Their singles and their descendants - by Charles Orr
Formed in 1962, The Chosen Few was the vehicle by which Alan Hull would launch his recording career. The band's original line up was Hull (guitar and vocals), Bumper Brown (bass), Rod Hudd (vocals), Tommy Jackman (drums), and Mickey Gallagher (keyboards). Their main output was that of Tamla Motown covers, plus Alan's own compositions. They released only two singles, both on the PYE record label, and both issued in 1965. Alan is quoted as having said that the two singles were very "Beatle-esque" - he was right, all four songs are in backbeat mode, with heavy Kinks overtones. All songs were penned by Alan Hull.
PYE 7N.15905: I WON'T BE ROUND YOU ANYMORE b/w BIG CITY
PYE 7N.15942: SO MUCH TO LOOK FORWARD TO b/w TODAY, TONIGHT AND TOMORROW
After Mr. Hull left the band (1965), line up changes included the addition of one Colin Gibson (of Radiator fame, also of Snafu - check out the mention on the back of Alan's SQUIRE album), and John Turnbull. Both were destined to play on the PIPEDREAM LP, and have their photographs appear within the gatefold cover. Both Turnbull and Gallagher later played with Loving Awareness, and then became two of Ian Dury's "blockheads".
A year later, the group became 'Skip Bifferty', without Rod Hudd and Bumper Brown. Now London based, vocals were provided by Graham Bell (probably the first person apart from Alan to publicly perform LADY ELEANOR). The 1967 psychedelic album SKIP BIFFERTY (RCA) is much sought after, and was available later on CD (Essex 111003CD). Three singles in all were released, all on RCA: ON LOVE (1967), HAPPY LAND (1967), and MAN IN BLACK (1968). The latter was produced and arranged by Ronnie Lane and Steve Marriot of the Small Faces. The band later recorded another single under the name of 'Heavy Jelly'.
The group evolved into 'Arc', temporarily without Graham Bell, but now with Tommy Duffy (bass). They produced an LP in 1971 - ARC… AT THIS (Decca SKL-R 5077), and with the return of the main vocalist, they became 'Bell + Arc'. More line up changes, but their debut album in 1971 on Charisma (CAS 1053) BELL + ARC, consisted of Graham Bell, John Turnbull, Tommy Duffy, Mickey Gallagher, with John Woods on drums. The album spawned an average single SHE BELONGS TO ME (CB170). The band split in 1972, and Bell recorded a solo album in the same year - GRAHAM BELL (Charisma CAS1061).