Appletree Theatre was a studio group of American musicians who released the album Playback in 1967. The project was set up by brothers Terry and John Boylan, with leading jazz session musicians including Larry Coryell and Eric Gale. The album was essentially a loosely woven concept album, comprising a collage of interlaced vocal narratives, sound effects, song fragments, and quality pop songs such as "Hightower Square" and "I Wonder If Louise Is Home".
The album was issued on the Verve Forecast label and was finally reissued on CD in 2007. John Lennon referred to it as one of his favourite albums. In the wake of the set's commercial failure, Terry went solo, releasing three albums as a singer/songwriter, while John reappeared as a member of the short-lived Hamilton Streetcar before turning his attention to production with the Eagles, Linda Ronstadt, and others.
Links To Peel
Peel praised the album in International Times, calling it "one of the best and most adventurous LPs I've heard", played tracks from it on his shows in 1968 and 1969, and returned to it periodically in later decades. In the Guardian newspaper of 28th June 1994, Peel mentioned meeting a lady at Glastonbury, who wanted to talk about the LP and thought he was the only person alive who remembered it. On his September 1999 (FSK) show, Peel described never having read any articles in magazines or newspapers about the album when it was first released (it was largely ignored by critics, perhaps because the Appletree Theatre didn't exist outside the recording studio) and on his 21 May 2002 programme he described the LP as a forgotten classic.
- 02 December 1987: Act II (I Wonder If Louise Is Home / Chez Louise / E-Train (The Jello Song) / Meanwhile / Brother Speed (album - Playback) Verve Forecast
- 01 July 1994: ‘Lullaby (album - Playback) Verve Forecast
- 01 July 1994: ‘Saturday Morning (album - Playback) Verve Forecast
- 01 July 1994: ‘Nevertheless It Was Italy (album - Playback) Verve Forecast
- September 1999 (FSK): I Wonder If Louise Is Home (album - Playback) Verve Forecast
- September 1999 (FSK): E-Train (The Jello Song) (album - Playback) Verve Forecast
- September 1999 (FSK): Brother Speed (album - Playback) Verve Forecast