Middle of the Road (band)

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Middle of the Road
Middle of the Road in 1972
Middle of the Road in 1972
Background information
Also known asPart 4 (1967)
Los Caracas (1968–1970)
OriginGlasgow, Scotland
GenresPop, bubblegum
Years active1968–present
LabelsRCA (1970–1973)
Ariola (1973–1976)
Websitemiddleoftheroad-popgroup.com
MembersLorna Osborne
Ian McCredie
Stuart McCredie
Stephan Ebn
Past membersSally Carr
Ken Andrew
Eric McCredie
Linda Carroll
Lorraine Fehlberg
Neil Henderson

Middle of the Road are a Scottish pop group who have enjoyed success across Europe and Latin America since the 1970s. Before ABBA established themselves in the mid 70s, Middle of the Road were the sound of early europop with their distinctive harmonies and lead vocals from Sally Carr. Four of their singles sold over one million copies each, and received a gold disc:[1] "Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep".[2] "Sacramento", "Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dum" and "Soley Soley". By early 1972 the group had sold over five million records.[1]

History[edit]

Original lead singer Sally Carr, drummer Ken Andrew, guitarist Ian McCredie and his bassist brother Eric McCredie, founded the band on 1 April 1970 in Glasgow, Scotland. They had already played together under the name Part Four since 1967 and later in Latin American style under the name Las Caracas. Under the name Las Caracas they won the UK TV talent show Opportunity Knocks. They moved to Italy in 1970 because they had not found success in the United Kingdom. There they met the Italian music producer Giacomo Tosti, who gave the band their distinctive sound and gave them their international break.

The band had their first and biggest hit record in the United Kingdom with their debut UK single, "Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep". The song reached No. 1 in the UK Singles Chart in June 1971 and stayed there for four more weeks. In all, Middle of the Road had five hit singles in the UK in 1971 and 1972. The band had especially strong success in Germany, where they achieved eleven Top 40 hits between 1971 and 1974. As an example of this, Frank Valdor was fast to adapt Sacramento as his "party records". Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep and Sacramento were played a lot on Scandinavian radio. In the Dutch Daverende 30 the group had four number 1 hits in between 1971 and 1973.[3]

In 1974, early Bay City Rollers member Neil Henderson joined the band on guitar. He wrote and co-wrote songs for Middle of the Road, including the singles "Rockin' Soul" and "Everybody Loves a Winner" and 1974 albums, You Pays Yer Money and You Takes Yer Chance and Postcard, all released in Germany via Ariola like their first German LP, Music Music.

Current activity[edit]

In 2016, Middle of the Road's founding guitarist Ian McCredie accepted a Living Legends Award on behalf of the group at the Scottish Music Awards in Glasgow. In 2017, Middle of the Road released their first single in over 20 years, a live recording of their 1970s hit Soley Soley, performed in front of 20,000 people in Berlin's Waldbühne amphitheatre.[citation needed]

Members[edit]

Original members[edit]

  • Sally Carr (born Sarah Cecilia Carr, 28 March 1945, Muirhead, Lanarkshire) – vocals, percussion
  • Ken Andrew (born Kenneth Ballentyne Andrew, 28 August 1942, Bearsden, Glasgow) – drums
  • Ian McCredie (born Ian Campbell McCredie, 15 July 1947, Partick, Glasgow) – guitar, flute
  • Eric McCredie (born Eric Campbell McCredie, 17 July 1945, Partick, Glasgow; died 6 October 2007, Glasgow) – bass
  • Neil Henderson (born Neil Fulton Henderson, 11 February 1953, Glasgow) – guitar
  • Anne Katherine Watson (born Anne Thomson, 2 December 1951, Partick, Glasgow) – for a time in 1975 as guest keyboard player and vocalist and who did session work

Current members[edit]

  • Lorna Osborne (born Lorna Bannon),
  • Ian McCredie (born Ian Campbell McCredie, 15 July 1947, Partick, Glasgow)
  • Stuart McCredie
  • Stephan Ebn

