Between a world of cancelled and postponed gigs and time spent in lockdown, 2020 has been a troubled year, but nevertheless, time marches on. Unbelievably, we’ve reached December and our traditional countdown to Christmas has begun.
With the release of two massive Small Faces box sets, two Humble Pie bootleg boxes, an expanded reissue of Humble Pie’s ‘Watch Your Step’ and a four disc set of the final performances of Steve Marriott’s Packet of Three all issued within just over a year, the stretch between April 2017 and the summer of 2018 was a wondrous time to be a Marriott fan. …And then, at the beginning of 2019, Cleopatra Records offered fans something extra from the archives – a long overdue vinyl release of ‘Joint Effort’, Humble Pie’s “lost” album from 1974.
The origins of ‘Joint Effort’ were already somewhat troubled. In the lead up to recording, Marriott had briefly quit Humble Pie hoping to join The Rolling Stones (the vacant guitarist’s role was filled by Faces man Ron Wood) and guitarist Clem Clempson had moonlighted with Greenslade [appearing on their ‘Spyglass Guest’ album, his contributions are fantastic]. To be fair, at that point, the future of the band looked uncertain. However, the reconvening of Clempson and Marriott in 1974 led to various recording sessions which, while perhaps not as coherent as ‘Street Rats’ (the album that eventually hit the shelves the following year), make an interesting album in their own right.