The original Animals were part of the British rhythm 'n' blues movement in the early years of that momentous decade - a movement whose love of a musical genre almost forgotten in its native America succeeded in "Bringing It All Back Home". Blessed in Eric Burdon with the most authentic white blues vocalist of their generation and a collective and astonishing capacity to reinvigorate old forms - most notably in transatlantic chart topper 'The House of the Rising Sun' - The Animals overcame bitter internecine rivalry to produce a string of truly classic singles that put them briefly on a par with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. They also gained a reputation for remarkable live shows that showcased Burdon's almost frightening commitment to their material.
By 1967, though, both music and society were changing. A trip to love-infused, LSD-drenched San Francisco convinced Burdon that R&B was redundant. His new line-up of The Animals espoused the philosophy of Flower Power and made the shift to writing their own material. Their hits 'San Franciscan Nights' and 'Sky Pilot', as well as being brilliant records, fascinatingly freeze for posterity the concerns and issues of a particular time and place. However, the 'new' Animals' affi nity for peace-and-love was not reflected by relations within the band. After personnel upheavals and a terrifying tour of Japan in 1968, the group collapsed.
Animal Tracks tells the story of both versions of The Animals. Additionally, it reveals the astonishing behind-the-scenes rancour that marked the ill-fated reunions of the original band. In this UPDATED AND EXPANDED version of his definitive Animals biography, Sean Egan draws on hours of interviews with surviving Animals, both original (Eric Burdon, John Steel, Hilton Valentine, Dave Rowberry, Barry Jenkins) and 'new' (Vic Briggs, John Weider, Zoot Money, Andy Summers) to produce a compelling portrait of a truly remarkable band. Egan has also been granted unprecedented access to band member journals and archives, enabling him to reveal the story behind the recording of each and every Animal Track.