Wednesday, 10 January 2018

The Kravats - 1965 - We The Kravats FLAC

Big Ben/Can't Blame Me/Why Hide/Besame Mucho

Hobart's Spook Club and Beachcombers, Melbourne's Pinnochio's, Perth's Cannon Bridge Stomp! All Felt the impact of The Kravats.
Tasmania's premier rock export of the 1960's, The Kravats gegan in 1958, their first gig being guests on the Lee Gordon Big Show at the City Hall in Hobart supporting artists like Llord Price , Conway Twitty, The Kalin Twins, Col Joye and The Joy Boysand The Delltones and Johnny OKeefe and the DJ's and Johnny Devlin and Dig Richards.
The Personal for this first appearance were Noel Best, Ray Woodruff, Norm Walker, Max Johns and Clem Meehan (filling in for the injured Richard Millhouse who was suffering from a broken arm).

In 1963 the Spook Club began as a regular Saturday night entertainment venue in Hobart at what is now known as the Winjammer.
The Kravats became the resident band and in June 1964 received a recording contract with W&G Records in Melbourne. Paying their own expenses to undertake this venture, the first session in 1964 led to the release of the single Puppet Strings (written by Noel) b/w Bel Mir Bist Du Schoen wich sold well in Hobart reaching #2 on the local charts. The follow up single Fred b/w Jindivik both sides being written by Noel, was also recorded at this session.

3UZ Disc jockey John Vertigan (ex 7HO Hobart), a close acquaintance of the group, actively campaigned W&G's Ron Tudor for the audition session which led to the recording contract. By the middle of 1964, Beatlemania was alive and well in Tasmania and the band realised the need for a vocalist to progress to this Merseybeat-style as compared to the Shadows-style wich had been their trademark.

Barry Woodruff a younger brother of Ray was added to the band. A Friday night residencey at the popular Beachcomber at the San Carlo Hall in North Hobart and a second recording session in Melbourne followed. This recording session produced the Tasmanian #1 hit "Baby Let Me Take You Home", the top 10 follow up "It Must Be Jelly (Cause Jam Don't Shake Like That) and the EP We The Kravats which also made the singles charts.

 "Baby Let Me Take You Home" (originally released by the Animals) reached #1 in Hobart on the 5th of August 1965 ahead of the Beatles "Help" and Brendan Bowyer's "Hucklebuck".
Former Hobart D.J. Keith McGowan had moved to Perth and as a result of his efforts "Baby Let Me Take You Home" entered the top ten in Western Australia which resulted in tour to Perth which commenced in August of 1965. The visit was originally scheduled for 1 week but the Kravats were so well recieved that another week was agreed to.

The return of the band from this tour coincided with their release of "It Must Be Jelly (Cause Jam Don't Shake Like That) which reached #7 in Hobart and #2 in Launceston on the 20th November 1965.

Things were going from strenght to strenght and because of their strong popularity base in Tasmania coupled with family commitments the band made a conscious decision not to base itself on the mainland but to do short spells.

As 1965 drew to a close the EP We The Kravats became their 5th release and entered the Hobart singles charts immediatley. the standout track being "Why Hide"  written by Barry who was becoming something of a prolific writer. On this track Barry ovedubbed the harmonies himself. In 1965 this was ground breaking stuff indeed.

Just prior to their departure for W.A. Max Johns left the bamd and was replaced on drums by John McAbe from local band the Silhouettes. The third and final session with W&G followed this time with "Macka" on drums and resulted in the release of the singles "We're Gonna Howl Tonight" (1966) and "That's What I Want" (1967). The days of hitmaking were over though and these singles sank without a trace.

With legaslative changes allowing entry into hotels of 18 year olds tennage dances disappeared and a new era of cabaret entertainment commenced with the Kravats becoming the resident band at the Carlyle Hotel in Hobart. This trend continued with the move to the cabaret scene and the band worked with such artists as Kamal, John Farnham, Ross D. Wylie and the legedary Johnny O'Keefe. The Kravats continued the professional aproach to their work and this culminated in an invitation in November 1969 to provide entertainment on the P&O liner Himalaya.

Although guest appearances in mainland venues continued periodically it was the cabaret scene in Hobart that the Kravats returned, providing entertaiment for a further two decades.

Mike Furber - 1966 - Just A Poor Boy FLAC

Just A Poor Boy/Mailman Bring Me No More Blues/You're Back Again/Love Talk

Just A Poor Boy by Paul Wade,Robbie van Delft and Neville Peard The writers are three members of The Bowery Boys released in 1965 it charted #25 Melbourne #21 Brisbane #5 Adelaide #42 Perth. A single on Sunshine label, also released on Kommotion. Its main chart action was in early 1966, but it appears to have been released at the end of 1965.The Bowery Boys were formed in Brisbane in 1965. Lead singer Mike Furber was given top billing after they were signed to Ivan Dayman's Sunshine label and management. After the band broke up in 1966, Mike Furber pursued an under-appreciated solo career, but in the early 70s he appeared to good notices in the gospel rock musical Godspell.   Lyn Nuttall

Mike Furber - 1967 - It's Too Late FLAC

It's Too Late/I'm So Glad/If You Need Me/Take This Hammer

Mike Furber was born on 28 September 1948 in London, England. His father was Ed Furber and Furber was raised with a sister Marian. When he was 10, his family emigrated to Brisbane, Australia. In mid-1965 Furber as lead vocalist joined local pop band The Bowery Boys which consisted of Robbie van Delft on lead guitar and vocals, Neville Peard on drums, Paul Wade on bass guitar and vocals, and Greg Walker on rhythm guitar. The group signed with Sunshine Records and were managed by label boss Ivan Dayman. Dayman promoted the group as Mike Furber and the Bowery Boys.

In late 1965 their debut single, "Just a Poor Boy", was released and in early 1966 it became a top 5 hit in Adelaide and top 30 in both Melbourne and Sydney. The song was written by Wade, van Delft and Peard. In February 1966, their second single, "You Stole My Love", was released – it is a cover version of The Mockingbird's 1965 song and was written by Graham Gouldman. Furber's version was a top 10 hit in Melbourne and peaked at No. 12 in Adelaide. The Kommotion label released the group's debut album, Just a Poor Boy. In July, a third single, "That's When Happiness Began" was issued but the group disbanded in August.

Dayman was keen to promote Furber as a solo artist and organised appearances on local television shows: The Go!! Show and Kommotion. Furber released three solo singles in 1967, "Where Were You?" (January), "I'm So Glad" (August) and "Bring Your Love Back Home" (October) but none of them charted. National teen pop music newspaper, Go-Set, praised "Bring Your Love Back Home" as "the best disc he has ever had. It could be the break he has been waiting for to put him right back on top". Furber was one of a number of popular artists who wrote in Go-Set against Australia's involvement in the Vietnam War, "you can't find an excuse for forcing a man to give up his chosen career to go into the army and fight a war in what would be one of the most dubious conflicts of all times". In Go-Set's Pop Poll, Furber was voted in the top 5 as most popular Male Vocalist in both 1966 and 1967. Furber's label, Sunshine collapsed in 1967 and Furber had a nervous breakdown at about that time.In 1969, Furber signed with Columbia Records and released "There's No Love Left" in June. This was followed in November by "I'm on Fire" / "Watch Me Burn", which were both written by Vanda & Young (ex-The Easybeats) as a two-part pop suite. According to Iain McIntyre's Tommorrow Is Today (2006) "'I'm on Fire' is scintillating pop track underscored by a ripping lead fuzz guitar line and a solid rhythm section" however "'Watch Me Burn' is even wilder, with TWIN lead guitars (one fuzz and one wah-wah) wailing away beneath Furber's excellent vocal performance". Nevertheless neither of the singles charted and Furber was dropped by Columbia.

 In June 1970 Furber toured Australia with The Sect, and Doug Parkinson in Focus as support acts to United States group The Four Tops. In the early 1970s he was conscripted for National Service in the Australian Army during the Vietnam War. At the time of his service Furber had been involved in stage musicals: Godspell and Nuclear (1973). He was fired from Nuclear.

According to music historian Ian McFarlane, he was "never a strong-willed person to begin with, Furber continued to suffer bouts of depression". Furber committed suicide on 10 May 1973; he was found hanged in the garage of his Sydney home. According to McFarlane, "reputedly in the depths of depression, he hanged himself ... It has been suggested, however, that Furber was actually murdered because he had befriended a King's Cross prostitute".

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Simple Image - 1969 - Four Hits From The Simple Image

Michael & The Slipper Tree/Ulla/Spinning Spinning Spinning/Grooviest Girl In The World

The original line-up of the Simple Image is as listed above, but Allan Gordon didn't stay very long and he was replaced by Gordon Wylie on drums. Barry, Harry and Gordon were all employees of Todd Motors in Wellington when they first started playing together. Harry had been around the music scene for a while, originally starting out in a group called the Young Ones, which after Harry left, went on to eventually become Larry's Rebels. Ron Gascoigne had originally played with South Island band, the Termites, before joining the Insect for six months. He left them at the end of 1966 to join the Simple Image. The Insect eventually evolved into the Fourmyula. Original drummer Allan also came from a South Island band called the Vaqueros.

Much of Simple Image's initial repertoire was strictly middle-of-the-road, and able to cross the age barrier, they soon proved popular on the wedding reception trail, while at the same time appearing in the Pantomime, Dick Whittington. After accepting an offer as ship's band, they then spent a month touring the islands aboard Arcadia before their road to fame began when booking agent Tom McDonald added the group to his booking agent roster. With him they began to get plum gigs. National support tours with Maria Dallas and Gerry Merito followed and in 1968 they signed a five year recording contract with HMV.

Their first single was "Two Kinds Of Lovers"/"Summer Wine", and released with little fanfare, it spent four weeks in the national charts in March 1968, peaking at number 11. It was their second single which really established Simple Image outside their hometown. Producer Howard Gable used a phasing technique in the mix and it gave the song a very distinctive sound. "Spinning Spinning Spinning"/"Shy Boy" climbed to number one on the charts and spent two weeks in that position in July 1968. "Spinning" was entered into the 1968 Loxene Gold Disc Awards and narrowly missed winning the top spot.

 The follow-up single showed they weren't a one-hit wonder, as "Little Bell That Cried"/"I Wanna Go To Heaven" also made the top 10, peaking at number 9. A self-titled album was also released and sold very well. It had some very striking artwork on its cover. Another single was released from the album, called "Hold Me Tight"/"Tomorrow Is Another Day" it didn't feature on the charts. The group adopted a very 'mod' image, with their stage uniform always consisting of navy blue capes with pink lining, floral shirts, bell-bottomed trousers and Cuban-heel boots. Moving into 1969 they released another huge single. This was "Grooviest Girl In The World"/"Make Time Stand Still" and it made it to number 3 on the charts. Bruce Walker, formerly from a group called Soul Sect, was added to the line-up on organ. The next single was "Ulla"/"Tomorrow Today", but it didn't make the charts.

Barry Leef left the group in June 1969 and had a short spell in a group called Retaliation, before he headed to Australia. He joined up with fellow Kiwis, Jack Stradwick, Mike Wilson and Mike Darby to form Straw Patch. They had a minor hit with a song called "Send Me No More Flowers". Barry's replacement in the Simple Image was Doug Smith and with him they chose to do a cover of a song by the Equals called "Michael and the Slipper Tree". Backed with "Mean So Much", the single was another top 10 hit, reaching number 7 in September. It was the last time the group featured on the charts. The Simple Image won the "Group Award" at the 1969 NEBOA Entertainer Of The Year Awards. Also in 1969 the group released an EP called "Four Hits From The Simple Image" and it contained "Michael and the Slipper Tree", "Ulla", "Spinning Spinning Spinning" and "Grooviest Girl In The World".

 At the end of 1969 they decided to make an assault on the Australian market. They accepted a residency at the Whiskey-A-Go-Go, a prestigious venue that they inherited from the now defunct Avengers. They had only been there a few weeks when Barry Leef rejoined them in place of Doug, but despite their popularity, they were unable to find a single to break them into the Australian charts. Over the next two years they went through a number of dramatic musical changes to meet the demands of the Whiskey clientele. They also found a liking to some artificial stimulants and as a result, Harry Leki's behaviour became quite bizarre and this eventually led to the group's demise in late 1971. Before disbanding, one final single called "Goodbye Birds"/"Send Me No More Letters" was released in 1971.

 Harry Leki returned to New Zealand and joined Arkastra. He also had a very short spell with Quincy Conserve. Barry Leef joined West Australian band Bakery as lead singer. He also formed the Barry Leef Band, which included Billy Williams, Steve Hopes, Mick Kenny, and Tim Partridge. They released one single in 1976 called "To Be Back Home"/"What Do You Wanna Do". Over the next twelve years he released four more solo singles, and was also a member of a jazz group called Crossfire in the eighties. Erana Clarke became a member of that group and by the end of the eighties her and Barry had married.

In 2001 EMI released a CD called "Spinning Spinning Spinning - The Complete Simple Image" which, using the cover from their original album, contains the entire album, plus every single they did and two previously unreleased songs.

Julie Anthony - 1978 - Something Special FLAC

My Day/Lady Bug/Everything Old Is New Again/Ain't No Mountain High Enough

Promotional release available only from the Max Factor counter at MYER stores.

 Julie Moncrieff Anthony, 23 August 1951, Galga, South Australia. Anthony was born in Galga (population 15) and raised on the family farm. In her teens she began singing with a local band and in 1970 won an amateur television talent quest. Her victory and the first prize ($600 and a trip to Tasmania) led to regular appearances on the Adelaide Tonight Show. She moved to Sydney, making television appearances and performing on the club and cabaret circuit, and eventually embarking on international tours. An engagement at the Hong Kong Hilton in 1973 was followed by the lead role in the Australian production of Irene. Three years later she starred in the UK version at the Adelphi Theatre. The Play and Players of London honoured her with the Best Newcomer (Actress) award for 1976. She returned to Australian television and appeared in three national specials, and in the same year she married her manager Eddie Natt. In 1977 she won the Sammy and Penquin awards for Best Television Variety Performer. Tours of America followed and Anthony worked with Bill Cosby, Roy Clarke and Merv Griffin. In 1980 she was awarded an OBE for services to the entertainment industry. Three years later she accepted the role of Maria in The Sound Of Music; following a season in Sydney, the show successfully toured major and regional centres.

For the 1988 World Expo held in Brisbane, Anthony was invited to sing with the re-formed Seekers, joining the group as lead singer from 1988-89. In 1988 she sang the national anthem at the official opening of Australia’s new Parliament House. The same year she returned to the stage in I Do!, I Do! In 1990, she was awarded AM in the Order of Australia for services to the entertainment industry. In 1994, Anthony further demonstrated her versatility by teaming with jazz musician Don Burrows (reeds/flute) for tours, including a successful appearance at the Jazz and Blues Festival at the Gold Coast International Hotel in 1995. A year later she returned to cabaret with a season at the Tilbury Hotel in Sydney. In her extensive repertoire she demonstrated great conviction, whether singing ‘Amazing Grace’ or material ranging from Stephen Sondheim to the Beatles. In June 1996 she accepted a cameo role as a band singer in the Bruce Beresford film Paradise Road, starring Glenn Close and Jean Simmons. Julie Anthony is one of the best and most durable theatre and variety performers in the post-war Australian entertainment industry. She has won the prestigious Mo Award for Entertainer Of The Year three times, and Best Female Variety Performer nine times. An admirable singer and engaging personality, she has successfully blended her career and family duties.

Thursday, 7 December 2017

The Atlantics - 1964 - The Explosive Sound Of The Atlantics FLAC

The Teddy Bears' Picnic Stomp/Cherry Pink And Apple Blossom Time/Secret Love/Three Coins In The Fountain

Think surf rock classics and a few songs come to mind. The Surfari’s Wipeout, Dick Dale’s Miserlou, Pipeline by the Chantays and of course Bombora, by Australia’s own, Atlantics. Virtually the only successful surf instrumental band, not from America.

Echoing the Shadow’s Twangy Atmospheric Instrumental Sound, they were snapped up by CBS Records and became a household name with the release of their Giant Hit Bombora.

cover-1The Atlantics went on to record seven more singles and four LPs for CBS, all of which are now regarded as classics of the Surf Instrumental Genre. They also recorded a string of vocal singles with various recording companies and these songs are now considered as outstanding examples of Pre-Punk Garage Rock. 

 After a long break from the music scene, original members Jim Skiathitis, Peter Hood and Bosco Bosanac along with new guitarist, Martin Cilia, reformed and set about recapturing the sound that had propelled them to fame so many years before and had lifted them to a legendary status worldwide.

Since reforming The Atlantics have released four excellent new CDs. “Flight Of The Surf Guitar”, ‘Atlantics – The Next Generation”, “Point Zero” and “Atlantics The Best Of”. In 2000 Bombora was given the ultimate accolade by being used in the Closing Ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. It was really a thrill to hear the “all new” Bombora during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games! What could have been better than to see Bondi Life Savers and Australia’s own Kylie Minogue making their entrance to the thundering sounds of Bombora!

 Many TV appearances followed on, Studio 22, 10:30 Slot, Denise, Morning Shift, Today, A Long way to The Top and Where are They Now. A string of live appearances at Pubs, Clubs, big shows and Festivals such as, Victoria’s Queenscliff Festival, Canberra’s Folk Festival and “Wintersun” on the Gold Coast, thrilled original fans and introduced a whole new generation to the driving infectious guitar sounds of, The Atlantics.

Their brilliant performances on tours around Australia with the spectacular “Long Way To The Top” Concert and as the support act on the Beach Boys and Chris Isaak Shows, resulted in rave reviews about their music and their talents and once again cemented their title of, Australia’s Greatest Instrumental band, ever.

The Flies - 1965 - The Flies FLAC

Can't You Feel/Doin' The Mod/Tell Her That/Ain't That Just Like Me

 The Flies were the first Aussie band to consciously ape The Beatles. The band supported The Rolling Stones on their first Australian tour and released a number of singles; Tell Her That (July 1964), Doin’ The Mod (July 1965) and Can’t You Feel (September 1965).

Doin' The Mod charted in June-July 1965 #23 Melbourne and was followed onto the Melbourne charts in September-October by Can't You Feel, an original song by Ronnie Burns and John Thomas of The Flies (#26 Melbourne).

