Looking at the music of Dutch rock band Focus, started in the late sixties by Thijs Van Leer (b /31/03/48) with Jan Akkerman (b 24/12/46). Van Leer still performs and records under the name today (official site here). Akkerman's site here.




Track by track 29 Hocus Pocus (Live)

Archive number: 29
Title: Hocus Pocus (Live)
Main Album: Focus at the Rainbow
Track number: 5
Genre: Live Progressive Rock Instrumental
Venue: Rainbow Theatre, Finsbury Park, 232 Seven Sisters Road, N4 3NX (recorded using Pye Studios Mobile Unit and edited from the two performances)
Length: 8' 29"
Composer: Thijs van Leer, Jan Akkerman
Musicians: Jan Akkerman – Electric guitar (Gibson Les Paul Custom); Thijs van Leer – Hammond organ, Voice; Bert Ruiter - Bass; Pierre van der Linden – Drums
Producer: Mike Vernon
Engineer: Phil Dunne Label: LP – Polydor, Sire CD – EMI-Bovema, IRS, Red Bullet, JVC Victor Date of recording/release: May 4, 5 1973/October 1973 (May 4 concert televised UK July 1973) CD 1988, 1993, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006
Alternative version: The original is on Moving Waves
Notes: This live version is based more on the US single rather than the album version. The pace is certainly hot. Akkerman begins it with just his guitar (00:00-00:13). The snare comes in at 00:14 and then the full drum kit at 00:34, followed by the full band at 00:46 as they run through the main riff for the first time. At 01:09-01:24 the yodelling and scream come in for the first time and this alternating pattern continues fairly predictably to the four minute mark - Full band (01:25-01:48) Yodelling, etc (01:49-02:04) Full band (02:05-02:27) Strange voice (02:28-02:40) Full band (02:41-03:03) Yodelling, including the low voice then the high voice (03:04-03:27) Full band (03:28-03:50) Flute (helped by guitar) (03:51-04:00). We then have the full band again (04:01-04:23) followed by another yodelling section (04:24-04:58) that includes an extended piece of yodelling (26 seconds altogether!) followed by a big breath at 04:50. After the full band (04:59-05:20) we have whistling with the organ and some guitar (05:21-05:42) the full band again (05:43-06:05) and then the famous introduction sequence (06:06-06:54). The words are 'On the bass guitar Bert Ruiter ... and on the drums Pierre van der Linden ... Guitar Jan Akkerman ... organ the flute Thijs van Leeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeer!
Then it is once more for the full band (06:55-07:16) and the guitar-led ending – first comic then dramatic (07:17-07:48). Applause follows with whistles and claps for an encore and a cheer (08:16). Some young men can be heard shouting 'House of the King' as the band returns and prepares to play Sylvia (07:49-08:29).

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