These excerpts from New Musical Express, kindly selected for 'Beyond the Pale' by Yan Friis, show early promise of Poll success for PH, and include BJ's very revealing report about the US tour: hippies, materialism and a disconsolate Fisher.
Front page: Full page advertisement for Scott Walker's new single Jackie (Philips)
Main feature headlines:
MEET A BEE GEE - No 2 ROBIN GIBB by Nick Logan
BEATLES enjoy being BEATLES!
GENE PITNEY IS EVERY INCH A STAR by Nick Logan
(The Procol Harum album cover used again in EMI's half page advertisement for new albums.)
NME POLL FORM: HOW THE STARS FILLED IT IN
(Dave Clark, Felice Taylor, Cliff Richard, Reg Presley, Jonathan King, Andrew Steele (Herd), Vince Melouney (Bee Gees) and Andy Fairweather-Low show how they filled their coupons)
Dave Clark: Year's Best British disc: A Whiter Shade Of Pale, Procol Harum
Felice Taylor: Best new group: Procol Harum
Tipped for charts by Derek Johnson:
The Herd, Paradise Lost
Scott Walker, Jackie
Georgie Fame, The Ballad Of Bonnie And Clyde
Mamas & Papas, Glad To Be Unhappy
Cat Stevens, Kitty
NME Top 5:
1 (2) Let The Heartaches Begin, Long John Baldry
2 (3) Everybody Knows, Dave Clark Five
3 (-) Hello, Goodbye, The Beatles
4 (1) Baby Now That I've Found You, Foundations
5 (4) Love Is All Around, Troggs
SAVILE AND BLACKBURN TIE! LULU'S BRITISH VICTORY
Beatles world come-back; Tom, Hump major successes
WHITER SHADE TOP DISC: ELVIS STILL REIGNS
... Other stars enjoying their-first ever NME poll success in the British divisions are Tom Jones ('Male Singer'), Bee Gees ('New Group'), Engelbert Humperdinck ('New Singer') and Procol Harum ('Best Disc of 1967').
Best 1967 British Disc:
1 Procol Harum's Whiter Shade Of Pale;
2 Beatles' All You Need Is Love.
(This was just a preview of the poll results giving away the winners and the runners-up. Full results in next week's edition.)
AMERICA CALLING: PROCOL GLAD TO BE BACK
It was a tired and relieved Procol Harum who arrived back in London on Monday after spending five weeks in America. Tired naturally as a result of all the travelling they've done recently but more relieved to be back in a more tolerant society.
Barry Wilson explained: 'The pressures of advertising in America are incredible. Everywhere you go they're screaming at you buy this or buy that. Everyone is so material-minded - much more than here.
'All they seem to want are bigger and better cars and bigger and better houses and newer swimming pools. But where is it getting them? There's much more violence there than there is here.
'The only release from it all was with the hippies in San Francisco. The flower scene there is fading now, but the hippies are still there - and many of them are dropping out altogether.
'They just don't want to belong to society any more. People there are now forming their own communities to get away from it all. There's one group which lives in caves out in the hills making their own rules and living their own lives.
'The average American has everything - car, fridge, washing machine, but they don't seem to be better people as a result.
'People were so obviously rude to us in some places. They pointed at us in restaurants and stared at us in the street. Lots of them used to shout abuse at us because of our hair and clothes. They used to think we were Americans and they just don't tolerate young people who look like us but when they realized we were English they seemed to accept us.
'It was all very interesting and we all enjoyed it - except Matthew (Fisher) who hated it. He didn't go out much at all because he just didn't like America.'
Despite his criticisms of Americans generally, Barry appreciated the audiences who came to see the group. 'In many ways they were just like the people who would come and see us at the Saville.
'They appreciated what we were trying to do and they showed it.
'There were many things that impressed us out there. Driving into New York from the airport was a tremendous experience. I had always wanted to go to America and it was a great thrill seeing the skyscrapers and all the other things associated with New York. It's just the pressures they live under that we couldn't take.'
Read more from the first year of Procol press