The Wurzels Archives

Adge Cutler & The Wurzels


1966 Acetate - EMI Pre-contract Demo Abbey Road Studio No. 2


Side 1: The Champion Dung Spreader (Cutler) ​    Side 2: Twice Daily (Cutler)

The Band:

At the time of this recording supporting Adge on vocals were Reg Quantrill (guitar & banjo), Reg Chant (accordion), John Macey (bass) and Brian Walker (tuba). The recording was produced by Bob Barrett.

Background To The Recording:

In 1966 John Miles, Adge’s first manager and friend, already had a few groups under his wing so he managed to persuade EMI's record producer Bob Barrett that this local west country band were worth a try. Bob was always up for something different, and so when John told him about the Wurzels with his well-rehearsed cider and manure line, he booked studio 2 at Abbey Road, home to the Beatles.    ​  'We’d got props, milk churns and bales of straw and so on, packed them all into the van" he said. "When we were on the outskirts of London I stopped the van and told them to get into their Wurzel gear, with Adge muttering that it was all bloody ridiculous! When we drove into Abbey Road they all jumped out, I pushed this milk churn and it bounced on the tarmac, straw was blowing everywhere in the wind and up in the windows all the secretaries were looking out wondering what on earth was happening”. After the kerfuffle died down somewhat and the band were taking their equipment into the studio, John Miles saw a grey-haired, charismatic looking sort of chap talking to Bob Barratt: 'Bob then brought him over and said to me "I'd like to introduce you to the chairman of EMI, Sir Joseph Lockwood." He said "John, Bob has been telling me about Adge Cutler and the Wurzels, and I've asked him to let me have the tapes at the end of the day". I told the boys the news, and urged them to do a good job. They did, Adge sang all his numbers, and a few days later Bob said the chairman had told him the Wurzels had to be signed.

The Recording:

The original tapes had long been thought lost - and the two tracks ‘Champion Dung Spreader’ and ‘Twice Daily’ appearing on this recently discovered disc are probably all that remain from that very first Abbey Road session. The disc is actually a metal based double-sided 7" acetate (double sided is quite unusual), neither side being labelled, playing at 45rpm and was produced directly from the master tapes recorded in studio 2 and then given to Sir Joseph Lockwood for his listening at the end of the day as he had requested. The lucky handful of people who have been privileged to listen to the songs, both self-penned by Adge, all agree that they show Adge at his very best – both tracks are upbeat, lively and clear with Adge clearly relaxed in surroundings more formal than he was used to in the local pubs of Somerset! Interestingly, both songs are slightly different than the later recordings that he made – the lyrics on this recording being the same as those he meticulously laid down in his 1965 diary - they underwent some changes before they appeared on his first album and singles at the end of the year and early in 1967

Collectors' Extras:

This disc is possibly the only Adge Cutler & The Wurzels recording to have been 'bootlegged'! It appears only a handful of copies on CD were produced for lucky Adge fans.

The sleeve image is from a late 1966 photoshoot taken of the band line-up as at the time of this recording - from the left Reg Chant, Brian Walker, Reg Quantrill, Adge Cutler and John Macey.  The credits on the back case of the CD are overlaid onto a photo taken from a series of promotional images of the band taken at the Nailsea cider factory in 1966 - the group perched on a mountain of cider apples that are ready for the pressing process.

The Wurzels Archives
The Wurzels Archives

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