 Vocalist Ronnie Burns left The Flies in August 1965 to go solo and spent the rest of the decade vying with Normie Rowe and Merv Benton as the most popular solo singer on the Australian pop scene.

He was replaced in the band by Peter Nicol, who had previously been with a group called The Wild Colonials.

Lead guitarist John Thomas also departed, following some musical dissension, leaving The Flies a trio of Peter Nicol (vocals and guitar), Themi (short for Themiststocles) Adams (bass) and Hank Wallis (drums).

The band called it a day in 1966 with Nicol returning to The Wild Colonials.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Kevin Shegog - 1962 - Wolverton Mountain FLAC

Wolverton Mountain/The Strange Little Melody/I Cant Stop Loving You/Raindrops

Kevin Joseph Shegog (20 August 1933 – 9 November 2000) was an Australian country music singer. He is perhaps most well known for his cover of Claude King's hit Wolverton Mountain and his singles One Small Photograph and Little Kangaroo.

Shegog was born in Lower Turner Marsh near Launceston, Tasmania to Joseph and Elvie Shegog (née Briant). When he was nine years old, Shegog taught himself how to play the guitar. He was also a member of the choir at school. At the age of fourteen, he started performing at venues and began to write his own songs.

Shegog was married to Shirley (née Haas) (d. 1981) and they had five children, Dallas, Susan, Lorena, Angela and Travis. They lived in Melbourne. He was a distant cousin of Vivian Bullwinkel.
Shegog died on 9 November 2000 at the age of 67 from complications of a stroke he suffered 7 years earlier. In 1983, Shegog was inducted into the Australian Country Music 'Hands of Fame' cornerstone.
Thanks to Mustang

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Ron Lees - 1961 - Requests FLAC

Danny Boy/Galway Bay/I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen/Charmaine

With decades of performing experience internationally on radio, television and live performances, plus 27 top selling recordings, RON LEES is one of the great tenors of our time.  His large Lyric Spinto Voice has been heard on every major television and radio station in Australia and overseas. He has also sung lead roles in no less than seven major operas.

 His career started at 20 with a show called "New Faces of 1960" with the English performer DAVID WHITFIELD at the famous TIVOLI THEATRE in Melbourne, this went for 6 months after which he worked as a truck driver for another 6 months until he went into the studios of Channel 7 Melbourne where he met the producer of  the television show "Sunnyside Up", Mr Alf Spargo, who hired  him immediatly and he became the feature tenor for ten years. During this time he was invited to do 3 command performances, one with KATHRYN GRAYSON ( the American soprano & co-star of the renowned tenor MARIO LANZA),  who then chose him  to tour around Australia as her duetist. She remarked back stage "Hey! You sing better than Mario!" It was about then he was given his own television show called "Free and Easy" which was highly successful.

For a further fve years he performed in Sydney clubs, concerts and on television. He toured in South Australia with the June Bronhill show which  went for 3 months.  The tours entrepreneur had trouble paying the acts and they all had to take extra work. Ron got a spot singing in The Blue Cave nightclub in Adelaide where he met his friend actor/comedian Tony Barry.  Ron was then contacted by David McIlwraith a well known entrepeneur who ran the famous LIDO nightclub. He  sang there for 4 years and during that time he worked with international stars such as KATHRYN GRAYSON, JOSE FERRER, JOHNNY RAY, HOWARD KEEL, FRANCIS FAYE, EARTHA KITT, JUNE BRONHILL, JOHN RAITT and many others. In 1974 he won a Scholarship into the Opera, but as fate would have it, a Brisbane television show, "Studio 9", offered him a contract and he became the featured singer on that show for another three years.

 1977 saw him in his first leading role in the opera "The Gypsy Baron", after  that season concluded, Ron sang the lead role in "Tosca" for the A.B.C. on a conert tour of Australia, called "The Longest Land Based Tour in the World".  It was at this time he was recognised  as one of the great singers of our day, getting rave reviews from newspapers and critics alike.  Four operas and four leads later, he was invited to sing at the famous "Genting Highlands Casino", the second largest in the world, where to this day, his life size portrait hangs above Andy Williams and Tom Jones.  After being voted  as the best and most popular singer ever to visit South East Asia, the success of this initial two-week engagement was extended to three months!  Ron then returned to Melbourne for "Madam Butterfly", once again as the leading man, for a very successful season with "Victorian Opera Company". 

 Up until 1994 Ron toured Australia singing on television, clubs and concert halls.  Ron's next engagement was at the famous "Mietta's" restaurant for a 14 day season, in  the Australian version of "The Mario Lanza Show", whilst Jose Carreras of the "Three Tenors " fame, did the version in the U.S.A.  The show was so successful it toured all over Australia. He has received rave reviews for his ability to recall the Great Tenor back to life. During all this he appeared on BERT NEWTON'S 'GOOD MORNING AUSTRALIA' on Channel 10 for 6 years and was voted the show's most popular artist. All though Ron Lees is Australian and has sung leads in 7 major operas there are many worldwide aficionados who regard him as one of the greatest "Italian Tenors" of our century. He has an extensive repertoire of arias & popular standard music which he performs in his exciting cabaret act that includes show songs and some Elvis Presley materiaL. Thanks to Mustang.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Ray Brown - 1967 - The Same Old Song RE-POST

The Same Old Song/New Kind of Love/Duke of Earl/Dance of Love

"It's the Same Old Song" is a 1965 hit single recorded by the Four Tops for the Motown label. Written and produced by Motown's main production team Holland–Dozier–Holland, the song is today one of The Tops' signature songs, and was notably created—from initial concept to commercial release—in 24 hours. In 1967, Australian singer Ray Brown (following his split with The Whispers), took his version into the Australian Top 10 #4 Sydney #23 Melbourne #18 Brisbane #5 Perth It was a double-sided hit in Sydney with New Kind Of Love.

Friday, 29 September 2017

The Chicks - 1965 - Heatwave

Heatwave/Be Bop A Lula/Let's Dance/California Sun

The Chicks were sisters Judy and Sue Donaldson. Both girls were born in Wellington in 1950 and 1952 respectively. They moved to Auckland at an early age and were brought up on a farm in the Huapai district.  They got their first taste of success at a talent quest in Napier one Christmas when they were still children singing as the Dots. A neighbour on the farm was Kevin Borich (later with the La De Da's) and with him they made a couple of acetates at Ascot Studios.

