Sunday, December 03, 2006

"Mapleoak" 1971

Mapleoak was the brainchild of former Kinks bass player Peter Quaife and was formed in April 1969. The group recorded a rare single and album for Decca Records. Quaife only appeared on the single.

Guitarist Stan Endersby (born July 17, 1947 in Lachine, Quebec, Canada) travelled to London, England in the spring of 1968 to visit his actor brother and to check out the city's vibrant music scene. On his first day in London he met Kinks bass player Peter Quaife at the club, Hatchettes. Quaife was impressed by his playing (Endersby had sat in with the house band) and told him he wanted to leave The Kinks and form a new group. Endersby agreed to join this band, but when Quaife decided to postpone his departure, he spent the next six months jobbing around with various local groups, including Horace Faith's soul band.

In the autumn, Endersby returned to Toronto, where he provided the music to an American TV show called "The Cube", which was produced by Jim Henson (later of the Muppets' fame) and filmed at CFTO for NBC. The studio band also included former Bobby Kris & The Imperials, Flying Circus and Olivus members Marty Fisher (born December 26, 1945 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada) and Gordon MacBain (born August 5, 1947 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada). When the recording ended, Endersby briefly gigged with Leather and then played with Transfusion (later briefly known as Crazy Horse), the house band at the Rock Pile, but in March 1969, he received a phone call from Quaife who was ready to put the band together.

Peter Quaife's new band is revealed to the press:
On April fool's day, Endersby and Fisher arrived in London to join Quaife and English drummer Mick Cook in the new group. Quaife's outfit was revealed to the world in a centre spread of Britain's NME magazine two days' later and was great surprise to the other Kinks, who were unaware of Quaife's musical plans.

After adopting the name Mapleoak (a combination of the two countries' national emblems – the Canadian Maple Leaf and the English Oak), the quartet quickly rehearsed at the Marquee (and played at the Factory in Birmingham in May) before embarking on a month tour of Denmark. Returning to the UK, Cook left and was replaced by Fisher's former band mate MacBain.
Turning down an offer from Muff Winwood to record for Island, Mapleoak signed a deal with Decca Records and began recording at West Hampstead studios, but they didn't like the results and moved to De Lane Lea. During this period, the band played at the Marquee with Renaissance, performed at the Speakeasy and appeared at the London Palladium on a show that also featured Matt Monroe and Roger Whittaker. Mapleoak also undertook a European tour, taking in Brussels, Antwerp and Hamburg.

A lone single coupling MacBain's "Son of A Gun" and Endersby's "Hurt Me So Much" was released in April 1970 but flopped. Soon afterwards, Quaife left the band.

Mapleoak records early country rock record in UK:
Reduced to a trio, and with Fisher providing the bass parts on the keyboards, the band continued to perform on the continent and in the UK. The new line-up returned to De Lane Lea studios to record an album, which was released nearly a year later in early 1971. The record is an early example of country rock and one of (if not) the first to be made in England. It contains a number of Bruce Cockburn's early songs as well as ex-Children member Bill Hawkins' "Frankly Stoned".

By the time the album appeared the group had returned to Toronto, and, following a final date at the Night Owl, broke up. Fisher and MacBain subsequently jobbed around while Endersby went solo before playing with Rick James's Heaven and Earth. Peter Quaife, who had moved to Denmark temporarily, later moved to Belleville, Ontario. He now lives in Denmark.

Sample pic: Click

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Blogger Lizardson said...


03 December, 2006 20:50  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow! Thanks for this one! it's pretty hard to find in Canada!

Stan Endersby has played with tonnes of groups!, buffalo springfield breifly, and subbed relatively recently for Toronto's reformed Ugly Ducklings.

04 December, 2006 05:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thanks for putting the Mapleoak entry but it would be nice to have a credit on this, after all I put it up on wikipedia for others to use only for them to pull it off. If you want to know more about this band, look no further than Misty Lane magazine's forthcoming issue.

Nick Warburton

05 December, 2006 23:01  

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