memories of the ’70s – Mott the Hoople

In the early 1970s, the radio playlists added a new must play song by Brit band Mott the Hoople.

Created from two bands, The Soulents and The Buddies, who had members form a new band called The Doc Thomas Group. Trying to get a record deal, the band decided to replace Stan Tippins on lead vocal with Ian Hunter.

The band’s name came from the book Mott the Hoople, about an eccentric who works in a circus freak show.

Producing their first album with Island Records in 1969, Mott the Hoople’s first effort was a cult success, gaining them radio airplay and plenty of Brit fans, including fellow performer David Bowie.

Consequent albums Mad Shadows and Wildlife didn’t fare as well, and the band thought about breaking up. But uber-fan Bowie persuaded them to stay together, and offered them the song Suffragette City,.

They didn’t like that song, but took another song offered by Bowie – All the Young Dudes, which he produced for the band, bringing them into the glam rock category.

Released as a single in July 1972, the song climbed the charts and became their first single. Two other songs did well for the band and the album sold well, but the newfound fame may have been a negative.

The music magazine New Music Express did an article on the band, showing how fame had negatively effected them and revealing the band’s animosities.

The band replaced a few members and then morphed into Mott, touring the UK and the US. But its the David Bowie connection that gave the band its fame, and the song All the Young Dudes its longlasting popularity.


About Waheeda Harris

A pop culture junkie with a penchant for exploring our planet.
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