Their lucky break came after the family moved to Henderson, when another neighbour was entertaining, and one of his guests was Peter Posa and his manager Ron Dalton. After hearing them sing, Ron thought the girls had some potential and a few weeks later he invited them into the Viking Studio to make their first real recording, "Heart Of Stone"/"I Want You To Be My Boy". The session players on that gig were among the best in Auckland, the Mike Perjanik Band. It was Mike who gave them their name, the Chicks, and the record was released on Viking in 1965.

 Because they hadn't performed in public, Dalton organised a spot for them at a teenage dance in Dargaville, to test public reaction. They also had a spot on the TV show "On The Beat Side", where they sang their second single "Hucklebuck", which was released with "Looking For The Right Guy" on the reverse in 1965.

In August 1965, the were support act on a tour featuring Sandi Shaw, the Pretty Things and Eden Kane. Following that there was another tour with Tommy Adderley and Dinah Lee. Two more singles were released in 1965, "Do You Want To Dance" with Peter Posa, coupled with "Terry" and "Java Jones"/"He's My Guy". It was time to release their first album and this was called "The Sound Of The Chicks".  

1966 saw the Chicks appearing on TV in "A Swinging Safari" and more tours with the likes of P J Proby. Another single for Viking "Cumala Be Stay"/"Be Bop A Lula" and then one single on Impact "Tweedle Dee"/"Rebel Kind". In 1967 a visit to Australia gave them guest spots on TV shows over there. Two singles were recorded on Festival "You Won't Forget Me"/"Gotta See My Baby Every Day" and "What Am I Doing Here With You"/"River Deep Mountain High" in 1967 and 1968 before the girls joined the team on TV's "C'Mon". This show ran for 26 weeks, thereby cutting out much of their live work because of its heavy schedule.  

 Three singles for Polydor were released during 1969, "Say A Prayer For Michael"/"Society's Child", "Miss You Baby"/"Are You Sure" and "Stoney End"/"Get Ready-Uptight". They also signed to a new manager that year and he tried to steer them into the more sophisticated adult-orientated cabaret scene. This was not successful and in 1970 they split up while under the management of Ray Columbus, with their last single being "I Will See You There"/"Long Time Comin'".

During their time 1965 to 1970, they also had 3 EP's and 6 albums released. After the breakup Judy married Ross Hindman from the Rumour and settled down to raise a family, not before recording one solo single on Philips called "Heaven Is The Place"/"I Can Hear The Picture" in 1970 and Sue went solo under the name Suzanne.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Noel McKay - 1961 - Party Songs For Adults Only Vol.3

Red Lights And Bells/Shimmy Like My Sisiter Kate/Song And Dance Man/You Played On My Piano

Born in Oamaru New Zealand about 1928, McKay began working as a female impersonator in the early 1950s. In his heyday he wore 18 wigs and eight frocks a night during his act, making all the dresses himself after learning to sew in a clothing factory (he was quickly sacked for sewing up the wrong seams).

“People say I make easy money, but I do suffer for it,” he said, regretting that thanks to his shaved legs, chest and armpit, he could never wear short-sleeved shirts and walk-shorts during summer.

McKay was occasionally “accused of being gay”, wrote the Otago Daily Times in 1978. “He vehemently denies this, however, and holds up a 25-year long happy marriage with his late wife for proof.” He doubted that any “camp” people attended his shows, though he had nothing against them. “I don’t give a damn what they do or are. That’s their business.”

By the 1970s, McKay was pleased to see that society had become more open-minded towards his sophisticated entertainment. “I enjoy playing to sensible adults,” he told the 8 O’Clock in 1975. “The ones who can laugh instead of snigger and come to the show for fun instead of dirt.” Then aged 48, he was based at Bondi Beach, Sydney, and had just taken up surfing after his much-older wife Tess had recently died. He was back for a two-week season at the Glenfield Tavern, and would soon have residencies at the Station Hotel in Auckland, and Phil Warren’s Silver Spade cabaret in Napier.

McKay performed in Japan, Britain, Europe and the United States, but all of his many recordings were made in New Zealand. In the early 1960s there were six albums, A Date with Noel McKay, Noel McKay In Person, That’s Me All Over, Noel McKay’s Party Song Book, The Fabulous Noel McKay plus the 1967 live album Bold ‘n’ Blue; all but the last were on Viking, who also released a series of five EPs called Party Songs for Adults Only. Among the tracks were ‘Johnny’s Little Yo-yo’, ‘My Body’s More Important than My Mind’, ‘Sweater Girl’ and ‘Leave My Instrument Alone’.

Monday, 28 August 2017

Ray Brown - 1966 - In The Midnight Hour FLAC

In The Midnight Hour/High School Confidential/Summertime Blues/Rockin' Pneumonia

 Ray Brown & the Whispers were a highly successful Australian rock band from 1964 to 1967. Led by singer Ray Brown, they ranked alongside the Easybeats, Billy Thorpe & the Aztecs and Normie Rowe as one of the most popular acts of the period. In 1964, the band played at the Bowl, a Sydney nightclub, doing covers of popular songs such as "Shakin All Over".

In The Midnight Hour was released in Australia in 1965 reaching #2 Sydney #4 Melbourne #1 Brisbane #4 Adelaide #6 Perth one of the bigger hits of this group.

Ray Brown - 1965 - Devoted To You FLAC

Devoted To You/Talkin' About You/Gonna Send You Back To Walker/Shakin' All Over

 Like his contemporaries, Brown began as a soloist at Sydney's suburban dances in front of house bands, until he acquired his own band, the Whispers in 1965. National success came quickly with a series of hit singles, including, "Pride", "Fool, Fool, Fool", and "20 Miles". In 1966, after five hit singles, the Whispers disbanded and the New Whispers were formed, who failed to sustain the momentum of the earlier outfit and broke up. Brown flew to the USA and, despite gaining a recording contract with Capitol Records, did not find success. He returned to Australia in 1970 with a new, bearded, long-haired image and immediately formed Moonstone, who used exotic instruments, such as the sitar, to record their album, and were consequently seen as a hippie folk band. In late 1971 Brown formed the 11-piece One Ton Gypsy, a cumbersome but excellent country-influenced rock band. After this band broke up, Brown continued to perform sporadically, although he has ceased recording.

