History - The Gardeners
Formed basically by Cliff
Morgan (b. September 24, 1977, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England, d. June 20, 2014, St. Moritz, Switzerland; vocals), Gregor
Stevens (b. November 3, 1977, Northampton, England; guitar), Mike
Gradas (b. November 20, 1976, St. Neots, Northamptonshire, England; bass/guitar) and Pat Rudford (b. May 22, 1978, Nottingham, England; drums) in the 90's earlies, The Gardeners began as a descompromised act in the british city of Welwyn Garden City among Gregor, Mike and Nick Willys (b. March 14, 1978, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England; vocals/guitar) when Mike Gradas still lived in St. Neots and went to Welwyn Garden City to visit his grandparents who lived at same building of Gregor Stevens.
From sporadic meetings among Gradas, Stevens and neighbour Willys the first musical activities of the group appeared. With the moving of Gradas to WGC, Cliff Morgan's entrance and not a long time later Nick Willys's exit by personal problems was practically established the central nucleus of the group. On that time the few presentations of the band were made with an electronic drums improvisated. Therefore it was verified which not was an efficient method for live shows and after a small test the Gregor and Cliff's friend, Pat Rudford, was selected for the position closing The Gardeners's classic formation.
From city came the name
Starting from then the group passed being devoted with more insistence in its musical taskwork, playing covers songs in parties, anniversaries and local festivals and to the few introducing its own compositions, all them done by double Morgan/Stevens. The constant presence in the town events added to the relative success of the singles "Words in the Wind" and "Christiane" seduced the artistic personal-agent Chris Bodan that took the group for tests in recording after a series of false promises done by other managers. After some refuses the band it was accepted by Virgin Records, EMI's label, that challenged to the boys recording a first disc for the Parlophone label (other subsidiary of EMI Records) and to reach the mark of 125 thousand copies sold to have contract signed with Virgin. How until it that moment the boys had not thought of any name for the group, the recording suggested The Gardeners for sending to the local-city of the band.
A contract for 150 thousand copies
The debut album The Gardeners Grow Up, 1999, is composed in its essence by rock in the format guitar-bass-drums and an or other insert of keyboards. With the main-songs ‘Words in the Wind' and ‘Christiane', the disc sold enough so that The Gardeners got to sign the contract with Virgin. A lot of the relative success obtained by the work it was conquered thanks to a tour around the United Kingdom during one year. With quiet way and necessary rearguard for they could follow career, The Gardeners moved close to the hard-rock in their second disc, Migraine
Boy, 2001. In this time a long partnership was firm with producer Gary Brodan that would last until the Yellow Cover Tour end. Anchored in to title-track that got to reach Top 10 in UK, the band accomplished their first round by Europe and United States, going by Japan and Australia the following year. Already at the tour's end the support musician and species of fifth element of the group, Brian Stanley, was arrested in New Zealand with cocaine and heroine.
Resolved differing in the musical scene, The Gardeners leaves the hard-rock style a little sideways to invest in new sounds. In that same time the consumption of drugs grows on the part of Cliff and Gregor which involuntarily finish driving the quartet to a type of more experimental music with influences from psychedelic rock of the sixties and progressive rock of the seventies. The result is highly acclaimed The Human Obiciclity is same to Transciding of the Nestery that in a lot it overcomes the expectations to a group that until then had not demonstrated anything of exceptional. But in spite of the pomp of ‘cult’ album received by The Human mainly in the USA, they were the commercial track that climbed disc for the 8 million copies sold worldly. ‘Strange Sentences' was Top #5 in Europe and Top #10 in America and ‘Three Princesses on the Heaven' first Top #1 in Europe. Furthermore, other tracks deserve prominence like ‘The Pirro's Victory' first song by Mike Gradas and ‘Singin' Stopless’ with its endless 11 minutes of duration. The success of the album took The Gardeners to a well-happened world tour although there were some setbacks as a simpatic declaration of Morgan to the IRA that had caused indisposition with the British government and an attack of Neo-Nazi in a presentation in Berlin.
