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Friday 12th

The peaceful tranquility of the shops and houses adjoining the Four Provinces Club in Islington was shattered beyond repair this week. Suddenly the area has become a hive of seething activity, though few people yet seem to know exactly what is going on.

Workmen cart large pieces of scenery into the club and glamorous showgirls periodically invade the quiet little restaurant around the corner in search of coffee; other girls peer out of windows, shoppers are startled by the waves of sound that waft out from the club, and schoolboys run the perimeter of the building frantically clutching autograph books.

The secret of the Four Provinces Club leaked out on a major scale on Tuesday - the second day of rehearsals for producer Jack Good's new "brainchild" series, "Oh Boy!"

Inside the hall, chaotic disorder reigns supreme. Sheet music litters every available chair, and instrument cases are strewn all over the floor; artists and musicians mingle with perspiring workmen as scenery is hurridly set up; the producer tries to make himself heard above the din of 70 or so voices, and a stray dog beats a hurried retreat between the legs of jiving chorus girls as the powerhouse Lord Rockingham's Eleven explode into action.

Slick show

Out of all this confusion will arise a slick, colourful show - the first of a new ABC-TV series that takes the air at 6p.m. tomorrow (Saturday).

Chaos will give way to a smooth, precision-timed show that promises to be one of the most exciting ever seen in this country.

In between sips of coffee and a goon-style cross-talk routine with musical director Harry Robinson, Jack Good outlined to me the basic aims of the show. "We intend to make this the most organised show on TV," he began, "and also one of the fastest and most exciting".

"I'm looking for a certain type of audience reaction. It's like as if an audience were sitting in a theatre quietly and then were confronted by a blistering stage show that never let up for one moment. They'd simply have to sit up and take notice, and that's what I'm looking for." Jack explained.

"We aim to startle viewers with quick, lively presentation, and because I'm convinced that comedy, no matter how good, tends to slow down a show of this kind, we won't be featuring any comedians. Team-work is going to count more than anything else, and I'm happy to say that everybody in the show is dead keen." he continued.

"Oh Boy!" will be in direct competition to BBC-TV's "6.5 Special" - formerly produced by Jack. How does he feel about it? "Frankly, I'm thrilled at the prospect, and the essence of competition must obviously encourage us to work doubly hard." he confided.

Finally, what style of music will we hear on "Oh Boy!"? For a start there'll be a preponderance of Big Beat material from the cream of Britain's "rockers." But that doesn't mean that ballads are out of favour.

"Right now, the trend in pop music generally is veering towards a more melodic conception, and we will follow that trend." Jack emphasised.

Now let's meet some of the artists who'll be appearing in tomorrow's show. I found newcomer Cliff Richard propped up against a wall listening to the Dallas Boys rehearsing. Introductions completed, we sought sanctuary in a quiet ante-room, where I managed to render Cliff speechless with the news that his first Columbia recording "Move It" had entered the hit parade.

His jaw dropped, and he groped unsuccessfully for words. He spoke in short, monosyllabic phrases: "Already?.....well.....I mean....what can I say? Everything is happening all at once."

His composure regained, Cheshunt-born Cliff, 17, set about telling me of his sudden attack of nerves. "It's wonderful to be going on TV for the first time, but I feel so nervous that I don't know what to do.

"I mean, I only turned professional five weeks ago, and before that I was working as a clerk and only playing at local dances and things in my spare time. I wore sideburns then, but I shaved them off last night - Jack (Good) thought it would make me look more original. I think he's right." he said.

John Foster, Cliff's burly, 19 year-old manager, broke in to tell me how ten London agents had given the thumbs down sign after hearing a tape recording by Cliff. "Seems like those fellows can be wrong after all." he grinned!

Coffee for two

Though his first year in show business is still not yet complete, Marty Wilde takes the hectic whirl of rehearsals in his stride. After singing his way through "Think It Over" and "Baby, I Don't Care," he greeted me with a smile and a handshake, and guided me to the nearest coffee bar.

Two steaming cups were placed on the table by an inquisitive waitress, and Marty requested extra sugar with a firm "got one heck of a sweet tooth." The sugar arrived together with a grubby piece of paper which Marty dutifully signed for a devoted fan.
To the accompaniment of Peggy Lee's "Fever" from a nearby juke box, we chatted about Marty's role in the show.

