Poli Palmer was a key player in the unique sound of British rockers Family while he was with them for five albums. John Michael Palmer (nicknamed Poli) was a drummer who picked up vibraphone along the way. He got his start playing in the proto-Traffic groups the Hellions and Deep Feeling, which were Midland's bands led by Dave Mason and Jim Capaldi. He then joined psych-legends Blossom Toes for one year and three singles, and played in Eclection for a short time before being asked to replace his old friend Jim King in Family, even though King was a saxophonist and Palmer played everything but saxophone. His 1970-1972 stint in Family led to their distinctive sound with his wah-wah piano and fuzz- and synth-driven vibes. After leaving Family he quietly went into production and session contributions, and an attempt to form a band with Ric Grech and Mitch Mitchell never panned out. In 1974, Palmer scored a rock-based opera called Hero for the Sydney Opera House. Through the 1980s he toured with Family-singer Roger Chapman for his solo projects. While Palmer was in Germany, he was approached by the head of Erdenklang, a "computer-acoustic music" label, to record a solo album. Human Error was released in 1985, and Palmer declined the offer of a second album. He continues to play pubs in the London-based band Chuck Farley, featuring Steve Simpson, Pat Crumley, Peter Stroud, and Sam Kelly.
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