Eric Woolfson - Pre Alan Parsons Project
The record producer for the Rolling Stones, Andrew Oldham, signed him up as a songwriter in the early 1960s. During the following years, Woolfson wrote songs for such artists as Marianne Faithfull, Frank Ifield, Jo Dassin, The Tremeloes, Marmalade and Dave Berry. His songs were recorded by over one hundred artists both in Europe and America. During the 60s he signed to Southern Music and worked alongside two then unknown writers, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice.
In the early seventies, Eric turned his hand to management and was instantly successful. His first two signings were Carl Douglas (whose record Kung Fu Fighting was one of the biggest selling hits of all time) and engineer/record producer Alan Parsons.
Tomorrow's calling - Marianne Faithfull
This was produced by Mike Leander who also produced Frank Ifield at that stage. Mike, who passed away in the 1990s, is best known for having written and produced nearly all the Gary Glitter records and as an arranger he made a notable contribution to the Beatle’s ‘She’s Leaving Home’.
Baby Make it Soon - Chris Farlowe
This single was credited : Woolfson/Oldham, however Andrew was not a co-writer. It was the B-side of the first attempt of Mick Jagger as a record producer. The A-side was 'Out of time' and reached no. 1 in the UK charts!
What have they done to Hazel - Swinging Blue Jeans
When Eric was working in the family furniture shop, bored out of his mind, this was one of the songs he wrote for his then girlfriend and subsequent wife.
Wooden Spoon - The Poets
Wooden Spoon is a song Eric wrote with Tommy Moeller who was lead singer with the group Unit 4 + 2. Tommy’s best known composition was the group’s hit ‘Concrete and Clay’. Eric produced ‘The Poet’s’ version of Wooden Spoon for Decca records.
No,no,no - The Tremeloes
No No No was recorded by The Tremeloes and a French version was recorded by Jo Dassin.
Sunshine Games - The Tremeloes
Sunshine Games - Music Explosion
Sunshine Games was also recorded by The Tremeloes and was covered by US Bubble Gum group ‘Music Explosion’.
Room at the top of the stairs - Timothy Blue
When Eric worked with Southern Music in Tin Pan Alley, London’s Denmark Street, the Publisher started an in-house label called Spark Records and Eric was asked to produce his own songs including 'Room at The Top of the Stairs' and the B-side, She Won’t See the Light. Timothy Blue was the stage name for the singer (who wasn’t Eric), but this obviously was not his real name. It had been so many years, Eric couldn’t remember his real name! Eric did sing the harmony vocals.
She won't see the light - Timothy Blue
She Won’t See the Light was one of the songs Eric wrote while contracted to Southern Music.
For as long as you need me - Art Movement
For As Long As You Need Me was recorded by The Art Movement which was one of Roy Orbison’s backing groups when he toured the UK. The song was also recorded by Mama Cass of the Mamas and Papas but was never released.
Soleil - Marie
Soleil was recorded by Marmalade. A cover version recorded by Marie won the Antibes Song Festival in France in 1971 and was Eric’s first number one A side success.
San Tokay - Eric Elder
Eric nearly became a member of 10CC, but the management didn’t want to put him on retainer. This recording was one of the pieces of work that was done around this time. Eric wrote the song with Graham Gouldman and Eric Stewart was the producer and engineer, although it's credited as 'Strawberry Productions' which was one of the companies involved with Strawberry Studios (in Stockport near Manchester) where the recording was made along with the early 10cc recordings. All the 10cc members played on the recording as well as Eric on keyboards and vocals. Eric was reluctant to use his real name as it didn't sound terribly snappy, especially in the 70s. His family had been in the furniture business and the firm in Glasgow was called 'Elders' which is why he borrowed the name 'Elder' on this one occasion. Hazel as usual provided some of the inspiration for the song, as she was a school teacher at the time and had a little girl in her class named 'Santoki Singh'. Although he never met her, Eric particularly liked this name which is how it came to be used.
If I ever see that face again - The Challenge
Not really 'pre APP' but the best place we could find to put it. This was a song included in the Steven Sondheim Mercury Workshop production called 'The Challenge'.
A Selection of Eric's Other Songs:
- All My Daydreaming – Frank Ifield
- And I Always Will Do – Frank Ifield
- Baby Make It Soon – Chris Farlowe
- Children’s Song – Greta Ann
- Every Single Day – Elastic Band
- I Fall Apart – Linda Kendrix
- Learner Driver – Hamlet
- Little Too Much – Jean Latter
- Mal Aimee Du Courrier – Jo Dassin
- Mr Appealing – Hamlet
- News Travels Fast In a One Horse Town – Dave Berry
- Papillon (lyrics only) – Rolf Harris
- Public Enemy Number 1 – Tom Winter
- Sadness Hides the Sun – Greta Ann
- Sign On the Dotted Line – Gene Latter
- Talk of the Devil (co-written with Bob Kingston)
- Think of You Baby
- Too Soon to Fly – Jumbo
- Yes Sir, No Sir – Art Movement
- You Give Me All That I Need – Hamlet
Pre APP links
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A major APP supporter, Alistair Young, has also accumulated a lot of details together on Eric's work and the APP which may also be of interest: