Boot Power was the fourth Mungo Jerry’s studio album to be released in the Autumn of 1972, and the first by Ray Dorset, the songwriter, and Mungo Jerry, the performer. Pianist, Colin Earl and banjoist, Paul King having left to form their own group, the King Earl Boogie Band.
Mungo Jerry, for the first time, with a drummer and had a harder-rocking sound, came up with what many fans believe to be the finest of all Mungo albums, containing classics such as, My Girl & Me and the autobiographical 46 & On.
Tracks: Open Up/She’s Gone/Looking For My Girl/See You Again/The Demon/My Girl & Me/Sweet Mary Jane/Lady Rose/Goin Down The Dusty Road/Brand New Car/46 & On.
Ray Dorset said…
“I was very pleased with the album, it still sounds fresh to me, although it could maybe have been a little shorter. Lady Rose was on the LP as the record company had left it off of the UK release of Electronically Tested so I had to re-record it as the original sounded nothing like the new band and would have stuck out on the album like a sore thumb.”
Derek Wadeson – Mungo Jerry Fan Club Secretary 1983-93.
“Strangely enough, Boot Power and Ray’s solo album, Cold Blue Excursion are my two favourite Mungo Jerry albums on Dawn.
“Obviously I love them all, but these two stand out for me. Many a long nights drive was improved immensely in recent years by these two pounding away full blast on the in-car CD player.
“They both showed what Ray Dorset is capable of without the constraints of the tags labelled to Mungo Jerry”.
MUNGO JERRY – BOOT POWER…
Ray Dorset has written and co-produced this new Mungo Jerry album and it’s a strong musical offering from the band. There are 11 tracks that display the range of Mungo Jerry and it must surely be well received by their many fans.
MUNGO MELT AWAY…
This a kind of sad album.
In student days of ’70 and ’71, it was quite a buzz to go down to the pub, get totally wrecked on cider, put every single Mungo Jerry record on the jukebox, stomp feet and chant along, if a trifle erratically.
But by then, the band became a full-tilt Ray Dorset ego boogie and that particular Mungo Jerry charm just melted away.
The cover of’Boot Power depicts Dorset on the fold-out as Dennis The Menace, and Mungo Jerry as Clockwork Orange types on the front.
The songs find Ray tackling heavier topics than in the old days in a more conventional electric rock style.
The trouble is that a charming but slight talent has strayed into areas which have effectively erased his charm and left the slightness bared. Sad, but nothing lasts forever.
Charles Shaar Murray, NME, 1972.
SMILER RAY PUTS THE BOOT IN…
(Extract from an article where Ray Dorset talks about Boot Power)
Mungo Jerry’s next album, Boot Power should surprise a lot of people. It’s got plenty of variety, a lot of surprises and a wedge of potential singles, though Ray is going to record a single later in October, probably at the same time as the album.
Why such an aggressive title? “Just like a lot of people can associate with it, the people on the streets. You’re always seeing ‘Shed’ or ‘Boot Boys’ scrawled on walls.”
RAY DORSET’S REVIEW…
Ray did a quick run-through of the tracks;
OPEN UP; “This is a re-recording with the new band, and is just how I thought it should be done. I think it’s much more alive.”
SHE’S GONE: “I went into a demo studio to work out some songs and the tape operator said he liked this one so I did it.”
LOOKING FOR MY GIRL; “I wrote the tune to this about six years ago, but the words were from another song, which I wrote about a year ago. I’d never had the words for the old tune, and eventually I realised that these lyrics fitted . Originally, it was called Looking For Myself.”
SEE YOU AGAIN; “This was just the result of going home one night and fiddling around. This is what I came up with.”
THE DEMON; “I was sitting in the flat in Hackney and thinking about a lot of strange things, like about when I was in Australia. The humidity was so great that you couldn’t see anything and it caused everything to blow up, so there was a power cut.”
MY GIRL & ME; “I used a Simmatone copy of a National Steel guitar on this one – a nice sunny sound.”
SWEET MARY JANE; “There is only me and John Godfrey on this one, plus a flute player. It’s very light with a Trini Lopez-type rhythm. I wrote it in Italy.”
LADY ROSE; “Lady Rose hasn’t been on an album before, only an (8-track) cartridge. Again, it’s been re-recorded, and has a high Pinky and Perky-ish voice on the end.”
BLOWIN’ DOWN THAT OLD DUSTY ROAD; “I found this on an old album of Woody Guthrie’s Dust Bowl Ballads. I’ve done it on stage, and I thought that it would be nice to get it on record. It’s a traditional Mungo Jerry-type number.”
BRAND NEW CAR; “I thought it would be nice to do an original rock ‘n roll song for a change. A lot of people take a lot of time and trouble on their cars – hence the song.”
46 & ON; “This one is my life to a degree but not just my life. it could be anybody. I think the song says a lot for a lot people. I got the idea from talking to a lot of people about, ‘do you remember gobstoppers and all that.”
SEE YOU AGAIN…“I’ve cheated and used one of the song titles from this very good album for the title to this review, the first after the split of the original (and still the best) line-up. Seems fitting as I did not expect to hear from them again.
“This album is a complete change of style and unexpectedly I warmed to it immediately. Not too sure about the new version of Lady Rose though as the original was just so good, but it is a grower. That cannot really be said for the new version of Open Up though, hence the 4 stars.
“Stand out tracks have to be Brand New Car and the semi-biographical 46 and On. Had the single (My Girl and Me) benefited from more airplay it would surely have been another hit. Perhaps it would have been if it had actually been released in the summer?
Looking For My Girl has some great stereo. Only down side is the fact that mostly the songs are not so instantly recognisable as Mungo Jerry and they do not have that catchy sing along appeal.
“In the good old vinyl days this was their last studio album for the Dawn label after which they moved to Polydor, where the rockier style continued and matured.
STAND UP AND DANCE… “Mungo Jerry is not a one-hit wonder ; it shows the ignorance of self-proclaimed musicologists and/or critics…
…The brilliance of the music cannot be measured by statistics only…
“To me it’s just another fireball of concentrated raw energy and honest to God rock…”
GOOD ALBUM…“May not have a lot of hits but all of the songs are good. It’s a very solid album.
Check out the Official Mungo Jerry website