Sunday, 27 August 2017

Ray Brown - 1965 - Fool! Fool! Fool! WAVE RE-POST

Jambalaya/Fool! Fool! Fool!/He'll Never Love You Like I Do/Go To Him

 Fool, Fool, Fool by Ray Brown and the Whispers was a chart topping single o 1965 reaching #1 Sydney #4 Melbourne #2 Brisbane #1 Adelaide #1 Perth. The B-side was Go To Him, something of a cult classic in its own right.

 Fool fool fool released in July 1965, was a cover of Roosevelt Grier's "Fool, Fool, Fool". Lyrically, the song is pretty slight, being a rather melodramatic variant on the "Mockingbird" theme, with a dash of "I Fought The Law" thrown in.
A former footballer, Ray was always known for his fit and non-indulging lifetyle, so it came as a great shock to friends and fans when he died suddenly on August 16, 1996 ,at 53

Ray Brown - 1966 - Now Is The Time FLAC RE-POST

Now Is The Time/Hands Off/Away From You/One Of These Days

Ray Brown and the Whispers were a chart-topping Sydney band that originated in the surf music scene as The Nocturnes. After acquiring Ray Brown as their lead singer, they went on to become one of the most popular Australian bands of the British Invasion era.
In The Midnight Hour was a double-sided hit in Brisbane with Now Is The Time on the B-Side reaching #2 Sydney #4 Melbourne #1 Brisbane #4 Adelaide #6 Perth.

Ray Brown - 1965 - 20 Miles WAVE RE-POST

20 Miles/If You Need Me/You Got That Way/Skinnie Minnie

 Ray Brown & The Whispers were a chart-topping Sydney band that originated in the surf music scene as The Nocturnes. After acquiring Ray Brown as their lead singer, they went on to become one of the most popular Australian bands of sixties era. The focus was on Ray Brown, who became a major star of the Australian pop scene. with a series of hit singles, including, "Pride", "Fool, Fool, Fool", and "20 Miles" #11 on the OZ charts.

Ray Brown & The Whispers ranked with Normie Rowe, The Aztecs and the Easybeats as one of the hottest acts in the country. They made regular appearances on all the major pop TV shows. By the end of 1965, they had already released two LPs, four singles and several EPs, and starting with their second album, Headin' For The Top, they were able to make use of Festival's newly opened four-track studio in Ultimo, enabling them to make great strides in production. In 1966, after five hit singles, the Whispers disbanded and losing momentum over the next few years, Ray Brown flew to the USA. returning to Australia in 1970 with a new, direction and he immediately formed Moonstone who used exotic instruments, such as the sitar, to record their album.

Ray spent most of 1971 back in the USA, returning in late 1971 to unveil the 11-piece One Ton Gypsy an excellent country-influenced rock band. One Ton Gypsy regrettably made no studio recordings, and lasted only until 1973, eventually folding due to the cost of keeping such a large outfit on the road. The only extant tracks by this remarkable all-star band are the two songs they performed at the closing of the Garrison venue in Melbourne in mid-1973, which were recorded by Mushroom and later released as the LPs Garrison: The Final Blow. Whether any other songs from One Ton Gypsy were recorded at this event, and if such recordings have survived, is unknownAfter this band broke up, Ray recorded a superb solo single "Steel Guitar" / "Covered Wagon" for the newly-launched Mushroom label in November 1973. He continued to perform solo, and also revived the Whispers (with new lineups, including Wilbur Wilde) for concert appearances into the 80s.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Peter Nelson And The Castaways - 1967 - Skye Boat Song

A Little Lovin' Somethin'/At A Time Like This/Goin Out Of My Mind/Skye Boat Song

 Peter Nelson and the Castaways originated from Christchurch. Peter's real name was Peter Trebilcock. They appeared on the local TV show "Teen Scene" there before basing themselves in Wellington. With this original line-up they recorded two singles "Baby Can I Take You Home"/"I'll Never Be Blue" and "Down The Road Apiece"/"I'll Go Crazy" in 1965. They were good examples of R&B from that time. Unlike other New Zealand bands of the era the Castaways chose to mine a rich vein of obscure tracks of R&B and mixed them with their own originals.

It was the next single that they were best known for. It was "Down In The Mine"/"So Don't Go". "Down In The Mine" was written by Peter Hindmarsh, who was the bass player for the Wellington band, the Premiers, in the early sixties. Around this time Doug Rowe, from Palmerston North's Saints, replaced Don Clarkson on bass in 1965. 

 One more single was released, "Goin' Out Of My Mind"/"Skye Boat Song", before the group left for Australia in 1966. Following the groups arrival in Australia, Peter Nelson left them to find fame as a solo artist, heading to the lucrative scene in Hong Kong. Peter was replaced by a new vocalist called Frankie Stevens, brother of Jon Stevens and they changed their name to the Castaways.

There were still two singles to be released as Peter Nelson and the Castaways. They were "Knock On Wood"/"Old Man Mose" and "At A Time Like This"/"A Little Lovin' Somethin' ", both released in 1967. As the Castaways they released the singles "Any Little Bit"/"Early Morning" in 1967 and "One More Fool"/"Baby What I Mean" and "Angelica"/"Love Is A Hurtin' Thing"  for EMI in Australia before returning to New Zealand in 1968. During their time in Australia, Len Ormsby was replaced by Reno Tehei, Doug Petrie by ex-Twilights drummer Laurie Pryor, and Peter Gillette by Lance Dixon.

Peter Nelson had previously been in another Christchurch group called the Diamonds, along with a number of others from the Castaways. The Diamonds consisted of Ray Messervy on bass, Don Clarkson on guitar, Doug Petrie on drums, David Henderson on guitar, Kay Bassett on vocals as well as Peter on vocals. They released one single in 1963 called "Ventures In Paradise"/"Lucille".

