Satisfaction – Just Like Friends

If the copyright holder deems that I affect his interests, please write to me (, and I’ll remove the video. Lucas & the Mike Cotton Sound were a British R&B band who never broke through as recording artists but enjoyed…

Satisfaction - Just Like Friends



If the copyright holder deems that I affect his interests, please write to me (, and I’ll remove the video.

Lucas & the Mike Cotton Sound were a British R&B band who never broke through as recording artists but enjoyed a successful run playing clubs and college dates. However, in the late ’60s they decided it was time to move on to something more creatively ambitious, and the group evolved into Satisfaction, who divided their energies between original material and idiosyncratic arrangements of popular rock tunes. A six-piece band with a three-man horn section, Satisfaction walked a fine line between jazz fusion, progressive rock, folk-rock, blues rock, and the brassy stylings of Chicago and Blood, Sweat & Tears, and all of these elements dance around one another on Three Ages of Man, the group’s long-lost second album, recorded in 1971 and 1972 but not released until it was discovered by Richard Searle of Acid Jazz Records in 2014. The opening track, “My Fixation,” sounds like an arty variation on Cream with the addition of a horn chart, the closing reprise is a nearly nine-minute epic with plenty of guitar heroics from Derek Griffiths, and their instrumental take on “House of the Rising Sun” is dominated by Nick Newall’s flute, including a coda that finds him riffing largely unaccompanied for over three-and-a-half minutes. However, while chops-intensive daring-do dominates Three Ages of Man, for the sake of contrast the album does feature a few more subdued guitar-and-vocal features with thoughtful lyrics, most notably “One Man Band” and the title track, and the band kicks the more complicated stuff to the side for the hard rock bombast of “Liar Liar.” Three Ages of Man often seems a bit too pretentious and overdone for its own good, but there’s no arguing the instrumental virtuosity of this band, and the scope and ambition of this music is a vivid evocation of the time and place in which it was created. Hike up your bell bottoms, grow out your moustache, and play this good and loud. …………..
It’s a heart-pumping month should you happen to be dangerously obsessed with Artwoods alumni. If the Keef Hartley Band live album, also reviewed in this issue, hasn’t quelled your fevered Jones, Three Ages Of Man by Satisfaction should tip the balance nicely.
Headed up by former Artwoods guitarist Derek Griffiths and ubiquitous trumpeter Mike Cotton, Satisfaction were a hirsute jazz-rock conglomerate who released one eponymous Decca album in 1970, then appeared to drop from view within nanoseconds. However, Derek Griffiths recently unearthed a 40-odd-year-old reel of ?” tape containing a conceptually linked album’s worth of material “written on the road, about the road”: not that you’d necessarily pick that up without prompting. Nevertheless, Three Ages Of Man is an intermittently stirring affair, its stout and roistering set-pieces oddly redolent of a brass-aided Family or Jethro Tull (My Fixation, Don’t Rag The Lady), and interwoven with brief vocal-and-acousticguitar interludes (the title track, Hotel).
The relentlessly hooky Don’t Rag The Lady may already have appeared as a bonus track on Esoteric’s 2008 reissue of the debut album, and Liar Liar may also be familiar to Satisified fans, but there’s enough “new” material here to make this worth a sniff. And the jazz-rock reinvention of House Of The Rising Sun earns a licked face for brazenness. …………….
Whilst pouring though twenty or so unmarked reel-to-reel tapes Derek Griffiths, formerly The Artwoods, one of the most revered and in fact the highest paid 60s band, Art Woods brother is Ronnie of The Rolling Stones (cf. a big deal). Derek and Rich Searle (Acid Jazz) came across a red tape box… Artist – Satisfaction. Date – 28.4.71.

‘A jazz-rock album,’ Derek explained, ‘a cross between Blood Sweat And Tears and early Chicago but without organ. Hammond organ smothers the horns.’ The studio engineer carefully cued up the forty-year-old quarter-inch tape and pressed play. As we listened, arms goosed, neck hair bristled, we fell silent, it was a trip. Derek endeavoured to shed more light. ‘It’s a concept album, written on the road about the road.

This album is a lost gem, a forgotten chapter from the British Rock Chronicles, a diamond in the rough…………

Line Up:

*John Beecham – Horn Arrangements, Trombone, Tuba
*Mike Cotton – Flugelhorn, Horn Arrangements, Trumpet
*Derek Griffiths – Guitar, Vocals
*Bernie Higginson – Bongos, Drums, Percussion
*Lem Lubin – Bass, Vocals
*Nick Newall – Flute, Horn Arrangements, Tenor Sax
*Jim Toomey – Drums

1) Satisfaction (1970)

2) Satisfaction – Three Ages Of Man 1971-72

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