Classic rock anthem CD guitarist's dream

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Who needs a vocalist when you have a guitarist who can make his instrument sing?

When music producer Dick Le Fort needed an accomplished musician to provide the guitar tracks for an album of instrumental rock anthems, he called on Fred Loveridge.

'Anthem', released on Lightfall, a division of Aardvark Records, features instrumental versions of The Moody Blues' 'Nights in White Satin', The Hollies' 'He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother', Elton John's 'Your Song', George Harrison's 'Something' and Procol Harum's 'Whiter Shade of Pale'.

"Dick had recorded the tracks with an orchestra and he asked me to go to Wellington and record the guitar.

"I went down in March and we had it completed before lockdown level 4 was announced."

The tracks on the album demonstrate Loveridge's impressive range with his guitar front and centre on every song.

From gentle picking on acoustic guitar to full-blown Hendrixesque electric lead breaks, Loveridge gives the much-loved songs just the right interpretations.

"Dick is from Whanganui - he played in bands here in the 60s," says Loveridge.

"He started out at the local radio station 2ZW and moved to Wellington where he became house producer at Broadcasting House in Bowen St."

Le Fort went on to produce the work of a range of New Zealand artists such as Brendan Dougan, Sharon O'Neill and The Warratahs while establishing an international reputation as a producer.

"He is known as Richard Le Fort in the UK and that name appears on the album cover to appeal to that market because they don't know me," says Loveridge.

"I am credited as guitarist on the back cover."

Loveridge said Le Fort anticipated that there was a market for an instrumental album featuring the popular rock anthems by British artists and early sales figures seem to be proving him right.

Loveridge, along with his bass-playing brother Murray Loveridge, has been a stalwart of the Whanganui and NZ music scene for several decades playing with bands such as Quincy Conserve, Captain Custard, The Web, Tanglefoot, The Alpha Gospel Band, Dance Party, Freddy and the Tearaways, The Zillionaires, The Lick, The Blues Buffet and more.

With a number of gigs cancelled during Covid-19 restrictions, Loveridge said he was looking forward to playing live at a 60th birthday party with his band Whiskey Mama this weekend and another of his bands, Reset, will be playing at Peggy Gordons in New Plymouth next weekend.

'Anthem' CDs are $15 and are available by contacting Loveridge via his Facebook page or online at i-Tunes and other sites.

Liz Wylie
Whanganui Chronicle 20/6/20


(*) Last Reviewed: June 22, 2020

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