Can-Con 45 Of The Day - April 15

Can-Con 45 Of The Day - April 15

Postby radiofan » Sat Apr 14, 2018 8:52 pm

Today's Can-Con 45 is from 1971 ... It's The Guess Who and "Bus Rider" [The flip side of Share The Land] ...

Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who couldn't hear the music.
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Re: Can-Con 45 Of The Day - April 15

Postby Richard Skelly » Sun Apr 15, 2018 5:18 am

The Canadian music landscape is littered with bands that coulda/woulda/shoulda been huge but whose members faltered at the starting gate.

By most accounts, Winnipeg-based Brother was one of those groups. A power trio, Brother comprised Kurt Winter (guitar/vocals), Bill Wallace (bass/vocals) and Vance “Masters” Schmidt (drums/vocals). Eager to follow in the successful slipstream of their city’s hometown heroes The Guess Who, the threesome worked up original songs and a fiery stage act.

Fate, in the form of Randy Bachman acrimoniously leaving The Guess Who in the late spring of 1970, dealt Brother a blow. Aware that Bachman had been a master guitarist, the remaining Guess Who opted to bring in two six-stringers to replace him. They made Kurt Winter an offer he couldn’t refuse. (Greg Leskiw became the co-guitarist.) Not only did Brother lose Winter, but also his two best songs—Hand Me Down World and Bus Rider. Both would now be sung by Guess Who frontman Burton Cummings.

Hand Me Down World became The Guess Who’s followup to American Woman. Bus Rider served as the b-side to the title track of their next album Share The Land. With its lyrics about musicians viewing the workaday commutes of 9-to-5 folk, it was not unlike a never-quite-finished Randy Bachman song known as White Collar Worker. It sounded completely different than Bus Rider...and later was tweaked and retitled Takin’ Care Of Business for Randy’s future band Bachman Turner Overdrive.

Bus Rider was a hit in Canada. Unlike some previous Guess Who releases, it didn’t become a doubled-sided hit in the US. Nevertheless Bus Rider was a concert staple on both sides of the border. Elements of other Brother songs emerged in three other Guess Who recordings—Rain Dance, Runnin Back To Saskatoon and Rock and Roller Steam.

Meanwhile, Brother carried on with a new guitarist until suddenly, in 1972, Guess Who bassist Jim Kale was pushed out of the band after problematic performances for the Live At The Paramount recordings in Seattle. The first emergency-replacement call went to Winter’s pal Bill Wallace who, of course, seized the opportunity of a lifetime. Drummer Schmidt, who’d later legally change his surname to Masters, pretty well threw in the towel on Brother. Years later, Burton Cummings ruefully observed: “If Vance has ever forgiven me, he’s a bigger man than I think I could have been.”

Vance Masters did join a post-Cummings Guess Who that featured Kurt Winter and Donnie McDougall (GW co-guitarist 1972-1974). Bill Wallace was in the official 2000-2003 Guess Who reunion. Kurt Winter died of organ failure in 1997.
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