So here we are, four weeks in. Seems to be going quite well so far, though it will be interesting to see what effect our first quantum jump has on the thread. I’m planning on a week’s pause to allow the flux capacitor to recharge, and then we’ll see where the controls land us. This week we bid, as mooted last time, farewell to the rock and roll era as Elvis heads for military service. Terry Dene, the subject of a story beneath, was hit with the same call-up for National Service in 1958 too. Did Cliff, Billy Fury or any of the other early Brit rock and rollers have to turn up at Catterick or Salisbury for a short back and sides? There’s a definite feel of ‘second wavers’ to the rock and roll scene, headed over here by Cliff and over there by Eddie Cochran. As ever, we open with some of the best stories from the NME Rock and Roll Years tome, and open the Almanac to receive entries of any hue from 1958.
Stereo. the coming thing?
The New York R and B label, Atlantic, have purchased new equipment which will put them in the forefront of recording technology. Their new 8-track console allows eight separate tracks to be recorded independently, thus allowing the instrumentation to be laid down on dindividual tracks and the vocals to be added and balanced later.
Until now, Atlantic have relied either on live studio trackers or on building up a number by dubbing rom one machine to another. Though they will still be issuing most of their records in mono, they are building up a library of ‘stereophonic’ recordings for future release.
RCA have this month begun issuing stereophonic albums – even though relatively few listereners possess layers capable of reproducing the three-dimensional sound they deliver. Like Atlantic, the company is convinced that within a few years all recordings will be stereo.
Latest hit to employ speeded-up vocals is ‘Purple People Eater’ by Sheb Woolley, an actor who played a baddy anxious to shoot Gary Cooper in High Noon.
Dene In The Dumps
Terry Dene is seeing a psychiatrist this week, reports his manager Paul Lincoln.’He will then receive treatment and will not recommence work until both he and the doctors are satisfied he is better.’
This follows an incident in Gloucester, England, where Dene with charged with being drunk and disorderly and causing wilful damage. Local magistrates fined him £155. Marty Wilde and Colin Hicks have been fulfilling his contracted dates.
First release on the new Pyle International label is ‘Come On Lets Go’ – the US hit by Californian Richie Valens.
Summertime Blues is a wintertime hit for Eddie!
He was first seen last year, singing up a storm in the Jayne Mansfield movie The Girl Can’T Help It – and you may have caught him again in the Mamie Van Doreen movie Untamed Youth – but this month marks Eddie Cochran’s chart debut in Britain.
His previous releases, ‘Twenty Flight Rock’ and ‘Sittin In the Balcony’ made little impact sales wise, but ‘Summertime Blues’ is a sure-fire rock n roll classic – written incidentally by the man himself.
Only five weeks out of his teens, Eddie was born in Oklahoma but moved to Los Angeles as a schoolboy. A proficient guitarists, he soon attracted the attraction of songwriter Jerry Capehart, who became his writing partner and producer.
A contract with Liberty Records followed, and Eddie was on his way…even though he still can’t find a cure for those Summertime Blues!
Oh Boy! Newcomer
Cliff Richard – a new British teenage singer whose debut disc ‘Schoolboy Crush’, is release at the end of the month, has already been snapped up by producer Jack Good for the first programme of the commercial TV series, Oh Boy!
Cliff, who is 17, records with his own group, The Drifters.
Reviewer Keith Fordyce writes; ‘Cliff is an expert proponent of rock n roll. To a steady beat, he puts over a lyric that has plenty of meaning to the younger listener. The B-side, ‘Move It’, is an exciting number with a throbbing beat. If you’re an addict of the big beat, then this is a must for your collection.’
Oh Boy! Which begins its run on September 13, is in the same Saturday time slot as BBC-TV’s Six-Five Speical, will also feature chart star Marty Wilde.
Elivs Posted to Europe!
The possibility of Elvis Presley performing in Britian has taken a decided step forward with the announcement that he must report to New York on September 20 prior to embarkation for Europe.
As a member of the Third American Armoured division, Presley will be stationed near Frankfurt, Germany – a mere hop from the stages of Britain. Meanwhile, his fans will have to be content with the screen Elivs, currently doing the rounds in King Creole, and the vinyl Elvis, singing songs from the soundtrack. Presley has recently been promoted to Private Second Class, which means a rise in salary to almost 86 dollars a month.