7:47
  rating: **** stars

Side two started out with some discordant guitar patterns before morphing into the album's standout number - Clocking in at over seven minutes 'Are You Gone?' offered up a growling slice of guitar rock.  Fantastic song with killer vocals, lead guitar and excellent drumming from Thomas (and no sax this time out).

2.) Berrying (Chuck Berry Medley)   (Chuck Berry) - 10:21  rating: ** stars

I have to admit that their Chuck Berry medley "Berrying' was actually far better than I would have expected.  The usual Berry chestnuts were here, but they also included a couple of lesser known tracks.  Not something you'd want to hear every day, but more fun than most straight covers.

3.) Easy Progressions (instrumental)   (Philip Evans) - 4:44  rating: *** stars

The album closed with the somewhat surprising instrumental 'Easy Progressions'.  The second Evans composition, the track sported a surprisingly engaging jazz feel and a great lead guitar segment - imagine one of those English Canterbury related bands if they actually had some talent.  I think this one was originally entitled 'Skaneateles Cellar Incident'. 

 

Too bad the rest of the tax scam catalogs weren't as impressive as this release.  Thoroughly enjoyable and easily makes it on to my top-10 tax scam listing. and is one of the few genre releases I'd give a four star rating to.

 

 

 

 

 

In 2017 the Italian Akarma affiliated Grail Records Production label made the Free WIll / Jukin' Bone connection and released a double album set under the Free Will imprint: "Cold Cold Morning" (catalog number GRL 301/302)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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