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A Laugh, a Song, and a Hand-Grenade

Adrian Mitchell, Leon Rosselson: A Laugh, a Song, and a Hand-Grenade (Transatlantic TRA 171)

A Laugh, a Song, and a Hand-Grenade
Adrian Mitchell, Leon Rosselson

Transatlantic Records TRA 171 (LP, UK, 1968)

Recorded in 1967 at concerts at the Universities of Bradford and Lancaster;
Recorded and produced by Bill Leader;
Cover photo and design: Brian Shuel

Musicians

Leon Rosselson, vocals and guitar [1, 3, 5, 8, 10, 12, 14];
Adrian Mitchell, spoken words [2, 4, 6-7, 9, 11, 13]

Tracks

Side 1Side 2
  1. [LR] Flower Power = Bread (3.30)
  2. [AM] Take Stalk Between Teeth
    Pull Stalk from Blossom
    Throw Blossom over Arm Towards Enemy
    Lie Flat and Await Explosion (1.45)
  3. [LR] She Was Crazy, He Was Mad (3.48)
  4. [AM] A Party Political Broadcast on Behalf of the Burial Party (3.18)
  5. [LR] Judgements (3.55)
  6. [AM] An Oxford Hysteria of English Poetry (4.13)
  1. [AM] The Whom It May Concern (1.55)
  2. [LR] Jumbo the Elephant (4.33)
  3. [AM] Ode to an Assassination of President Johnson (1.46)
  4. [LR] History Lesson (2.42)
  5. [AM] Vroomph (2.35)
  6. [LR] Palaces of Gold (3.00)
  7. [AM] To You (2.58)
  8. [LR] The Rules of the Game (3.04)

Tracks 1, 3, 5, 8, 10, 12, 14 Leon Rosselson;
Tracks 2, 4, 6-7, 9, 11, 13 Adrian Mitchell

Review

Aisnia Cswica's review is from Gramophone, December 1968:

By complete contrast to the Topic offering is a record that inherits the tradition in a quite different way: as the source of an idiom, and an audience, for a new popular poetry. Where Topic records faithfully the exact detail of traditional song, Leon Rosselson, with as great integrity, re-invents the forms of popular sung poetry in a modern urban style close to Brassens. Here (on A Laugh, a Song and a Hand Grenade, Transatlantic mono TRA171) he joins Adrian Mitchell for 45 minutes of contemporary poetry, half to the guitar, half to a renegade jazz instrument, Mitchell's voice. This is poetry for the ear more than for the page: the timing, delivery and (in Rosselson's case) the excellent guitar accompaniments are part of the pleasure. The performance is as good as the material, but the material has a wider value than this performance alone.