Incongruously among the Mohican haircuts, some Stretford punks had their leather biker jackets adorned with early cartoons of Danger Mouse and his sidekick Penfold. He just clicked with people. We were just doing it. We had attitude. And the only time I played with The Patrol. Brown, Squire and to an extent Garner were hooked on the raw excitement these bands generated. They were direct, avowedly working class and aggressively anti-establishment.
Brown saw the Upstarts, celebrated for their left-wing stance, play live between fifteen and twenty times, and even acted as roadie for them. Brown also followed the fashion of Oi! This was important as Oi! I wanted to know they could hold their hands up in a row. Although Ian was a little bit skinny, he was a game fucker. Wolstencroft and Couzens back that evaluation. Outside the Rotters club in the city centre, a bunch of blokes started having a go.
He challenged them to hit him and the bloke did. It was difficult to explain and easy to misinterpret. It was written as a tribute to the bravery of the English working classes, whom Mensi reckoned had too often been sent to war on the basis of greed. I used to lecture everybody. This new-found fondness for Oi! The songs were just too quick, with no sort of subtlety to them. The Patrol blew their one shot of making something of themselves when they missed the chance of playing in front of a potentially influential crowd at the Osbourne Club in Miles Platting, inner-city Manchester.
Garner had planned to attend and was on the phone to the venue asking what was on instead. Told they were struggling to find a replacement, he suggested The Patrol. Wolstencroft joined a new band called Freak Party, exploring an interest in British jazz funk with bass player Andy Rourke and guitarist Johnny Marr, who had often mixed with The Patrol gang at a pub called the Vine in Sale.
Freak Party would become The Smiths, and although Wolstencroft kept in. Marr, whom he knew from primary school, worked in an independent fashion shop called X Clothes nearby in the city centre. I had long dyed black hair.
It was Couzens who stayed closest to Brown and Squire, even after he was thrown out of college. The job washing dishes at a hotel lasted about three weeks, after which he worked in an office, on a building site and washed caravans, but was mostly on the dole. S quire stacked shelves at Tesco. His dad had tried to get him a job as a forklift truck driver at his GEC factory.
I always think of that as my lucky escape from the mundane. Although John and I got into scooters, it was to a lesser extent than Ian. We continued trying to make music. It was a boon year, one that saw the mod look of suits and parkas replaced by the skinhead look of green army combat trousers, MA1 jackets and Dr Martens, scooter clubs springing up all over the country and a fresh wave of national runs taking place. The first of these was Scarborough Easter weekend , when 10, scooterists gathered, followed in July by a run to Keswick in the Lake District that ended in a full-blown, Molotov-cocktail-scarred riot, and resulted in scooter runs being banned from the Lake District for twenty years.
Brown was there. Brown became a regular. He was charismatic, spinning stories and telling jokes that would hold the attention of huddles of scooterboys, and the girls loved him. He had an ability to make easy mates with anybody, even, on one memorable run, a group of Hells Angels. He was unafraid to put forward his opinion on any subject with a cheeky grin. Phoenix and Brown knew most of the faces on the scene.
Throughout and , Brown and his rum and rowdy clique would be regulars at the rallies in Brighton, the Isle of Wight, Morecambe, Great Yarmouth and Weston-super-Mare, as the scooterboys became the scourge of seaside towns.
You want to kick against things. Brown had five or six scooters, including two real head-turners. Couzens, Brown and Phoenix would take a break from the hassle associated with. John Squire was also noted for his customized scooter and had done the work himself. It was a Lambretta GP in iridescent dark blue, with the petrol tank, the internals and the forks plated in copper. That scooter would stand up today.
He had the image and the style. John was just there, one of the crowd. In fact around the country many of the new scooter clubs often had strong links to football hooligan firms. Alongside a taste for Motown, Northern Soul and mod-revival acts, they were into the psychobilly scene, a good-time apolitical mix of punk and rockabilly led by King Kurt and The Meteors.
Mani first encountered Brown under more. We were policing ourselves in those days. I remember seeing Mani sat down in this council house. He always had that striking simian thing. I liked him from day one because he looked like my favourite telly programme. Kaiser and Mani were both part-time members of an irregular Oldham-based band called The Hungry Sox, whose psychobilly and garage rock set was played mainly for laughs.
