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Shabby Tiger - 1976 Shabby Tiger

ARTIST: Shabby Tiger
ALBUM: Shabby Tiger
LABEL: Negram
YEAR: 1976


LINEUP: Henderson Gibson - vocals * Dave Almond - guitars, flute, vocals * Toni Baker - keyboards, vocals * Mike Ryan - bass * Graham Fielding - drums, percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Stone Angel * 02 Amorous Lady * 03 Nancy * 04 Bird Of Prey * 05 Slow Down * 06 Lovely Lady * 07 Showdown * 08 One More Stop * 09 20th Century Cowboy * 10 Devil Rides Tonight * 11 Shabby Tiger

Shabby Tiger were a shortlived London based band formed by Scottish singer Henderson 'Cheroot' Gibson. With a nomadic childhood, and stints into mainland Europe, Gibson returned to London during the mid 70's to form this band, which based its style around the British pop scene and forthcoming disco/pop era. Think of acts such as Jigsaw and Pilot and you have a fair idea as to their sound. Signed to the small label Negram, Shabby Tiger were an active outfit across a three year period, and released a wealth of 7 inch singles in various markets, all with differing artwork it would seem. The disco connection is a good one, as the band's producer Ben Findon was well connected in that scene at the time, and was also Billy Ocean's producer as well. Gibson and Ocean would hook up on projects in the future.

The Songs
Many of these songs initially had a run in 1975 as 7 inch singles. 'Amourous Lady', 'Slow Down', 'Devil Rides Tonight' and 'Stone Angel' were all issued in various countries and on different labels during this time with assorted B-Side tracks which never made it onto the album. RCA released this in the USA, Polydor in Germany, Negram in Holland and Decca in Belgium. So certainly Shabby Tiger had a number of avenues in which to spread their music. Shabby Tiger's music is aimed squarely at the pop market, and I'll hedge my bets and say that the material here would be of little interest to hardened rockers and AORsters, but in the 21st century, this lot are fairly obscure, so it's best to give them a fleeting mention.

In Summary
I notice on the website that these guys released a single as far as 1979! I'm not sure if it was a posthumous release or a genuine recording of the band four years later. Not much is known of the band members since that time, with the exception of Gibson, who now lives on the Costa Del Sol of Spain, where he still continues to play live music.

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#1 | Eric on July 12 2008 16:13:35
Spot on review here George and many thanks for bringing it to my attention a while back!
#2 | Eric on September 21 2008 20:14:29
It appears the albums 45/ single 'Slow Down' was released in several different picture sleeves in 1975. Very interesting band.
#3 | Toni Baker on September 15 2010 13:18:37
just to bring everyone up to date...
the band disbanded around 1977. We had hits all over europe but couldn't get arrested in UK!
Hendy (Henderson Gibson) was living and working in Benidorm under the name 'Cheroot'
Hendy sadly died in 2013 from lung cancer.

Dave Almond is still gigging around the north west of England as a great guitarist/vocalist...
YouTube Video:

Graham Fielden is still drumming around North West too...!/graham.fielden?ref=ts

Mike Ryan went into advertising and graphics and lives in Salford Manchester.

Toni now play keyboards with 60s band 'The Dakotas' and also write music for TV...

Hope this helps!

Toni Baker
#4 | Eric on September 15 2010 13:44:43
Wow! Great update Toni- thank you! A terrific album.
#5 | Toni Baker on February 27 2015 15:13:16
There were 2 different album covers - one for UK with the cartoon tiger, and one for Europe with the model holding the sleeve.
Also .... NOT a London based band as stated in this website, but based in Blackburn, Lancashire.
There was an unofficial CD released a few months ago of nearly all the releases - worth a look!

Shabby Tiger

Hailing from Blackburn in Lancashire, Shabby Tiger were Henderson Gibson (lead vocals), Toni Baker (keyboards, vocals), Dave Almond (lead guitar, vocals), Mike Ryan (bass, vocals) and Graham Fielden (drums). The band started in 1970 playing the Northern club circuit and quickly went on to play some major venues in London, where they were spotted by Ben Findon who signed them to RCA records. In the same 'stable', were The Dooleys, Billy Ocean and later, the Nolans. Their first single, 'Slow Down' reached the top of the charts in Scandinavia, Holland, Belgium and Germany but failed to chart in the UK probably due to lack of plays on Radio One at the time, who seemed to have the monopoly on whether a record would be listed or not. There were numerous TV appearances on programmes like 'Lift Off' and other pop shows of the time, whereas in Europe, the band did 'Top Pop' the Dutch chart show nearly every week for about 2 months appearing with artistes as varied as 'ELO', 'Pete Wingfield', 'Sweet', 'The Chanter Sisters', 'Hello' and 'Thin Lizzie'. The band's subsequent singles reached high positions once again in Europe, but still failed to reach any position in the UK charts again. After numerous successful tours of Scandinavia playing alongside 'Sweet', 'Darts', 'Thin Lizzie' etc the band finally gave up trying to get that elusive hit in the UK and finally disbanded in 1976 leaving 5 singles and one album to their credit, still they remain virtually unknown in the UK. Strangely the album came in two different cover designs and UK catalogue numbers (RS 1065 with a partially clothed women holding a tiger mask in front of her face), and PL25046 with the more common cartoon tiger cover. Singer Henderson Gibson died at the age of 61. Gibson, who was affectionately known as 'Hendy', was diagnosed with lung cancer and died at home on March 26 2013. Henderson Gibson co-wrote and sang backing vocals for Billy Ocean and the Nolan Sisters in the early 1970s.


Henderson Gibson, Lead Vocals
Toni Baker, Piano, Synthesizer, Organ, Vocals
Dave Almond, Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Flute, Vocals
Mike Ryan, Bass Guitar
Graham Fielden - Drums, Percussion
#6 | gdazegod on February 27 2015 15:34:07
Toni, did you see the question posed (below) about a raod manager by the name of Gary?

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