After their first album their repertoire and reputation grew by leaps and bounds. Chris’ original flair for vocal arranging and orchestration and the God-given voices of all of them gave the world a sound that should always be remembered.
Chris Dedrick did most of the writing and all the arranging. Once Chris had established a pattern for their songs, Sandy and Bruce joined in with songwriting of their own. Their source was, of course, the beat and feel of rock´n´roll. “I like it,” said Chris at the time, “because it’s got a young thing to it. It’s a different thing today, a thing that’s being done by young people who are saying what they want to say.” But I want to take a more studied musical approach to rock´n´roll than just shouting. There are other ways of building excitement than to have the drummer get louder and louder. I’ve tried to incorporate more real expression in our songs from a musical standpoint.
Chris wrote the lyrics of his songs first. “It’s important for the whole song to have an idea, like a novel or a poem, although it doesn’t have to be very profound. To start with, you need a catchy phrase. But after that phrase, a lot of songs don’t go very far. I spend a lot of time on the lyrics trying to make them say something and, at the same time, to make sure that they’re not so deep that nobody understands them.”
The golden sound of the Free Design was shown in a non-stop run of potential hits like “Friendly Man”, “I Found Love”, “You Could Be Born Again”, “One By One”, and a collection of gems such as “Love You” and “Daniel Dolphin” dedicated to “very important people” (ie: children).