History of N.E. Music

Table of Contents

Joe Viglione’s Guide to N.E. Music http://rocktableofcontents.blogspot.com/

Posted to YouTube June 20, 2011 Moulty talks TAMI show with Joe Viglione on Visual Radio.


This information is part of my “life’s work”, the chronicling of the Boston Rock & Roll Scene and its surrounding communities. Between the video taped for my TV shows VISUAL RADIO and
TV EYE as well as the audio from a variety of radio shows I hosted and/or produced to the incredible tape archive I’ve built over the decades, these writings will come to life in audio and visual, a unique history of the scene from one of its documentarians.

2)Ka-Ding Dong – The first days of Boston Rock & Roll
1950s, early 1960s

3)The Sixties – The Bosstown Sound – Orpheus, Listening, Willie Loco, Ultimate Spiniach
The Prince & The Paupers, Barry & The Remains

April 11, 2011 at the original N.E. Compact Disc and Record Expo
Moulty of the Barbarians Joe Viglione has interviewed over a thousand personalities on radio, television and for magazines. Here’s the legendary MOULTY of The Barbarians talking about his career. This is at the Original New England Compact Disc and Record Expo now held at the Dedham Holiday Inn, Dedham,

4) Hallucinations, J.Geils, Modern Lovers, Aerosmith
The sixties to early seventies…

5)J Geils Band
tons of J GEILS Biographies and reviews to posted here:

6)The Early Seventies

1)The Quill 2)The Sidewinders 3)Fat 4)Milkwood (early Cars), 5)Swallow, 6)Duke & The Drivers 7)James Montgomery 8)Stormin’ Norman & Suzy 9)P.J. Colt

7)Andy Pratt
Tons of Andy Pratt reviews on AMG will show up here soon.

Temporary links:


When J Geils & Andy Pratt played together

8)Willie “Loco” Alexander

9)The New Wave – Willie Alexander re-emerges, Reddy Teddy, Fox Pass,
Aastral Projection

10)Into the 1980s

Visual Radio on the road at the Original N.E. Compact Disc & Record Expo. Two rock legends meeting at the legendary record exposition on a legendary cable TV program. Next Expo is February 17, 2013 at the Dedham Holiday Inn, Sunday from 10 AM to 4 PM. Ken Evans of The Fifth Estate (with the 1967 hit from the Wizard of Oz, “Ding Dong the Witch Is Dead”) is scheduled to appear. 1,000 views of this video on YouTube 7:59 pm Wednesday 4-8-2020

11)Peter Calo, Carly Simon, Pamela Ruby Russell

12)Boston Compilations and more – Live at the Rat, Live at Studio B
Farrenheit, Joe Perry Project, Cowsills, Real Kids, The Outlets

13)More Eighties

Face To Face, The Rings, Jonzun Crew, Robin Lane, Didi Stewart. Rick Berlin, Rubber Rodeo, Mass, Treat Her Right

14)Boston Music Showcase – Harvey Wharfield and the best local music show on radio
The 1990s

15)The 1990s with Grateful Ted of SMUGGLER and more…

16)The New Millennium

17)The Ongoing Process


https://arlington.wickedlocal.com/article/20100715/NEWS/307159797 By Joe Viglione Posted Jul 15, 2010 at 12:01 AM Updated Jul 15, 2010 at 3:10 PM
On its website, a quote from the Arlington veteran group Fox Pass reads, ”[t]he first Fox Pass era ended before the real explosion of Boston music that came in the early 1980s and therefore they are somewhat obscure in history, except for those who were there.”

The current Fox Pass lineup Steve Gilligan on bass and vocals, Jon Macey on guitar and vocals, Tom Landers on drums, and Michael Roy on guitar and vocals.  — Courtesy photo
On its website, a quote from the Arlington veteran group Fox Pass reads, ”[t]he first Fox Pass era ended before the real explosion of Boston music that came in the early 1980s and therefore they are somewhat obscure in history, except for those who were there.”
“There” was a special place in time for Arlington residents who had already witnessed a favorite son, 25-year-old Alan “Blind Owl” Wilson, performing at Woodstock with his group Canned Heat and singing on Top 40 hits “On The Road Again” and “Goin’ Up The Country.”
Boston proper had Barry & The Remains opening for The Beatles and Willie “Loco” Alexander joining The Velvet Underground, but Arlington, had other musical gifts to offer, including The Prince & The Paupers and, just a few years later, Fox Pass.
Fox Pass and a handful of other groups were that all-important bridge from the old guard to the New Wave in the early 1970s.
In 2010, the band released a new CD/download album “Intemporel” and has been seen around this neck of the woods again performing at Right Turn, an Arlington non-profit that promotes sobriety, as well as a planned event in the autumn of 2010 at the Regent Theater.
The beginning
Jon Macey, who was known back then as Jonathan Hall and eventually changed his name, was taken with music at a young age. According to his website, he began writing songs for the accordion at age 9 and then for the piano before he took up the guitar when he was 12 years old.
While a student at AHS in the early 1970s, Macey began developing folk songs in the style of Bob Dylan or Woody Guthrie. In 1971, Macey met another AHS student Michael Roy; together they formed an acoustic duo.

