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DAVE HILL 60. Birthday
4th April 2006
Dave Hill and Don Powell have been playing together for some years, when they in the winter of 1966 ask Noddy Holder to join The N`Betweens. They audition for a bass player and Jim Lea is asked to join the band. The Slade line-up Dave Hill (lead guitar, backing vocals), Noddy Holder (vocals, rhythm guitar), Jim Lea (bass, violin, backing vocals) and Don Powell (drums) is formed in March 1966. Noddy and Johnny Howells take care of the vocals, but Howells is asked to leave the group by summer of 1966.
In 1966 they release the first single You Better Run on Columbia.
The N`Betweens stregthen their reputation as a good live band in the late sixties. The name changes to Ambrose Slade. First album Beginnings is released in 1969. The chart success still awaits.
In 1970 Slade get ex-Animals bassist Chas Chandler as their manager. With Chas they start to build a new image and the chart success. After a short skinhead period they grow their hair long and the clothes style changes to very colourful way.
In the autumn of 1973 Slade play their second concert in Finland. Dave is on the cover of Suosikki, Finland`s biggest pop and rock magazine, when Slade recieve the number one group in Finland award.
In the winter of 1974 Slade release Everyday ballad. In the summer they make a movie Slade in Flame that will stand out the test of times totally in a different way to other pop and rock movies.
Slade in Flame soundtrack is a big change in Slade`s musical style, but contains great melodies Far, Far Away and How Does It Feel.
In 1975 Slade go touring in America for two years. They don`t make a breakthrough in the new continent and lost also their success in the old continent.
After the return to UK, they make again a style change going to more hard rock direction and release a very strong ironically titled Whatever Happened To Slade? album. Dave goes Kojak and cuts off his hair.
The end of 70`s means for Dave and Slade a return to base by going to university and club gigs circuits - "chicken in the basket".
In 1979 released Return to Base album mirrors big changes in their music style again and it reflects also that in this phase Slade didn't quite well know in which direction to go.
1980 Slade are going to split up, but then they are asked to replace Ozzy Osbourne at Reading festival in the last minute. Dave is very much against going there, but is finally persuated to make a last gig there. The rest of it is history, Slade go and blow off every other band and the audience is singing Merry Xmas Everybody in the middle of summer.
In the next year Slade renew the Reading deed at Monsters of Rock festival in Castle of Donington: "...the cold, the wet, the discomfort, nothing mattered Slade came, saw and conquered the whole almighty throng. Follow that, Def Leppard, AC/DC, Whitesnake couldn't...".
Later in 1981 Slade rock at Lochem festival in Netherlands.
In the autumn they release aptly titled Till Deaf Do Us Part album, where musically Slade go into heavy metal direction losing a bit in the melodies; We`ll Bring The House Down, Lock Up Your Daughters, Rock`n`Roll Preacher, When I`m Dancin` I Ain`t Fightin`.
Dave writes beautiful instrumental M`Hat, M`Coat. H`Hat man has got his hair back and grows the beard that get critics writing "...but the beard must be gone."
1982 is more quiet year, but Slade release the strongest live record ever Slade On Stage recorded mainly in Newcastle City Town Hall. Single (And now...the waltz) C`est la Vie is an exception being a ballad (and waltz) in "Slade`s scale".
In the end of 1983 Slade get a massive hit with My Oh My that gets to no 2 spot in the charts. Slade play their last for ever UK gig in liverpool Royal Court Theater on their Xmas tour 1983.
Album Amazing Kamikaze Syndrome and single Run Runaway follow soon in the beginning of 1984 and the single hits charts also in the USA and is finally opening doors for Slade in America. Slade start tour there, but they have to cancel it due to Jim`s sickness and gig in San Fransisco in March 1984 will become Slade`s last concert for ever.
Slade stop playing live in 1984, but they release still two studio albums in the next three years. Album Rogues Gallery with new synth and keyboard sounds is released in March 1985 and the last studio album You Boyz Make Big Noize two years later in 1987.
The end of the decade is passive time for Slade. Dave releases two singles in 1989 under the name Blessings In The Disguise featuring also Noddy.
Dave writes also two fine guitar tracks for Slade. Lay Your Love On The Line is the B side for Radio Wall Of Sound that becomes reasonably big hit in 1991 and Red Hot another B side for Slade`s last single Universe.
Slade has an option for making an album with Polydor records, if their follow-up single for Radio Wall Of Sound will make the charts. Universe doesn't get into the charts and this means finally the end of Slade.
In 1992 after Slade`s split-up Dave starts to seek new musicians and puts up Slade II with Don. Steve Whalley takes up the vocals and on the second guitar Dave finds Steve Makin. On the bass will start Craig Fenney. Slade II plays their first at Uumaja Sweden in December 1992.
Slade II release the first album Keep On Rockin` in 1993.
Dave has been co-writing most of the songs and they make also a new version of an old Slade song
Do You Want Me.
In September 2002 Dave Hill gets with other members of Slade the honourity membership of Wolverhampton University.
In the beginning of 2003 Slade change the bassist. John Berry is on stage with Slade for the first time at Emmen in Netherlands. Dave continues touring all over the Europe going also to the east in Belarus and Russia.
Dave 'H' Hill's left shoe still getting in the east and west.
Here in the east; Moscow, Prague Monsters of Rock festivals and Donetsk, Belarus.
In 2005 Dave takes Slade`s traditional Merry Xmas tour also to his (old) hometown Wolverhampton, Bilston. Dave and Don record also a new Xmas song with members of Showaddywaddy, but the record company doesn't get it out in time.