Calcutta-16 HMV NE 1003 Ballad of the Purple Inn

Calcutta-16

Calcutta-16 HMV NE 1003 Ballad of the Purple InnAs far as I can tell, Calcutta-16 only released this one 45, but what a record it is. Ed Nadorozny has the record and provided the music and scans here. When I heard Calcutta-16’s “Ballad of the Purple Inn” I asked Ed if I could cover it on Garage Hangover and he kindly said yesCalcutta-16 HMV 45 Ballad of the Purple Inn  

I love everything about the song: Brinnand’s insolent delivery of the lyrics, the full bass line, the excellent sounds they get out of the guitars and echo, the drumming, all of it.

The flip “One Eyed Woman” has a great break halfway through with a pounding snare drum that just gets louder, war whoops, and a solo the segues so nicely back into the song. The bassist and the sound of the group in general remind me somewhat of the Great Society.

The band were:

John Brinnand – lead vocals (spelled John Brinand on the labels)
Peter Yeti – lead guitar
Romit Bhattaharya – rhythm guitar
Devdan Sen – bass guitar
Nondon Bagchi – drums

Devdan Sen and John Brinand “wrote the lyrics and composed and arranged the music” according to the notes on the back cover.Calcutta-16 HMV 45 One Eyed Woman

Dubby Bhagat of the Junior Statesmen produced the record and wrote the notes, and J.P. Sen engineered it. The record was released on His Master’s Voice NE. 1003 in 1969.

Dubby’s notes on the back also thank the band’s manager Jimmy Chaudhuri and “Colonel Bose of the ‘Living Sound’ Studio and his daughters Rita and Mita, who first recorded the group. Jack Dantes who christened the group. Sumit Bhattacharya and Rangam Mitra who gave time and equipment aplenty. The Surayas for their quiet but wholehearted support. Mr. Rafiq and Mr. A.C. Sen of H.M.V., who gave the boys this chance. Desmond Doig of the Junior Statesmen who encouraged the project. And Ananda Mitter and Jonathan Mason without who the group would never have got to Dum Dum for the recording!”

Next up from Ed will be a couple tracks from a very rare early EP by the Savages, better known for their Black Scorpio LP.

Calcutta-16 HMV NE 1003 Ballad of the Purple Inn

9 thoughts on “Calcutta-16”

    1. Wow, what an amazing surprise to see this after 45 years. I lost my copy of the record a while back so I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am to Chris for doing this. I’m the rhythm guitarist living in the US since 1972 and currently have a band (Kalkutta). Met up with Devdan in the UK about 15 years ago. Nondon still plays in Kolkata. John was last seen in Australia and I’m not at all sure about Peter. Thanks again, Chris!!–Romit

      1. John Brinnand lives in San Jose California. He still plays some music. Mostly sitar now days. I am his wife, I found your site by accident the other day. When I played Purple Inn for him he was dumbfounded. He says he had hoped to never hear this song again. Ha!! Still I think he was happy to hear that someone has pulled this record out of a hat.

        1. Suzanne.. I had this single since years ago. Many things are still not clear for me. The quality of the band was really great. Did they record any more material? Did they played any concert on that time? I only know the drummer is a legend in India.. Still playing rock after 43 years!!! AMAZING

      2. I had this single since years ago. Many things are still not clear for me. The quality of the band was really great. Did you record any more material? Did played any concert on that time? I only know the drummer is a legend in India.. Still playing rock after 43 years!!! AMAZING.

        http://www.bickramghoshacademy.com/faculty-nondon-bagchi.html

        I wonder if there is any kind of group of that time played such a psych stuff… After that until 1972.. Do you played music in other bands in India? Thanks a lot best wishes

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