"I'm very proud to be associated with the series because I know it's going to be a great show. That's because we have such a fine producer. You know, I predict that one day Jack will be the world's greatest producer." he confided.
"Rehearsals," he echoed, in answer to my question. "They're fun. I enjoy them because I learn so much watching other people work. I like learning because it helps to broaden my scope. You know, pretty soon I want to have a crack at all kinds of songs - ballads, rock, everything."

In panto

About his future, Marty was very frank. Towards Christmas, he'll be temporarily leaving "Oh Boy!" to make his debut in pantomime at Stockton. "It'll be my first and last pantomime," he declared. "I'm not awfully keen on the idea, but I realise that the experience will be good. Anyway, I've always fancied myself as a comedian, so maybe this'll be a good opportunity to try out some gag lines."

Marty is his own severest critic, but I feel he was being hyper-critical when we discussed his latest record, "Misery's Child."

"It's a bad record," he stressed. "And if it gets into the hit parade, it doesn't deserve to." And with that, Marty strode off to the juke box to drop another coin in the slot. The tune? "Fever"!

Back in the Provinces Club, Lord Rockingham's Eleven were blowing up a storm on Harry Robinson's new composition, "Hoots Mon." Girls in sweaters and shorts - the Vernon Girls - were running through dance steps, and Jack Good was frantically waving a piece of music in front of organist Cherry Wainer.

Grouped around a piano were Neville Taylor and The Cutters - the "Oh Boy!" resident vocal quartet and the group who supplied the high-pitched scat lyrics on the Rockingham outfit's Decca recording of "Fried Onions".

A drum roll brought "Hoots Mon" to a close, and The Cutters broke into a pounding version of "Yakety Yak." A couple of choruses later, Jack Good nodded his approval, and the group dispersed to various corners of the room.

"Like it?" Neville asked. "I want to record with the group soon because I think we've got a good sound. Anyway, the audiences seemed to like us when we did those two "Oh Boy!" trial shows a while back."

"You know the boys?' I shook my head, and Neville pointed out Wilf Todd, Basil Short, and Sonny McKenzie. "Funny thing, but they all play bass," he beamed. "All good musicians - couldn't work with a better bunch," he beamed again.

Further conversation with Neville was cut short by the arrival of a harassed-looking Jack Good, requesting Neville's presence on the bandstand. We turned around, and I succeeded in treading on Ronnie Carroll's toe!

Finding a relatively quiet spot to talk, Ronnie proceeded to eulogise about Jack. "Great producer," he said. "Jack knows what he wants and he always gets results. That's why I'm very pleased to be working with him on this series."

TV rehearsals hold no worries for Ronnie, and he was even looking forward to the 45 minutes ahead of him. But I don't think he'll be so keen in a couple of months time, for within the next 12 weeks, he is set to make 20 major TV appearances on shows like the "Jack Jackson", "Cool For Cats"", and "Rainbow Room" programmes.

"I'll be the contrast in "Oh Boy!" because whereas most of the other artists will be singing beat stuff, I'll concentrate mainly on ballads. It'll add a touch of variety to the show," Ronnie told me.

Variety dates have no place in Ronnie's work schedule these days. "In the first place, I don't get the time and apart from that, I never was very keen on variety. But I'm looking forward to doing pantomime for the first time at Sheffield this Christmas," he added, before dashing off to sing the opening bars of "Seven Steps to Love."

In the studio, everything seem to be happening at once.

Bertice Reading and John Barry - two further stars of tomorrow's debut show - weren't scheduled to arrive for at least another two hours, and I suspected that by the time they got there, I wouldn't be able to get a word in edgeways. So I left!

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Saturday 13th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 1 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer, The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
John Barry Seven
Marty Wilde
Ronnie Carroll

An incomplete rehearsal schedule exists to this classic first show. (see Rehearsals). Ronnie Carroll sang "Seven Steps To Love”, the Dallas Boys sang Buddy Holly's “Think It Over" and Gene Vincent's "Rocky Road Blues”, Neville Taylor & The Cutters sang the Coaster's “Yakety Yak” and the Everly Brothers “Oh What a Feeling”, and Lord Rockingham's XI performed two medleys plus a full performance of their current hit  “Hoots Mon”. The audience went wild over Marty (he appeared in the 2 trial broadcasts earlier in June 58) who sang Buddy Knox's “Somebody Touched Me” in addition to a medley with the Dallas Boys in which he sang Elvis' “Baby I Don’t Care” and Ricky Nelson's “Poor Little Fool.”

