by Tom Brennan
created 03/14/04
last updated: 07/10/06
special thanks to: Michael Lanning, Jack Reed, and Michael Reed (Reedo)
Jiva with George Harrison (Deliberate Alchemy Archives)

(pronounced "Gee-Vah")
Jiva comes from the Sanskrit root "jiv" which means "to breathe."
Jiva is "that which breathes" and is commonly used to signify the soul.

Jiva was the first American act signed to Dark Horse Records. According to Geoffrey Giuliano's George Harrison biography, Harrison signed Jiva because they were followers of the young Indian Guru Maharaji, to whom he had been introduced by his future 2nd wife Olivia.

Jiva played soulful white funk rock music. They only released one LP and one single on Dark Horse Records which both failed to chart.

Jack Reed (manager): I managed the core of the Jiva crew (Lanning, Hilton & Reed) from the time they were a high school group called Tolbekin. I moved them to Los Angeles as Tolbekin, but the bass player soon left to take a full scholarship at Stanford and after that the band began a series of metamorphoses and playing lots of Los Angeles clubs before becoming Jiva. At one point it was an eight piece band with keyboards, two trumpets and a sax player and was called Titan. Of the eight players, five were named Michael, so only Michael Lanning as the lead singer got to keep his own name... all the others had to adopt nicknames. I personally nurtured them through several 'salad years' before we met George (Harrison) and also served as a recording engineer and mixer on the road. Jiva failed to attain 'star' status. We did, however, have a fantastic journey through the world of Rock & Roll. We got to hang out with half of The Beatles, George & Ringo, both of whom were very open of spirit and generous with their time and hospitality. Of course, it didn't hurt that one of our close friends, Olivia, married George and that her sister, Linda, handled most of the Harrison affairs when George and Livvy (Olivia) were in England. On top of that, we got to tour with Fleetwood Mac and Donovan and we got to meet & party with all sorts of musical greats.

Michael Lanning (guitarist and vocalist): "George (Harrison) was deeply involved in not only signing us, but the making of our record as well. He served as executive producer and was there quite a lot of the recording time. He even helped in the demo sessions, picking out what tunes would be on the record and even playing piano on one of the demo tracks."

Jiva split from Dark Horse Records in Late 1976. They returned in 1978 with an album on Polydor Records titled "Still Life" which was of about the same musical quality as their Dark Horse LP.

Jack Reed (manager): "We had lots of feedback that our whole future may have turned as much on the fact that Dark Horse was never really run as a serious label in that they never did any of the kinds of promotion (for any of their artists) that would get radio stations to stick with our releases. We got some great airplay in some key regions, but when the programming managers don't see good follow-up from the label, they tend to drop the songs. When we were touring with Fleetwood Mac, we got
fantastic audience response. On more than one occassion, I can recall John McVie telling us that he thought we had a better rapport with the audience on a given night than the Mac did. (McVie was always an incredibly gracious person and never treated us as "just the opening act" - nor did any of the rest of the Mac - we remained friends with them for years after our tour). George (Harrison) admitted that some poor choices were made in the management team of Dark Horse Records, which was proven out by the fact that he let the whole thing drop as soon as he left A&M Records."


Jiva is:
Michael Scott Lanning: guitar, vocals
James Gartland Strauss: bass, vocals
Thomas Walter Hilton: guitar, vocals
Michael Randolph Reed (Reedo): drums, percussion

Highlights on the Dark Horse album are: "The Closer I Get", which features some excellent guitar playing, "Love Is A Treasure" and "Take My Love".

Catalog #: Dark Horse SP 22003, released October 6, 1975 (U.S.)
Catalog #: Dark Horse AMLH 22003, released October 31, 1975 (U.K.)
Catalog #: Dark Horse L 35 714, released 1975 (Australia)
Jiva, Dark Horse SP 22003

U.S. promo LP: [
side 1 label | side 2 label]

1. Something's Goin' On Inside L.A. [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (4:07) mp3-128k-3.8MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

2. The Closer I Get [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:30) mp3-128k-3.2MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

3. Love Is A Treasure [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (4:06) mp3-128k-3.8MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

4. Take My Love (version 1) [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (2:45) mp3-128k-2.6MB
Note: timing on album (4:06) is incorrect, was copied from previous song by mistake
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

5. Hey Brother [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:00) mp3-128k-2.8MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

1. World Of Love [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:27) mp3-128k-3.2MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

2. What You're Waiting For [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:39) mp3-128k-3.4MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

3. It's Time You Know [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:23) mp3-128k-3.1MB
lead vocal: Tommy Hilton
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

4. Don't Be Sad [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:16) mp3-128k-3.0MB
lead vocal: Michael Lanning
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)

