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The Animals

One of the most important bands originating from England's R&B scene during the early '60s, the Animals were second only to the Rolling Stones in influence among R&B-based bands in the first wave of the British Invasion. The Animals had their origins in a Newcastle-based group called the Kansas City Five, whose membership included pianist Alan Price, drummer John Steel, and vocalist Eric Burdon. Price exited to join the Kontours in 1962, while Burdon went off to London. The Kontours, whose membership included Bryan "Chas" Chandler, eventually were transmuted into the Alan Price R&B Combo, with John Steel joining on drums. Burdon's return to Newcastle in early 1963 heralded his return to the lineup. The final member of the combo, guitarist Hilton Valentine, joined just in time for the recording of a self-produced EP under the band's new name, the Animals. That record alerted Graham Bond to the Animals; he was likely responsible for pointing impresario Giorgio Gomelsky to the group.

Gomelsky booked the band into his Crawdaddy Club in London, and they were subsequently signed by Mickie Most, an independent producer who secured a contract with EMI's Columbia imprint. A studio session in February 1964 yielded their Columbia debut single, "Baby Let Me Take You Home" (adapted from "Baby Let Me Follow You Down"), which rose to number 21 on the British charts. For years, it was rumored incorrectly that the Animals got their next single, "House of the Rising Sun," from Bob Dylan's first album, but it has been revealed that, like "Baby Let Me Take You Home," the song came to them courtesy of Josh White. In any event, the song -- given a new guitar riff by Valentine and a soulful organ accompaniment devised by Price -- shot to the top of the U.K. and U.S. charts early that summer. This success led to a follow-up session that summer, yielding their first long-playing record, The Animals. Their third single, "I'm Crying," rose to number eight on the British charts. The group compiled an enviable record of Top Ten successes, including "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood" and "We've Gotta Get Out of This Place," along with a second album, Animal Tracks.

In May of 1965, immediately after recording "We've Gotta Get Out of This Place," Alan Price left the band, citing fear of flying as the reason; subsequent biographies of the band have indicated that the reasons were less psychological. When "House of the Rising Sun" was recorded, using what was essentially a group arrangement, the management persuaded the band to put one person's name down as arranger. Price came up the lucky one, supposedly with the intention that the money from the arranger credit would be divided later on. The money was never divided, however, and as soon as it began rolling in, Price suddenly developed his fear of flying and exited the band. Others cite the increasing contentiousness between Burdon and Price over leadership of the group as the latter's reason for leaving. In any case, a replacement was recruited in the person of Dave Rowberry.

In the meantime, the group was growing increasingly unhappy with the material they were being given to record by manager Mickie Most. Not only were the majority of these songs much too commercial for their taste, but they represented a false image of the band, even if many were successful. "It's My Life," a number seven British hit and a similar smash in America, caused the Animals to terminate their association with Most and with EMI Records. They moved over to Decca/London Records and came up with a more forceful, powerful sound on their first album for the new label, Animalisms. The lineup shifts continued, however: Steel exited in 1966, after recording Animalisms, and was replaced by Barry Jenkins, formerly of the Nashville Teens. Chandler left in mid-1966 after recording "Don't Bring Me Down," and Valentine remained until the end of 1966, but essentially "Don't Bring Me Down" marked the end of the original Animals.

Burdon re-formed the group under the aegis of Eric Burdon and the New Animals, with Jenkins on drums, John Weider on guitar and violin, Danny McCulloch on bass, and Vic Briggs on guitar. He remained officially a solo act for a time, releasing a collection of material called Eric Is Here in 1967. As soon as the contract with English Decca was up, Burdon signed with MGM directly for worldwide distribution, and the new lineup made their debut in mid-1967. Eric Burdon and the New Animals embraced psychedelica to the hilt amid the full bloom of the Summer of Love. By the end of 1968, Briggs and McCulloch had departed, to be replaced by Burdon's old friend, keyboard player/vocalist Zoot Money, and his longtime stablemate, guitarist Andy Summers, while Weider switched to bass. Finally, in 1969, Burdon pulled the plug on what was left of the Animals. He hooked up with a Los Angeles-based group called War, and started a subsequent solo career.

