The original Steady On LP (1978).
The original Steady On vinyl LP (1978).

First Released

September 1978

The History of the Easybeats’ only bootleg.

In the history of 20th century popular culture, there was little to rival the global phenomenon of Beatlemania.  Even behind the Iron Curtin of the U.S.S.R, the British Invasion had crept through, via the underground bootlegs of tapes and records printed on X-rays (known as “Records On Bones”). In Siberia, a young man named George Crotty was one of the many Soviet teenagers taken by the pop group.  At aged 19, his love for beat music was such that he was already fronting his own beat band called The Q. To his friends, he was given the nickname Nesa Bitls (pronounced Nesher Beatles).

In the late 1960’s, Crotty immigrated to Sydney, Australia.  Because of his easy going nature and exuberant personality, he found it easy to make friends.  His passion for the rock music of the 1960’s continued as he began to collect the rock groups of his newly adopted country.  One Australian group in particular was The Easybeats.  The high regard in which Crotty held the band was well known thru-out the collector’s circuit.  And being based in Sydney, the spiritual home of the group and their label Albert Productions, it was inevitable.

In the mid 1970’s, he summoned the courage to visit the label.  With the goal of meeting his idols Harry Vanda and George Young, he was successful beyond his wildest dreams.  His open personality and unabashed enthusiasm for the duo’s music made him a friend to everyone at Alberts – including Harry and George.  If that wasn’t enough, after sometime, George Young gave Crotty access to the recordings the group had accumulated in the Albert Studio Vaults.  With his domestic grade tape recorder,Crotty began to make copies of the band’s acetates, demo reels and studio outtakes for his own private collection.  Although the quality of Crotty’s tape recorder wasn’t “professional”, it was still an honour to have recordings these unreleased treasures.

By 1978 he had collected quite a substantial amount of music. Crotty decided to compile the songs recorded from the early period of The Easybeats’ career and have them privately pressed to vinyl.  At a very small run (said to be “around twenty”), he had no intention of selling the album commercially, they were simply intended as presents to friends and the people at Alberts as a “thank you” for their kindness. He referred to it as his “tribute album.” In keeping with the compilation’s period, he designed a cover and wrote liner notes in the style of a pop album from the early/mid 60’s.  The liner notes express his love for the band – “The Easybeats are my favourite group and all their songs are music to my ears.  The time is now and 1965 will be remembered as the days of that E.A.S.Y. beat”.  The album was called “Steady On”, after one of the demo recordings found LP.

The L.P. White label with number stamped.
The L.P. White label with number stamped.

After completion, he mailed copies of the record to his record trading friends across the world.  Next was to present the LP to his friends at Albert Productions.  But it was to his dismay to learn that his project had not gone over as well as he had hoped.  Although Crotty’s intentions were good (if naïve), Albert Productions were understandably shocked at the thought of these recordings being leaked to the public (and more importantly – bootleggers). It was probably made worse by Crotty crediting the LP to Albert Productions, especially with the poor quality of the album’s audio.  When word of this got back to Crotty, he air-mailed his collector friends, begging them not to sell their copies or reveal they owned a copy.

In 1979 – Raven Records would secure the licence to officially release some of the songs on an E.P. titled Mean Old Lovin’.  This would include 4 of the songs from Crotty’s disc.  But to date – no other songs featured on the original L.P. have been officially released by Albert Productions or any other label with an approved  licence to the material.
The album became something of an enigma to Easybeats fans.  It was even described and pictured in an issue of Record Collector magazine.  Eventually, 12 years after it was pressed, seven of the tracks surfaced on a bootleg CD bearing the “Steady On” name [Tendolar TDR-061] along with other Vanda & Young related rarities.  Some of the songs from the original LP were retitled.

Crotty reputation as one of Australia most renowned collectors of Garage Rock, Psychedelic and Australian artists from the 1960’s continued to grow throughout the 80’s, 90’s and 2000’s.  He would go on to organize two fondly remembered “60’s Reunion Parties” early in the new millennium. These reunited many fans and artists from the past, but he had to retire from this as his health began to fail.  In George Crotty passed away from a fatal heart attack in 2010.

Since Crotty’s passing in 2010, the LP has appeared in various online auctions sites.  Demanding prices into the thousands, but often being mistaken as an “official” lost album or a test pressing.

Original 1978 track listing

Side A
  1. Steady On ^
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  2. I Believe In You ^
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  3. Mama ^
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  4. I’m In Love With You ^
    A studio outtake, location and date unknown.
  5. No One Knows *
    A studio outtake, location and date unknown.
  6. I Know Something ^ #
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  7. Keep Your Hands Off My Baby * #
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
Side B
  1. I Know It ^ #
    A recording from the scrapped 2nd album sessions, Olympic Studios, London.  That only song not recorded in Australia.  This was added because it was found on the B-side of an acetate of “The Bell”.
  2. The Bell ^
    A studio outtake.  Said to be the band’s first proper studio recording.
  3. How You Doin’ Now ^ #
    A studio outtake, location and date unknown.
  4. Every Night ^
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  5. I Don’t Agree *
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  6. I Can Still See The Sun ^
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  7. Hey! Babe *
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
  8. Woe Is Me ^
    A recording from Ted Albert’s studio in the 2UW Theatre, Sydney.
* Officially released on Mean Old Lovin’ E.P.
^ Still officially unreleased
# Only found on the original vinyl L.P.
The 1990 CD version.
The 1990 CD version.

1990 CD edition track listing

  1. Steady On
  2. I Believe In You
  3. Mama
  4. I Need Your Lovin’ (“I’m In Love With You” retitled)
  5. The Bells
  6. Nothing Happens (“Every Night” retitled).
  7. I Can Still See The Sun
  8. Shot In The Head (Haffy’s Whiskey Sour single)
  9. Bye, Bye Bluebird (Haffy’s Whiskey Sour single)
  10. Natural Man (Marcus Hook Roll Band)
  11. Come On Round (Paintbox)
  12. Take It From Here (Paintbox)
  13. Easy As Can Be (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  14. Wedding Ring (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  15. Women (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  16. In My Book (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  17. I’ll Make You Happy (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  18. Come And See Her (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  19. She’s So Fine (live performance from Brian Henderson’s Bandstand)
  20. I’ll Make You Happy (Stereo version) +
  21. I’m Gonna Tell Everybody (Stereo version) +
  22. Girl On My Mind (Stereo version) +
  23. It’s So Easy (Stereo version) +
  24. You Are The Light (Stereo version) +
  25. Someway, Somehow (Stereo version) +
  26. What About Our Love (Stereo version) +
  27. Say You Want Me (Stereo version) +
  28. My, My, My (Stereo version) +
  29. Yesterday’s Her0 (John Paul Young single – fades out early)
+ Fake stereo mixes.

Releases

Australia
1978  – Alberts UAS-6465 (note:  This is an unauthorised compilation and was not an official pressing by Albert Productions).
Unknown
1990 – Tendolar TDR-061
R-6018007-1408938820-2449
The back cover of the LP edition.
Special thanks to William S Small for information about this album.
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