Procol Harum

the Pale

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Procol Harum's first year in the NME

Last year's charts: 6 January 1968

These excerpts from New Musical Express, kindly selected for 'Beyond the Pale' by Yan Friis, show Procol Harum lost amidst a sea of Englebert in the chart retrospective; a handful of obscure college gigs, and a decision to postpone the concert tour!

Front page: Full page advertisement for PP Arnold’s (If You Think You’re) Groovy (Immediate).

Main feature headlines:

Mike Nesmith emerges as THE voice on Pisces album by Allen Evans



Norrie Drummond stands by what he wrote about the Magical film

 Tipped for charts by Derek Johnson:

 Engelbert Humperdinck, Am I That Easy To Forget
Beach Boys, Darlin’

Anita Harris, Anniversary Waltz
Bachelors, If Ever I Would Leave You 

(my comment: what’s wrong with ol’ Derek, is he a personal friend of The Bachelors? every time they have a new single out he tips it for the charts … )

 NME Top 5

1 (1) Hello, Goodbye, Beatles
2 (2) Magical Mystery Tour (EPs), Beatles
3 (3) If The Whole World Stopped Lovin’, Val Doonican
4 (4) I’m Coming Home, Tom Jones
5 (7) Daydream Believer, Monkees

News pages:


Procol Harum’s first British personal appearance since last summer will be a one-nighter at Boston Gliderdrome on Saturday, January 27. The group is also set for three university dates at Loughborough (February 16), Newcastle (20th) and Durham (23rd).

Harum had originally planned to make a British concert tour this month, but the project is now shelved until March.

The group is the latest attraction lined up for the Midem Festival in Cannes later this month. Another booking for Procol Harum is at a French teenage pop festival in Brest on March 9, when it co-stars with the Move.

by Derek Johnson


… And if proof were needed about the impact of the new brigade, just look at the next five in order of merit in the Points Table – the Move (9th), Traffic (10th), Jimi Hendrix (11th), Procol Harum (12th) and Bee Gees (13th).

All of them made their NME Chart debut in 1967! …

… (We pay tribute) … to Procol Harum, quite the most distinctive of the new batch, for providing us with the best record of the year and thus amply justifying their high rating …


FULL 1967 POINTS TABLE (excerpt)

1 Engelbert Humperdinck 1,218
2 Monkees 916
3 Tom Jones 890
4 Beatles 695
5 Tremeloes 633
12 Procol Harum 458


(Derek’s dear Bachelors are down at 96 with 32 points)



1 The Last Waltz (Engelbert Humperdinck) 481
2 Release Me (Engelbert Humperdinck) 399
3 Puppet On A String (Sandie Shaw) 347
4 There Goes My Everything (Engelbert Humperdinck) 338
San Francisco (Scott McKenzie) 337
7 A Whiter Shade Of Pale (Procol Harum)   309 


Artists occupying the No 1 position in the NME Top Thirty during 1967:
Engelbert Humperdinck 12 weeks
Beatles 8 weeks
Procol Harum 5 weeks
Monkees 4 weeks
Scott McKenzie 4 weeks
Sandie Shaw 4 weeks


Tailpieces by the Alley Cat

… Eagerly awaited Ray Charles’ version of Procol Harum’s Whiter Shade Of Pale

Read more from the first year of Procol press

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