SONGS JEFF CHRISTIE WROTE FOR OTHERS
WHEN Christie were on the charts in the
early 70s, Jeff's songwriting talent was recognised and
much in demand. Singers who approached Jeff to write songs
for them included Ray Coniff, Cliff Richard, Long John Baldry,
James Last, Jackie Wilson, and Peter Noone (Herman of Herman's
Hermits). Ray Coniff even approached Jeff personally at
a party to ask him to write several songs for one of his
Unfortunately for Jeff, because Christie toured round
the world so much, he could not find the time to accept
the requests, and even had to turn down what would have
been a lucrative offer to write a jingle for Coca Cola.
For Jeff, the group came first, and all his energies were
focussed on helping the band establish themselves.
But there's a story with Baldry, Jeff recalls.
"Sometime in 1969, with Yellow
River and San Bernadino
already born and waiting to meet the world plus many more,
I was able to get to many artists, as I'd already worked
with them at gigs where Outer Limits were supporting, and
would try to interest them in my songs," Jeff said.
"Baldry initially was and still is a great blues
singer. I knew him from gigging with him, Rod Stewart, Julie
Driscoll and Brian Auger when they were in Steampacket,
so I met up with him in London and played him lots of songs.
"He liked quite a few, and loved Yellow
River and San Bernadino.
He wanted to record San Bernadino
and I felt that as Yellow River
was in the Trems' pocket, San Bernadino
would be great for him.
"At the time, the Trems were still going to
release Yellow River themselves
and were still on course with it. I didn't know they were
going to change their mind and that subsequently I would
record and release it, so when that actually happened and
it was a hit, San Bernadino
was a natural follow-up for me so Baldry didn't get it in
"I didn't see him after that as within a few
months I was climbing the charts, and when I hit No.1, he
sent me a congratulations telegram which I still have today."
Ironically, when Jeff initially set out to carve
himself a name as a songwriter after the Outer Limits split
up, he had composed many pieces with specific performers
A song called Tomorrow Night,
for example, was offered to the Tremeloes because it was
in the style of the melodramatic Italian pop songs that
the group were covering at the time. But the Trems rejected
it in favour of Yellow River,
which they subsequently came close to releasing as a single.
Jeff also wrote a piece called Sunday
which he thought would suit Frank Sinatra, and a catchy
pop tune called All The Love
for Roy Orbison, who at one stage even tried unsuccessfully
to contact Jeff for a song. In later years, Jeff came up
a song he felt suited the style of Elton John.
Another song called Northern
Lights was intended for Rod Stewart, but Jeff rejigged
it as Yuletide
Lights and released it as an inclusion for a
Stars of the 70s Christmas album.
"I was asked to provide a Christmas song for
the festive season album project being set up by Alan Williams
of the Rubettes," Jeff said.
"I had to give him part of the publishing
on this track for a period of time, that's why you'll see
Jonalco Music alongside Christabel on the album credits."
Nevertheless, some of Jeff's material which
were not performed by Christie has been covered and
performed by other artists.
A Brazilian singer named Rosemary recorded a song
called Nothing Has Changed,
which she released in 1974.
In 1976, Jeff was commissioned
by an aspiring singer to write a soul song, and to play
on the backing. Together with Paul Fenton on drums and Ted
Platt on bass, the trio played on the song called
Shoot Out The Light
with the hopeful wannabe on lead vocals.
Jeff liked the song so much, he substituted his own
vocals after the project was finished.
In the 80s, a young female UK singer named Joanne
Booth was the lucky recipient of two of Jeff's songs, Living
Without Your Love and End Of
Time. Jeff also played the instruments on both of
"Considering that she'd never set foot in a
studio before, she did very well, I think. She went to study
drama in London soon after," Jeff said.
The sounds and arrangements are very much in the
flavour of the 80s, and are reminiscent of some Sheena Easton
In the late 80s, the UK band the Tubeless Hearts
recorded Jeff's Safe
In Your Arms, a song submitted for the Eurovision
"As much as I dislike song contests, I was persuaded
to have a go by a London publisher who bemoaned the lack
of quality songs that were entered into Eurovision,"
In 1998, Jeff was invited to a songwriting workshop
at Copenhagen, Denmark, during which time he co-wrote several
pieces with other writers, including six songs in six days,
each with a different Danish participant. There was another
co-written song with a girl singer named Ann Louise Mathiesen
called It's Alright, which
she released on record.
Out of these sessions also came the jazzy Whispering