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The Olympic tapes

At Olympic Studios in Barnes one morning, possibly in the late sixties, two guys walked in off the street and started looking around. They asked if they could record some songs, and the technical engineer who was aligning the tape machines that morning put up a microphone and a new reel of tape for them and let them sing a few songs before they disappeared on their way.

The result is possibly the worst session ever recorded, so bad in fact I have edited some of the songs to 30 second doses, not for copyright purposes but for any music lovers who may hear these. Ken Jones who worked at Olympic later added some jangly piano behind a couple of the tracks to deliberately make things even worse. We don't know who these guys were, and it was all done straight with no laughs at the time, but I suspect it may have been some professional comedians having a wind-up.

The technical engineer on that day was Dag Fellner (photo), who later introduced AMS digital delays to London studios and went on to be the head of MCI UK Ltd, selling the American MCI recording consoles and tape machines into the UK (and also to odd parts of Europe). Phil got The Marquee to upgrade to an MCI JH400 console, and when Phil & Gus were setting up The Mill, they purchased one of the first batch of MCI JH500 consoles along with 24 track, 4 track and 2 track MCI tape machines from Dag Fellner in what was the largest order of MCI equipment outside the USA at the time.

Phil's wife Andy Dunne was Dag Fellner's secretary at MCI UK.

This tape was given to Phil by Dag, and there is a extra rock & roll track leadered onto the end that is a cover of the classic "Some of These Days" by an unknown artist that we can only suppose was recorded at Olympic Studios.

Reel 63 tk1Gee Whiz it's You3:11s
Reel 63 tk2A Rose Grows Wild in the Country2:24s
Reel 63 tk3When the Saints Go Marching In2:52s
Reel 63 tk5Discussions0:40s
Reel 63 tk6The Young Ones2:52s
Reel 63 tk7Running out of Time1:31s

And now by contrast, some decent rock & roll...

Reel 63 tk8Some of These Days2:03s

The complete duration of each track is shown, however all playable samples have been edited to 30 seconds in length. Except for some of the stuff above.