Farrah Bees & Honey

  • 3 x CD + DVD + 20 page booklet + stickers, badges & postcards
  • 56 demos, versions & studio miscellanea
  • 10 live tracks (UK, Spain & Japan)
  • 5 acoustic tracks & radio sessions
  • 2 new recordings
  • 11 music videos + interview featurette
  • limited edition of 500

As with so many things connected with Farrah, it started in a pub. Specifically, the Pembroke Castle at the Chalk Farm end of Regents Park Road, Primrose Hill, London. In attendance – me, Mike Walker and Jez, and a seemingly endless supply of Guinness and lager. It was probably 1996. We were debating the topic which often reduces bands to fisticuffs before even their first gig – the name of the band. There had been the Futon Riders, and then Zephyr. I remember Jez wanted “something 70s”, possibly because it had been pointed out that the band had that powerpop / new wave sound often to be heard on the radio in the late 1970s...punky energy but with tunes and great harmonies. “Farrah” kept coming up in discussion simply because Farrah Fawcett was an icon who summoned up a certain feel of the 1970s...something summery, something positive, and something with enormous hair, wearing a vest.

The early shows were energetic, often a tad shambolic, driven along by the unique energy of Max Fidani on drums who attacked his kit with the verve only a fully qualified optometrist could muster. As the songs began to take shape, more lager and Guinness was consumed, and the ever-prudent Mike Walker funded the album which became “Moustache”, produced with the amazing Ron Rogers at his great home studio in Monmouth. ARK 21 Records put forward a proposal to release the record, which was best summed up by their CEO who announced “Let me tell you what advance I’m going to offer. Nothing. (*leans forward*). Nothing”. But it was a deal, and the band got their start.

Bob Harris, Steve Lamacq, Janice Long, fake letters in the NME, Copeland, Tannett, Bucketfull of Brains, Four Star Mary, Shed Seven, strange exports to Japan, a van called Bertha, Lojinx, 1977, Rock Indiana, Nobu, Yoshi, Naoki,Terry, Pablo, Santi, Olivier, Katsu, AKG, Yokohama Arena with 15,000 people, June, a field in Tuscany on World Cup Final night with 1 person watching, Takeshi, Jimmy K, airports, Shinkansen, mad nights in Madrid and Hakata, Kaela, Hanson, a small town in Spain with the Knack, Comatos, the never ending quest for veggie food, broken amps, Fabtone, Zushi beach...a blur of names, experiences, snapshots, vlogs, disasters and triumphs.... and amidst it all, endless humour, beer, tortillas and tofu.

Maybe, before the blur gets even more blurry, before Andrew’s computer finally explodes and Jez forgets all his lyrics, now is the time for this Box Set. To say thank you and send lots of love to everyone but most of all to anyone who has come to a show, bought a CD or some merchandise. This isn’t the end, but maybe it’s a good time to have some toast.

So....Bees And Honey. Something sweet, something made from things that are collected, something with the occasional sting to it, and something you have to wear a special hat for. Actually, you don’t really need to wear a special hat. Not unless you want to. It’s up to you.

Will Ashurst, Manager, March 2012

Disc 1 (Demos)

1. Don't Know Anyone 2. Tired Of Apologising (4-Track Demo) 3. Always Pushing Me 4. Downtown (4-Track Demo) 5. Seventies Superstar (Holloway Version) 6. Harold Bishop (Holloway Version) 7. Underground (Monmouth Session) 8. Daytime TV (Monmouth Session) 9. The Last Word 10. The One That Got Away 11. High And Low 12. Half As Strong 13. Christmas Is Cancelled 14. Famous Dentist 15. Start It Again 16. Can't Do Right For Doing Wrong 17. Can’t Do Right For Doing Wrong (Acoustic) 18. Blue Is The Colour 19. Overloaded 20. Sarah 21. Surfer Ghost 22. All I Want Is You 23. Dorian Gray 24. Dorian Gray (Alt. Chorus) 25. Oh My Friend 26. Colour Of Your Love (Mellow) 27. Colour Of Your Love (Heavy)

Disc 2 (Demos)

1. Swings And Roundabouts (Intro) 2. Awkward Situation 3. School Reunion 4. Peter Waits 5. Hit Single 6. List Song 7. Get Your Kicks 8. Filing Song 9. The Only Way 10. No Reason Why 11. Things We Shouldn't Say 12. Better Off This Way 13. Slow Down 14. Dumb Dumb Ditty 15. DNA 16. Last Of The Innocents 17. Wristband Generation 18. No One Stays Together 19. As Soon As I Get Over You 20. Abby’s Going Out 21. Can't Kick The Habit 22. Fear Of Flying 23. Missed The Boat 24. Right Thing At The Right Time 25. Heavy Metal 26. Just Driving 27. Get Over Yourself 28. Best Shot 29. Wasting Time

Disc 3 (Rare & Live)

1. Crash 2. The Final Countdown 3. Santa Don’t Go 4. Christmas Is Cancelled 5. Fear Of Flying (Live Acoustic, 2011) 6. Tired Of Apologising (Live Acoustic, 2011) 7. No Reason Why (Live Acoustic, 2011) 8. Terry (Radio Session, 2000) 9. Lois Lane (Radio Session, 2000) 10. Harold Bishop (The Dublin Castle, London, 1999) 11. Daytime TV (FNAC, Madrid, 2004) 12. Different For Girls (FNAC, Madrid, 2004) 13. He Gives An Inch (FNAC, Madrid, 2004) 14. Do You Ever Think Of Me (Maidstone, 2009) 15. No R`stone, 2009) 16. Swings And Roundabouts (Osaka, 2009) 16. Just Driving (Osaka, 2009) 17. Sleep Above The Covers (Osaka, 2009) 19. Stereotypes (Nano-mugen, Yokohama, 2009) 20. Swings And Roundabouts (Nano-mugen, Yokohama, 2009)

Disc 4 (DVD*)

1. So Far (featurette) 2. Tongue Tied 3. Fear Of Flying 4. Can't Kick The Habit 5. Last Of The Innocents 6. Swings & Roundabouts 7. Stereotypes (Unfinished) 8. Fear Of Flying (Concept Proof) 9. Fear Of Flying (Teaser) 10. Tongue Tied (Live at Nano-mugen, 2005) 11. The One That Got Away (Live at Nano-mugen, 2005) 12. First & Last (Live at Nano-mugen, 2005)

(*European release is an all regions, PAL encoded, 16x9 DVD)