Sniff 'n' the Tears was formed through the partnership of Luigi Salvoni and myself in 1978. Lou and his band, Moon, had played on some demos for me a year or so earlier. He took these demos to Ted Carroll at Chiswick Records and we were given the go ahead to make an album. The album was Fickle Heart, and the first single Driver's Seat. To everyone's amazement Driver's Seat became a critical and commercial success around the world.
This success meant tours in Europe and the USA, and also the departure of Luigi who disagreed with some of the things that were happening. Coming back from a two and a half month tour of America we went into the studio and recorded The Game's Up, many of the songs having been thoroughly played-in on the tour. This is still my favourite Sniff album from that time. Steve Lipson, who had engineered the first one, was now producing and the whole process was both creative and a lot of fun. At the insistance of our new big time American manager we used a different producer for Love/Action. This I think was a mistake, as some of the spirit of the first two albums was processed out. Still there were some good songs.
Our swan song for Chiswick was Ride Blue Divide in 1982. Hungry Eyes, Ride Blue Divide and Gold stood out. But the momentum had passed and we called it a day.
Since that time things refuse to stand still. Driver's Seat was used in two highly successful advertising campaigns in Holland and Germany, catapulting it into the charts in these countries, reaching the No 1 spot in Holland in 1992.
I went on to make a couple of solo albums, City Without Walls in 1985 and Kettle Drum Blues in 1987, and a Sniff album called No Damage Done in 1992. Unable to resist the lure of music making I'm working on a new record in my own home studio, enjoying the wonders of digital technology. The new album will be available in the new year. From the various musicians who passed through the ranks of Sniff 'n' the Tears, guitarist Les Davidson has played on some of the new stuff. I still speak to Luigi from time to time and we have remained friends. Nick South is working as a musician in Los Angeles. Loz Netto and Mick Dyche, are as far as I know, still playing. Mick Taylor fell for a girl in Hamburg on one of our tours and now lives there with her. Alan Feldman has been working with Lou and Noel McCalla, and Jamie Lane is now a producer. Life goes on.
By Paul Roberts
We're currently in the process of setting up a Sniff 'n' the Tears website which will have more information.