There will be more to follow and I was also hoping to get a couple of answers about two songs:
The 1985 original release of Irresistible was apparently followed by a re-recorded version in 1986 and then of course it was included on the Yes You Can album. Is the Yes You Can album version another re-recording or is it the 1985 or 1986 version?
A Friend For Life was released in 2001 as a single and then later included on the Quality of Mercy album in 2005 - is this a re-recorded version? I have yet to purchase and listen to this album.
AJ........I'm only a fan so obviously not 100% CERTAIN of these answers but here goes anyway...(and it's all part of the fun)
1.A fRIEND fOR lIFE, I believe the vocal was re-recorded for the cd The Quality Of Mercy.
2.IRRESISTIBLE...always found it a little tricky to keep up with the versions...I believe the 1985 version was re-recorded for another single in 1986..(there were different B Sides).When Yes You Can was first released in Europe in 1992 I think the album version sounds more like the 1986 recording?
You may be interested to know also that in 1992 there was a cd single released in Europe CTE 055-31813 which had on it 1.irresistible ( remix version by Boogiepark Hamburg) 2. Irresistible ( taken from the album yes You Can)3. The Waggon ( which was originally released in 1989 as the B side of When I'm With You (but then called the Theme From Babbacombe Lee).
Hopefully others out there in Harley land can shed some more light on the questions or indeed put me right!!
Good to see your work for Wikipedia. Perhaps I can give you the answers to your two questions?
The re-recorded version of 'Irresistible' is indeed the one included on the 'Yes You Can' album. At around 5'12" it was an 'extended' version, which was a popular product at the time (also known as the '12-inch' re-mix sometimes). This mix was made by my ol' pal Stuart Breed, a Recording Engineer at A.I.R. Studios, London in 1986. [He went on to become Freelance and worked especially with Art Garfunkel]. Stuart did an exceptional job, not least as a Maintenance Engineer made a career-threatening error on the morning of the session and recorded a sublime 1kHz tone over the original multitrack up until around the first chorus of 'Irresistible' as made by Mickey Most a year before. The client (Steve Harley) kept his cool of course and he and Stuart came up with this gem of a version that was justly included on the forthcoming album. 'A Friend For Life' is another superb Single from Steve Harley. It was recorded at his friend Mike Batt's house and features a quartet arranged by Mike, who also plays keyboards. There is only one version of this song and this was indeed included on the album 'The Quality Of Mercy'.
This recording inspired Mike Batt to record extensively at his home and most of Katie Melua's recordings have been made there.
Hope this helps.
Just to add to the forum - can't wait until the London show on the 13th!
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The following user(s) said Thank You: , DaveHornby
There you go AJ,fantastic stuff from Matt whose done some brilliant work with Steve over the years.His answers will be spot on,cos he was there!! I always thought the vocal for A Friend For Life for the album had been redone but if Matt says there's only one version, then there's only one version!
Thank you Stewart for those kind words! My answer was sent before I had a chance to read yours by the way.
You had me worried about the vocal for 'A Friend For Life' ...I'm happy to say I've had to play both versions several times to check! They are identical I believe - we were very happy with all of our work at Mike's place, so no changes were required.
There is a very slight difference in the sound of the CD's (the Single and the Album) and the richer sound of the album shows off the work of another pal who did the Album CD Mastering - one Denis Blackham. He resides up on the Isle of Skye and as well as his excellent Mastering work he is a DJ for local radio and regularly plays excerpts from 'The Quality Of Mercy'.
So Stewart, from the decorum of one Forum to another...see you in the London one on the 13th I hope!
Matt,had myself worried and like you I played the single version and cd version..no difference at all!! However it must be the richer sound of the album that made me think the vocal had been re-recorded! That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it! Sadly I won't be at The Forum but Manchester last Friday was superb and your in for a cracking night in London next week.