The Classic Line-up 1960-1962

In early June 1960, Vince Taylor & his New Playboys took part of a benefit for the family of the late Eddie Cochran, who had died in a car crash on April 17. They then took up a residency at Blackpool Palace during the summer prior to recording 2 new numbers, “I'll be your Hero” and “Jet bLack Machine”, for Belgian label Palette Records.
While the Shadows topped the British charts with “Apache”, “I'll be your Hero”/“Jet bLack Machine” reached number 15, becoming probably Vince’s biggest sale at home.
Still managed by Tom Littlewood, Vince Taylor went out on “2i's package show” with Keith Kelly, Lance Fortune and Screaming Lord Sutch in Autumn of 1960. The Playboys backed all the artists of the show. The first tour they did all together was of Devon and Cornwall (see posters), during which their pianist Alan LeClaire used to drive the van of the band.

Alan LeClaire
“While we were with Taylor, we were introduced to Sutch. He didn't have a band at that time, so he toured with us for a few months before getting his own group together… The first tour we did was of Devon and Cornwall. he had an old van, but no driving licence. I drove it and it kept on breaking down… Sutch slept in the back of the van to save on expences… He act was general lunacy and quite funny. He couldn't sing, but just shouted while we played…
His stage show was really a visual performance of organised insanity. A real good laugh, but not much musical value…”

On September 28th 1960, The Sunday Pictorial ran a photograph of Screaming Lord Sutch – arms outstreched, eyes shut, mouth wide open, hair hanging around his face – with the head line “he’s the daftest yet”.
The 19 year old screamer was plain Dave Sutch from South Harrow, Middlesex, when he asked Rock star Vince Taylor for work with his group. Vince heard Dave scream and recommended him to his own backer, Tom Littlehood, who runs the 2I’s… Tom advised the newcomer: “Get a gimmick, and you’re in”.
So, plain Dave Sutch went away and bought a pair of buffalo horns in a Second Hand Shop for 15 shillings. He fixed them in a hat, and returned to Two I's as Screaming Lord Sutch, the 18-inch hair just grew, along with the gimmick, and now he is touring with Vince’s group. Says Vince: “When the screamer starts work, the fans don’t know wether to laugh, jive or run away”. Sutch described the group’ style at that time as “Rock’n’Roll, Wild and Frantic”.

Vic Clark, Savages Lead Guitarist in 1960
“We played the 2I's very frequently. Vince Taylor and the Playboys was the main act at that time…
When we played the 2I's Tony Harvey and Bobby Woodman were in the Playboys. Bobby Woodman was an amazing rock drummer. He really worked his kick-drum, nearly everything was 8 beats to the bar. One night when we were watching, Sutch grabbed Carlo and said "Thats how I want you to play the drums". Bobby was Carlo's inspiration and Carlo responded well.”

Rick Brown, Savages Bassist in 1960-64
“In 1960/1, all the musicians who went to the I's (Savages included) were strongly influenced by the sound of the Playboys, which really came from Bobby Woodman. It was a hard, punchy, aggressive style which has made any other British rock or pop music sound weak and flimsy by comparison. And Woodman had his hair bleached for visual impact.”

Vince Taylor's unstable caracter caused several arguments with the band, approuved by ruptures shortly followed by reconciliations. Prior to a 2 weet tour starting in Guilford, Vince came up while the band was rehearsing and asked them if they were O.K. to back him though Tom Littlewood still hadn’t paid them. But they refused to back him until they weren’t paid. After that Vince drove to the airport and took the first plane to Los Angeles. He stayed there for about 4 months. Obviously, as Bobby Woodman noticed, he had enough money to buy a ticket to ride! So The Playboys started looking for other people to play with such as Terry Dene or Duffy Power. They took part of Gene Vincent’s tour of Great Britain in early 1961 backing Dene and Screaming Lord Sutch. In spring of ‘61,The Playboys, lead by Bobbie Woodman, changed their name to 'The Bobbie Woodman Noise'.

In April 1961, lead guitarist Tony Harvey left the Playboys to join Nero & The Gladiators run by the pianist Mike O'Neill formerly with Tommy Steele's brother Colin Hicks & The Cabin Boys alongside Laurie Jay on drums and Boot Slade on bass. The Playboys replaced Harvey with Bob Steel.

Aucun commentaire:

Enregistrer un commentaire