Both tracks on the Waterfront demo, which Squire again designed the inserts for, were carefully constructed pop and in part precursors of classic period Stone Roses.
John and I talked about The Beach Boys a lot. We were definitely more pop-orientated. We had an idea of what we were trying to do. I was impressed I knew somebody that could play to that quality.
Mani invited Couzens and Brown up to Oldham in an attempt to get something else going. They rehearsed for an afternoon with another member of the Hungry Sox gang, Clint Boon, at his studio the Mill, but nothing came of it. Squire and Brown appeared to be leaving behind their adolescent obsessions of music and scooters and adopting new, more adult responsibilities as their teenage years faded out.
Squire had landed a good job, and Brown was settling into a long-term relationship. The scooter rallies were becoming bigger and bigger, but growing increasingly ugly as racist skinheads, often without scooters, infiltrated the scene. The National Scooter Rallies Association folded in and the runs came to an end. He went down with his girlfriend, Mitch. At that time Hulme was the poorest, most neglected part of inner-city Manchester. These flats had been award-winning designs, but by the s inherent faults meant they were cold, damp and riddled with cockroaches and other vermin.
Many of the flats were squatted and the area had acquired a bohemian reputation because of the punks, artists and musicians living there. When Brown moved to Hulme, she followed, and shared her flat with Rob Hampson, a scooterboy and suedehead heavily into Northern Soul. Hampson would briefly become a member of The Stone Roses in As a couple they were still a bit mad, as anybody who lived in Hulme in that period would be, but to all intents and purposes they were settled down.
They were both working. S quire had landed a job as a model maker for the animation company Cosgrove Hall. I got the job, and I loved it. Squire was employed to work on a subsequent TV series based on the characters in the film. Ian was working at the dole office — behind the counter, where people come in asking for money. He pestered Brown about forming a new band. In all likelihood the invitation would have fallen on stony ground had Brown not just had a.
I said, Yeah, man. I went and the party was jumping, but I really wanted a joint instead of just drinking the booze. I got talking to a bunch over in the corner, which was Ian Brown and another couple of guys. I kept seeing these girls looking at Ian. They all liked him. So I said to him, Looks like you got a lot of action going on.
So I said, Hey, look, just to make this shit great, have you got any friends that could bring over some smoke? This friend came over about twenty minutes later. He had some good shit too.
So I was on the good foot, I felt like I had had more glide in my stride, I had some loot in my flute. I took him away from his friends, over to another corner, and was talking to him seriously. I said, Look, man, you ought to be a pop star, you ought to go into the pop business. I asked him, You sing? I asked him, Do you write songs? Goddamn, I said, Look, when you were in school did you write poetry or some kind of shit like that? He said, Yeah, I wrote a little bit of poetry.
He looked at me and said, Really, you think so? All you got to do is start writing your poems again and just move the shit to songs. Then the more you do it the more you improve. You got it in your hand, man, do this. Do it for yourself, Ian.
After recruiting Brown, Couzens contacted Squire to suggest starting a new group. Squire was still living at home and hanging out with Garner again after interesting him in helping to make an animated film independently at Cosgrove Hall. They spent their Sundays painstakingly putting footage together. And John asked, did I want to play bass? The line-up would be Squire and Couzens on guitar, Garner on bass and Brown on vocals.
With the addition of Si Wolstencroft, it was basically the old Patrol gang again. In that time they had tried out a number of singers. Marr was even said to have been keen on having Brown front the band at one stage. Finally they had settled on Morrissey, changed their name to The Smiths and made their first demo recordings. The next rehearsal John would have another riff.
Ian co-wrote the lyrics, but the creative input for the music was John. B rown, as Washington had forewarned, struggled at first. It was a challenge. I did three weeks with her. Every week names for the band were suggested and rejected until finally Squire came up with The Stone Roses.
Squire later picked up a copy of the book in a charity shop in Chorlton. A key early influence on the sound of The Stone Roses was a band called Empire. Squire was also exploring s psychedelic music, particularly The Misunderstood: Cherry Red Records had released a compilation of their work in called Before the Dream Faded.
The Stone Roses may have had high hopes, but with Garner and Brown still learning their roles they were more just mates having a laugh. So when the opportunity arose for Wolstencroft to join a real band in January , he jumped at it. Wolstencroft passed the audition and for a while The Stone Roses continued to rehearse without a drummer. None of them stuck around for much longer. A live-wire jobbing drummer with an eye on the big time, he was playing with a number of local rock bands, such as The Dealers and Tora Tora.
