SpaceArk


SpaceArk

SpaceArk

Rock, Soul, R&B
From: Encino, CA, United States

Band Members

  • Peter Silberg - Founder, Lead Guitar
  • Troy Raglin - Founder, Vocals
  • Bryan "Skip" Reed - Percussion
  • Reggie Austin - Bass
  • Russell Greene - Keyboards
  • Jared Stewart - Keyboards (#2)
  • Allen "Kenny" Chavis - Bass (#3)
  • Mahlon Hawk - Bass (#2)

About Band

Hello, thank you for visiting SpaceArk's Unsigned.com website.   Please also visit SpaceArk's Facebook website at:  https://www.facebook.com/SpaceArk.lasoul.

Contact email:  spaceark@mail.com

SpaceArk video-photo slideshow now available including unreleased audio demos.
Facebook URL
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10201081497943977&l=7620446419698531718
Youtube URL
http://youtu.be/GeNxGV9iCeU

Individual photos are available for viewing at the end of this page.

SpaceArk's albums in CD format were released in Japan on Creole Stream Records in 2011, and upcoming in 2018 will be re-released on original vinyl (and CD) by Mr. Bongo Records in the UK for distribution world-wide.

MP3s and CDs on demand are available on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, and other websites:

iTunes
SpaceArk I
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/spaceark-i/id428998362
SpaceArk IS
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/spaceark-is/id431720913

Amazon US
SpaceArk I
SpaceArk IS
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-music&field-keywords=spaceark&x=0&y=0

Amazon UK
SpaceArk I
SpaceArk IS
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B004U3QRCS/ref=dm_dp_adp

Enough promo, now please read on and learn about the group...
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SpaceArk was an independent, seminal 1970s Los Angeles-based Soul/Rock group that began in 1973 and disbanded in 1979. The band's current status is inactive.  The website is historical and exists so old and new fans can discover SpaceArk's music, and learn about the group's members. 

This website is maintained by Peter Silberg, original founding member and lead guitarist.   
Your comments and messages are welcome on this site or on Facebook, and you can email me at spaceark@mail.com.  I love to hear from fans, especially if you were an original fan back in the day.

Please enjoy and "Welcome to My Door"....

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Once upon a dream....  a brief history of SpaceArk 
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Peter Alan Silberg Bio (Pre-SpaceArk):  
Offered recording/development deal with RCA Victor Records, England, at age 4 but emigrated to USA.
Took up guitar after seeing Dick Dale "King of the Surf Guitar" perform live at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium (1961)."
Lead guitarist for SoCal Surf Band "The Intoxicators" (1963-66).
Lead guitarist for Epic Recording Artists, "The Bad Boys" (1966) .
Lead guitarist for "The Black Watch" (1967-71), a local So.Cal. band, which formed from old members of The Intoxicators and rival surf rock bands.  The music style morphed from surf and R&B classics to British Invasion and folk-rock, as time went forward.  Keyboard player, Mark Weitz, went on to fame with the "Strawberry Alarm Clock."  The Black Watch shared both concert and club venues with The Challengers, Bobby Fuller 4, Sam the Sham & The Pharoahs, The Coasters, The Standells, The Strawberry Alarm Clock, Ben E. King, and other 60's rock & soul groups. 

In 1973, after many years working in SoCal, I decided to emigrate to England.  Two weeks before I was scheduled to leave, I was contacted by songwriter/singer Troy Raglin.  We met each other through a musician's contact service, hit it off, and subsequently spent that first summer composing original songs, recording rough demos on a 2-track reel-to-reel recorder, and attempted to market ourselves to major record companies as a song-writing duo.  After no success in that direction, we decided to form SpaceArk to further develop our musical ideas, and play LIVE.   We auditioned numerous players, and finally settled on the members who helped us record our first album.  SpaceArk's musical compositions were created with all the band members' input, and after numerous live gigs (some initial duds and many more successes) the players cemented as a performing and recording unit.

