Who played what?


I’ve now reached the point with this new book where I’m focusing on details. While the main body of the book will be mid/late 1960s – sort of Birdcage to IOW Festivals musically – there is stuff about what came before and I’m interested in what the local groups were playing around 1963/4.

I have a recording of Mike Devon & the Diplomats – the guys who supported the Beatles at the Savoy – and their sets in those days included some ‘Merseybeat’ songs: “I Saw Her Standing There”, “There’s a Place”, “I Call Your Name”, “Sugar & Spice”, “I’m Telling You Now”  as well as Chuck Berry’s “Roll Over Beethoven”, & “Memphis Tennessee” and other stuff from the USA that many people covered back then such as “Keep Your Hands Off My Baby”, “Do You Love Me”, “I Can Tell”, “Searchin”, and “Love Potion No 9”.

This is post rock & roll and just prior to the R&B ‘boom’ (Muddy, Hooker, Bo etc). I’d like to know about other groups back then and whether this set looks typical, whether any ‘classics’ or favourites are missing?


Author: pompeypop

University lecturer, longtime local musician and recently historian of popular music - especially in and around Portsmouth. My blog is entirely about that topic

4 thoughts on “Who played what?

  1. Well not seeing much response here is one from me

    Well Dave no Gig Lists survive from the Furys that I know of but if memory serves me here is a smattering from what I figure is late 63 through most of 64 although I may be out of whack on some of the stuff

    Do you love me – Farons Flamingos (IMHO The VERY Best Band to come out of Liverpool)
    See if She Cares – Farons Flamingos
    Everythings alright – Mojos
    Give your lovin to Me – Mojos
    Memphis Tennessee – Chuck Berry
    No Particular place to go – Chuck Berry
    Shakin All over – Johnny Kidd
    Stay – The Hollies
    Chains – The Cookies
    Spanish Harlem – Ben E King?
    The Night has a thousand eyes – Bobby Vee
    How do you do it – Gerry and the Pacemakers
    I Like it – Gerry and the Pacemakers
    Move it – Cliff Richard
    Mailman Bring Me no More Blues – Buddy Holly
    Think it over – Buddy Holly
    Summertime – R&H
    Please Please Me – Beatles
    Money – Beatles
    Surfin Safari – Beach Boys
    Pipeline – Chantays
    Perfidia – Ventures
    The Bandit of Brazil – The Shadows (Vocal)
    Dream – Everly Bros
    Blowin in the Wind – PP&M
    Johnny B Goode – Chuck Berry
    I fought the law – The Crickets
    Multiplication – Bobby Darin
    Summertime Blues – EC
    Trambone – Krew Kats
    And I think some more Hollies and maybe Manfred Mann and a bunch of Johnny Kidd stuff but don’t remember what
    Looking back it seems a rag tag bunch of crap and seems like a band in transition with an unsure direction. At the start we struggled and made the transition from Instrumental to Vocal Group and seemed to have some wild swings in what style we played.We did veer towards some oddball stuff. Almost at one point into just Top 20 type stuff and Beatles with an exploration into almost Folk music then into Beach boys (I get around) In 63 we had pretty much left the instrumentals behind and transitioning into the typical BlacK Leather and White shirts Hollies look we all had back then.
    We played many of the standards and the hits of the time.

  2. MANY thanks Pete – very interesting. To what extent were you picking songs for the DANCERS? (including the final song smooch!)

  3. I really don’t think we targeted the dancers. I think we just played along and they Danced anyway. I think there always was a percentage of guys and girls who hung out at the foot of the stage. Don’t recall we did a last slow song either but we may have.
    I think back then they danced to anything. It was a couple of years before the crowd became mainly watchers and I think that was due to the shifting beats and strangeness as the musicians became more self indulgent. It’s hard to imagine how a 63/64 crowd would react to say for example the ending guitar solo in Freebird. I really don’t think I became aware of just how to read an audience and how to construct sets as to get the crowd out on the floor until years later.

  4. Hope this helps a little,

    Slightly embarrassed to say so but, I actually still have a very old piece of paper with our playlist on from the very first gig I ever played. It was ’63, I think, in the first ‘incarnation’ of ‘The Conchords’ and we played at St Nicholas Church Hall in Battenburg Ave. Copnor, I think it was for free. We were all still at school then and the line up was myself on drums, Doug Chalmers on Bass, John Davis on rhythm and a guy named Richard Colley on lead. At the time, we didn’t have a singer and we only played instrumental numbers. My mum was the one who said I should keep the list as I would look back on it and smile one day. To my surprise, whilst knowing I probably wouldn’t, she then duly kept it safe for all those years .

    Peter Gunn – Duane Eddy
    Apache – The Shadows
    Walk Don’t Run – The Ventures
    FBI – The Shadows ( no, we didn’t do the walk 😉 )
    Let’s Go – The Routers
    Pipeline – The Ventures/Chantays
    Perfidia – The Ventures/Shadows
    Let There be Drums – Sandy Nelson
    Dance On – The Shadows
    Wipe Out – The Surfaris ( which I used to practise in my bedroom for hours )
    Because They’re Young – Duane Eddy
    and for the grand finale
    Green Onions – Booker T and the MGs ( must have sounded real bad with no Hammond 😉 )

    Not too long afterwards Stuart Ward replaced Richard on lead and we welcomed our own Allan Clarke ‘look-alike’ vocalist in a guy named Ron Binfield. Needless to say we got much better from then on. Certainly as we progressed I can clearly remember including Numbers like ..

    Just One Look
    Love Potion Number Nine
    Poison Ivy
    Walking the Dog
    High Heel Sneekers
    Cut Across shorty
    Good Morning Little Schoolgirl
    I Wanna Hold Your Hand
    Duke of Earl
    Love Me Do
    Roll Over Beethoven
    Do You Love Me
    Johnny B Good
    Be My Baby
    Dah Doo Ron Ron
    Under the Boardwalk
    Glad All Over
    House of the Rising Sun
    You Really Got me
    Twist and Shout
    I Saw Her Standing There
    Needles and Pins
    It’s All Over Now ( Doug, our Bass player, LOVED the bass riff )
    Save The Last Dance for Me
    Oh and I remember doing a ‘drum solo’ to a version of ‘Diamonds’ also 😉

    We kinda got to know what the audience that we had to play for generally expected, but also liked to feature the occasional Rufus Thomas, Yardbirds/Muddy Waters numbers too, very much influenced once more by Doug. Time moved on and so did Ron and in came Phil and Mick, whilst John gave up rhythm guitar and started to learn and play saxophone. From then on was certainly the best sound ( in my opinion ) that ‘The Conchords’ ever produced – and continued as they morphed into ‘The Soul Society’.

    I later moved on to the St Louis Checks and then into The Soul Society, where it was a whole different ball game and the only real survivors were numbers like those by Rufus Thomas etc.

    Fast forward to the early mid 70’s and to ‘Amalgamation’ and it was back to hit parade stuff, current and old, for the type of gigs that we were booked for and that we did best, including lots of ‘four part harmony’ material by bands like The Hollies, Crosby Stills and Nash, Marmalade, Tremeloes etc.

    The only “Last Dance’ number that I particularly remember, above all others, was played at Neros in the early 70’s and it was Peter Skellerns – ‘You’re a Lady’.

    Certainly this has helped to bring back so many great memories.

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