5. All Is Well [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:39) mp3-128k-3.3MB
lead vocal: Jim Strauss
keyboards: Gary Wright (courtesy of Warner Brothers Records)
string arrangement: Dick Parke

Copyright ©1975 See Zet Music and Sinsonte Music (BMI)
All administrative rights controlled by Screen Gems--Columbia Music Inc. (BMI)

An Outside Production
Produced by Stewart Levine

Recorded at the Record Plant, Los Angeles
Associate producer & engineer: Rik Pekkonen
Recordist: Bob Edwards

Direction: Alan Pariser
Special thanks to Lady Trisha
Thanks to Jack Reed

Cover design and photography: Tom Wilkes


Catalog #: Dark Horse DH 10006 (promo), released February 11, 1976 (U.S.)
Something's Goin' On Inside L.A. [mono edit] (3:08)
Something's Goin' On Inside L.A. [stereo edit] (3:08)

Catalog #: Dark Horse DH 10006, released February 11, 1976 (U.S.)
Catalog #: Dark Horse K-6297, released 1976 (Australia)
Something's Goin' On Inside L.A.
Take My Love

The A-side here, although it contained Beatles references and mentions Ringo Starr's "Only You", lacks any melody or hook and predictably flopped.
The B-side should have been the hit here; it's the most commercial sounding and catchy track on the LP, enough so that it was re-recorded on Jiva's next LP.


Jiva is:
Michael Scott Lanning: lead vocals, guitar, bass, percussion
Patric Pearsall: lead guitar, vocals, percussion
Thomas Walter Hilton: bass, vocals, guitar
Michael Randolph Reed (Reedo): drums, percussion, vocals
Steven Halter: keyboards, vocals

With a label change from Dark Horse to Polydor, the group also had a line-up change. Jim Strauss (the bass player) left, and Patric Pearsall joined, playing lead guitar, with Tommy Hilton switching from lead guitar to bass guitar.

This time also, they got a permanent keyboard player, Steven Halter, who also doubled as their string arranger. On this 2nd album, Jiva remade the song "Take My Love" which was their most commercial sounding song on either of their first 2 albums. Highlights on this album are: "Face The Light", "Take My Love" and "That Scene Again".

Still Life
Catalog #: Polydor PD-1-6165, released 1978 (U.S.)
Still Life, Polydor PD-1-6165
1. Face The Light [Lanning/Hilton] (4:59)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

2. Take My Love (version 2) [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (3:42)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

3. Let It Go [Hilton/Lanning/Halter/Pearsall/Reed] (4:14)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

4. Hangin' On To That Sand [Hilton] (4:37)
lead vocal: Tommy Hilton
cello: Ron Clearfield

1. Just For You [Lanning/Hilton/Strauss] (4:58)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

2. That Scene Again [Lanning] (3:41)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

3. Remember [Lanning/Hilton] (3:41)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

4. You Belong To Me [Lanning/Hilton] (3:29)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

5. Love Is The Feeling [Halter] (4:00)
lead vocal: Michael Lanning

song arrangements by Jiva
additional background vocals: Jude Jacobs, Allan Thomas, Carole Thomas
strings arranged and conducted by Steven Halter with additional assistance by Rick Wilson

All songs Copyright ©1978 JIVAMUSIC and Homefire Music (BMI),
except "Take My Love", See Zet Music, Sinsonte Music & Homefire Music (BMI)
and "Just For You", Mzungu Music (ASCAP)

produced by Stephen Barncard & Stuart Alan Love for C.C.I.
executive producer: David Chackler

recorded at Silvery Moon Studios, Los Angeles

recording and mix engineer: Rick Bralver
additional engineer: Rick Wilson
assistant engineer: Mark Hanan

Management: Russell Palmer
Palmer/Gerber Associates
Road manager: Jack Reed

Special thanks: Keith Barr, David Buchanan, Terry Doran, Garry Fish, Donna Halter, Adrian Lanning, Nikki, Ning, Joe Reed, Richard Schulenberg, Jack Viera and the Premie chorus.

Album design and photography: Herbert W. Worthington, III
Logo Design: Jack Upston
Composition Art: Micol Communication Arts
Master Print: Wolf Color Lab

inner sleeve photos: [
top half | bottom half]

Jiva, 1978 line-up


Please e-mail any corrections or contributions

Tom Brennan's Badfinger Library
Tom Brennan's Splinter Library

© Copyright 2004-2006 Tom Brennan's Dark Horse Library (TBDHL). All Rights Reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Tom Brennan's Dark Horse Library, is prohibited.
All trademarks used on TBDHL are the property of their respective owners.