The original Animals reunited in 1976 for a superb album called Before We Were So Rudely Interrupted, which picked up right where Animalisms had left off a decade earlier and which was well-received critically but failed to capture the public's attention. In 1983, a somewhat longer-lasting reunion came about between the original members, augmented with the presence of Zoot Money on keyboards. The resulting album, Ark, consisting of entirely new material, was well received by critics and charted surprisingly high, and a world tour followed. By the end of the year and the heavy touring schedule, however, it was clear that this reunion was not going to be a lasting event. The quintet split up again, having finally let the other shoe drop on their careers and history, and walked away with some financial rewards, along with memories of two generations of rock fans cheering their every note. ~ Bruce Eder
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Restrospective

1. House Of The Rising Sun

2. I'm Crying

3. Baby Let Me Take You Home

4. Gonna Send You Back To Walker

5. Boom Boom

6. Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood

7. Bring It On Home To Me

8. We Gotta Get Out Of This Place

9. It's My Life

10. Don't Bring Me Down

11. See See Rider

12. Inside - Looking Out

13. Hey Gyp

14. Help Me Girl

15. When I Was Young

16. A Girl Named Sandoz

17. San Franciscan Nights

18. Monterey

19. Anything

20. Sky Pilot

21. White Houses

22. Spill The Wine

x

Track List: Gratefully Dead 1964-1968

1. Dimples

2. I'm Mad Again

3. She Said Yeah

4. Talkin' 'Bout You

5. Bright Lights Big City

7. Don't Want Much

8. I'm Gonna Change The World

9. All Night Long

11. A Girl Named Sandoz

13. Gratefully Dead

15. Anything

x

Track List: The Complete Animals

Disc 1

1. Boom Boom

2. Talkin' Bout You

3. Blue Feeling

4. Dimples

5. Baby Let Me Take You Home

6. Gonna Send You Back To Walker

7. Baby What's Wrong

8. The House Of The Rising Sun

9. F-E-E-L

10. I'm Mad Again

11. The Right Time

12. Around And Around

13. I'm In Love Again

14. Bury My Body

15. She Said Yeah

16. I'm Crying

18. The Story Of Bo Diddley

19. The Girl Can't Help It

20. I've Been Around

Disc 2

1. Memphis Tennessee

2. Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood

4. Roadrunner

5. Hallelujah I Love Her So

6. Don't Want Much

7. I Believe To My Soul

8. Let The Good Times Roll

9. Mess Around

10. How You've Changed

12. Roberta

13. Bright Lights Big City

14. Worried Life Blues

15. Bring It On Home To Me

16. For Miss Caulker

17. I Can't Believe It

18. We've Gotta Get Out Of This Place

19. It's My Life

x

Track List: Animalisms

1. One Monkey Don't Stop No Show

2. Maudie

4. Sweet Little Sixteen

5. You're On My Mind

7. Gin House Blues

9. What Am I Living For

10. I Put A Spell On You

12. She'll Return It

13. Inside Looking Out

14. Don't Bring Me Down

15. Cheating

16. Help Me Girl

17. See See Rider

19. Boom Boom

22. Don't Bring Me Down

23. See See Rider

24. Help Me Girl

25. Cheating

x

Track List: The Best Of The Animals

1. House of the Rising Sun

2. I'm Crying

3. Baby, Let me Take you Home

4. Around and Around

5. Talkin' Bout You

6. Don't Let Me be Misunderstood

7. Boom Boom

8. Dimples

9. We Gotta Get Out Of This Place

10. I'm in Love Again

11. Bury My Body

12. Gonna Send You Back to Walker

13. Story of Bo Diddley

14. It's My Life

15. Bring it on Home to me

Comments

Report as inappropriate
eviemiller11
Dont read this. You will be hugged on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tommowrow you will have the best day of your life. Now you've started, but don't stop. If you read this and ignore it you will have bad luck. Put this on 15 other songs in 143 minutes, then press space bar and your crushes name will appear in big letters on the screen. This is so freaky. It actually works.
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Awesome band...The Animals have a different sound all their own
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Say iPhone 5 times
Pick a colour
Post this on 5 other songs
Look under your pillow
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War sings this song not the animals WTF.....
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❤❤❤❤❤
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Stop the chain mail
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No
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Don't read this. You will be hugged on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow you will have the best day of your life. Now you've started, but don't stop. If you read this and ignore it you will have bad luck. Put this on 15 other songs in 143 minutes, then press space bar and you crushed name will appear in big letters on the screen. This is so freaky. It actually works.
Report as inappropriate
I was 11 years old and my older brother bought me a 4 track and my first tape was Eric burden and the Animals .He had a special blues rhythm that started me on that long road
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In GOD....I KNOW...I AM.....ONE!! ! ! . . . . X X X X X O O O O O O O O