By age 17, Macey was doing his own version of the Velvet Underground/Modern Lovers brand of songwriting and singing. That became the early Fox Pass repertoire, perhaps the start of the musical evolution from when Hall and Roy performed on the Cambridge Commons Concerts, all original songs, precursors to what would become the early Fox Pass style.
By the time Macey and Roy graduated in 1973, they had already become a professional rock band. Other Arlington residents, including Michael’s brother John, were the initial members of Fox Pass.
The build up
Music lovers began to take notice. Fox Pass was performing at Tufts University, The Club in Cambridge, The Paradise, Olivers (now the Cask ‘n’ Flagon), and many other venues. They also had a big plus, which was the envy of other groups in the region, a local businessman named Bruce Miner began managing them.
The band’s first 45 RPM recording, “I Believed” b/w “Prized Possession,” was released in 1976 and created a buzz.
That recording helped the group get into the pages of Playboy Magazine in 1978 as one of Boston’s five best bands. The interest in the band began to spread beyond the fans and directly into the eyes of the media, specifically The Boston Globe, Boston Phoenix, Real Paper and other publications.
Macey and Roy’s Fox Pass emerged from the Arlington and Cambridge circuit and went on to become a major draw in the New England area.

But the Fox Pass saga is one of the strangest in rock history. Shortly after being named one of Boston’s five best bands, Fox Pass disappeared.
“We broke up the first time because we realized we had missed the Punk Rock trend,” Macey said. “We were too ahead of it and too young to see that we could have easily rode the wave. So, instead we moved to New York City and reinvented ourselves.”
In 1979, both Macey and Roy had moved to New York City. They joined up with RCA recording artist Tom Dickie and signed with Mercury Records for two albums as Tom Dickie & The Desires, culminating in a regional and semi-national hit “Downtown Talk” and openings for Hall & Oates and Cheap Trick.
While the band’s first single was released in 1976, it took another 29 years until a debut album was released, a self-titled CD appearing in 2005.
The return
The journey from Arlington to New York and back was long, intense and noteworthy on many levels.
Fox Pass took a hiatus of almost 30 years or so, but after the variety of projects, they have reconnected, creating a new era for the band.

“The second Fox Pass era began in 2002 when Mike Roy and I reunited while recording my solo project, the ‘Actuality in Process’ CD,” said Macey. “We began to write songs together which led to live performances and two CDs since then.”
“Intemporel,” the bands follow-up to their self-titled “debut,” is a vibrant set of recordings, which succeeds in its simple mission statement: To entertain.
With cascading jangle guitars that The Flamin’ Groovies and R.E.M. helped establish in the post-60s garage rock era, when garage got more sophisticated (but still stayed away from hotel lounges), Fox Pass comes up with some new material while also dipping into their back catalog.
The CD opens with “Hurry Cherie,” an older song from their repertoire. This is a hard-driving pop song where Macey finds himself “dreaming of you…hurry Cherie,” and though it is not the long-promised “first album” of material from when Fox Pass released its first single, these industry veterans are still “mining the vaults” and coming up with 17 tracks that show the band still has it, and is still evolving.
“Fly Away (From Me)” and “Front Page Girl” keep the party going while the stylish “Cool Dreamer” slinks in for almost eight minutes, followed by an almost five-minute piece “She Dreams Of Me.”
Earlier this spring, the group performed next door at Winchester’s “Wincam” public access station and played material from across its career along with many selections from “Intemporel.” That performance showed Roy shouldering some of the lead vocals, sometimes co-singing harmonies with bassist Steve Gilligan and Macey as on the “The Spark.”
For those who have followed the band and its various spin-offs, the most recent music has continuity to projects from long ago, but Fox Pass isn’t detouring “back to the future” as much as getting the music onto a familiar track.

“We still perform ‘Amtrak’ and ‘Wanda,’ both written in 1973,” Macey said.
On the latest Fox Pass CD “The Sacred Mountain Is Falling” could be a Sgt. Pepper out-take. And the band is exploring longer titles a la early Mott The Hoople, this track going more than nine minutes, and “A Long Goodbye” clocking in at more than six minutes.
For Fox Pass fans, the latest disc provides short pop-bursts and extensive essays, perhaps a stream of-consciousness approach by industry veterans who continue to do what they love.
For more information about Fox Pass, or to purchase a CD, visit foxpassmusic.com, CD Baby, iTunes or amazon.com.
Joe Viglione can be reached by e-mailing recordreview2001@yahoo.com.

