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|Past members||Robert Woodward
Lieutenant Pigeon was a British musical group popular in the early 1970s. A spin-off from an experimental music band Stavely Makepeace, it was fronted by Rob Woodward and managed by David Whitehouse. Other members included bassist Stephen Johnson and drummer Nigel Fletcher. The group's sound was dominated by a heavy honky-tonk-style piano played by Woodward's mother, Hilda.
Lieutenant Pigeon achieved two UK hits: "Mouldy Old Dough", written by Rob Woodward with bandmate Nigel Fletcher, reached number one in 1972, followed by "Desperate Dan" (number 17 in 1973). Both tracks were largely instrumental, with the titles providing virtually the only lyrics. "Mouldy Old Dough" (the title being an adaptation of the 1920s jazz phrase, "vo-de-o-do") became the second biggest selling UK single of the year, behind The Band of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards' bagpipe version of "Amazing Grace".
Lieutenant Pigeon scored a further hit, in the autumn of 1974, when it reached number 3 in the Australian charts with a cover version of "I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen". The band split up in 1978, although Johnson (after recording as Class 50) re-formed the band in the 1980s, touring to notable success in Scandinavia. The line-up went through a number of changes. By the late 1980s Stephen Johnson was the only original member of the live band. Fletcher joined Tasty (which also featured Johnson) and Oakie. Johnson subsequently set up a documentary video production company. Hilda Woodward died, aged 85, on 22 February 1999. She was aged about 58 or 59 at the time of "Mouldy Old Dough" topping the charts, which made her the oldest female artist to feature on a UK number one single.
The Pigeon name, and that of Stavely Makepeace, remain active with former members working together in the production of jingles, maintaining a website and releasing occasional new material. Their 2001 release "Opus 400," a 35 minute single made up of separate sections, is the most recent material produced by Pigeon. The current performing line-up of the band features none of the original members.
- Robert Woodward – keyboards, guitar, tin whistle
- Hilda Woodward – piano
- Stephen Johnson – bass guitar, tin whistle
- Nigel Fletcher – drums
- "Mouldy Old Dough" (1972) – #1 UK
- "Desperate Dan" (1972) – #17 UK
- "And the Fun Goes On" (1973)
- "Oxford Bags" (1973)
- "I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen" (1974)
- "You Are My Heart's Delight" (1974)
- "The Blue Danube" (1975)
- "Rockabilly Hot Pot" (1975)
- "Goodbye"(from The White Horse Inn) (1976)
- "Grandfather Clock" (1976)
- "Spangles" (1977)
- "Disco Bells" (1978)
- "Bye Bye Blackbird" (1978)
- "Bobbing Up and Down Like This" (1981)
- "Opus 400"
- Mouldy Old Music (1973 – Decca SKL 5154)
- Pigeon Pie (1973 – Decca SKL 5174)
- Pigeon Party (1974 – Decca SKL 5196)
- The World of Lieutenant Pigeon (Decca SPA 414)
- I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen (1974 – Axis 6127)
- Mouldy Old Dough (1998), Emporio
- The Best of Lieutenant Pigeon (2001), Cherry Red
- List of artists who reached number one on the UK Singles Chart
- List of artists under the Decca Records label
- Number 1 Singles in Ireland 1972
- Rice, Jo (1982). The Guinness Book of 500 Number One Hits (1st ed.). Enfield, Middlesex: Guinness Superlatives Ltd. p. 147. ISBN 0-85112-250-7.
- Larkin, Colin (2002) The Virgin Encyclopedia of 70s Music, MUZE UK Ltd, ISBN 1-85227-947-8, p. 237-8
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 321. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.