He was also in a vocal harmony group and a fine singer. Reni was born in April , the second of six siblings. Reni had displayed freakish abilities on drums as a child, playing on the kit set up in the pub his mum and dad ran in Denton. Instead of writing down the number on the ad, Reni took it off the wall and stuck it in his pocket so nobody else would see it. Within ten seconds he was in and the band sounded better than it had ever sounded. It would have faltered like all the other things John and Ian and I had done.
John was a punk guitarist when we met Reni, but Reni could play anything. He had a musical talent none of us had. The whole group was such an oddball collection of long-hairs, scruffs and smoothies I just had to join. He was basically in the band, why would you not have him? He was easily the most talented musician of us all, way beyond everybody, including John. We were all pissing about a bit. He was a serious drummer who could have joined any band. Rehearsing got more enjoyable because he could play any style of music.
And, said Garner, Reni fitted into the gang straight away. He was into a totally different type of music, he came from a totally different part of Manchester, but instantly I loved him. He was also keen to broaden his horizons, and happy for the gang to introduce him to their haunts and influences.
The Stone Roses continued rehearsing at Decibel for a few weeks before moving to nearby rehearsal rooms at Out of the Blue on Blossom Street, where for a time they shared a room with Easterhouse, who were signed to Rough Trade and being tipped as the next Smiths. John Breakell, who owned the basement set-up, would become a key benefactor.
The Roses recorded their first demo at Spirit in an overnight session on the newly installed Brenell eight-track. The studio was basic.
He was also in for a surprise when he discovered Reni and Squire had painted the live room overnight. Reni was an amazing character. The four songs the Roses recorded would become mainstays in their early repertoire.
T he Roses limited the demo to a hundred copies. Couzens and Brown were the most proactive members, often driving down to London for the dual purpose of a night out and to hustle the demo tape. Reed already managed the Rhyl-based Clash-influenced Mercenary Skank, and offered the Roses their first gig supporting the band at an anti-heroin benefit at the Moonlight Club in West Hampstead in October That would have been wrong.
Factory, famed for Joy Division and run by Tony Wilson, dominated the city — especially now New Order were firmly established. John and I were members really early on, but it was the only place to go. So it became a resentful thing, this big shining light in this sea of shit. Manchester was a horrible, dirty, scruffy place. The band was so determined to impress at their debut gig they even rehearsed stage moves.
The Roses were an instant hit in London. He was equally impressed. He ended up playing three or four The Who tunes with Townshend. But I was thinking, Shit, man, our secret weapon is out of the bag. My worst fear had come true. S quire shared the same fear. Just to watch him play was inspirational. The two bands were not a natural fit. The Ad Lib gig was. Johnson was respected as the poet of Oi!
J ohnson listened to the Roses demo tape Brown had sent him. Johnson had family in Manchester and organized a trip to the city to interview the band. Speed was also popular with the band, but not to the extent Johnson snorted it. Couzens was teetotal and Brown avoided beer altogether. Johnson took the band to a Bruce Foxton gig and introduced him to them. Garry had organized some photographer to take a photo of us with Bruce Foxton, but John refused.
B efore going AWOL Johnson did manage to get a few more column inches for the Roses with a bogus story about Garner beating up the lead singer of teen pop act Kajagoogoo at a showbiz party. There were two more nights with Mercenary Skank for the Roses in January , both in London, at the Fulham Greyhound and at the Marquee, where there was a microphone-throwing incident that saw them banned.
Relations with manager Caroline Reed became strained, said Couzens. We were like a by-product of a bad problem. Couzens kicked her door in one night and Reed gave up answering the phone to them. But the Roses already had a new manager lined up. He would normally set the band up in the live recording room and watch from the control room, separated from the band by a glass partition. The Roses demanded Jones and Chambers go into their rehearsal room.
Johnny [Squire] was behind his fringe, Pete and Andy were bouncing off one another and Ian was right in your face. They already truly believed they were the greatest band in the world.