During the mid-1970s, SpaceArk released 2 independently produced and marketed albums and a handful of single 45s through our self-financed private Colorworld label.  SpaceArk's records were produced at Sunset Sound and the original Ocean Way Studios in Santa Monica.  Financing was obtained through individual investors and funded through the earnings from live performances, a novel approach 30 years ago.  None of the group members made any money on this venture, least of all me...

SpaceArk's records were stocked at Tower Records (the biggest record store in Southern California at the time) and other small distribution chains and stores.  SpaceArk's first album was also released in South America on Pirate Records.   SpaceArk's first album and singles were played on AM and FM radio in Los Angeles, at KRLA and KMET, and helped the band get bookings and a following, both in local clubs and other venues.  

SpaceArk performed at regional Southern California scenes and clubs, and worked extensively on a tour circuit of Armed Forces service bases (Army, Marines, Air Force and Navy) in Southern California.  During the 1970s opportunities and venues to play original music did not exist (unless you were a successful recording group and on the radio).  So bands played the "hits of the day," to get gigs.  Our sets would consist of popular hits and our own compositions so we could perform our music and see audience reaction to our original songs and ideas.  That exposure helped shape the songs we performed and the direction we took musically as time progressed.  As a promotion, we gave away many 45rpm singles, 8-tracks, and full-length albums at live performances.  Because we extensively toured military bases club circuits, our records eventually made their way all around the world.  

SpaceArk's vinyl records are now highly sought-after collectibles in England, Europe, and the Far East, and are classified as "Northern Soul."   No CDs exist of the group's recordings, only original release vinyl records, and copies sell for hundreds of dollars on Ebay and on esoteric record/vinyl websites around the globe.

SpaceArk was ahead of the times (which we recognized back then), both in musical ideas, and in being self-produced, recorded, promoted, and owning the rights to their songs, which was rare in the 1970s.  Unfortunately, SpaceArk was not successful in bringing their music to a wider audience, as they were not promoted by a major record label.  Record companies did not know how to market SpaceArk.  The group's music could not be classified as soul, rock, disco, or pop, as it contained many styles, as is represented in the individual songs.  A/R men generally agreed the group was unique and talented, but as SpaceArk's music didn't fall into one of those neat marketing categories (we weren't rock, we weren't disco, we weren't pop...), the end result was major record companies passed on the group.

Circumstances led SpaceArk to adopt a novel approach and create their own record and promotion company (largely the idea of singer Troy Raglin who had more experience in the music business than the other group members, being almost 10 years older).  For the next 5 years, we worked diligently, rehearsed, recorded, and played hundreds of gigs, and performed over 100 original songs.  SpaceArk produced 2 full length albums and a handful of 45 rpm singles, including recording solo guest artists that were signed to Colorworld, SpaceArk's record label.

But the times were not favorable, and after many years of effort, with personnel changes along the way, in late 1979 I left the group and SpaceArk ceased to exist.  Some factors which led to the group disbanding were lead singer Troy Raglin's dictatorial management style, the simultaneous efforts to market different artists at the same time as SpaceArk, and an exhausting and lengthy period of not performing live.  SpaceArk's dream was over in 1980...  All that survived were vinyl records, photographs, and many memories...  

2009 update (30 years after the group disbanded) 3 of the original members of the group found each other and had a reunion, resuming their friendship ---  Peter Silberg, Reggie Austin, and Bryan "Skip" Reed.  How we found each other, and how I obtained a treasure trove of original SpaceArk pictures, tapes and artifacts of the group may be the subject of a later writing on this website.

Regarding the other group members, I learned that somewhere around 2009 Russell Greene, the original keyboardist, passed on.  A few years ago, I was contacted by Allen "Kenny" Chavis, our 3rd bass player who is well and living in Pasadena.  Our 2nd bass player, Mahlon Hawk lives in Phoenix.  Unknown are the whereabouts of friends, Jerry our roadie/record promo man, and the second female singer (name forgotten)  who accompanied SpaceArk at various times during the late 1970s, recording and performing with the group.  For a brief time, I was in sporadic email contact with Jared Stewart, our second keyboardist.

