The late Gerry Rafferty’s brother, Jim – who co- wrote lyrics and sang harmony on the song, Trouble With Love – recently found the track on an old hard drive.
Now the song will be broadcast for the first time on Glasgow’s Celtic Music Radio, presenter Mike Dillon’s Singers and Songwriters show this Friday between 10pm and midnight.
The chance to have a world exclusive on his show came after Mike recently played a new track, called Breath of Fresh Air, by the songwriter, artist and designer Jim Rafferty. And following that, Jim sent Mike the previously unheard song, recorded in 1989.
A respected musician and songwriter, Jim released two albums – the first, Don’t Talk Back, in 1978 and the following year, Solid Logic – along with several singles during the time his younger brother was having hits with Stuck In The Middle and Baker Street.
Jim tells how the Trouble With Love track came about as Gerry and Joe got together in the studio for the first time in several years following the Stealers Wheel split.
“I was living in Tunbridge Wells, which wasn’t very far from where Gerry lived, at Tye Farm, in Hartfield and where he had just built a recording studio,” says Jim.
“I got a phone call out the blue from him asking if I would come over, as Joe Egan was also there with a new and unfinished song.
“It had been a while since Gerry and Joe had worked in the studio together after Stealers Wheel had ended and I suspect Gerry was curious to see how they might get on writing and recording together again.
“I think I was there in part to oil the wheels of the session after such a break and I was asked if I wanted to listen to a track they were working on, which needed some further input on the lyric side.
“By the time I got to Gerry’s the backing track was in place and as best as I can recall Joe had already put down part of the vocal.
“I gathered that the original idea for the song had come from Joe and I’d been recruited to help finish the lyrics.
“Gerry and Joe had already put a few ideas down when I got there, but the bulk of the lyric was still unwritten.
“I made notes of what had already been written by Gerry and Joe, got the sense of where the song seemed to be going and finished the thing off, which seemed to meet with general approval.”Jim continues: “It was an interesting session, everybody was very relaxed and working well. Joe then recorded the main vocal in full and sounded in great voice. Then Gerry added a distinctive second harmony, followed by a third from me in the closing choruses.”
“It was a great to be in the studio with the pair of them - and with the late Hugh Murphy, Gerry’s long time producer. And for that evening I got to be part of Stealers Wheel.”
“In the times that followed the session nothing much seemed to have been done with the track. But having recently rediscovered it, I gave the song another listen, thought it still sounded great and asked Mike at Celtic Music Radio if he was interested in hearing it, despite the fact that it was essentially a superior demo of the song.”
Mike Dillon said: “If the track Trouble With Love had been given the full Stealers Wheel production treatment and released as a single, I’ve no doubt it would have been a hit.
“It’s a real honour for me to be able to play this unheard track on my show. It’s just like having Stealers Wheel, aided and abetted by Gerry’s brother, Jim back again.”