Public's success and critic in Europe and already with a foot stuck in America, manager Chris Bodan promoted a strategic moving of The Gardeners to United States what provoked a series of internal conflicts between him and double Cliff Morgan/Gregor Stevens contrary the moving to California. Defeated in this clash, Cliff and Gregor, as well as their companions Mike and Pat became people diffused thoroughly at the country composing the theme-music of the 007 secret agent's movie, participating of the disc in honor to the rock n' roll half-century and until appearing in an episode of the TV series The Simpsons.
Side-side with the giants
Surrounded by the media high-interest, The Gardeners run for the recording of a new album in 2005 not without before to pass for a troubled phase during the sessions. The aggression of Cliff Morgan to a journalist that spied the rehearsals as well as his polemic interviews and a Gregor Stevens car accident passed the image of an irresponsible band that was not prepared for the success. Looking for to thwart these opinions, The Gardeners release The Man of Yellow Cover a disc since from its conception characterized by the commercial orientation remained per several weeks in the top parades in the USA and Europe and it was acclaimed as the album of the year. Songs that became instantaneous hits like ‘The Man of Yellow Cover' (Top #1 in the USA and Europe), ‘Flying High', ‘Discover My Secret', ‘Delirium From Thinking' and ‘Black Hell' generated the world-tour Yellow Cover Tour that placed The Gardeners in the same level of the largest world's rock bands. Although they filled stadiums in all concerts the tour giantism it caused some problems during the passage by United States as the impediment of accomplishing a show in Salt Lake City because marijuana port what generated a discussion on the artists' right to consume drugs during the presentations, answers on the part of Cliff in San Francisco and a split between him and Gregor in Dallas. After passing by the 5 continents The Gardeners concluded their tour in Europe with more a confusion in Barcelona and two anthological concerts at the Wembley Stadium.
Therefore after Yellow Cover Tour end drastic changes influences in the future of The Gardeners. Cliff Morgan falls in love by journalist Yanna Mason and he begins going away gradually of the other companions, Mike Gradas, always obscured by the shine of double Morgan/Stevens, decides to leave the group and manager Chris Bodan is arrested under accusation of defraudment of taxes and illicit enrichment being substituted by north american Anthony Johnson until then commercial representative of the band. The result is that video Yellow Cover Tour that pictures the previous album tour and the CD The Gardeners Still Live disappoint in the sales.
The empire´s fall
The Bodan's absence in the control of The Gardeners ends up feeding a growing intern rivalry among Cliff and Gregor who passed one year in parallel works and they are going enlarging their domains in The Gardeners. This is very clear in The
Time’s Over, last studio work, in that Stevens sign the production and Morgan drives video-clips of some album tracks. In spite of the battle veiled between Cliff and Gregor, also fed by Nick Willys's improper return who substituted Gradas, The Time's Over it gets to be an album with qualities although it demonstrated a more bitter tone in most of its songs as to title-song and ‘Tales and Stories'. The Time's Over Tour works practically as a no-official farewell of the band, occasion in that The Gardeners Unplugged is recorded (it would be released in January, 2010) for MTV in Paris Theatre. After they finish the round it remains the doubt on the pursuit of The Gardeners finally cleared-up when on November 20th, 2009 it is announced the group breakup officially.
Each one in yours
The separation of The Gardeners seems to work as a relief for the former-integral ones. Although they stayed with the climate of private war, so much to solo-career of Cliff Morgan (more and more under influence of Yanna Mason) as Gregor Stevens in his new group called Alcoholic Blues Band and even Mike Gradas, who had already left the band and he was with UK Rangers, they get to give sequence to careers stable relatively in spite of nor from a distance they repeat sellings and success from The Gardeners age.
Cliff Morgan's death in 2014 closes the remote hopes once and for all that The Gardeners could come back. Starts it then an intense judicial dispute between Yanna Mason and the other three former-gardeners on relative copyrights to the band. In spite of this brand force The Gardeners proves to stay unshaken and three years later in order to the case and the liberation of the catalog of the group is released the double-album, DVD, book and documentary The Gardeners Anthology, collection that includes great hits, covers, rare recordings and the unpublished track ‘For You Come Back' the last partnership of double Morgan/Stevens.