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THIS IS NOT THE ANIMALS!!!!! ! ! ! ! This is Eric Burdon and WAR!!! C'MON PANDORA, get your stuff straight!!
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ttsmith49
Always like this song and discovered the heavy metal group 'Five finger death punch' does a fantastic rock version of House of the Rising Sun. Check it out.
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Favourite song ever ❤️
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Favorite.. Love my Pandora..
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Love this song
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riddlem14
I want to hear John Lennon song Imagine
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The Vietnam War Campaign Song....I first heard it while on R&R in October '66 in a hotel barroom. A great song that brings back memories best forgotten.
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Had these animals, and Johny rivers at the wisky a go go great music jp
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The Animals made several stops at the Whiskey a go go on W. Sunset Bvd. in Los Angeles. On one night in 1967, the club had hundreds of fans outside trying to get in to see them, but obviously couldn't, the club was small in seating capacity.
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At Kent concert the opening song/jam was CC Ryder killer version2'13' 1 6 8pm cc union
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I saw Eric Burden & the Animals on 2/13/16 at Kent ,Ohio - great show. Eric would not sign autographs or answer any questions- dynamite show. His vocals are still in great shape- For the encore he did Spill the Wine (l970 when he was with the band War) cc_union
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This song was Eric Burton and War, not the animals
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Truly a great band that influenced countless others and never really received their just due!
Report as inappropriate
I like the Animal's psychedelic period, but I've always been horrified by:

'I smoked my first cigarette at 10; and for girls, I had a bad yen.'

Surely Eric could have put in 30 seconds on a better rhyme.
Report as inappropriate
Reminds me of Tony Soprano's flashbacks to his father, part of the soundtrack of his life.
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My girl calls me an Animal in bed.
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nleshelman
Paint it black!!!!!!! ! ! ! !
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It y 6 yh yt\þyýy thy ůþtg y t t t t Dr 4\ttukillyoj i m i 8 u ti u 6trffhyyy t Kurt yř yo ry t tyt6 Tyger tatty y y Yue 47 5u Ryu|tutu 66| y y Tujunga uu I'll
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Love this song!
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I
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Cool beat reminds me of when i was a lil kid ,my uncle was a big fan of THIS band,rideing around in his 68road runner.
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colewingo5
FFDP remade this song they are both awesome
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lqe33

I
Mkkkkiokikik k k i o i k i i i i m m m m i mmomkmmkm
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lqe33
Ok
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lqe33
k

Kk
K
Kk
Mm
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lqe33
K

K
KI
Ok
Knoll
K
Km
Mmmkmmimiiii m k
Ikmknmmmmmmm k
Report as inappropriate
tjb600
Great voice. He still got it. Great songs.
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nleshelman
O.klkk
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We all b Animals
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Wrong group. 100% sure this is Eric Burden and War.
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they will be playing 2/13/16 at Kent,Ohio at Kent Stage 8pm cc_union
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41 years ago this was my favourite song, still a classic, love Eric's voice
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Casino,... .....in God I know ....I'm One!¡!.....X x x X x x X x x O o O o O o o o
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T
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crsartin
Best nam song
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NICE INDEED !!!!
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Outstanding burdon!!! Saw him live in the early 90s at a bar in Eugene or with my wife we were pretty hamered in the front of the stage I got to yell into his Mike , he put his hand on the top of my head!! Totally cool man
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One of their best had it on 8 track
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Been to that house in Wallace Idaho in the 70s....good times
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My song for the day nothing like gutter a** neighbors to make you want to get the hell out of this place
Show more

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