|Birth name||Samuel Hutt|
November 15, 1940 |
Wangford, Suffolk, England
|Genres||Country & Western|
|Labels||Cow Pie Records, Sincere Sounds, Charisma Records, Situation Two|
Hank Wangford is an English country and western songwriter. Hank Wangford is the stage name of Dr. Samuel Hutt (born 15 November 1940, Wangford, Suffolk, England). His music is notable for its humour and cheerful irony, and occasional excursions into biting political undercurrent.
- "Hank is a good smoke screen. He can do things I can't do. He's my clown," says Dr. Hutt, who has been struggling to balance his musical and medical interests ever since medical school at Cambridge University. His 1960's practice in a drug-addiction centre brought him into contact with a lot of rockers and modest renown as London's long-haired, rock-and-roll doctor. "If The Who had a first night, the tickets would be sent. I actually had more of an identity crisis with that than with Hank, because Hank is a fool. I quite like him. Dr. Sam was definitely threatening to become a monster."
 The Hank Wangford Band
Although his first recordings in the Hank Wangford guise were made with a group of leading session musicians, he now works with a group - The Hank Wangford Band. There have been at least four incarnations of the band, and a significant feature of the various lineups has been the number of high quality musicians who have appeared with him.
A common feature of the early bands was the ever present stage humour, including frequent references to "our recent 1982 country and western tour of Nepal" along with mention of the shows being sponsored by Sincere Products "the makers of the only genuine reproduction Hank Wangford products". One of their standard lines to the audience (especially when selling band souvenirs from the stage) is "We urge you good people to patronise us the way we are going to go on patronising you."
In earlier years, the band usually closed the show with the theme song "Jogging with Jesus", which celebrated the delights of Clissold Park (and its pond).
The second incarnation of the Hank Wangford Band included Amos Avaczyk-Daley (bass) (aka Gary Taylor), Milton Keynes alias Billy Three-Knees, a genuine Prawnee Indian (drums) (aka Howard Tibble), Brad Breath (lead - pronounced as in the metal - guitar) (aka Andy Roberts (musician)), Irma Cetas (vocalist) (aka Melanie Harrold), and Manly Footwear (pedal steel guitar) (aka B. J. Cole). This lineup broke up in 1984 after appearing at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe although Andy Roberts, B. J. Cole and Melanie Harrold have occasionally returned to play live dates with Hank. B.J. and Melanie most recently being featured in the 5 October 2007 show at the Half Moon, Putney.
A third version of the band took a more rock-oriented approach to country music with a complete change in personnel. Joining the band were Cissy Footwear (vocals) (aka Kathy O'Donoghue), Bobby Valentino (fiddle and vocals), Jett Atkins (guitar) (aka Mick Dyche), George Hamilton VI (bass) (aka Richie Robertson) and Big Mac (drums) (aka Alan Coulter). After George Hamilton VI left the band, the role of bass player was taken over by Cherry Red Footwear (aka Clare Kenny).
Sam's family background is radical: his father Allen (a journalist and expert on the history of printing) was a lifelong Communist. During the NUM miners strike in 1984/85, the Hank Wangford Band toured extensively with Billy Bragg and the Frank Chickens as 'Hank, Frank and Billy' performing at trade union benefit and anti-racist gigs. It was during such a benefit for the Greater London Council (GLC) in 1984 that Hank and the band were attacked on stage by a group of right-wing skinheads, an event that has been immortalised in the song "On The Line".
The 1984 Edinburgh Festival Fringe saw the Hank and the Wangfords achieve fame (if not fortune) with their show being nominated for the Perrier Award. Fringe Sunday also saw the importation to Edinburgh of the sport of cow-pat flinging. Unfortunately, this required hard cow-pats as an essential part of the process. BBC Radio 1 DJ Andy Kershaw had to put out an appeal for cow-pats which later had to be dried in a microwave oven for them to work successfully.
 Hank Wangford and The Lost Cowboys
Hank currently tours and plays as "Hank Wangford and The Lost Cowboys". This is a return to a more folk and country oriented approach and the current lineup is Hank with Reg Meuross (vocals, banjo and guitar), Martin Belmont (guitar and six stringed bass), Kevin Foster (bass) and Roy Dodds (drums). During 2008 B. J. Cole has appeared with the band on a number of occasions, due to the inadvertent clashing of dates of solo performances by Reg Meuross, and this arrangement looks likely to continue, although Reg will play with the band from time to time.
Recent set lists have contained a mixture of songs written by Hank or Reg along with a selection of cover versions of classic country songs.
In 2008 Hank completed a new album, Whistling in the Dark, with the Lost Cowboys and his old friend and colleague B.J. Cole who was "Manley Footwear" in the early '80s incarnation of the band and producer of Hank's first two albums. Cole is the UK's greatest pedal steel and dobro player and has added a new dimension to Hank's recorded work.
