I bought a boatful of Curved Air tracks over the weekend — Repertoire’s 2010 compilation Retrospective, for which “boatful” = 28 — and it occurred to me that maybe I ought to say something about Sonja Kristina, the one constant member of the ever-reshuffling band.
Sonja Kristina Linwood, born in 1949, started out singing folk and doing stage work, the combination of which found her doing Hair in London. (She sang the role of Chrissy, the girl who met a boy called Frank Mills.) When Hair finally closed, she and the four stage musicians formed Curved Air, which carved out a small reputation as a progressive band. This vintage photo seems appropriate:
Weirdly, my favorite Curved Air track turned out to be one from the band’s fourth album, in which all of the original members save Kristina had gone their separate ways. This 2012 live version of “Metamorphosis” features Kristina reunited with original drummer Florian Pilkington-Miksa, who didn’t play on the 1973 studio track, and with keyboardist Robert Norton, who ably reconstructs Eddie Jobson’s original piano bits.
“Back Street Luv” is the title of Curved Air’s only hit single, which reached #4 on the UK charts and nowhere anywhere else.