We were really genuinely, unbelievably arrogant. Ian was perfect for it because he drew people in anyway. If you want to help, great — well done, pal; now fuck off. It was like that. Jones would use Tim Chambers, who was closer in age to the band, as his conduit in attempting to assert influence over the Roses — having found his initial suggestion that Garner cut his hair strongly rebuffed. They were sucking up all these influences looking for their vision. Ian was always writing lyrics or notes or memos to himself.
The band were serious about rehearsals, unnervingly focused and instinctive in their approach. Arguments were commonplace as they aspired to turn their rock bombast into a white light sound.
Brown and his girlfriend Mitch had moved to a flat in Chorlton, and Squire, whose Cosgrove Hall workplace was in the area, lived with them there for a while. Brown and Mitch would move flats regularly, always staying around south Manchester, and often sharing with Squire. Jones also lived in Chorlton, and the new Roses manager often blagged the band free rehearsal time at the Lock-Up on flimsy excuses.
Less is more. John wrote the bass line that runs right through it, and the rest of it is ethereal. It was unusual in the set; most of our songs were fast and quite angsty, and that had quite a groove to it.
Hannett was looking for the next U2. He was a bit taken aback because everyone wanted to talk to him about Joy Division apart from us. News that Hannett had agreed to work with the band spread fast. There was a joke that at Thin Line we were forming Renegade Records. On this principle the influential Wilson hated the Roses.
He had asked Jones about the possibility of Brown and Squire coming on the show to play an acoustic set, but Jones wanted it to be the whole band. The Roses went into the Piccadilly live studio — more accustomed to hosting orchestras than rock bands — to record a live session on 12 January There was a little bit of an interview after the session, but they were not really great interviewees.
Ian got right out in the audience and he was going up to people and singing in their faces. There were London journalists at the show, including Jon Wilde, who in would write a scathing Melody Maker cover story about the band.
It was raw but you could hear the potential. The set was pretty short, about twenty minutes max, inspired by the Sex Pistols. Best to keep the audience wanting more.
What I was into more than anything was the energy. Ian used to come off the stage and be quite menacing. I sang to the girls to get the lads wound up. Everywhere we went I used to get on that. And it worked — people remembered us. It was just bravado. Following Dingwalls the Roses came to a decision over what songs to record for their debut single on Thin Line. He adored the Roses. He liked rawness. He liked that authoritarian studio thing because otherwise the whole band would have tried to interfere in the recording.
While recording the original demo at Spirit, the Roses had just counted to four and performed the songs live with limited overdubs.
This first single session was more arduous as Hannett recorded each instrument separately. Hearing themselves in perfect clarity was an eye-opener and led to rows in the studio. If Ian, or I, would say anything about anything, he used to go mad. Fucking ridiculous. Petty but very intense. On the back of the sleeve he spelt rhythm wrong; how amateur.
We tended to get animated and upset about things that seem ridiculous now. We played the original version. We went for a. We should have gone with that version. It was pre-Mary Chain and full of feedback. It was beautiful.
But we went with the safer mix. The mixes would never materialize. It was very un-Manchester. I got the impression that the Roses had heard a lot of British stuff from the s. D ickinson asked Squire about this musical reference point. There was nothing exciting us at all, so the best thing was for us to do it ourselves. Garner wore a ruffle shirt, Squire a bandana and Brown had his hair slicked back. This first photo shoot with the band was also supposed to be used by the NME.
I wanted it to be more hippyish — that was the feel of the shot. Manchester so anyone who was on the scene who knew us travelled to Preston to see it. There was a big contingent of kids who went to this venue in Preston every week, so as soon as we started playing it was just waiting for a spark. The Roses provided the spark. It is also fantastic to watch where a group can go between one Top 20 Club visit and another.
The early line-up did not feature their popular vocalist real name Tony Thompson but included, at least at some point in their early history, a guy called Bobby Rio who later worked for Joe Meek. Rivers took over the vocal chores towards the end of , having been approached by The Cutaways after he was spotted singing at a local pub called the Cherry Tree. Whilst manager Terry Oates was contemplating the possibility of turning The Cutaways into an instrumental group, the band secured a couple of recording tests with Decca and EMI and with Pony eventually retained as their front man, they were signed to Columbia and recorded their debut single at Abbey Road.
Being on an EMI label gave the group the opportunity to witness a show that The Beach Boys were recording in London for Radio Luxembourg and such was the bond between the two bands, Carl Wilson invited the group to attend a number of other radio shows and TV programs that the Beach Boys were playing as part of their itinerary.
