Affinity had its origins in the mid-60s at the University Of Sussex when three science students - pianist Lynton Naiff, drummer Grant Serpell and double-bass player Nick Nicholas - formed the US Jazz Trio. One year later another science student, Mo Foster, who had originally played bass guitar in his school band, adapted to playing drums in the band when Grant Serpell graduated. After University and a short-lived involvement in a pop group called Ice, Lynton and Grant invited Mo to play bass in a proposed new jazz-influenced pop band. The guys held auditions for a guitarist and were delighted to find ex-Tridents guitarist Mike Jopp. Mike's father guaranteed the band's loan so they were able to purchase some amplifiers and instruments.
They held auditions for singers but finally realised that the only person for the job was Linda Hoyle, a qualified English teacher who they had earlier met through a friend at University.
They spent the summer of 1968 "getting it together" and took the name "Affinity" from the title of an Oscar Peterson LP. Their first-ever gig took place on 5 October 1968 at the Revolution Club, London. As a result of hearing the band Ronnie Scott agreed to manage them and booked them into his club where they played alongside world-class players.
The band released it's critically-acclaimed first album on the infamous Vertigo label and one of their earliest advocates was the Radio 1 DJ Anne Nightingale who proclaimed that Linda was "the girl most likely to succeed in 1970."
Lynton and Mo started to write for a second album and the band was lined up for a USA tour but in January 1971 Linda announced she had decided to leave the business.
Until now all that remained from the band in terms of released material was that first album. From the group's own archives comes a further five unreleased bonus tracks as well as the first LP and both sides of the single.
The original album exchanges hands these days for £100 plus. This Angel Air release includes informative sleeve notes from band member Mo Foster and photographs from his own personal archives.
This album will appeal to all lovers of well-played jazz/rock and blues, with Linda Hoyle's vocal style not dissimilar to that of Curved Air's Sonja Kristina in the seventies or classic Grace Slick.
|1.||I Am And So Are You|
|3.||I Wonder If I Care As Much|
|7.||All Along The Watchtower|