1978 Steve Harley – Hobo With A Grin

Hobo With A Grin is the debut solo album by Steve Harleyof Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel, released in 1978. The album was produced by Harley, except for “Roll the Dice” which was produced by Michael J. Jackson. Jackson also acted as additional producer on the album.

In July 1977, Harley disbanded Cockney Rebel and began working on his debut solo album, which was largely completed by early 1978. In February of that year, Harley flew to Los Angeles to finish working on the album, which had been given the working title Couples. Of the album’s nine tracks, six were recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London, and the other three were recorded in Los Angeles at Sunset Sound or Record Plant. Using a range of session musicians and ex-Cockney Rebel members, the album featured contributions from a range of personnel, including Jim Cregan, George Ford, Duncan Mackay, Stuart Elliott, Gloria Jones and Marc Bolan, as well as American musicians such as Tom Moncrieff, Bob Glaub, Bill Payne, Roy Kenner, Bobby Kimball and Michael McDonald. A mixture of older songs, written when Cockney Rebel were still active, were recorded, alongside some newer material. The album was mixed at Sunset Sound and mastered at Capitol Mastering.

Soon after the album was completed, Harley decided to leave Britain and live in Los Angeles. He had been first attracted to the city when recording and mixing the Love’s a Prima Donna album there in 1976. Purchasing a house in Beverly Hills, he stayed there for nearly a year to gain new experience and inspirations. When Hobo with a Grin emerged in July 1978, it was revealed the album cost £70,000 and took 18 months to make, and yet proved to be Harley’s biggest flop. The album failed to make any chart appearance, as did its two singles. The first, “Roll the Dice”, was released in July, while the second, a remixed version of “Someone’s Coming”, was released in February 1979.

Tracks

1  Roll The Dice (Steve Harley; Jo Partridge) 3:31
2  Amerika The Brave (Steve Harley) 4:56
3  Living In A Rhapsody (Steve Harley; Duncan Mackay; Jim Cregan) 4:22
4  I Wish It Would Rain (Barrett Strong; Norman Whitfield) 3:20
5  Riding The Waves (For Virginia Woolf) (Steve Harley) 4:35
6  Someone’s Coming (Steve Harley; Jo Partridge) 4:36
7  Hot Youth (Steve Harley; Duncan Mackay) 2:52
8  (I Don’t Believe) God Is An Anarchist (Steve Harley) 7:24
9  Faith, Hope And Charity (Steve Harley) 4:01
10  Spaced Out (bonus) (Steve Harley) 3:01
11  That’s My Life In Your Hands (Live, bonus) (Steve Harley; Hugh Nicholson) 3:39

Media

Musicians

1 Roll The Dice

BassBob Glaub
DrumsRick Shlosser
GuitarJo Partridge
Acoustic GuitarFred Tackett
HarpsichordDuncan Mackay
PianoBill Payne
PianoDuncan Mackay
SynthesizerDuncan Mackay
PercussionMichael J Jackson
Background VocalsBill Champlin
Background VocalsBobby Kimball
Background VocalsMichael McDonald
Background VocalsRosemary Butler
Background VocalsTom Kelly
VocalsSteve Harvey


2 Amerika The Brave

DrumsRicky Fataar
GuitarJo Partridge
GuitarMarc Bolan
KeyboardsDuncan Mackay
SynthesizerDuncan Mackay
PercussionChris Karan
PercussionLuis Jordan


3 Living In A Rhapsody

GuitarJim Creegan
Acoustic GuitarJim Cregan
PianoBill Payne
SynthesizerDuncan Mackay
Background VocalsYvonne Keeley
VocalsSteve Harley


4 I Wish It Would Rain

BassAlan Jones
DrumsRicky Fataar
Guitar (solo)Tom Moncrieff
GuitarIan Bairnson
Acoustic GuitarIan Bairnson
OrganBill Payne
PianoDuncan Mackay
Background VocalsJohn Townsend
Background VocalsRosemary Butler
Background VocalsRoy Kenner
VocalsSteve Harley


5 Riding The Waves (For Virginia Woolf)

BassBob Glaub
DrumsRick Shlosser
Guitar (solo)Jo Partridge
GuitarGreg Poree
Acoustic GuitarJo Partridge
KeyboardsDuncan Mackay
PianoBill Payne
SynthesizerDuncan Mackay
Background VocalsBill Champlin
Background VocalsBobby Kimball
Background VocalsTom Kelly
VocalsSteve Harley


6 Someone’s Coming

BassGeorge Ford
DrumsStuart Elliott
GuitarJo Partridge
Acoustic GuitarJo Partridge
PianoDuncan Mackay
CongasLindsay Elliott
PercussionJim Isaacson
Background VocalsGloria Jones
Background VocalsYvonne Keeley
VocalsSteve Harley


7 Hot Youth

Double BassHerbie Flowers
GuitarJo Partridge
Acoustic GuitarJo Partridge
PianoDuncan Mackay
PercussionLuis Jordan
VocalsSteve Harley


8 (I Don’t Believe) God Is An Anarchist

BassReginald McBride
DrumsPaul Humphrey
GuitarGreg Poree
Acoustic GuitarGreg Poree
OrganDuncan Mackay
PianoBill Payne
CongasKing Errisson
PercussionChris Karan
PercussionLuis Jordan
PercussionSimon Morton
Background VocalsBarry St John
Background VocalsYvonne Keeley
VocalsSteve Harley


9 Faith, Hope And Charity

DrumsJim Isaacson
KeyboardsDuncan Mackay
PianoMichael J Jackson
SynthesizerDuncan Mackay
Background VocalsGloria Jones
Background VocalsYvonne Keeley
VocalsSteve Harley

Liner Notes

Producer – Steve Harley
Producer – Michael J Jackson (Track 1)
Producer (Additional) – Michael J Jackson
Arranged By (Strings, Horns) – Jimmy Horowitz (Track 3)
Arranged By (Strings) – Jimmy Horowitz (Tracks 4, 6)
Engineer – Jim Isaacson, John Haeny (Tracks 1, 5)
Engineer – Tony Clark (Tracks 2, 3, 6, 7, 9)
Engineer – Peter James (Track 4)
Engineer – Gary Ladinsky (Track 8)
Engineer (Assistant) – Paul Black (Track 1)
Engineer (Assistant) – Haydn Bendall (Tracks 3, 6, 7, 9)
Engineer (Remix, Additional Recording) – Jim Isaacson
Mixed By – Michael J Jackson

Design – John Kosh
Photography By – Jim Shea

Recorded at Sunset Sound, EMI Studio/Abbey Road and Record Plant (LA)
Mixed at Sunset Sound Recorders, Hollywood, California.