History Part 3
.....a release date was set and the band were invited to a meeting at the record company offices where they were told that the allocated budget had been virtually all used up on making the album and there was little money left for marketing! As they had never been made aware of any budget conditions and had not been a party to the spending of it, the band were horrified that the success of their creative efforts was going to be completely unsupported and left to fate!
The album received moderate air plays on Radio 1 thanks to the continued loyalty and support of Bob Harris and John Peel but the primetime programmes that were bombarded by record pluggers and as such assisted commercial success evaded Aubrey Small completely. However the band were highly respected within the record company and were accorded the freedom of the studio at their Head Offices. Studio time would simply be a matter of ringing up the resident engineer to tell him that they were coming and they could spend as long as they liked there, which was an incredible facility to be given. One product of the time spent there was their eventual single “The Loser” which the band produced.
Since signing with the record company the band’s musical direction had changed and eventually a mutual decision was reached between the band and Ronnie Scott’s that they would go their separate ways. There was no acrimony whatsoever and with a great deal of sadness the band left their much-loved management. It was an even greater sadness that Ronnie Scott, Pete King and Peter “Chips” Chipperfield all passed away in recent years having each played such a formative role in the life of Aubrey Small.
The band continued to enjoy the support of both Bob Harris and John Peel and recorded “Sound of the Seventies” sessions until late 1972. During this period Graham Hunt decided to leave the band and auditions took place for a replacement drummer. Barry Shute joined and played until 1973 adding an excitingly different dimension to the performances. Bob in particular became much more involved with the artistic development of the band and made regular weekend visits to Portsmouth to advise on new songs. It was on one of these visits that Bob brought along Bob Hirschmann who was involved in the management of Bread. The band were rehearsing in the Tricorn Club and during a break the two Bobs put forward an interesting offer! David Gates of Bread had privately given notice that he was quitting in one year and his record company Elektra/Asylum headed by David Geffen were looking for a replacement and Aubrey Small had been recommended! This would mean going to live in L.A., writing, recording and rehearsing ready to be launched the following year to fill the void left by Bread. However, as with lots of things in the music world things unfortunately did not work out.
After a short while the band decided to call it a day and went their separate ways but remain lifelong friends to this day. Sadly drummer Graham Hunt died in 1999 after a long period of illness.
In December 2006 the band reformed to celebrate the 60th birthdays of David, Rod and Alan. Pete came from his home in Toulouse in France, and Paul Anthony Godwin, who had played separately with both Pete and Rod joined the band on drums. Songs were re-learnt, rehearsals were held, and for 10 days the years seemed to disappear and Aubrey Small once again performed the songs from their album and single to an invited audience! The event was recorded and some of the video footage can be seen on the 2006 page of this website.
In late 2012 the band were unexpectedly reunited with many long lost tapes including an original Trident Studio master copy of the album, an original extended master copy of the single, plus additional recorded “live” sessions and radio broadcasts which will be made available exclusively via this website. In addition Graham Hunt left a legacy of original songs which together with songs by other members of the band will hopefully be recorded by Aubrey Small for release in the near future. There is now a website in Graham's memory.
Read about the individual members on the page and view their web sites.