The Early Radio London Fab Forties
Sunday 28th November 1965

 

Lucky for some – a leap of 13 Fab 40 places from #25 to #12, to bring a first major hit for the 'Pied Piper' from Swanley, Kent.

And this week, an well-known eccentric pop star who was no stranger to watery wireless was interviewed for the job of Big L DJ.

(See notes below chart.)

Last
This
 
Week
Week
1
1
My Generation Who
3
2
Wind Me Up (Let Me Go) Cliff Richard
11
3
Let's Hang On Four Seasons
10
4
Princess In Rags Gene Pitney
5
5
Tell Me Why Elvis Presley
13
6
The River Ken Dodd
7
7
Get Off Of My Cloud Rolling Stones
2
8
Positively 4th Street Bob Dylan
6
9
1-2-3 Len Barry
4
10
Don't Bring Me Your Heartaches Paul & Barry Ryan
30
11
Maria P J Proby
25
12
You Were On My Mind Crispian St Peters
23
13
Walk Hand In Hand Gerry & the Pacemakers
39
14
Rescue Me Fontella Bass
14
15
Is It Really Over? Jim Reeves
18
16
How Can You Tell? Sandie Shaw
17
17
Turn Turn Turn Byrds
8
18
The Carnival Is Over Seekers
27
19
This Year, Next Year Honeycombs
9
20
A Lover's Concerto Toys
31
21
To Whom It Concerns Chris Andrews
29
22
Girls Girls Girls Fourmost
35
23
Come Away Melinda Wendy Huber / Barry St John
32
24
Till The End Of The Day Kinks
25
My Ship Is Coming In Walker Brothers
28
26
I Found A Girl Jan & Dean
38
27
Go My Way Valerie Mitchell
36
28
Ain't That Peculiar Marvin Gaye
29
Take Me For What I'm Worth Searchers
30
Fever McCoys
31
Eight Days A Week Alma Cogan
32
It's All Happening Leapy Lee
33
You Make It Move Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mick & Tich
34
It Was Easier To Hurt Her Wayne Fontana
35
Keep On Running Spencer Davis Group
36
Leave It To Me A Band Of Angels
37
It Comes And Goes Mike Berry
38
Is This The Dream? Zombies
39
Thunderball Tom Jones
40
All Or Nothing Patti LaBelle & her Belles

Note: TW announced on the 'Dr Circuit' tape (see FF 21/11/65) that Ed Stewart was scheduled to present this Fab 40 show,
although there is no confirmation as to whether or not he actually did.

25
12
You Were On My Mind Crispian St Peters Decca F12287

On March 7th 1965, Crispian St Peters arrived in the Fab Forty with his first single At This Moment. A second release No No No vanished without trace and then came You Were On My Mind, which was to be a national #2. The song had already seen success in the US, where it reached the Top Ten for Californian quintet, We Five. In the US Crispian's version of You Were On My Mind was released after he had found chart success there with Pied Piper, and it climbed to #36 around the end of 1966. Not bad, considering the We Five version had been #3 as recently as the summer of '65.

However, international Top Ten hits aside, the most exciting kneevent in Crispian's career which must surely have been etched forever in his memorknee, was May 17th, 1966, when he became member #253 of the Knees Club! (See Fab Forty 01/05/66)

Notice that Radio London was playing You Were On My Mind in November '65, but it did not enter the national chart till January '66.

Sadly, Crispian St Peters died in 2010, after being in poor health for some time.

This Week Ashore

...in Curzon Street

Brian Long, in his book The London Sound, reveals that on Nov 30th 1965, Screaming Lord Sutch went for an interview as a Big L DJ. The eccentric singer and would-be politician obviously felt himself well qualified for the job, having previously claimed squatters' rights to the abandoned Thames estuary ex-naval fort Shivering Sands, to house his own offshore station, Radio Sutch. This was late in May 1964 and Sutch was the first to have the nerve to commandeer one of several derelict wartime forts for the purpose, although others were hot on his heels.

