Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Rock n Roll Comes To Singapore Part 2 by Michael Bangar

Good Friend Michael obliges as usual, writing on a topic that he holds dearly, the emergence of a music era that’s incomparable at any period in time. 

Many thanks Michael.

Hi Andy,

This paper is a continuation of Part 1.

Meanwhile in the UK & Europe, Cliff Richard & The Shadows and their likes were rocking the charts  with some of their own catchy hits. In the US pop music in the charts were  watered down to keep in line with the authorities idea to phase out Rock & Roll eventually. 

In the meantime, the US troops that were stationed in Germany, especially the African American ones were bringing with them and introducing their music to the European audiences and bands performing there. By Rock & Roll Artistes like Gene Vincent & His Blue Caps, Bill Haley & His Comets, Ricky Nelson, Eddie Cochran, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and of cause King Elvis Presley. Coloured Artistes like Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Fats Domino, Ray Charles. Blues Artistes like B B King, Albert King, Freddie King, John Lee Hooker, Buddy Guy, Albert Collins, etc.
In Hamburg, a relatively unknown 5 piece band from Liverpool, England calling themselves The Silver Beatles were doing the  rounds there in clubs like The Star Club, doing covers of American Rock & Roll, Pop, Soul & Blues. Made up of 3 guitarists John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison, Stuart Suttcliffe on bass and Pete Best on drums. They paid their dues there working long sets to hone their craft. During a violent tragic incident where they were beaten up by thugs, Stuart succumbed to his injuries and passed on. Sad !

 At home in the UK, some bands were doing the same thing. The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Animals, The Searchers, etc were also doing the rounds in clubs and concert halls polishing their skills, doing mostly covers of American Music. 

Upon returning to England, Paul switched to bass & Ringo Starr (Richard Starkey - real name ) replaced Pete Best on drums. They got involved with Brian Epstein who took on their management. He worked on a recording deal for them. Decca Records rejected them first saying that " guitar bands are on the way out " before EMI ( Parlophone Label to be exact - who put them on to producer George Martin ) took them on. 

Then they started their run of hits : Love Me Do, Please Please Me, From Me To You, I Wanna Hold Your Hand, Help, A Hard Days Night and the list went on and on and on. Before all that, they shortened their band name to The Beatles and dressed in matching outfits. With their Beatle boots and moptops they started a fashion craze worldwide. In a short while in the UK bands started sprouting out all over the place, imitating them and their image.

All the groups came along and followed their footsteps. They gave The Rolling Stones their 1st. Hit " I Wanna Be Your Man " which Ringo Starr  recorded on their 1st. album - With The Beatles . Other Stones hits followed - The Last Time, Under The Boardwalk ( American group, The Drifters original ) their giant hit Satisfaction and Get Off Of My Cloud. The Kinks, with their hits You Really Got Me, All Day And All Of The Night, Dedicated Follower Of Fashion and Waterloo Sunset. Manfred Man with hits like 5, 4, 3, 2, 1,, If You Got To Go, Go Now, Pretty Flamingo. The Dave Clark 5 gave us Glad All Over, Catch Us If You Can, Because Because I Love You, Reelin' & A-Rockin', a Chuck Berry original. 

     The Animals with House Of The Rising Sun ( an American tradtional folk song 1st. popularised by Nina Simone ), Please Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood, Bring It On Home To Me, We Got To Get Out Of This Place, See See Rider. Hermans' Hermits and their hits I'm Into Something Good, No Milk Today, A Little Bit Better, Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter.

The Searchers had Sweet For My Sweet, Needles And Pins, When You Walk In The Room.  Gerry & The Pacemakers had How Do You Do, I like It, Ferry Cross The Mersey and the Liverpool Football Club Anthem - You'll Never Walk Alone. Freddie & The Dreamers gave us If You Got To Make A Fool Of Somebody, I Understand a remake of The Four Tunes 1954 hit ( Integrated  with Auld Lang Syne )and Do The Freddie ( their dance hit). Billy J. Kramer & The Dakotas hit the British charts with George Harrison's Do You Want To Know A Secret, Bad To me, I'll Keep You Satisfied and Little Children.

During that period, the early 60's there were some short- lived groups that had their songs in the UK charts as well. Like The Merseybeats and they had hits like I Think Of You, Sorrow, Wishing And Hoping. The Foremosts hits were A Little Loving, Hello Little Girl, Baby I Need Your Loving. The Honeycombs with a lady drummer gave the UK charts Have I The Right, Leslie Anne, That's The Way. After a short period these bands faded into UK Pop Music History.

Best regards,

Michael Bangar



Good morning Andy so nice see your blog out again, indeed such a beautiful written article of those unforgetable 60s UK bands and music by Michael Bangar, loved them all 👍😊

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks for your support and messages Freda. Appreciate. I shall send your comment to Michael too. And Jennie, Your music conductor gif takes the cake. Thanks. Appreciate other friends who LIKE this post. Cheers.



Ericbronson Wong
Freda Hanum
Jennie Law
Ho Victor
Jimmy Appudurai-chua
Kali Dass S
Terence Lee
Gracie Teo


Love this article on British Pop Singers and Bands.During the British Invasion,lots of them invaded Singapore too.I had the chances to watch them perform at the National Theatre in many occasions,bands like The Shadows,Bee Gees,Dave Clark 5,Cliff Richard,The Animals,Freddie and the Dreamers,The Hollies,The Searchers and other great bands


It's been a while since I read your blog which made me sure that I grew up with listening and being inspired by those names. But they still live with me now.