Talbot was sadly buried on his 21st birthday and, due to their injuries, it took a long time for the group to recover, both mentally and physically. Rivers had also started to write his own material by this time but these original compositions were relegated to the flip side of their singles. Unfortunately, Johnston was not true to his word and despite The Castaways providing some temporary competition, it was long forgotten well before The Beach Boys version had reached No. After their Top Twenty appearance The Castaways continued much as before, a band still looking for that big hit despite being managed by both Robert Stigwood and Brian Epstein in quick succession.
His next move was to form Harmony Grass in October , a band that were effectively The Castaways in all but name but with a slightly different image. Eventually Harmony Grass disbanded in August but Rivers became a house producer with CBS Records whilst maintaining his career as an in-demand vocalist.
Tony is still out there and is currently singing with his son Anthony. Appropriate to the season, Tony Rivers and the Castaways presented happy, bouncing music at the Top 20 club, Bridgwater.
Experts, in the West Coast surfing Beach Boys style four-part harmonies and smooth falsetto , this unit surely gave the best singing ever heard at the club. No wonder they are so tip-top. They belong to Nems Enterprises, and for the uninitiated this is the agency formed by none other than Mr. Nems only choose the best, and after hearing these boys I can see why they signed them up. How did the Nems signing come about, I asked Tony. Now with the correct projection from the agency, this group are able to develop along the right lines, and I am certain they will stand the test of time and become international stars.
Part of this development is taking place shortly, with dates in Monte Carlo next week Brian Epstein is travelling with them , and future trips to Denmark, Hungary, and Manila. They are also getting into cabaret and winning over the often-hard-to-please cabaret audiences. To completely achieve the close harmonies, they also have Kenny Rowe doing vocals full-time. Indeed they cannot be classed as a pop group.
Good luck to them. Starkey had defected to the Fab Four. Chambers has probably played in more Merseybeat bands than most, though none of them could be described as pioneers of the Liverpool beat scene. Within 8 months Chambers had moved on to join forces with Kemp in the Dominoes but after just a few weeks, Chambers, Kemp and another ex-Domino called John Franland jumped ship and, after recruiting bassist and future Mojo Lewis Collins, formed a new group called The Eyes. They became the first signings for a young ex-graduate called Tony Stratton-Smith, who was just getting into group management.
They released three rare singles during this period, none of which charted. Unsurprisingly, the band finally called it a day due to their lack of commercial success, disbanding just two months after their Top Twenty performance. Chambers went on to join a later version of The Escorts, Gibson Kemp married Astrid Kerchherr in and as for Voorman — his skills as a bassist found fame in Manfred Mann where he replaced Jack Bruce, after the latter had left to join Cream.
After retiring in , Voorman returned to his first love by designing the covers for the Beatles Anthology series of albums in In these days when five seems to be the accepted number for a pop group, it made a pleasant change to see just three musicians on the stage of the Town Hall, Bridgwater last Monday for the latest meeting of the Top 20 Club. We may sound and look like any other group but there is coming the time when we are going to change. You cannot do this just like that.
Gibson and Paddy Chambers lead guitar were in Germany for a spell with a group called The Eyes not the same Eyes as those recently guesting at the Club. Strangely enough, the tables were turned, for Klaus was in London then working as a commercial artist, while the other two were in his native land!
When the fourth member of that group dropped out, the remaining three decided to form a new outfit, and Paddy, Klaus and Gibson were born so to speak. It could turn out a double A-side. The boys were asked by the B. In fact it has been suggested by one observer that due to the mod doctrine that says that commercialism is unhealthy, by being largely ignored by the general public, they are the ultimate mod band.
They were formed in London in , with three members of the band originating from Kentish Town whilst Mike Evans, a Camden boy, had briefly appeared in the same semi-pro outfit that included a 13 year-old Keith Moon. Originally called The Boyfriends, they were the backing band for an aspiring actress from Hampstead called Sandra Barry.
The single failed to make an impression but the band secured an important residency supporting The Who at The Marquee Club and it was during this period that they became The Action and started to attract a loyal following. An attempt to get them replaced failed and in the end, The Action were given a residency of their own. In the end, Martin caught them at a Bedford Hotel gig in Balham and suitably impressed, paid off their debts, secured them a deal with Parlophone and suggested to Brian Epstein that he manage them.