Sutch (1963 candidate for the National Teenage Party) promoted Radio Sutch as 'Britain's First Teenage Radio Station'. Although the fledgling Caroline and Atlanta were far more appealing to music-starved teens with trannies than the BBC Light Programme, neither could be categorised accurately as exclusively pop stations. Caroline played a lot of MOR material and Atlanta aired many cover versions of hits – which was exactly what the hip kids already loathed about the Light Programme - session bands playing covers in order for the BBC to to get around the restricted 'needle time' allowance.

In September '64, 'his lordship' sold Radio Sutch to his manager Reg Calvert, who renamed it Radio City and used it as a promotional vehicle for the pop acts he managed.

At the time of Sutch's interview with Radio London, he and Calvert had fallen out. Sutch claimed he was being 'slagged off' over the Radio City airwaves, so he applied to join Big L 'for a joke' in order to 'get his own back' on his manager. It is not known who interviewed 'his lordship', presumably at the Curzon Street offices, but he claimed, "I would be a good asset to you. I'm a national name and I'm better than a lot of the deejays you've got on there."

Radio London management decided otherwise, and the application was rejected because Sutch's image was deemed 'too wild' for the station. They might also have contemplated the consequences of the existing DJs having to spend regular fortnights with the wild man in the confined space of the Galaxy. However, as plain Lord Sutch, he did appear briefly in the Fab Forty in May/June '66 with his forgettable single The Cheat. This chart placing most likely happened because the record bore as its B-side Sutch's self-penned ditty Black and Hairy, a song published by the Big L- associated Pall Mall Music.

At around £50 for a mint copy, The Cheat is highly collectable.

Offshore Echoes features the histories of the fort-based stations here.

...and in Charing Cross Road

the Big L Discotheque opened on December 3rd. (The word 'Discotheque' had yet to be shortened to 'disco'.) The launch was attended by so many Radio London stars that there can't have been many left aboard the ship – and as the above story tells, management was looking for new blood. Pete Brady had resigned to take a job with Radio Luxembourg and Kenny Everett had been ousted for lampooning 'The World Tomorrow'. The religious programme provided a huge source of income for Radio London and when the sponsor demanded his sacking, Curzon Street management was forced to comply.

See news clipping in our Mini-Memories pages

34
It Was Easier To Hurt Her Wayne Fontana Fontana TF 642

Alan Field's Fab Notes:

Just one month after She Needs Love dropped out of the Fab 40, Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders had gone their separate ways, and Wayne entered the Fab 40 at #34 with his first solo release, Garnet Mimms' It Was Easier To Hurt Her. Wayne's personal site is here.

36
Leave It To Me A Band Of Angels Piccadilly 7N 25379

New in at #36 this week, A Band Of Angels featured Mike d'Abo (vocals), Christian Gaynor, John Baker, Dave Wilkinson and James Rugge-Price. The group had formed while its members were at Harrow public school, turning professional in 1964. They traded on their "upper class" origins, appearing in publicity shots dressed in matching suits and straw boater hats. The group broke up in 1966, when d'Abo beat all-comers (including Rod Stewart, apparently!) and was chosen in auditions to replace the departing Paul Jones as lead singer with Manfred Mann. The final Band Of Angels single, Invitation, reached the Radio London Top Twenty in March 1966.

The band was also one of many which recorded a first birthday message for Radio Caroline.

Mike d'Abo is responsible for creating the Cadbury's advert: 'A finger of fudge is just enough' and he likes to relate how that one jingle has made him more money than any of his songs, including Handbags and Gladrags which Chris Farlowe took to number one in 1967 and charted again for the Stereophonics in December 2001.

Alan Field and Mary Payne

DJ Climber:
The Little Girl I Once Knew Beach Boys Dave Dennis

Climbers:
Broken Hearted Clown Foresters
Work Song James Royal
I Hear A Symphony Supremes

The climber in BLUE has been added as a supplement to Brian Long's original listing, and was kindly contributed by Kees Brinkerink
with information gained from listening to archive Radio London recordings.


The Caroline 'Sounds of '65' chart (south ship) for this week is here


Tune in next week for another Big L Fab 40!

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