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the Pale

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From Pam Quinn's scrapbook

Miscellaneous clippings

This clipping is undated in the scrapbook, but may confidently be assigned to NME, 10 January 1964: there's more NME Paramounts coverage, including the full text of this clipping, here (RC)

Please print a pic and some gen on the Paramounts. I've got their disc, Poison Ivy, but I don't know a thing about them. June Lewis (Swansea)

The Paramounts (pictured right) began playing in Southend three years ago. Gary Brooker, aged 18, is a founder member of the group. He's 5 ft 11.5 ins tall, has black hair and blue eyes, and plays the piano. Rob Trower, the guitarist, is the other founder member. He's 5 ft 10 ins tall and likes American cars and British Beatles! Diz Derrick plays bass guitar. He's 19 and likes driving and apple turnovers. Barrie Wilson is 17, and likes Ray Charles. He's the group's drummer.

This piece is undated in the scrapbook, but if the ages are correctly printed, it would date from 1963. It shows how sub-editors are trained to cut a story from the top downwards: in order to fit the text to the size of the picture, we are told less and less about the band as we move from founder-members to apparent also-rans. Or maybe there is another reason for not telling us what colour Rob's hair really is? (RC)

Frans Streensma adds, This letter is probably from January 1964. The single was released in December 1963, but only started selling in January 1964

Frans Steensma writes:

Pam cut this photo from Melody Maker (25 July 1964). The article was about various bands and called Call Up The Groups! (Alan Clayson nicked this
title for his book on beat groups - Blandford, 1985).

And about The Paramounts was written - in this MM - the following:
'Another group that has been hovering on the brink of stardom is the PARAMOUNTS, from Southend, tipped for the top by The Rolling Stones. "A hit record is everything to an artist in this business," says Paramounts' pianist-vocalist Gary Brooker. "A couple of years ago, a hit wouldn't have mattered. Today, if you don't have a hit, you might as well give up. There are so many groups around that you have to have that record as a claim to fame. We used to call ourselves R&B, but not now. We don't want any tag. We're just a band! I think the beat popularity is slipping just a little because so many artists are making it with ballads just now." The Paramounts hope their new single I'm The One Who Loves You will do the trick

Probably one of the most performed, most sung pops of the last two years is a tune called Poison Ivy.

And certainly the most popular recording of the this song according to your letters has been by that Southend group, the Paramounts.

Jean Ollinson of Grimsby and Pat Johns of Bournemouth are both great Paramount [sic] fans and ask for information on their favourite group.

Well, Pat and Jean, the group consists of Gary Brooker, Rob Trower, Diz Derrick and Barrie Wilson. Gary is 18 years old and is the group's pianist and lead vocalist. He left school at 16 and became a laboratory assistant. Originally he formed his own group called the Coasters in Southend then three years ago, he decided to form the Paramounts.

Gary says his only interests are musical ones and he likes eating steak, he is 5 ft 11 tall, has black hair and blue eyes, and likes Ray Charles and John Lee Hooker.

Next member of the group is Rob Trower, 18 year old guitarist. When he left school at 15 he became a window-cleaner and had several jobs, including being a trainee printer and managing his father's coffee bar in Southend.

He played with three other local rock groups before joining up with the Paramounts. He's 5ft 10 in, brown haired [sic] and blue-eyed. He likes American cigarettes, milk, mushroom omelettes and rhythm and blues. Brooker [sic] Tee and Bobby 'Blue' Band [sic] are his favourite artistes.

Diz Derrick is 18 and bass guitarist. He used to work as a radio technician. He likes milk, driving and apple turnovers.

Last member of the group is young Barrie Wilson. He's 17 [sic] and he is the drummer. Black haired and brown eyed, he likes Muddy Waters, the Coasters and John Lee Hooker

From Boyfriend, 1 February 1964.

Frans Steensma adds: Boyfriend was a girl weekly: other beat acts featured in this issue were Gerry and the Pacemakers, The Merseybeats and Bern Elliott and the Fenmen. (more from Frans here)

BJ's page at BtP

More from Pam Quinn's scrapbook

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