Epstein agreed in principle, but it soon became apparent that he did not have enough time to devote to the band and they were eventually handled by Ricky Farr. The name was short-lived however, though by this time it was apparent that the band were heading for new musical territory and by they became Mighty Baby, a British equivalent of The Grateful Dead.
Mighty Baby released a couple of acclaimed albums before splitting themselves in Despite existing for just three years they are still fondly remembered, Paul Weller and Phil Collins who used to see them regularly at The Marquee are both lifelong fans and thanks to a couple of compilations, their music has succeeded in filtering down to a new generation of fans. They temporarily reformed in at a mod gathering on the Isle of Wight and in , returned with a triumphant sell-out series of concerts that fittingly featured Phil Collins as a guest drummer.
The best ones at it were the Action… They were an amazing band. Parlophone recording group The Action live up to their title. They take the infectious shuffle rhythm of Tamla-Motown material and incorporate into it their own pulsating, powerhouse style to produce a dynamic magnetism, as illustrated in their gig at The Top 20 Club last Monday.
The Action come across on stage right enough, but their expansion of songs was not ideally suited to this atmosphere and made for repetition and sometimes monotony. I am all in favour of transporting the London club acts to the provinces and several groups who are resident at these establishments have really gone down well at the Top 20 club in the past.
The Action, though, seemed out of their natural environment. Armed with this view, I next called at their dressing room to give them, in fairness, the opportunity of commenting on my opinion.
They liked playing obscure stuff he said, material they personally enjoyed, and usually they followed the policy of lengthening songs by reprises. On disc The Action are limited to the confines of the normal three minutes playing time. The Action are managed by Ricky Farr, a son of the famous boxer and brother of Gary Farr who with his group the T-Bones, performed at the Top 20 Club earlier in the year.
And if you were at the Top 20 Club on Monday you will know they have good cause to get excited. For on that evening The Nite People occupied the star spot at the Town Hall and they made a deep and favourable impression with members.
And it was even more gratifying to find this being provided by a West Country group. Their material performed at the Club was of an exceptionally high professional standard, it catered for most musical tastes and was executed with precision care, and neatness. There are five Nite People, but upon hearing them one gets the impression there are seven or eight playing because the sound—not overpowering—is so expansive. Meet them. Terry Rolph is their young, go-ahead manager and the group belong to Avenue Artistes Ltd.
The boys have secured engagements in all the prominent London clubs, at ballrooms in different parts of the country, and weekly Summer seasons at such resorts as Torquay and Newquay. The holidaymakers should love em! Undoubtedly these five, unassuming players have the best things still to come. They are a group of the future. Mike suggests in his preview of their Top 20 concert that, by , they had been together for just 12 months but I have found details of a concert played at The Cellar Club in Poole dating from the 1st April They were apparently formed by the Shipstone brothers and despite not having a record contract at the time of their Top 20 appearance, eventually recorded singles for both Fontana and Page One Records, the latter of which was owned by Larry Page.
Prog Rock beckons! The pop pulse in Bridgwater is quickening. With The Top 20 Club sessions taking place almost every Monday at The Town Hall, another beat organisation announced last week that they were going to put on a dance presentation for one date at the same venue. This is the Shepton Mallet-based agency known as Mid-Somerset Promotions who will offer keen competition to local fans with their show at the Town Hall this coming Saturday between 8 p.
As the star attraction, they have booked The Uglies, a recording group with a big following who have made several successful discs. Mid-Somerset Promotions have signed another group — The Drovers — to play at the same evening show.
The groups will alternate on stage and when there are breaks between acts, teenagers will be able to continue dancing to the current hit discs. In they obtained a new vocalist, ex-plumbers apprentice and Elvis Presley nut Steve Gibbons. During their formative years the band played several local venues and despite harbouring a rougher than most image they attracted quite a following. By , The Dominettes had been re-named The Uglys and eventually secured a recording contract with Pye Records in From this point on, the band seemed to lose their way somewhat, unable to hang on to members of personnel for very long whilst struggling to find a record deal that would provide them with a platform for success.
Other new arrivals came and went with alarming speed, most of which ended up playing with the various permutations of The Move, one of the biggest Birmingham bands in existence. Appearing on that chart-topping single was keyboard player Richard Tandy.
