Procol Harum are a British rock band, formed in the 1960s, who contributed to the development of progressive rock, and by extension, symphonic rock. Their best-known recording is their 1967 single "A Whiter Shade of Pale." Although noted for itsclassical influence, Procol Harum's music also embraces the blues and pop.
Started off as The Paramounts, led by Gary Brooker and Robin Trower and including Chris Copping, the group disbanded in 1966. In April 1967, Brooker began working as a singer/songwriter and formed Procol Harum with non-Paramounts Keith Reid (poet), Hammond organist Matthew Fisher, guitarist Ray Royer and bassist David Knights. Guy Stevens, their original manager, named the band after a friend's Burmese cat.
Lyrics | Procol Harum lyrics - A Whiter Shade Of Pale lyrics
With a structure reminiscent of Baroque music, a counter melody based on J.S. Bach's cantata no.140 assigned to Fisher's Hammond organ, Brooker's soulful vocals and Reid's mysterious lyrics, "A Whiter Shade of Pale" reached #1 on the British charts and did almost as well in the United States, reaching #5.
The group's follow-up single, "Homburg", with a lineup change of former Paramounts B.J. Wilson on drums and Robin Trower on guitar, was almost as successful in the UK as it reached #6, but the LP Procol Harum, was less successful (it was recorded soon between the two hit singles, but was held back until early 1968 and in mono and phony stereo, which was unusual by that time).
A Salty Dog (1969; see 1969 in music) was popular among fans, and was their first album to sell well in the UK; it is still regarded as one of their finest albums. The title track in particular gained a good deal of US FM radio airplay, with Reid's ominous lyrics in the forefront. However, Fisher, who produced this album, departed the band soon after its release. [wikipedia]
Each time when I hear this song I will sure to have goose pimples all over..whoa love that organ sure rocks. My oh my after so many years they're still great just the same.