Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
(b 15 April '44, Cardiff, Wales) UK rock guitarist, singer, producer. Played in local bands '60s, then trio Love Sculpture, who had one-off no. 5 UK hit '68 with breakneck version of Khachaturian's 'Sabre Dance'. Kept flame of '50s rock alive with cover of Smiley Lewis's 'I Hear You Knockin' ' (no. 1 UK '70; no. 4 USA '71), solo LP Rockpile '72, top ten hits UK '73 'Baby I Love You', 'Born To Be With You'. Invested in studio Rockfield in Wales, prod. LPs early '70s by Del Shannon, Flaming Groovies, Man, Brinsley Schwarz, forming friendship with Brinsley bassist Nick Lowe. Edmunds was mus. dir., appeared with David Essex in film Stardust '73. Solo LP Subtle As A Flying Mallet '75 re-created basic rock sound: highly rated by contemporaries; one of few signings to Led Zeppelin label Swansong: album Get It '77 saw formation of fine band Rockpile, with Billy Bremner, guitar; Terry Williams, drums; and Lowe; Lowe and Edmunds were part of first Stiff tour '77. Edmunds's further LPs incl. Tracks On Wax '78, Repeat When Necessary '79 (cover of Elvis Costello's 'Girls Talk' no. 4 UK; minor hit was Graham Parker's 'Crawling From The Wreckage'). Rockpile made LP Seconds Of Pleasure '80 before split (Bremner to Pretenders, released solo album Bash '83; Williams worked with Paul Brady, then joined Dire Straits). Edmunds's Twangin' '81 incl. cover of John Fogerty's 'Almost Saturday Night', duet with Stray Cats 'The Race Is On' (top 40 hit). DE7th incl. Bruce Springsteen song personally passed on by the composer, 'From Small Things'. Information '83 and Riff-Raff '84 had Edmunds working with Jeff Lynne. Always in demand as producer: albums by Stray Cats, Everly Bros; Shakin' Stevens, Jeff Beck, Fabulous Thunderbirds, Dr Feelgood, etc; appeared in Paul McCartney's film Give My Regards To Broad Street '84; oversaw Carl Perkins UK tour '85, worked with George Harrison, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton; supervised soundtrack for film Porky's Revenge '85. His live I Hear You Rockin' '87 was on Arista, studio Closer To The Flame '90 on Capitol. Retrospective Edmunds Anthology (1968--1990) on Rhino.