Occupation — a model. There she met, quite by accident Mr. Yet this has all happened for them since that meeting of a year ago. They are my two favourite singers on the popular music front, and I was delighted they had been signed to head a meeting of the club here in Bridgwater. But I was also bitterly disappointed at the surprisingly low number of teenagers who attended. A great pity that such a noteworthy act could not have drawn in more admirers.
Diane and Nicky present up-tempo numbers with that bit of class and sincerity — and dare I say it — professionalism, that is very frequently missing in other pop performers.
Effervescent Diane, dressed in an off-white woollen trouser suit, and likeable Nicky, who wore a contrasting outfit comprising black, open-necked shirt and matching slacks, punched their way through a most commendable programme. Watching them, who could have failed to be won over by the togetherness of this pair. Their glances and smiles at each other, their formation dancing, their strong. Nicky said during the interval that they had to round up some accompanists fairly quickly once the first disc started moving.
They make a perfect match for Diane and Nicky, having the same feel for music. Putting much thought and planning into their act, Diane and Nicky hope to go into cabaret in London and the North soon. For an act that has been in existence for only about five months, Diane and Nicky have collected a remarkable amount of praise from journalists, fellow performers, disc jockeys and the record buying public.
They have a full list of engagements to fulfil at present, but when they do take a holiday, I wonder if they will spend it in Las Palmas! Napier-Bell was very much a larger than life character, openly homosexual, and a flamboyant entrepreneur with a flair for overt publicity.
It was his handling of this couple that gave Napier-Bell the opportunity to become The Yardbirds second manager after Giorgio Gomelsky. There was also a nice young black girl who kept doing the same.
To be frank, I was bored and desperately wanted to get rid of them. So I asked one of the press secretaries if they could sing. It turned out they could and they were a very pretty couple together. So we made an album and it was quite a good record. It was a hit, got to No.
The duo went on to make several records together, most of which were harmless pop fodder penned by Napier-Bell and which suggested that this act were very much a question of style over substance. The Ferris Wheel also featured ex-members of The Checkmates, contained three vocalists and became a popular club act with a healthy mix of soul music spiced with the influence of psychedelia. The band remained together for a couple more years but Ferraz eventually left show business altogether to raise a family and was subsequently replaced by firstly Marsha Hunt and then Linda Lewis.
It is sad and alarming to see a consistently good group like The Paramounts stagnate. When they starred at The Top 20 Club 18 months ago they were received enthusiastically by a large crowd. Everyone wee confident they would become one of the top attractions in this country, especially when Brian Epstein signed them to his Nems empire.
They brought out a regular supply of discs, but none of them made the charts — and gradually they were left behind in the race for star honours. The Paramounts came beck to the Club last Monday and it is true to say they are in a worse position now then when they visited the same venue in December But the group has not changed much in that time. The boys are still their cheerful selves and they continue to play well.
Why they have deteriorated in popular appeal is a mystery. They were performing to a half empty Town Hall and by the time they reached their last two numbers there were only about a dozen people present. When I called on them they gave me their frankest interview to date. Lead guitarist Robin Trower honestly said: tonight was not a good night for us.
We have since left Nems. Now we hope to get another single out soon that is more in our style. Did they feel embittered that so many new groups had overtaken them while they remained in a static position? You cannot get television bookings unless you have a hit record.
We can not perform on B. Our earnings have dropped by a quarter and we have had to economise. But at the moment there is no question of the group breaking up or anything like that. We do well out of overseas engagements. For instance we shall be working out of England for three months this year, going to such places as the South of France, Majorca and Denmark. We wont give up! They are four musicians who should have got further. It is only by getting into long conversation with them that the accolades come to the surface, but even then they are revealed with equal modesty.
Has an extensive knowledge of classical music, having studied it for 10 years, and can also play cello and piano. For a start, there are six of them and they are far from quiet. Satch Goswell sax and Roger, The offstage versatility of this London group is reflected in their performances.
Something of everything for everybody could be a fitting description. They competently handled them all, switching Instruments and lead vocalising duties.
I can think of no other Club artistes, apart from Dave, who have given members such an entertaining, happy evening. All these qualities make The Quiet Five a winning combo. I am sure The Quiet Five are going to have a very big hit on their hands with this one.
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