Archive for the ‘British invasion’ Category


A PAVEMENT ARTIST – The pavement artist is one of the familiar features of the London scene. Your genuine artist draws with coloured chalks direct onto the flagstones, but there are others, less talented or more idle, who merely prop a few sketches or paintings against a convenient railing. The artist in this photograph has given titles to three of his pictures – ‘A Norfolk Road’, ‘Amsterdam, Holland’ and ‘Wessex’. His work is exhibited against some railings in Waterloo Place, on the opposite side from the Athenaeum, which is seen in the previous picture. Perhaps he does not come into the category of ‘artists of eminence in any class of the Fine Arts’, but nobody can deny him the honourable title of ‘artist’.

From “Country Life Picture Book of London” with photos by G F Allen

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intro_ill_rsrg_thumb5_thumbEven the most music interested among us can sometimes get lost in all the different labels music journalists and record companies choose to put on recordings. This glossary may help you find your way in this label jungle. As you can see from the text above here this glossary is from 1979 and as this is a retro blog that works alright for me. Besides, any music styles that has emerged since then is of little interest to me, with the possible exception of neo-classic country. I’m sorry to say that dance, trance, hip-hop, rap and the rest simply don’t do it for me – Ted

You’ll find Glossary A – B here

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Billy J. Kramer (born William Howard Ashton, 19 August 1943, in Bootle, Liverpool, England) was a British Invasion / Merseybeat singer. He is known today primarily as the singer of various Lennon-McCartney compositions that The Beatles did not use.

The performing name Kramer was chosen at random from a telephone directory. It was John Lennon’s suggestion that the “J” be added to the name to further distinguish him by adding a ‘tougher edge’. Billy soon came to the attention of Brian Epstein, ever on the look-out for new talent to add to his expanding roster of local artists. Kramer turned professional but his then backing band, The Coasters were less keen, so Epstein sought out the services of a Manchester based band, The Dakotas, a well-respected combo then backing Pete MacLaine.

Even then, the Dakotas would not join Kramer wihout a recording deal of their own. Once in place, the deal was set and both acts signed to Parlophone under George Martin. Collectively, they were named Billy J. Kramer with The Dakotas to keep their own identities within the act. Once the Beatles broke through, the way was paved for a tide of “Merseybeat” and Kramer was offered the chance to cover a song first released by the Beatles on their own debut album, Please Please Me. The track had been allegedly turned down by Shane Fenton (later Alvin Stardust) who was looking for a career reviving hit.

Added videos with Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas:
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – It’s Gotta Last Forever
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – I Call Your Name
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – Tennessee Waltz
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – Trains & Boats & Planes
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – From A Window
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – Bad to me
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – I ‘ll Keep You Satisfied
Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas – Little Children

And you’ll find these mersey beat classics on “British Classics 2” on my vodpod pages and in the Vodpod widget in the right column here on the blog – Ted

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