Late in 2008, I learned lead singer Troy Raglin passed away 3-4 years prior.  Reflecting all these years later, "Rip" was the nickname Troy gave me for playing fast and aggressive guitar.  Troy's self-moniker was "Rags" for the the patchwork jeans he had a habit of wearing.  RIP Rags...  

In June, 2009, I was contacted by the daughter of Dolores Hardy.  I was able to provide her with recordings of her mother and photos.  I unfortunately learned Dolores was tragically killed in the mid-1980s.  Dolores Hardy had the most pure voice I'd ever heard, and could effortlessly sing any style or dynamic.

I learned that Michael McAllister, our group photographer and second roadie, passed away an unknown number of years ago.  On behalf of the surviving group members, I thank Michael for his hard work, dedication and belief in the group.

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SpaceArk's Musicians:
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SpaceArk's founding members were Peter Silberg (lead guitar) and Troy "Troiel" Raglin (lead vocals).  Original band members were Reggie Austin (bass), Bryan "Skip" Reed (drums), and Russell Greene (keyboards).  Subsequent band members were Mahlon Hawk (bass2), Allen "Kenny" Chavis (bass3), and Jared Stewart (keyboards2).    SpaceArk also periodically performed with 2 female singers, Dolores Hardy (who recorded "Don't Stop" a Silberg/Raglin composition), and another wonderful singer whose name I have unfortunately forgotten.

The members of SpaceArk came from different musical backgrounds and brought unique playing styles and ideas to the group.  I contributed the Rock and Surf music flourishes, and the others brought Pop, R&B/ Soul, and classical/jazz flavorings to the mix.  As musicians, we collectively strove to create unique, danceable, and melodic compositions with meaningful lyrics.  To this day I haven't heard any group "duplicate" our sound and our ability to pursue such varied musical directions.

The band members' musicianship and dedication was of the highest level and each person was passionate about music, and brought skill and vision to the group.  We enjoyed playing and hanging out together and had a lot of fun, besides the hard times that all musicians are familiar with...

SpaceArk was a high-energy live act, and eventually achieved a terrific audience response.  We were full-time dedicated musicians, believed in the group and our "mission" and did everything we could to be successful.  Who knows how different circumstances would have been if SpaceArk had existed during modern times?

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Spaceark's Music:
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There were over 100 songs that SpaceArk wrote and performed, most of which were not recorded and are now lost and forgotten, with the exception of the recorded LPs, and a few singles. I do have some primitive demos of songwriting sessions from the beginning of the Raglin/Silberg duo, which I may post online.  There are also re-recordings of SpaceArk songs that were created after I left the group, which I may also post online at some point in the future.

Over the years, I've attempted to obtain cassettes or other sound recordings of the group playing live and rehearsing, but until recently was not successful.  Quite by luck, I was contacted and offered numerous boxes of photos, tapes and documentation, which were rescued from being tossed into the trash by a "caring" musician, who thought they might be of interest.  Indeed they were and I'm very fortunate to have received this treasure trove, some of which is suitable for uploading, and other materials which are only of historical interest.  I do have a direct memory of SpaceArk being taped by KCET public television for a membership drive where we performed two lip-synched songs.  

Lastly, memory can only recall a handful of unrecorded song ideas, but some of the old cassette tapes I did receive contained portions of songs we wrote that were not professionally recorded.  However, SpaceArk's professionally recorded material survives along with a selection of wonderful photographs posted to the website.

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SpaceArk I - Recording Notes:
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MP3s for the SpaceArk1 album posted here were duplicated from the original (unreleased) 2-track stereo R/R master tape copy from the first mixdown session, with the exception of "Everybody's Trying" which is from the vinyl release.

