Edgar Broughton Band

Phto: Bjørn-Kåre Iversen

Last year Edgar Broughton Band played for an extraordinary enthusiastic crowd on Karlsøya, the band gave all they had and they turned out to be just as socially conscious and groovy as they used to be. Their involvement with important issues is the backbone of their style and, as could almost be expected, the entire heading of their homepage is a banner that states “Free Tibet!”

Edgar Broughtons homepage.


And the Karlsøy Festival was entirely to their liking.
After the concert last year Edgar wrote on their webpage:

“This island is a magic place and I have never been any where like it.

I wish all good things for the inhabitants of Karlsoy. I hope they continue to flourish in their wonderful wilderness. Living there would not suit every one. The winters are extremely harsh but I for one would like to give it a go. The place and the people will always have a place in my heart.

I will always remember the Afghani guy who, with his wife, came to talk with me after the show. He spoke about my rap in ODO when I list the people for whom the piece is dedicated. I say " we do this for the people waiting at borders with no place to go - with out a country - with out a home". He told me how he had gone to Norway as a refugee and was moved by the words and the sentiment and intent of the lyrics. I was very touched by his words. We embraced as brothers and I was content with what we had made in the far north.”

Edgars blog.

So they were easy to convince when we proposed that they come back and play at our 10year anniversary!

Edgar Broughton Band was founded in England in 1968 and was one the pioneers of the progressive music culture. They were the first band ever to be released on the now famous label Harvest, shortly before Pink Floyd and Deep Purple signed on with them.
But despite their critical success they never became superstars like the others. 
”We weren’t willing to compromise”, Edgar Broughton himself said in an interview; ”…and to political. That gave us a lot of publicity, which annoyed the music industry. They wanted to control the bands, but they couldn’t do that with us. No doubt that ruined a lot of commercial possibilities, but we’ve never regret it.”
Their first LP “Wasa Wasa” was the rawest, most unpolished and heavy record released from the British Isles at the time. A mix of blues, boogie and heavy rock combined with easily identified anarchist politics.
From early on Edgar Broughton band were known as alternative, often playing at political rallies from the back of a lorry and with no permit to play electric music. This of course meant that more often than not the police would arrive and end their concerts prematurely. Edgar Broughton Band was a legend already in the 60´s and they still are!
Edgar Broughton Band released numerous albums in the 70´s. Records like "Wasa Wasa", "Sing Brother Sing" and "Edgar Broughton Band" and such songs as "Apache Dropout", "Out Demons Out", "Momma's Reward (Keep Them Freaks-A-Rollin')", "Evil" and "Evening Over Rooftops" are all classics of the freak scene even today.
The Band gradually slowed down their activity in the 80´s and 90´s but some years ago their sails once again got filled with fresh wind. The original Harvest release of their records is today sought after by collectors and is increasingly hard to come by. Their raw and uncompromising style has given them popularity way outside the circle of collectors of music from back then. Many who have their main interest in punk rock and political rock has opened their eyes for them.
In 2004 EMI and Harvest re-released their records on CDs, remastered and with bonus tracks. The formidable interest around these gave Edgar Broughton Band a fresh start. They got back together in 2005 and have toured ever since, with numerous concerts also in Norway.
Edgar Broughton is certainly one of my personal all time favorites!

Photo: Anka Nordenborg