The January 1971
issue of Fabulous 208 made up a Christie calendar, charting
six months of the group's past and looking at six months
into the future.
Christie's Yellow River makes
the number one spot. Originally written by Jeff Christie
for the Tremeloes, he was persuaded to form a group and
record the song himself.
Christie spent three days in Poland as guest artists at
a big international festival televised for 250 million viewers
behind the Iron Curtain.
staying in a big hotel and there were crowds of people around
all the time who were just waiting to see us," Jeff
said. "The trip was one of the highlights of our summer."
Drummer Mike Blakley left the line-up to pursue his own
things and he was replaced by Paul Fenton, so the current
line-up is originals Jeff and Vic Elmes and newcomer Paul,
who has already influenced the group sound quite a bit.
He and Jeff are big friends and share a Kensington pad.
collected a British gold disc for Yellow
River and completed a record-breaking Scandinavian
The month started with the release of Christie's first album,
Christie were in South America wowing the natives. The schedule
included Rio, Sau Paulo, and Buenos Aires.
at Santos football stadium, which is where Pele plays his
football, and did a great big festival at Luna Park in Buenos
Aires," Jeff said. "The people were so warm and
so nice. Everywhere we went we were followed and if you
stopped to look in a shop, a crowd gathered and they kept
taking snaps of us. And when we were working we had a military
escort everywhere, soldiers with guns to guard us!"
Christie's second release San Bernadino
is well up in the charts.
The band also
took a well-earned Christmas rest after an Italian tour
and recording the Christmas edition of Top of the Pops to
cover the year's big hits including of course Yellow
River. Jeff also insisted they play a sentimental
date, a gig at Leeds Grammar School, where he was once a
Christie see in the New Year with a gig at Stockholm. Apart
from a two-week tour of Germany, the rest of the month is
spent in the studio recording for a single and LP.
will be the most difficult one to choose so far," says
Jeff. "After I wrote Yellow River,
it was easy to write a follow-up. San
Bernadino is a very similar sound but it's not very
representative of the sound we are making on stage now.
I want to write something that's heavier but still instantly
recognisable as a Christie sound."
The single should be released.
very well-treated by the fans," says Jeff, "and
we're grateful to them because after all they're the ones
who put us in the charts. I really hope they like the new
single and the sound Christie are making now."
Jeff hopes it's back to South America month.
"I love that
place so much. The girls are so beautiful for one thing,
it's worth going back just for them! Everything is chaotic.
They don't seem to be able to cope with technical things
like electricity and we spent half our last trip getting
shocks off the mikes and the equipment. They're the worst
drivers in the world with their hands on the horn all the
time and it's generally crazy! But I can't wait to get back."
A trip the to USA is being negotiated. Yellow
River has been in the US charts for five months already,
the longest any record has been there for a year.
"We hope to go to New Zealand and Australia,"
Jeff said. "I'm really looking forward to that, because
apart from seing the down-under scene, I've got quite a
few relatives there who I'd love to look up."
That completes the Christie calendar. A quick trip to Japan
is also scheduled.
one thing that's so marvellous about the pop business,"
Jeff said. "If you have an ordinary job and you save
hard, maybe you can go to Spain or France or Sweden, but
trips to South America and the States and Japan they're
something really special, something to look forward to and
be very grateful for that you're so lucky.