Don Clarkson had also been with Don Clarkson and the Wildcats, another Christchurch group consisting of Bevan Littler on piano, Elton Burgess on bass, Russ Thompson on drums, Don on guitar and vocals and Brian Ringrose, of Invaders and Dave Miller and the Byrds fame, on lead guitar. They also released one single in 1963 called "Pretty Baby"/"Somewhere".

Peter Gillette went on to play with the Chapta, the Footsteps and Moviez.

After the Castaways dissolved, Len Ormsby and Doug Petrie joined up with Peter Gillette on keyboards, Ben Kaika, now from Compulsion, and a girl singer called Toni, in a new group called the Traque

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Johnny Devlin - 1961 - Gigolo

Gigolo/I'm Gonna Love You/Turn The Lights Out/Wicked,Wicked

 Johnny Devlin (b. 1938 in Raetihi) was a New Zealander who had been a pioneering rock'n'roll star in his home country. Devlin's New Zealand success was in covering American rock'n'roll, and his repertoire included a range of astutely chosen covers, many away from the mainstream. However, most of his charting Australian records were originals, usually written or co-written by himself.

Johnny Devlin had sixteen songs on the Sydney charts alone 1959-1965. His biggest hits were:
Gigolo 1960 #16 Sydney #25 Melbourne #19 Adelaide, Turn The Lights Out Johnny (1959, #3 Sydney, #27 Melbourne, #2 Adelaide), an original rocker by Devlin; the novelty Got A Zack In The Back Of My Pocket (1960, #7 Sydney, #19 Brisbane, #8 Adelaide), written by Nat Kipner, (a zack was a sixpenny piece); and Stomp The Tumbarumba (1963, #5 Sydney, #5 Brisbane), by Devlin, a surf craze song that seems to refer to an inland New South Wales town.

Thanks to Geoff G.

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Peter and the Panthers - 1964 - Stomp '64 @320

Come Surf With Me/Love's Made A Fool Of You/How Will It End/This Time

 The year 1963 in the music world was one of new fads and new faces one of the fads was a brand new dance called the "Stomp". And along with it came a brand new vocalist sounding very much like the late Buddy Holly. His name is Peter Leslie and together with his own instrumental group "The Panthers" he has made a tremendous impact on the Rock and Stomp dances all over Victoria.

The Panthers consist of Peter White (Lead Guitar) Ron Albett (Rhythm Guitar) Peter Henley (Bass Guitar) and Bob O'Connor (Drums).

Peter Leslie who in common with many other many well known singers sang for the first in public with a church choir, started his professional career by singing pop tunes with a dance band in 1961.At about this time he met and joinrd forces with the present lead guitarist for the Panthers Peter White and together they began to introduce the dance patrons to a brand new Rock beat during the supper break.  They were immediately successful and very shortly formed the group now known as The Panthers.

Nineteen year old Peter Leslie is a recording engineer by trade and has been largely resonsible for creating and developing the sound of the Panthers. Originally formed in Gippsland Victoria the group must be headed for big things in 1964.

Liner notes from the EP.       

Thanks to Geoff G. for this one.

Friday, 21 July 2017

Barry Humphries - 1958 - Wild Life In Suburbia Vol 2 FLAC

Highett Fidelity/Dear Beryl

 John Barry Humphries, AO, CBE (born 17 February 1934) is an Australian comedian, actor, satirist, artist, and author. He is best known for writing and playing his on-stage and television alter egos Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson. He is also a film producer and script writer, a star of London's West End musical theatre, an award-winning writer, and an accomplished landscape painter. For his delivery of dadaist and absurdist humour to millions, biographer Anne Pender described Humphries in 2010 as not only "the most significant theatrical figure of our time … [but] the most significant comedian to emerge since Charlie Chaplin".
 In 1958, Humphries and director Peter O'Shaughnessy collaborated on and appeared in the Rock'n'Reel Revue at the New Theatre in Melbourne where Humphries brought the characters of Mrs Everage and Sandy Stone into the psyche of Melbourne audiences. In the same year, Humphries made his first commercial recording, the EP's Wild Life in Suburbia Volumes 1 & 2, which featured liner notes by his friend, the Modernist architect and writer Robin Boyd.

Thanks to AussieRock

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Peter Posa - 1972 - Plays Westerns

The Ballad of Jed Clampett/Cotton Fields/Redwing/Mexicali Rose

In the Henderson Valley west of Auckland during the 1940's a boy was growing up who within twenty years would be New Zealand's best known instrumentalist. He would have numerous hit records and make no fewer than twenty albums. His fame would spread throughout Australia and the South Pacific. He would work in the USA and mix with the giants of world show business. He was of course Peter Posa.

Peter was the youngest of three sons born into an industrious Yugoslav family. The family business was an orchard growing apples, peaches and plums, but eventually Mr Paul Posa could see that Henderson was proving to be an ideal place for making wine. So out went the fruit trees and in came the vineyard.

 Peter wasn't greatly interested in all that because from a very early age he had his mind set on music and specifically playing the guitar. He started on ukulele when he was seven. After that he used to spend all his spare time making his own toy guitars. He would find a round piece of wood for the bell, a long piece for the stem, and then steal his mother's clothes lines from the porch to use as strings. Mrs Posa was forever wondering where her clothesline had gone.

Finally for his ninth birthday, Peter was given his first real guitar, he remembers it well. It was a South African Galatone which his father bought for £5 from a secondhand shop. He used to listen to his family's old 78 rpm records, country artists like Tex Morton and Col Wilson and try to copy the guitar licks. He had a few lessons to learn the chords, but worked out all the rest for himself. The family couldn't get the guitar off him.

He got a better instrument when he was eleven and his older brothers used to take him around to talent quests. Peter was a shy lad who didn't dare look at the audience, and he laughs when he recalls that he always used to finish second, even when he played "Guitar Boogie" on 1ZB's "Have A Shot". He also used to do some singing in those days.

At age twelve Peter at last got his first amplifier and began taking a deep interest in the multi-guitar sounds which Les Paul was turning out in the States, this was a major influence on his early career. As he developed in his teenage years he led the Peter Posa Combo which used to play for all types of dances and functions in West Auckland. There were a number of different people who played in the Combo, some of the significant ones are Jack Stradwick and Brian Harris, who were later in the Figures and the Action.

