The Magic Highway


Mike Blakley's departure made the news in all the music papers.

clippingThe story was front page news for Disc, September 19, 1970.

CHRISTIE have lost drummer Mike Blakley, brother of Tremeloes star Alan Blakley. He quit to work behind-the-scenes in pop.
     His replacement is 23-year-old Paul Fenton, formerly with a group called the Contrasts, from Huddersfield.
     His first appearance with the Yellow River hit-makers was at Scarborough last Saturday.
     Says group manager Brian Longley: "The split was quite friendly. Mike will be working for his brother's music publishing firm in future. We're very happy with Paul. Jeff Christie and Vic Elmes have known him for some time."
     Paul joins Christie in time to help promote their follow-up, San Bernadino, just released.
     Read more about Mike's departure here


TOP and RIGHT: How some other papers reported the story



A few months earlier, in the May 23 issue, Mike had featured in a regular Disc column where current chartmakers were asked to comment on other hits in the Top 10.

clipping"Norman Greenbaum's Spirit in the Sky really appeals to me. It's very straightforward and great for teenyboppers to dance to.
     The England World Cup Squad song is a good joke. Great for football supporters.
     I can't see the success of Frijid Pink's House of the Rising Sun. The Animals' version was alright, but never really appealed to me either.
     Stevie Wonder's Never Had a Dream Come True is knockout; he can't do a thing wrong. He really swings and this one moves like nothing on earth. Next to Ray Charles he's the greatest!
     CCR are tremendous. Travelling Band is back to basic rock-and-roll but they've given it a new approach, it's the ultimate.
     Hollies are fantastic, but their song sounds like any other Hollies record. It's time they tried other fields.
     Moody Blues and Question are brilliant. They're knockout on stage and the most different group around. They're going to be big and deserve to be."