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Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: sf37 ()
Date: June 28, 2019 07:36

Greetings all,

Would anyone happen to know the story behind why the proposed Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller single back in 1963 was withdrawn before hitting the market? Did the band decide after-the-fact that it just didn't meet their expectations, or were there other circumstances? Just curious, really.

Thanks everyone, much appreciated!

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: ash ()
Date: June 28, 2019 17:35

It was a combination of reasons. The single was all set for release and reported as such in a number of music papers / magazines.
However, Come On was a slow starter on the charts, it first entered the Record Retailer chart on 31st July (for example), peaked at 23 on 4th September, went down, went back up reaching 21 on 25 September, went down for three weeks and then up a place to 29 and then down and out of the chart. While Record Retailer was a poor chart of choice for the official singles, it might broadly mirror the other music paper charts such as NME (I'd have to check that).
Anyway, upshot would be that they / Andrew / Decca probably thought it worth holding off releasing the 2nd single while Come On was still having promising chart action.
Recently (somewhere) I read that the group's appearance on Thank Your Lucky Stars in September 63 had been booked to promote the Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller single but due to the charts it was decided to give a push to Come On again instead. This TV appearance was recorded on 8th September for transmission on 14th September 1963.

It must have been around this time that the band began to feel that their 2nd single just wasn't strong enough and it's worth pointing out that the song was in a lot of other groups repertoires at the time. Looking at what we know of the band's recording sessions, those first 6 months were quite a struggle as they tried to balance the kind of music they liked and played, the pop music they needed to succeed, studio technique and forging their own identity out of all that.
Apparently Andrew bumped into John and Paul Fab on September 10th after a Variety Club Awards luncheon and mentioned the Stones were having problems with a follow-up. The two groups were already friendly. Oldham had worked for Brian Epstein, George Harrison had recommended The Stones to Dick Rowe at Decca...quite nice of him to do so as Rowe was infamous for supposedly turning down the Beatles in January 1962 though the ultimate decision may have rested with Decca producer Mike Smith or ex-Shadow, now Decca A&R man Tony Meehan ??
Fab gear John and Paul offered I Wanna Be Your Man which The Beatles themselves began recording (with Ringo on vocals) on Sept 11th at EMI. On the 15th September the Beatles and The Stones played on the same bill at the Royal Albert Hall "Pop Prom".
In the meantime, The Stones worked up their own arrangement of I Wanna Be Your Man and obviously, it was a much better choice than Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller. They recorded it on 7th October and released it 3 weeks before the Mop Heads version hit the stores. Thanks Beatles.

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: ash ()
Date: June 28, 2019 17:47

worth noting too that at their BBC Radio debut on Sept 23rd 1963, they didn't play either side of what had been earmarked to be their next single.
Also, I'm not certain what the intended A-side was but in August 63 The Merseybeats released It's Love That Really Counts / Fortune Teller on Fontana Records, It's possible that that might have made an impact on the decision making process too.??

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: Elmo Lewis ()
Date: June 28, 2019 18:12

I would have loved to have been at that Beatles/Stones gig!

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: His Majesty ()
Date: June 28, 2019 18:45

Nice and informative post ash! smileys with beer

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: Spud ()
Date: June 28, 2019 18:52

I wish Fortune Teller had been on the subsequent EP instead of "You Better Move on" ...one of their weaker and more self conscious early attempts to play pop influenced soul .

They did, thankfuly, get a lot better at itgrinning smiley

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: Swayed1967 ()
Date: June 28, 2019 19:04

Quote
His Majesty
Nice and informative post ash! smileys with beer

Yes indeed. Personally though, I find 'I Wanna Be Your Man' as musically exciting as, say, 'Chopsticks' - haven't listened to it in decades while I'm still in love with the Fortune Tella/Poison Ivy. Who's with me?

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: rootsman ()
Date: June 28, 2019 19:09

Bill Wyman in "Stone Alone".

On August 19...we were played the first pressing of ´Poison Ivy´ and `Fortune Teller´. They sounded good. The single was all set to be released later in the month and Decca had already pressed some copies when, a week later, we decided to have it withdrawn. We were still not entirely satisfied that it was a strong enough follow-up.

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: Spud ()
Date: June 28, 2019 19:10

I'll happily second that smiling smiley

Re: Poison Ivy / Fortune Teller Single
Posted by: sf37 ()
Date: June 29, 2019 03:21

Quote
Swayed1967
Quote
His Majesty
Nice and informative post ash! smileys with beer

Yes indeed. Personally though, I find 'I Wanna Be Your Man' as musically exciting as, say, 'Chopsticks' - haven't listened to it in decades while I'm still in love with the Fortune Tella/Poison Ivy. Who's with me?

Agreed - - thank you so much, ash, for the in-depth feedback on this, much appreciated. And thanks to the rest of you for the additional info as well. I actually enjoy both Poison Ivy and Fortune Teller - - just a shame they never got much (if any) airplay over the yesrs.



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