After leaving Henderson High School, Peter thought it was time to make his first record., so he approached Eldred Stebbing of the Zodiac label. Eldred wasn't interested in recording the Posa Combo, but could see a real technical challenge in the multiple guitar style in which Peter overdubbed all the tracks himself.

So the first record was put together in late 1959. It was "Sweet Georgia Brown"/"Some Of These Days" and was the start of his solo career, with nightclub engagements and several more singles to follow. In 1961 the first real breakthrough came when Peter did his own version of the Stringalongs hit "Wheels". It was played on the Lever Hit Parade and suddenly he had a nationwide tour as support act for the English singing sensation Helen Shapiro.

By 1963 Peter was feeling the need to branch out and develop his own guitar style in different directions. So he signed a deal with Viking Records, the "hot" label at the time, which also had the advantage of overseas outlets. His first record there was "Galloping Guitars"/"Jessie", but out of the blue two Auckland musicians, Bill Ivory and Graham Rosling arrived with a tune that they thought had potential. Peter loved it at first hearing and it was about to change his life.

"The White Rabbit" was the name, and even in that wonderful year of 1963, when the Beatles had just arrived and the charts were overflowing with million sellers, it received enormous airplay. Peter was now headlining his own national tour with co-artists Bill and Boyd, and Max Merritt and the Meteors. A string of hit records followed, the same composers came up with "The Mad Hatter", then Margaret Raggett of Gisbourne penned "Grasshopper" and "Hitch Hiker". Peter himself wrote "Gonk", named after the fluffy toy of the moment, and then the track mysteriously called "?", and the radio contest to find it's name, which was eventually "Flapjack".    

1963 and 1964 were one long whirl, Peter says he worked 363 out of 365 days in one of those years. On top of his New Zealand shows, he toured Australia, New Caledonia, Fiji, Tahiti and Vanuatu. To cap it all off, Viking's Ron Dalton arranged for "White Rabbit" to be released in the USA and for Peter to do six months work there. Before he left, his farewell tour, the "Peter Posa Spectacular" swept through the country, which took about eight weeks so huge was the public interest.

 In Nashville, Peter spent time at all the major recording studios and met his hero Chet Atkins. He played on the TV show Hollywood Palace where he was accompanied by the legendary jazz guitarist Herb Ellis. He met Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin in Las Vegas, and worked his gigs mainly in LA.

But there was a downside as well. The "White Rabbit" had been released on a small independent label and there was little promotion. What's more Peter was on his own in the States and very homesick. So he made the decision to come home for Christmas 1964 and to confine his future touring to the South Pacific, a similar decision as Howard Morrison made when the world seemed to beckon him also.

Back in New Zealand Peter became a prolific recording artist making more albums than any other New Zealander. He toured the country many times, often as part of the Miss NZ Shows, which now included the likes of Eddie Lowe, Howard Morrison, John Hore and Paul Walden, and also on tours by Marty Robbins, Roger Whittaker, Hank Snow, Slim Whitman and Demis Roussos. In Fiji he was made an honourary chief, in Noumea he was known as "King Peter", and he dedicated one of his compositions "French Caledonian Blue" to that market. He had residencies at some of Auckland's top venues, including the Troika.     

In 1965, Peter and his manager Ron Dalton had been invited to a friends place in Henderson. Their were also some of the friends neighbours there as well. Two in particular were a couple of young girls who sang a few songs. After hearing them sing, Ron soon had them in the studio and the Chicks were on their way to success. Later in 1965 Peter released one single with the Chicks called "Do You Wanna Dance"/"Terry".

His writing talent also won him awards and recognition. In 1975, "Nashville Express" won the Best Instrumental of the Year Award in Australia. The next year his "Rose Can I Share A Bed With You" was a huge hit for Toni Williams.

Today Peter lives happily in Auckland with his wife Margaret.

Peter's total output on vinyl amounted to 28 singles, (14 on Zodiac, 13 on Viking and 1 on Joe Brown), plus international releases, 15 EP's on Viking, plus 1 international, and 20 albums, (2 on Zodiac, 16 on Viking, 1 on Salem and 1 on Axis).   

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Billy Thorpe - 1964 - Poison Ivy RE-POST

Poison Ivy/Broken Things/Blue Day/You Don't Love Me

Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs were an Australian pop and rock group dating from the mid-1960s. The group enjoyed success in the mid-1960s, but split in 1967. They re-emerged in the early 1970s to become one of the most popular Australian hard-rock bands of the period. Thorpe died from a heart attack in Sydney on 28 February 2007.

Originally a four-piece instrumental group who had put out one surfing instrumental, "Smoke & Stack", they formed in Sydney in 1963. With the advent of the Merseybeat sound, they added a lead singer, Billy Thorpe. His powerful voice and showmanship (which made him one of the most popular and respected rock performers in Australian music), completed the original line-up, which consisted of drummer Col Baigent, bassist John "Bluey" Watson and guitarists Valentine Jones and Vince Maloney (who later played with The Bee Gees). Valentine Jones left the band shortly after Billy Thorpe had joined and was later replaced by Tony Barber.
Chart success
The group broke through in mid-1964 with a massive nationwide hit, their cover of the Leiber and Stoller classic "Poison Ivy", which famously kept The Beatles from the No. 1 spot on the Sydney charts at the very moment that the group was making its first and only tour of Australia—a feat which resulted in Thorpe being invited to meet the Fab Four at their hotel.

TMG - Areoplane Jelly RE-POST

Areoplane Jelly (Slow)/Areoplane Jelly (Rock)/Interview

A flexi disc issued in the 70's for Aeroplane Jelly most likely '77 as the interview promotes the TMG Album which was released  in 1977.

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Saints - 1965 - Ski With The Saints RE-POST

The Deep Warmth Of You/Snowdrift/Skiing Holiday/On The Perisher Track

The Saints were very much an 'easy listening' instrumental band with some vocals. They put a twist on the surf instrumental genre in 1964 by recording one with a ski theme. Sit back by a roaring log fire, pour yourself a steaming mug of gluhwein, and enter the world of 1960s-era ski lodges.

 Songs predominantly written by producer Sven Libaek, with some by vocalist/guitarist Noel Quinlan, and also drummer George Thornton and pianist/vocalist Brian Myers.