The Creation was an English rock band, formed in 1966. The most popular Creation song was "
Pre-history: The Mark Four (1963—1966)
Most of the members of what would eventually become Creation were initially members of
Dalton then left the band, later joining
In April 1966, the group signed a management deal with Tony Stratton-Smith. He promptly suggested replacing Cooke with new bassist Bob Garner (previously of the
Initial success (1966)
The band's style, produced by Shel Talmy, was, at this point, loud pop art, similar to early records by
Their next single, October 1966's "Painter Man", became their biggest hit, reaching #36 UK and the top 10 in Germany. The track featured Phillips playing his electric guitar with a violin bow. He was reputedly the first guitarist to use this technique, although Jimmy Page later did it to greater acclaim.
The Creation took their pop art experimentation slightly further when, during live performances of "Painter Man" Pickett would spraypaint a canvas during their concerts, before a member of the road crew set light to artwork on stage.
The Bob Garner era (1967)
"Painter Man" was the last single issued by the original line-up, and their last single to chart in the UK. In early 1967, the band brought in Kim Gardner as their new bassist, and former bassist Bob Garner moved into the lead vocal slot in June 1967, leaving Kenny Pickett out of the group, at least for the time being.
This line-up issued its first single in July 1967 ("If I Stay Too Long" b/w "Nightmares"). Unsuccessful in the UK, the song did well in Germany, as did a German only follow-up single ("Tom Tom"). Their commercial momentum in Germany was strong enough for a Creation album called We Are Paintermen to be issued in mid 1967 for the German and continental European market, compiled from previously issued singles and several newly recorded songs. By this time, the band's sound had developed into a more typically mid-1960s psychedelic rock sound, which has been retroactively described as freakbeat.
Also during late 1966 and 1967, four Creation singles were issued in the United States, without commercial success: "Making Time" b/w "Try And Stop Me" and "Painter Man" b/w "Biff Bang Pow" on US Planet (distributed by Jay-Gee/Jubilee), and "If I Stay Too Long" b/w "Nightmares" and "How Does It Feel To Feel" b/w "Life Is Just Beginning" on US Decca. The band remained popular in Germany, Sweden, Denmark and Norway.
The single "Life Is Just Beginning" was released in the UK towards the end of 1967, but almost immediately afterwards guitarist Eddie Phillps announced his departure. He was replaced for several European tour dates by guitarist Tony Ollard, but within a matter of weeks, vocalist Bob Garner also quit the group and by February 1968, The Creation had officially ceased to exist.
Pickett returns, band breaks up (1968)
However, demand was still strong in continental Europe for Creation records and live shows, and almost immediately after the band had disbanded drummer Jack Jones formed a new Creation line-up, bringing back Kenny Pickett as singer. Kim Gardner returned as bass player (after a stint in Santa Barbara Machine Head) and brought in his old bandmate from The Birds, Ronnie Wood on guitar.
This line-up debuted with the single "Midway Down", released in the UK and Germany in April 1968. However this Creation line-up splintered almost immediately, and by June, the band was no more. Two posthumous follow-up singles: "Bony Moronie" and "For All That I Am" were German only releases, appearing later in 1968.
Eddie Phillips became bass player in
Kenny Pickett continued as songwriter for the Creation's American producer, Shel Talmy, and also became Jimmy Page's guitar technician. He issued some solo recordings in the 1970s and 1980s, and later sang with The Kennedy Express.
Ronnie Wood joined the
Kim Gardner co-formed
Bob Garner left the music business entirely, though he later participated in various Creation reunions.
Jack Jones became a cabaret singer.
Mick Avory was the drummer for the
Reformations (1980s — present)
The Creation re-formed in the mid-1980s with Phillips, Pickett, Dalton, and Mick Avory (drums, ex-Kinks). In 1987, they released a single on
In 1994, the original line-up (consisting of Phillips, Pickett, Garner and Jones) got together to record the album Power Surge, issued in 1996 on UK indie label Creation Records, which had been named in honour of the group. The 1990s band Ride then recorded the song "How Does It Feel to Feel?" on their album, Carnival of Light.
Pickett died in 1997, but the group continued for a time with Garner as lead vocalist. The band performed in the United States for the first time in 2001.
In 2004, Cherry Red Records released Psychedelic Rose, made up of nine songs from the group's abandoned 1987/88 sessions including the tracks previously issued on the 1987 single, augmented by two spoken-word recollections of The Creation's history; the few reviews of the album were almost uniformly negative.
Garner and Jones both exited the band sometime in the early 2000s: the only original member left in the current line-up is Phillips. The most recent Creation touring line-up consists of Eddie Phillips (lead guitar, vocals), Simon Tourle (lead vocals), Tony Barber (bass), and Kevin Mann (drums).