Ron English’s full-length Strata debut, Fish Feet, was recorded, promoted, and even mocked up with an album cover. Unfortunately, the Strata machine ran out of financial steam before the LP could see release.
John Sinclair, in his original liner notes to the Lyman Woodard Organization’s Saturday Night Special LP, mentions Fish Feet, hinting at a track listing and even assigning it a catalog number (Strata SRI-108-75). Recorded in the same spirit, same space, and with essentially the same line-up as Saturday Night Special, Fish Feet could have achieved the same renown as Woodard’s cult classic.
The enduring momento of this never-released LP comes courtesy of its album artwork. Funk aficionados will recognize the work of Overton Loyd, best known as an artist in George Clinton’s P-Funk camp. (Loyd created the delightfully demented cover illustration for Parliament’s 1978 classic Motor Booty Affair).
“The concept was entirely Overton’s,” says Ron English. “I just told him what the music was we would be doing—[Lyman Woodard’s arrangement of Thom Bell’s] ‘You Make Me Feel Brand New’ and some of my originals. And going from that, and what he knew of me, and my way of life in those days, and the scene in general, he said, ‘Fish Feet? All right, here it is: A mermaid tending bar, basically, and the floor of the bar drops away and it’s a night sky and all the regulars are lined up and down the bar.”
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