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Title Label Peak chart positions
FIN
[4]
GER
[5]
NL
[6]
NOR
[7]
1971 Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep RCA 3
Acceleration 15 13 2 2
1972 The Best of Middle of the Road 19
1973 Drive On 48
Music Music Ariola 45
1974 Postcard
You Pays Yer Money And You Takes Yer Chance
1975 Dice
1976 Black Gold Dig-It, Trema
1981 Something Old Something New CNR
1987 Today Koch, Karussell
1989 The Very Best of Middle of the Road Dino 56
1994 A New Chapter Sm'Art Art
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
UK
[8]
AUS
[9]
AUT
[10]
BE (FLA)
[11]
BE (WA)
[12]
FIN
[4]
GER
[5]
IRE
[13]
NL
[14]
NOR
[15]
NZ
[16]
SA
[17]
SWE
[18]
SWI
[19]
ZIM
[20]
1971 "Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep" 1 2 2 1 1 3 2 1 2 1 8 1 1 Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep
"Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dum" 2 15 7 16 15 15 2 7 6 5 5 6 3
"Soley Soley" 5 23 1 1 3 2 5 1 1 6 1 2 1 1 Acceleration
1972 "Sacramento (A Wonderful Town)" 23 79 1 1 6 1 1 1 3 2 1 2
"Samson and Delilah" 26 1 2 15 2 1 11 5 3 7
"Talk of All the USA" 19 2 9 11
"Bottoms Up" 71 3 13 18 2 5 8 16 5 Drive On
1973 "Yellow Boomerang" 14 2 6 11 6 1 8 19 13 9 2 9
"Union Silver" 31
"Kailakee Kailako" 26 26 29 21 5
"Samba D'Amour" 35 Music Music
1974 "Honey No" 31 31 5 Drive On
"Sole Giallo" (Italy-only release) Non-album single
"Bonjour Ҫa Va" Postcard
"Rockin' Soul" 31 You Pays Yer Money and You Takes Yer Chance
1975 "Hitchin' a Ride in the Moonlight" Non-album single
1976 "Bubblegum Baby" (France/Belgium-only release) 38 Black Gold
"Everybody Loves a Winner" 43 Non-album single
1980 "Space Machine" (Netherlands-only release) Something Old Something New
"Sugar Jo Jo" (Netherlands and Germany-only release)
"Steal a Piece of My Heart"
1981 "The Medley" 20
1982 "Jingle Jangle" (Netherlands-only release) Non-album singles
1985 "Scotland's Coming Alive Again"
1987 "Midnight Blue" (Austria-only release) Today
1989 "One More Night" (Netherlands-only release) The Very Best of Middle of the Road
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 298/299. ISBN 0-214-20512-6.
  2. ^ Moore-Gilbert, Bart (11 March 2002). The Arts in the 1970s: Cultural Closure. Routledge. ISBN 9780415099066. Retrieved 30 May 2012.
  3. ^ "Thank you for the music: How Scots band Middle Of The Road inspired Abba". The Sunday Post. 15 July 2018. Retrieved 10 May 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Sisältää hitin: Levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1960: Artistit MEN - MIK". Sisältää hitin. 12 August 2015. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  5. ^ a b "Suche - Offizielle Deutsche Charts". www.offiziellecharts.de. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  6. ^ "Dutch Charts - dutchcharts.nl". dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  7. ^ "norwegiancharts.com - Norwegian charts portal". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  8. ^ "MIDDLE OF THE ROAD | full Official Chart History | Official Charts Company". www.officialcharts.com. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  9. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 199. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  10. ^ "Das österreichische Hitparaden- und Musik-Portal". austriancharts.at. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  11. ^ "ultratop.be - ULTRATOP BELGIAN CHARTS". ultratop.be. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  12. ^ "ultratop.be - ULTRATOP BELGIAN CHARTS". ultratop.be. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  13. ^ "The Irish Charts - All there is to know". irishcharts.ie. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  14. ^ "Dutch Charts - dutchcharts.nl". dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  15. ^ "norwegiancharts.com - Norwegian charts portal". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  16. ^ "flavour of new zealand - search listener". www.flavourofnz.co.nz. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  17. ^ "South African Rock Lists Website - SA Charts 1969 - 1989 Acts (M)". www.rock.co.za. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  18. ^ "HITS ALLER TIJDEN". www.hitsallertijden.nl. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  19. ^ "Die Offizielle Schweizer Hitparade - hitparade.ch". swisscharts.com. Retrieved 28 April 2021.
  20. ^ Kimberley, C. Zimbabwe: singles chart book. Harare: C. Kimberley, 2000

External links[edit]