 No Hall Too Small
Hank has also toured with Reg Meuross on the "No Hall Too Small" tour of village halls throughout the UK as part of the Arts Council-funded National Rural Touring Forum (NRTF). Hank and Reg were involved in a major road accident following a short tour of village halls in Scotland at the beginning of September 2007 when Reg's car was clipped by a speeding motor cycle causing the car to lose control. It then hit rocks either side of the highway resulting in the car to roll over a number of times before eventually landing in a peat bog. Apart from severe shock neither musician suffered any injury, thanks to the car being filled with the PA system and equipment flight cases which kept the structural integrity of the car intact thus stopping Hank and Reg from being crushed. The motor cyclist managed to retain control after the collision and didn't stop.
By the middle of May 2009 Hank and Reg had played over 230 village hall shows. Hank is currently writing a book based on his experiences of the "No Hall Too Small" tour.
In early 2010 Hank announced that "Brad Breath" Andy Roberts would be joining him and replacing Reg on future village hall dates.
 Medical career
Dr. Hutt works as a family planning doctor for the NHS. After the fall and execution of Nicolae Ceauşescu, he has spent a lot of time in Romania helping to set up a family planning infrastructure, including training nurses and doctors in prescribing contraception. Ceauşescu had discouraged family planning in an attempt to increase the population of Romania. Many infants were abandoned in orphanages as a result of this policy.
 Writing career
 Band name
The name "Hank Wangford" is amusing to British ears since it suggests the English slang word wank. This was emphasised by the name the band some times gave themselves- "Hank Wangford and the Hankerers - featuring The Jodrelles". Jodrelles is from Jodrell Bank, Jodrell being rhyming slang for "wank".
- Sam Hutt's first song-writing credit appears to have been on a 1965 single on the Fontana label by the actress Sarah Miles.
- In 1968 Sam Hutt under the name Boeing Duveen & The Beautiful Soup released a single on the Parlophone "Jaberwock c/w Which Dreamed It". In later years the single frequently appeared in the top 100 psychedelic tracks of all times and a copy of the single in the extremely rare picture sleeve has changed hands for over £720.
- The Hank Wangford Band once achieved prime time BBC television exposure by appearing on The Little and Large Show.
- Jake Burns's father was a Hank Wangford fan.
- Hank Wangford, Cow Pie Records (COW 1), 1980
- Hank Wangford - Wild Thing c/w All I Want, Cow Pie Records (PIE001), 1980 (7")
- Hank Wangford - Cowboys Stay On Longer c/w Whisky On My Guitar, Cow Pie Records (PIE002), 1980 (7")
- Hank Wangford - Cowboys Stay On Longer c/w Whisky On My Guitar, WEA (K18712), 1980 (7")
- The Hank Wangford Band Live, Cow Pie Records (COW 2), 1982
- The Hank Wangford Band, Rodeo Radio, Situation Two (SITU 16), 1985
- The Hank Wangford Band, Cowboys Stay On Longer, Sincere Sounds (Honky 1X), 1987 (12")
- The Hank Wangford Band, Cowboys Stay On Longer, Sincere Sounds (Honky 1A-DJ), 1987 (7")
- Hank Wangford - Cowboys Stay On Longer, Reissue Albums One and Two, Sincere Sounds, 2001
- Hank Wangford - Stormy Horizons, Sincere Sounds, 1990
- Hank Wangford & The Lost Cowboys - Hard Shoulder To Cry On, Live Album Sincere Sounds, 1993
- Hank Wangford & The Lost Cowboys - Wake Up Dead, Sincere Sounds, 1997
- Hank Wangford & The Lost Cowboys - Best Foot Forward, Sincere Sounds, 2003
- Hank Wangford & The Lost Cowboys - Whistling In The Dark, Sincere Sounds, 2008
- The Hank Wangford Band Bumper Box, Cow Pie Records (CCP1), 1981
- The Hank Wangford Band - Rootin' Tootin' Santa Claus, Cow Pie Records (CCP2), 1982
- By Howell RainesPublished: March 06, 1988 (1988-03-06). "LONDON; A Singing Doctor Works the Land Between Ridicule And Reverence for Nashville". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "Hank Wangford". Gram Parsons Project. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "The Hank Wangford Band". Bobby Valentino. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Mark Borkowski (2001-07-30). "Weird is not enough | Culture". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Mark Borkowski (2004-08-10). "PR stunts: an expert's guide | Media". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "Home". NRTF. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "At the end of the world | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "A splash of Grenadines | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "Under the Boardwalk | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "Trail of broken hearts | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "Croon river | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "Temple of nature | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "High spirits | Travel". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "San Francisco's wild west | Travel | guardian.co.uk". Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford. "Strippers with altitude | Travel | guardian.co.uk". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- "Stiff Little Fingers: When Belfast Punk'd The World | State Magazine". State.ie. 2009-05-20. Retrieved 2012-11-11.
- Hank Wangford Volume III The Middle Years as told to Sam Hutt, Pan London 1989, ISBN 0-330-30925-0
- Lost Cowboys From Patagonia to the Alamo by Hank Wangford. Orion Cassell 1997