Tag Archives: The Shadows

Rocks In The Attic #658: Cliff Richard & The Shadows – ‘The Young Ones (O.S.T.)’ (1961)

RITA#658Look out – CLIFF!

Hit: The Young Ones

Hidden Gem: The Savage

Rocks In The Attic #381: The Shadows – ‘The Shadows’ Greatest Hits ’ (1963)

RITA#381Last year I read Mark Lewisohn’s first volume of his Beatles super biography, The Beatles: All These Years. One of the many, many nuggets of information I gleaned from it was that while the Beatles were over in Germany for their first shambolic Hamburg trip, the Shadows came out with Apache. Due to their absence, John, Paul, George and Pete missed out on the craze that would soon sweep the nation – beat groups with synchronised dance manoeuvres, and guitars heavily drenched in reverb.

It’s a blessing that they were out of the country for this. I don’t think I could handle Love Me Do with some twangy guitar lines over the top of it, or John, Paul and George doing some corny dance steps. The Shadows can keep that nonsense – Cliff Richard is welcome to them. I’ll happily take some of these tunes though – what a bunch of great melodies in such a short, three year period.

One of my Dad’s favourite jokes from the ‘60s goes something along the lines of ‘Have you heard that rumour about Cliff Richard? After his concerts, he likes to slip quietly into the shadows.’

Hit: Apache

Hidden Gem: 36-24-36

Rocks In The Attic #230: Booker T. & The M.G.’s – ‘The Booker T. Set’ (1969)

RITA#230On paper, Booker T. & The M.G.’s shouldn’t work. If you put their original material to one side, all that is left is a band covering instrumental versions of the hits of the day. I’ve never been a fan of the type of instrumental covers where the lead instrument – in this case, Booker T. Jones’ organ – tends to play the vocal melody. The same goes for guitar groups like The Shadows, where Hank Marvin will play the vocal line on his guitar. It can sound very infantile.

But, it works with Booker T. & The M.G.’s. A couple of songs are close to sounding a little hammy, but on the whole, mainly due to their choice of songs, it avoids the type of pitfalls that trouble a lot of instrumental groups. The skills that each member of the M.G.’s bring to their respective instruments puts them in a much better position than most instrumental groups, which tend to be built around one particular musician.

This is the group’s last album from the ‘60s. Their next album would be an entire cover of The Beatles’ Abbey Road, but this wouldn’t see the light of day until April of the next decade.

Hit: Lady Madonna

Hidden Gem: The Horse