AllMusic Review by Joe Viglione  [-]

The mark of craftsmanship on songs like “Hit or Miss,” “Saving Grace,” and “Dream Inside Your Heart” would be hard to find on many “debut” albums, and 32 years after their 1972 formation in Arlington, MA, Fox Pass bring insightful lyrics and strong melodies to the world on their first full album. Of course having released a classic indie single with “I Believed” in 1976 — a year that saw them opening for Roxy Music in Boston — with the duo of Mike Roy and Jon Macey heading off to Mercury Records to record two albums with Tom Dickie & the Desires in the early ’80s, well, this debut is actually more like a diamond hewn from decades in a business rife with uncertainty. Barry Marshall‘s production crystallizes the performances — taking a “Sometime Saturday Girl” to bring that Tommy Boyce/Bobby Hart vibe into the new millennium. Marshall has known the group almost since its inception and truly understands the work of Jon Macey and Mike Roy better than Ed Sprigg and Martin Rushent did for the Tom Dickie albums — all due respect to the highly competent Sprigg and Rushent. The chemistry between the artist and the producers on those Desires albums just wasn’t there. And with no label pressures the band is free to come up with fine pop tunes like “The Easy Way,” material that effortlessly flows from their repertoire. Roy sounds like Ben Orr of the Cars singing the exquisite “Heavy as a Heartache” with neo-doo wop vocals from Macey and bassist Steve Gilligan. While the group’s influences are very well disguised on this set — you’ll hear pieces of sounds you just can’t place — the key is that the music seems more original because the band is plagiarizing its own riffs from years past. Some of the ambience of the Jon Macey/Barry Marshall tune “Comical” from 1993’s Too Much Perspective disc is reinvented on “Dream Inside Your Heart” — a terrific hook over a gliding and airy bed of pop riffs and chord changes. Its complexities are vast compared to “Wanda,” the closing song that the band has performed since it was written back in 1973. “Hit or Miss” might come in at close to six minutes, but it has the groove and guitars suspended in space to be radio-friendly, playing perfectly on an album where songs like “In a Dream” come in from out of nowhere, sparkling pop created by a band that was doing it years before R.E.M. formed and brought this style into vogue.


Everything Under the Sun Jon Macey / Steve Gilligan


Review: Eclectricity by Michael J. Roy – A Burst of Creative Energy

By Joe Viglione – July 1, 2015


Michael J. Roy’s THE BRIGHT SIDE

TMRZoo Review by Joe Viglione http://www.tmrzoo.com/2018/72588/review-michael-j-roy-the-bright-side

Steve Gilligan and Jon Macey are two veterans of the Boston music scene as well as half of the band Fox Pass, and their debut CD as a duo, Everything Under the Sun, features a dozen fine original compositions that are democratically split — five from each songwriter with two collaborations. The title track is one of those co-writes and it features an uptempo Everly Brothers harmony à la the Beatles on “Two of Us” from the Let It Be CD, and is one of the poppier episodes before the singers touch upon the other musical worlds they fancy. With longtime producer Barry Marshall intentionally keeping the production sparse, it allows Gilligan‘s superb use of mandocello, mandolin, Dobro, and harmonica — as well as Jon Macey‘s dulcimer playing — to shine under the perfect guitar strums. When experienced live in concert, it is those exotic instruments coupled with the strong songwriting that help the pair create a magic that their friend and colleague Jonathan Richman sought when he traded the loud underground rock in for the flamenco guitar. But where Richman tells his song-stories from the protagonist’s point of view, Macey and Gilligan indulge their passion for the music of Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman, the Louvin Brothers, and, deliberate or not, Bob Dylan, in a reverent way that keeps their personalities from overpowering the material. It’s a dramatic departure from Fox Pass, where the writing is solely from the pens of Jon Macey and his longtime collaborator, Mike Roy — a pair who toured with Hall & Oates (they had the same manager), so the major-league polish and approach on a simple composition like “You Will Know Them” is crafted from decades of walking the path.

