Toe Fat

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Toe Fat
Origin England
Genres Psychedelic rock, hard rock
Years active 1969 (1969)–1971 (1971)
Labels EMI (Parlophone/Regal Zonophone)
Associated acts Uriah Heep
Past members Cliff Bennett
Lee Kerslake
Ken Hensley
John Konas
John Glascock
Alan Kendall
Brian Glascock

Toe Fat was an English rock music band, active from June 1969 to 1971, notable for including two future members of Uriah Heep.

Career[edit]

Formed in June 1969, the band was fronted by former Rebel Rouser Cliff Bennett and, in the course of its two year, two album career, featured lead guitarist and keyboardist Ken Hensley; bassist John Glascock (who replaced original bassist John Konas (Joseph Stanley Konas)); and drummer Lee Kerslake. After the first album, Kerslake and Hensley were replaced by Brian Glascock (drums) and Alan Kendall (guitar) respectively.

The band was founded by Bennett, a former pop star, after the dissolution of the Cliff Bennett Band. He teamed with the former Gods keyboard player Hensley, who drafted in fellow ex-Gods members Kerslake and Glascock. The name was decided over dinner when Bennett and his manager attempted to create the most disgusting band name possible.[citation needed]

Toe Fat was signed to the record label, Rare Earth, in the US. In the UK, the band signed with EMI, who released their first album on the Parlophone label, and the second on Regal Zonophone.

The eponymously titled first album flopped commercially, but gained considerable critical praise.[citation needed] Such was their stir that after their first single, "Workin' Nights", (the B-side was an early Elton John composition "Bad Side of the Moon") they were booked for a tour supporting Derek and the Dominos in the US. The album was also notable for its cover designed by the recently formed graphic art company Hipgnosis. The cover showed a beach scene with four people who have large toes superimposed over their heads. For the US release, a man and a topless woman in the background were replaced by the image of a sheep. The photo of the band on the back of the US album shows Cliff Bennett, Alan Kendall, John Glascock, and Lee Kerslake even though Alan Kendall did not play on the first album. This was an interim line-up, Lee Kerslake would soon depart also before second album was recorded.

Hensley quit the band to form Uriah Heep. Alan Kendall replaced Hensley, before their second album, Toe Fat Two. Bennett admitted in the sleeve notes of his Rebellion album that when asked he "probably should have joined them". Kerslake left to join the National Head Band, before also joining Uriah Heep in 1971. Glascock later joined Jethro Tull. Another ex-Gods man, Brian Glascock, became the new drummer.

Jonathan Peel (not the DJ) produced Toe Fat 2, after hearing them on several BBC radio sessions, including one for Terry Wogan. However, this LP also flopped, despite more radio airplay, and a reasonably successful US tour promoting it. Following these successive failures, their management and labels informed the group that they could no longer fund them.

Bennett recorded Rebellion, before quitting the music industry to become a shipping magnate. He still occasionally tours with the Rebel Rousers.

Alan Kendall and Brian Glascock went on to play with, and write for, the Bee Gees.

Former members[edit]

Discography[edit]

  • Toe Fat (Rare Earth RS 511 [US] / Parlophone PCS 7097 [UK], 1970)
  • Toe Fat Two (Rare Earth RS 525 [US] / Regal Zonophone SLRZ 1015 [UK], 1971)

References[edit]

External links[edit]