Subsequently re-released in part on Someday Fantasies and in full on Resigning from Today.
One act in which the conflict between the artistic and the commercial considerations exists is with Harvey Andrews. Andrews is one of the most powerful and compelling writers working in Britain today. His strength of imagery and ability to communicate feeling has been perfectly displayed on his last three albums, the latest being ‘Fantasies from a corner seat’, produced by Ritchie Gold. Despite a production that is superb and which won great critical acclaim, the record failed to sell in large numbers and Ritchie is now working on a follow up.
We want to sell records now. I’m working with some fine musicians who’ve played on hits before, I’m arranging Harvey’s stuff and I’m frankly trying to get him a hit. The feeling here is singles, singles. It takes maybe £8,000 or £10,000 to make an album, considerably less for a single so you can see why people are anxious to get singles away. We’ve always been an album company, but economics are forcing that to change.’
The solid, central group of Harvey Andrews’ fans may be horrified. Questioned closely on the validity of commercialising his material, his producer admits that perhaps Harvey shouldn’t be recording. His strength is in his imagery and despite the fact that the melodic vehicle communicates those images perfectly in a club, the record and media system of exposure requires adulteration of Harvey’s main strength.
Harvey is one of the few singers whose interpretation of songs I can describe as magic. He plays with your emotions, having the ability to lift you from sadness to joy in just a few lines. This album is no exception. It takes several playings to get into some of the tracks, but it’s a very good album. Stockport Advertiser
The strange thing is that Harvey Andrews who has been making fine records for some five years now remains appreciated by the few. This is a finely and sensitively crafted album.
Harvey Andrews, still regarded by the music world as a folk artist throws caution to the wind for the opening track of his new album ‘Someday’ and plunges into pure pop. The song is called ‘Why?’. It is a fun song, clearly aimed at the singles market, and it is already winning plenty of air time on Commercial and local radio, even if the national network chooses to ignore it.
Labels may be unfair, but artists will always be pigeon-holed and those labelled ‘British contemporary singer-songwriter’ are among the less successful in terms of record sales. However, this album deserves to sell in large quantities. The songs are excellent.
Andrews has been around for a long while, getting better and better. It’s about time somebody woke up to the fact.
This album really marks Harvey’s emergence. Since 1972 he’s been making brilliant albums quietly which have been quietly received by the public despite critical raptures. One of the lad’s problems has been that people seem unwilling to listen to songs without prejudice – because he sang about ‘ordinary’ life as he observed it, they had to mark him down as a protest or folk singer and thus dismiss him.
Such rationalisation is not possible with this album as Harvey has managed to craft his songs more subtly and build melodies that would exist very happily if divorced from the lyrics. Harvey has discovered melody and sings very well on this record, far better than on anything before.
I suspect the faithful of his hard-core folk club audience will be slightly upset by Harvey seeming to go commercial – but that would be as pure an expression of prejudice as the opposite view. It’s a very fine album, demonstrating that English songwriting is as vital as any in the world.
If a hit single comes from this album (and it should if Transatlantic can do there job) all of a sudden the world will have discovered a new songwriting force – only like other overnight successes he’s been waiting a long time.
His concert presentation is sparse, but both intimate and dramatic. The drama comes from some of the full-blooded songs, full of insight, which reflect on many of the turbulent topics of today. The characters in Harvey Andrews’ songs suffer from a variety of todays social problems. Forlorn mistresses, frustrated office workers, middle aged men jealous of the younger generations overt sexuality, harmless pensioners being bulldozed into skyscraper blocks. His talent is to take these characters and situations and translate them into songs full of charm, wit and pathos, without a trace of pretension. The intimacy of his live performance comes from his wry commentary between songs and his total communication with his audience.
Harvey quite naturally hopes that his work will reach the ears of an ever-widening public. He does not look the part of a pop star, but that of course, is totally unimportant to the ever growing legion of Harvey Andrews fans.
His is a literate, intelligent audience who are not always catered for in the area of crafted songs
Man With A Gun, The Him and Us dancers
This is a curiosity I never knew existed. The single was issued by Transatlantic and sank without a trace. It would not have been my choice for radio play at the time. However, this gem appeared recently on the web, much to my astonishment. The PR department obviously did a good job getting this on the programme.