In the mid- and late '60s, this British artist was in the recording studios regularly, usually backed by the Welsh group the Shevells. Although the history of their collaboration is nowhere near as difficult to follow as the Welsh language, a certain amount of confusion was created by the fact that the group sometimes recorded under just its own name, featuring Stevens on guitar and vocals; sometimes under its own name without Stevens; and sometimes presented itself logically as Mike Stevens & the Shevells. Credited the latter way, the performers recorded a cover version of "Cathy's Clown" with the badly derailed "Go-Go Train" on the flipside for Pye in 1966, then waited several years before given another chance by Polydor. The opportunity excited Stevens and companions to the point where they recorded ditties entitled "Guaranteed to Drive You Wild" and "Hog-Tied." The Shevells also cut several singles under their own name, while Stevens was also active as a member of the Squires.
The Shevells backed several American blues artists on their United Kingdom tours. Upon switching to United Artists, a funkier direction took hold with a cover of "Watermelon Man," the Herbie Hancock tune that another British act, Manfred Mann, had also recorded in order to demonstrate growing jazz choppers. The best record made by Stevens and company is often said to be a cover of obscure soul artist Jackie Edwards' invitation to "Come on Home." The band also performed under the name of the Welsh Conquerors, as if things weren't confusing enough. ~ Eugene Chadbourne