After the recording and first mix session, Troy Raglin remastered and VSO'd (speeded up) the tracks, which were then pressed to vinyl. These song versions come from the original mixes which I believe were more representative of the original intent/sound/feel of the songs as performed live.  As the MP3 mixes were taken from a mastering test tape the tracks do not have normal scratchy sounds associated with an old record.

Song credits - all lyrics Troy Raglin except where noted, musical composition as noted):
Everybody's Trying - Raglin
Understand - Silberg/Raglin
Fever Pitch - Silberg/Raglin/Greene
I'm Only Me - Reed/Greene/Silberg/Raglin
Jr. Blaster - Austin/Raglin
Welcome To My Door - Silberg/Raglin
Our Love Will Last - Raglin/Greene
I'm Walking - Silberg/Raglin
Do What You Can Do - Reed/Greene
This World - Austin/Raglin  

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The "Lost" SpaceArk II Album  
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After Spaceark's first album, a new group of songs were composed, rehearsed, and tested before live audiences.  We subsequently began recording a "second" LP but it was not to be completed.  Troy Raglin decided it wasn't the direction he thought the group should go in and the recordings were abandoned after the original instrumental rhythm tracks were recorded.  This decision was made unilaterally by Troy and distressed the group's members, being one of the main factors in the original keyboardist, Russell Greene, leaving the group.  

The original song selections for the second album concept were group-composed and rehearsed, and performed at live concerts.  The songs were uniformly inspiring, well-written, and I can recall some of the songs brought tears to my eyes when we finished rehearsals because they were so heartfelt.  Ah, but onto creating more pop commercialism...

Troy Raglin subsequently and unilaterally worked on and composed a new group of songs (mostly without the band's input) and re-recorded a "new" second album entitled "SpaceArk Is."   As far as the original second album's tracks, no recorded record exists except for two songs Beautiful Machine & Don't Stop (recorded by Dolores Hardy and released as a 45 single).  

Original Lost Album track (Beautiful Machine - demo):
This track is the first surviving example of a song from the lost original "second" album.   Music composed by Peter Silberg; and Troy Raglin dubbed a guide vocal.  Troy was so enthusiastic about this song that he pressed a studio acetate. This track was unreleased, and until now was unheard by anyone, except fans who attended our live stage shows.

Original Lost Album track (Don't Stop - featuring Dollyway/Dolores Hardy, one of the singers who sometimes appeared with SpaceArk).  Music was composed by Peter Silberg, lyrics by Troy Raglin.  Musicians were SpaceArk augmented by a horn section.  Don't Stop was a featured song at SpaceArk live performances and was a song from the original second album concept.

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SpaceArk Is -- Recording Notes:  
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Tracks copied directly from the vinyl release.  Troy Raglin composed most of the songs contained on the SpaceArk Is Album and directed the recording efforts unilaterally.  I contributed guitar overdubs, and was the composer of "Sexy Lady."  SpaceArk's band members contributed the rhythm music tracks (Skip Reed, Drums; Kenny Chavis, Bass;and Jared Stewart, Keyboards).  Skip Reed sang lead on "Take Her Out Dancing."

Song credits - all lyrics Troy Raglin, except where noted, musical composition as noted:
Sweet Hitchiker - Raglin
Take Her Out Dancing - Raglin/McAllister
Sexy Lady - Silberg/Raglin
Ja More Mon A More (I Love My Love) - Raglin/Silberg
Phantom Lover - Raglin/McAllister
Each Song - Raglin  

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IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICE -- MP3s ARE NOT TO BE REPACKAGED AND SOLD FOR PROFIT, AND ARE PROVIDED SOLELY FOR MUSICAL ENJOYMENT.  ALL LEGAL RIGHTS RETAINED AND RESERVED UNDER U.S. COPYRIGHT LAWS.  
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A special thank you to Randy & Lisa for providing the SpaceArk photos and other artifacts to me, and saving them from oblivion...

For all inquiries, email to spaceark@mail.com

Peace to all,

Peter Silberg, founder and lead guitarist of SpaceArk

Photo Album

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