Thursday, December 23, 2010

Short Cross - Arising (us 1971)

Short Cross - Arising (us 1971, & Bonus tracks)

Formed: 1970, Sandston, VA, United States
Disbanded: 1972 //

* Gray McCalley (drums, percussion, vocals),
* Butch Owens (organ, piano, Moog, Hammond, vocals),
* Velpo Robertson (vocals, lead guitar, piano),
* Steve Hicks (bass),
* Dudley "Byrd" Sharp (bass, backing vocals)

Related Artists: The Reactors, The Outlaws

Also Known As: The Hustlers

01. Nothin' but a Woman 5:24
02. Wastin Time 3:46
03. Suicide Blues 7:01
04. Just Don't Care 4:27
05. On My Own 4:56
06. Till We Reach the Sun 4:53
07. Ellen 5:50
08. Hobo Love Song 4:46
Bonus Tracks:
09. On My Own (stereo mix of A-side of 45*) 2:50
10. Marching off to War (stereo mix of B-side of 45*) 2:57
11. That's Her Train (unreleased stereo mix) 2:54
12. Bomb (unfinished demo - mono) 4:04
13. Before It Rains (unfinished demo - mono) 3:28

"We haven't been able to dig up much about Short Cross, though we know they were based in Sandston, Virginia (a suburb of Richmond). Originally known as The Hustlers, by the late-'60s drummer Gray McCalley, keyboard player Butch Owens, singer/guitarist Velpo Robertson and bassist Bird Sharp had metamorphosed into Short Cross. The band made their debut with a little known single on the small Colpar label - "On My Own" b/w "Marching Off To War" (Colpar catalog 54-1005). The following year they got an opportunity to record an album. Recorded in Richmond's ''Alpha Audio'' Studios and released by the small local Grizzly Records label, 1971's "Arising" teamed the group with producers Dave Herren and Rhett Riddle. Judging by the liner notes, Robertson was the band's mainstay. In addition to serving as lead singer and lead guitarist, he was responsible for penning all eight tracks (drummer McCalley co-wrote one track). So what about the music? Well, over the years we've seen this one listed on several high priced psych/progressive sales lists. If you're looking for those genres, don't bother reading the rest of this. The majority of "Uprising" offers up a surprisingly accomplished set of mainstream guitar-rock. Overlooking the occasionally irritating horn arrangements ("Nothing But a Woman"), material such as the organ-propelled "Till We Reach the Sun" (sporting a nice Santana-styled Latin vibe), the bluesy "Suicide Blues" and "On My Own" was tuneful and rocked, fitting in well with conventional early-'70s rock. Sporting a modest Allman Brothers feel and a great rhythm pattern, "Wastin Time" was our personal favorite. While you won't find anything particularly original or earth shattering here, Richardson had a good voice and was a first-rate guitarist (check out his solo on "Just Don't Care"). Some of you may not take this as a compliment (it's meant to be), but we play this LP far more often than anything from Grand Funk Railroad ... The fact it was released on a small label with limited distribution capabilities spelled instant obscurity for the album (and apparently the band itself)."
~ by BadCat Records.
From Sandston, Virginia, this band evolved out of the Hustlers, whose members included, at various stages, ex-Reactors Steve Hicks and ex-Outlaws Butch Owens alongside core members Velpo Robertson, Gray McCalley and Ben Luck. The latter left to join the Barracudas, of A Plane View LP fame.Their rare album can best be described as heavy psychedelic blues, at its purest on Suicide Blues. There's plenty of good guitar work throughout, Wastin' Time, Just Don't Care, Till We Reach The Sun and Hobo Love Song all have their share, whilst Ellen is a slow bluesy ballad. The album lacks sufficient originality to make it special but if this musical genre is where you're at you shouldn't be disappointed.
~ by (Max Waller / Roger Maglio).

Download Links:
Normal version :
Shorter version :

...and also...
Short Cross - Arising (us 1972, & bonus).rar (135.47 MB)


Gray said...

Thank you for your kind words and review. Here are a few humble corrections:
Velpo "Richardson" is Velpo Robertson, "Alpha Studio Studios" is Alpha Audio & "Guzley" is Grizzly Records.
Shortcross disbanded in 1974 and have played reunion performances in 2004 & 2005. All of the members still perform in various other venues in the Virginia, Washington DC & Carolinas region. More info @

Thank you again for your promotion and review,

Gray McCalley

alfaios said...

Dear Gray McCalley
Thank you for the important correction in the "BadCat Records" review.
Thank you very much to you and also to all the members of "Short Cross" for all the great music you offered us!
~ Alfaios