Must find my autographed pic of billy jay and Dakotas.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Stephen, Hiroshi, and Jimmy for invaluable comments. Coming from you guys, they are gems.

facebook chats said...

Roop Singh
Hiroshi Deguchi
Ser Kiong Tan
Terence Lee
Michael Lee
Davy Chan

FRED CHING said...

Hey Brother Andy, thanks to Michael for this article. Just finished listening to this in my music room. I’ve got 17 years old again and happy memories came to my mind.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Ah, Fred, it looks like a wonderful piece of UK nostalgia there. You were 17 when you were in the British Isles? That's youth. Thanks Fred for your cheerful reaction!

To Jimmy Appudurai:
Ah the man himself. Missed him since on the train. Hi Jimmy. What's the going on down south? Summertime and the livin' is easy?


Boris lifted my lockdown yesterday from 12 weeks to 10. For good behaviour.... will drive to Plymouth later to see a friend. They are allowing me to meet one person..the din is blazing, horse racing is back.

One of my horses is tuning at Newmarket on Thursday..first time out.it is racing with ,10 other unraced horses. Hope it runs well...slowly the UK is opening, but no chance for the musicians.yet ,??

Stay safe Andy xxxx.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Jimmy. Give your horse a pat for me. Good luck on the fast tracks. Wow! That's a national past-time. Cheers brother.

Stay cool and SAFE.


I have a share in three horses, this one is un-raced..do a watching brief am working well and very well bred, his sire is footsteps-in-the-sands who won the 2000 guineas.. he runs 3 pm at Newmarket on Thursday.drawn,11 of 11 runners have a sporting chance.


OK Jimmy.
You stay safe OK. Wear your mask all the time. In case you need help with the horses just gimme a call and, "I'll come running, to see you again..." I used to ride them at Cameron Highlands and in Canada. Fell once and that was it!" A palomino? Your story triggered mine! Cheers.

Jimmy Appudurai-chua:

Ha ha ha. Glad to rekindle your memories... my other btw are jumpers. So possibly would not run till autumn or winter... I love horse racing.

Andy Young
Now not only envy. I am greatly disturbed. I may have to fly there soon to see them in action. Must follow your footsteps in the sand and win 2020Gs. Thanks again and stay careful.

facebook chats said...

just for your information the horse is called _____, and is a lovely Colt... if it runs well on Thursday... it is not fully fit... then we can plot a good path for him in the bigger races. Guess I am full of surprises

Andy Young
DARK HORSE by George Harrison an appropriate 60's song to end this chat. See you soon. Bye. Thanks Jimmy.

FL said...

In the early 1960s, I used to tune to the BBC radio program (SW, ie. shortwave band)every Monday. It was an hour program (7pm to 8pm) featuring the Top 20s hit parade chart. I never missed this program after coming home from school ! That was how I came to know many British pop groups and singers and their new songs every weeks, i.e. the songs entered the Top 20 chart. Very entertaining then. My family could not afford to subscribe the Redifusion service Then.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Through the years from the 60's, I never had a Rediffusion set, only a PYE radio that my dad bought and I was listening to it since I could understand what music meant.

Yes, and I was like you, turning and twisting the knob for some sound of music. The Singapore broadcasts were clearer so Maisie Conceicao and Mildred Appudurai were always on hand to present CALLING ALL HOSPITALS. I didn't know the wave length, even now.

Then some 78's, heavy as hell, grinding on an old gramophone player that I never knew we had.
That's how I learnt some songs FL. And Pathe records too and Oriole too.

But radio was the best. But sadly, never became a requester of song.

My sincerest thanks FL. Blessings!

MATTJSLTAN WORLD MUSICIAN (ex fried ice) said...

here is a list of the bands i saw -
(badminton stadium)...
rolling stones (mach 1 with brian)
manfred man (mach 1 with paul jones, i think they opened for the stones)
cliff and the shadows (mach 2 with jet harris and brian bennet)
(national theatre)
yardbirds (the trio backing keith. jeff quits before this as he hated flying)
hollies (i think mach 1 with graham )

and then there were the others not so big ones like linda scott,
the dutch band jumping jewels, i think they opened for linda.

i even got to see stars too, eg. hayley mills..
at rediffusion. well, not really, i was late and could not wait in queque
and i saw larry lai, so i told larry my situation and he went in to get hayley to give me an autograph and off i went , running back to class at sji...
(afternoon school.. where i was classmate to derrick and the thunderbirds, peter diaz,..
but they did not know me as a musician yet.. just their prefect and monitor and captain of the football team.
it was only much later than i became the great super star and co founder
of fried ice (cream hendrix imposter power trio).

it was indeed a long time ago... feels like it was during the times
dinosaurs roamed singapore kampongs.. LOL
well, the esplanade was still by the water and asia insurance bldg was the tallest building then.

tempus fugit... fast fwd to 2020
here am i ... no longer superstar of singapore..
but a one man band doing my own music and my own "sonic Re- inventions
in tribute to the musicians who influenced me.
eg. the latest upload on fandalism and youtube and indiesound
Jimi Hendrix Electric Ladyland, my favorite tune .
me playing the Made in Mexico hendrix monterey replica and made in USA jeff beck signature strat..
(gtr 1) (gtr 2)
made in indonesia yamaha bass and fender rumble 15w
my lead amp is a made in vietnam vox pathfinder 10w
and my 8 track recorder is a made in japan tascam ..
where i record in stereo per instrument. (lead, 2nd gtr, bass, drs, and vocals).



love to hear from some singapore bands too...
as we do have some from indonesia, japan,.. here on fandalism
.so far, none from singapore.