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Backing Band from Pop's Golden Age

Backing Band from Pop's Golden Age



Who: The Searchers
Where: Club Phoenix
When: Sunday January 16, 2000

IN 1962 THE SEARCHERS were making a few extra quid playing small gigs around their hometown of Liverpool, providing the backing for country singer JOHNNY SANDON. But when Sandon left to pursue a solo career the group soon found itself with a number one British chart hit on their hands called SWEETS FOR MY SWEET. The Mersey boom had arrived, thanks to THE BEATLES, and The Searchers found themselves caught up in the beginning of what was to become known as the golden age of British pop music.

JOHN MCNALLY, CHRIS CURTIS, TONY JACKSON and MIKE PENDER packed their bags and headed for Hamburg, where they played the notorious Star Club, where the hours were long but the pay was plentiful.

The hits kept coming - DON'T THROW YOUR LOVE AWAY, NEEDLES AND PINS, LOVE POTION NUMBER NINE, SUGAR AND SPICE and SOMEDAY WE'RE GONNA LOVE AGAIN. At the peak of their success Jackson quit to pursue a solo career, to be replaced by FRANK ALLEN. The hits continued to flow with WHEN YOU WALK IN THE ROOM, WHAT HAVE THEY DONE TO THE RAIN, GOODBYE MY LOVE, BUMBLE BEE, HE'S GOT NO LOVE, TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT and HAVE YOU EVER LOVED SOMEBODY. Curtis left in 1966, to be eventually replaced by BILLY ADAMSON who is still with the band today. In the 1980s SPENCER JAMES joined the group, replacing Pender, the only change since the late 1960s.

The Searchers will perform on Sunday, January 16, at Phoenix. Tickets are $20. TE



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