Religious overtones abound, and former Stompers bassist Gilligan‘s solo voice on “Harrison Ave. 2am,” before the harmonies kick in, gives the album another sort of definition — this is not a Jon Macey solo project — and the exciting sounds of the Old World instrumentation that sparkle on-stage translate perfectly to CD. Producer Marshall compared old mixes from the Louvin Brothers to keep the sound authentic, or as this duo (trio with their producer) calls it…”timeless.” It works, especially on the disc’s longest track, the eight-minute epic “Emma and the Dance,” with its lovely instrumental opening. Less is more here, because these minstrels are so proficient at working their stringed instruments and, clearly, are in it for the art, as evidenced by “Watchin’ You Go By” and the neo-rockabilly of “Roy Orbison gone folky” that is “All You Gotta Do.” Even the packaging reflects the care put into the recordings: the vintage look of the back photo and the color schemes on both the inside panel and the CD face. Picture Aztec Two-Step or Batdorf & Rodney exploring new territory by going back to the future; a lot of ground is covered by keeping it simple and touching upon as many of their influences as possible. Everything Under the Sun is a pleasant and highly effective departure from what the Fox Pass fan base would expect, and for those familiar with Jon Macey and Steve Gilligan‘s rock & roll efforts, hearing “Gordon’s Daughter” would certainly confuse during a blindfold test — and impress, as this album does from start to finish. Collapse ↑

Four minutes and fourteen seconds of “The End” opens The Bright Side CD from Fox Pass guitarist Michael J. Roy…no, no, no…not the Doors near twelve minute MFSB epic – referring to a Charles Manson delivery of the Philly Sound’s mother/father/sister/brother routine, though in another dimension. Michael punctuates his pop with guitar bursts, leaving Oedipus out of the equation.

Track 2, “Same Old Thing,” brings the jangle back, but dips it into Gene Parsons territory, something Tom Petty made a career out of. Interesting in that Roy’s partner-in-Fox-Pass, Jon Macey, has gone full-out with the Hummingbird Syndicate embracing Sonny Bono/Jack Nitzsche “Needles and Pins” guitar sound. “Impossible Ways,” track 3, could be a modern-day Searchers in fact, with “Mr. Berserk” taking a similar sound down into the dark side. That’s the interesting force at play here, Mr. Roy’s optimism in Fox Pass taking a turn into Lou Reed downer territory with vocal work reflecting the titles, “The End,” “Mr. Berserk,” interestingly finding Reed’s Blue Mask emotions than the “bright side” of life, but an album does give one the opportunity to stretch out.

With over forty-seven minutes of music, we’ll give Mike that latitude. “World Run Wild” shows the Boston area veteran artist his Billy Squier side, the emphasis on hard rock feels like a sequel to “The Stroke” from former Sidewinder Squier’s 1981 Don’t Say No album. Now this critic is referencing lots of musical textures from other artists, but that’s just for the reader to get an idea. Mike Roy is an original and he draws from a bountiful palette to offer something distinctly different from the work that he’s known for, the music of New England area legend Fox Pass. “Point of No Return” at four and a half minutes is Hugo Montenegro meets the Doors and a strong track. “Thin Air” pierces the speakers after the mellow verse while

“Barely There” takes George Harrison’s amazing descending line from Cream’s “Badge” – and a good chunk of side 2 of the Beatles Abbey Road – with a folk/poet’s reading over a most Beatle-esque spirit. While most of the tunes are in the four-minute range, track 10, “A Reason To Live” is the shortest at 2:37, poppy and anthemic, Joan Jett or the late Ben Orr could both have a ball with it.

Once upon a time New Rose Records’ Fan Club imprint put out Sons of the Dolls, an intriguing look at songs from members of the New York Dolls. If one takes the accumulated tracks of the Fox Pass family tree – 12 songs here, the Stompers, the Jon Macey/Steve Gilligan project, Gilligan’s own solo cd’s, Hummingbird Syndicate and more, you are talking over a hundred compositions from a talented set of musicians. A digital boxed set of the future, perhaps. The Bright Side presents more than just a follow-up to the previous Electricity disc, it is also the musical other side of a musician away from the focus of a working band.

Find The Bright Side on
CD Baby https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/michaelroy1
Reverb Nation https://www.reverbnation.com/michaeljroy/songs
Website: www.mj-roy.com
Release Date: August 6, 2017
Label: Blue Room Records

See more reviews here: http://bostonrecordreviews.blogspot.com/2007/07/miscellaneous-reviews.html

Joe Viglione is the Chief Film Critic at TMRZoo.com. He has written thousands of reviews and biographies for AllMovie.com, Allmusic.com, Gatehouse Media, Al Aronowitz’s The Blacklisted Journal, and a variety of other media outlets. Joe also produces and hosts Visual Radio, a seventeen year old variety show on cable TV which has interviewed Jodie Foster, director/screenwriter David Koepp, Michael Moore, John Cena, comics/actors Margaret Cho, Gilbert Gottfried, Gallagher, musicians Mark Farner and Don Brewer of Grand Funk Railroad, Ian Hunter of Mott The Hoople, Ray Manzarek, John Densmore, Felix Cavaliere of The Rascals, political commentator Bill Press and hundreds of other personalities.