Music today has returned to the early seventies with one of those obscure Vertigo bands that all record collectors know about, the general public not so much. Gracious made three albums, two in the seventies, self-titled (1970) and This Is Gracious (1971). Another album, Echo, appeared in 1996, which I’ve not heard – yet. Their music is Rock Prog rather than Prog Rock, there seems to be a difference. The cover of their second album might be seen as controversial if one looks closely – a Rock singer in a pulpit (heaven forbid) and a stained glass window with a naked couple embracing – or wait a minute, no surely not?

Next were the first two Colosseum albums, beginning with For Those About To Die Salute You and Valentyne Suite, both released in 1969, albeit on different labels. The debut album was on Fontana, the second album was the first release on Vertigo Records and reached No.15 in the UK charts. They were formed out of a desire to fuse Rock and Jazz. Drummer Jon Hiseman had played with Graham Bond where he replaced Ginger Baker. There he met sax player Dick Heckstall-Smith. In 1968 they moved on to John Mayall’s band where they met Dave Greenslade on keys and Tony Reeves on bass. With the addition of James Litherland on guitar and vocals Colosseum was born. Later Litherland left and was replaced by Clem Clempson. If you like your late sixties and early seventies Rock jazzy then this is for you. Dave Greenslade went on to form Greenslade, Jon Hiseman to Tempest and Clem Clempson to Humble Pie with Steve Marriott. Colosseum ll, a different incarnation, featured some great guitar playing by Gary Moore. Reunions ensued, but most recently and sadly Jon Hiseman died and he was seen as the driving force. Fast forward to 2020, Clem Clempson’s Colosseum were booked for this years Night Of The Prog in Germany until…

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