Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Before we was Fab...

After reading some ill informed drivel in a daily rag about how good Cliff Richard is and how it was a disgrace that he wasn’t being played on 60’s radio due to the fact that he was deemed ‘not cool’, I felt compelled to fight the corner of the radio station.

Firstly he isn’t cool, he never was. He was a diet coke Elvis but with none of the sexual aspects or raw hillbilly rebel swagger to his character that Elvis had in spades. He was for all intense purposes simply rock and roll for your Nan to tap her foot to. The idea that he was some full on heavy rock and roller like Gene Vincent or Elvis is laughable. Firstly he was backed by The Shadows, a group so un-hip and vacuous that they took boring to a new level. Many people might talk in hushed tones about Hank Marvin's guitar ability and his introduction and use of the fabled ‘Whammy Bar’ but the gentle shimmer he gave was nothing compared to the out and out sonic abuse Ike Turner was dishing out over the pond in the USA at the same time with the same tools.

The writer in question who spoke about ‘Move it’ being the best rock and roll record to come out of pre-Beatle Britain has obviously never listened to any of the following that blast it out of the water.

Here are just 5 pre-Beatles British Rock and Roll Records that I picked out from a handful that I would say argue my case…

Shakin’ All OverJohnny Kid & the Pirates
Johnny Remember MeJohn Leyton
Wondrous PlaceBilly Fury
No Other BabyThe Vipers
TelstarThe Tornados (the first UK record to reach #1 in US charts)

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