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Bury St Edmunds: 70s band Smoke set to reissue sell-out single Dreams of Dreams 40 years on from original release

18:13 03 September 2014

Steve Vaughn-Williams from smoke meets reps from Spoke Records

Steve Vaughn-Williams from smoke meets reps from Spoke Records

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A single which became a collector’s item is set to be reissued more
than 40 years after it was first released.

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Bury St Edmunds guitarist Steve Vaughn-Williams recorded Dreams of Dreams with his band Smoke in 1970, without realising the impact it would later have.

Now, decades after the band dissolved, the single is being reissued by Suffolk-based music label Spoke Records.

The single’s niche success, which secondhand can sell for up £700, came as a big surprise to Steve.

It was only released in small numbers but has generated much interest over the years.

The 63-year-old, who lives in Plover’s Way, said: “About a year ago Spoke Records got in touch with me and told me they loved the record and wanted to reissue it.

“It was a shock – I thought
everyone had forgotten about Smoke, I mean a few people used to ask ‘did you used to be in that band?’ but nothing like this.

“I had no idea it was worth so much, they said to have a look
on eBay and I just couldn’t believe it.”

Steve, who now plays in the Bury Folk Collective, continued: “The people at Spoke are passionate about music and some of them have been DJing up and down the country playing our record.

“They told me loads of people have been listening to the song, it is an amazing thing to find out.”

Steve and the band, which also featured childhood friend and singer Michael Ridgeon, were best known for holding the Guinness World Record for the longest continuous jam session – 102 hours.

The father-of-two said: “We held the record for about six months to a year, before some American band went a couple of hours further.

“You can see from the Look East coverage on Youtube that we were shattered by the end of it.”

It was this record breaking feat that led to Moyse’s Hall Museum volunteer researcher Aimée Blampied, 28, to discovering the story for the Loving the 70s exhibition.

“We all loved the story of Smoke and gave it pride of place at the entrance of the 70s exhibition,” said Peter Jones, Moyse’s Hall Heritage Officer.

“It was a clipping from the East Anglian Daily Times about the record attempt that led us to Steve.

“Finding out about the single’s reissue was a surprise, a great coincidence and we thought the museum was the perfect place to launch the record.”

The reissued single features Dreams of Dreams alongside three other tracks and will be launched at the museum on September 13, with a Spoke DJ set between 6.30pm and 8.30pm.

The Loving the 70s exhibition, which has been part of a National Lottery-funded initiative, will run until October 24 at the museum on Cornhill.

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1 comment

  • I remember in the early 70s when Smoke tried to get into the Guiness Book of Records for the length of time they could play continuously. I don't think they achieved the record but watching them try was better than studying for A levels at Bury Tech which is what I should have been doing!

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    Robin Felton

    Thursday, September 4, 2014

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