Jimmy Henney introduced an exciting new talent making his debut television appearance -- 17-year-old Cliff Richard backed by his group The Drifters. Cliff pouted and gyrated his way through Milton Allen's "Don’t Bug Me Baby” and his first ever-record release, “Move It!”.

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Saturday 20th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 2 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
'Cuddly' Dudley
John Barry Seven
Vince Eager
Ronnie Carroll

Cliff Richard returned for his 2nd appearance to sing the B side of his new single, "Schoolboy Crush" (originally the A side, until EMI swapped the sides over) backed by the Drifters, the Dallas Boys & the Vernons Girls.

Dudley Heslop, who had appeared in the two trial Oh Boy! shows in June, makes his first appearance under his new guise of  'Cuddly Dudley'.  Marty Wilde, although listed to appear, lost his voice and so did not in fact sing. His place was taken by Vince Eager.

Note that although TV Times lists The John Barry Seven as appearing in this episode, the NME stated just beforehand that they would not.  Wilde, Eager & The JB7 were also due to appear on a package tour concert at Burnt Oak, that evening. However, if Eager & The JB7 did appear on Oh Boy! that evening, they could not have arrived at Burn Oak in time for the first house.

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Monday 22nd

A milestone week in Cliff Richard’s life. After just 2 appearances on "Oh Boy!" he was offered his first national tour supporting the Kalin Twins beginning on Sunday 5th October. Looking for professional musicians to back him he went to the 2 I's coffee bar in London's Soho district where he met Hank Marvin and Bruce Welch who became the new Drifters ( later The Shadows).

Within weeks the new Drifters were backing Cliff on “Oh Boy” and Hank and Bruce later appeared as vocal artists in their own right too.

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Tuesday 23rd

Jack Good falls ill with a mild case of pneumonia bought on by the sheer exhaustion and grueling demands of the last three weeks.

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Friday 26th

Marty Wilde gets his first record release in America next week, when American Columbia issue "Misery's Child" on their subsidiary Epic label. At the same time, the progress of Marty's new disc in Britain has been handicapped by the fact that he is unable to feature the number during his current "Oh Boy!" TV series.

Marty's manager, Larry Parnes, told the NME: "We are very disappointed that producer Jack Good feels this number is unsuitable for the programme. There must be many fans who would like to hear it. As four days rehearsals are needed for each "Oh Boy!" show, he has almost no time for other TV shows in which he could sing "Misery's Child". In view of this, it now seems unlikely that Marty will continue in the series after October 18, when he completes his six scheduled appearances. Meanwhile, there is more good news for him from the U.S. In New York, his agent Hyman Zahl is negotiating for Marty to tour with the Alan Freed show on a similar rock 'n' roll package.

Britain's latest teenage talent singing star, Cliff Richard, who is currently moving up the NME charts with his Columbia recording of "Move It!", has now become one of the resident team of ABC TV's Saturday evening "Oh Boy!" show.


Producer Jack Good, now back in action after a mild attack of pneumonia last week, confirmed that his aim is to dispense with guest artists, and rely solely on residents. Cliff, who originally appeared as a guest on the first show of the series, is now booked indefinitely. When Ronnie Carroll leaves the show on October 18 to go to "6.5 Special" he will be replaced on "Oh Boy!" by Peter Elliott who has been booked until the end of the year. Jack Good's other ABC TV production is now set to commence on October 18, and will be seen only by viewers in the Midlands and North. This is the disc-jockey show starring Sam Costa and Keith Fordyce, which will be titled "Sam and Keith."

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Saturday 27th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 3 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUEST STARS:
The John Barry Seven
Lorie Mann
Marty Wilde
Ronnie Carroll

Both Ronnie Carroll and Marty Wilde were signed up initially by Good to appear in the first six shows of the series  (until 18th October). After this date Carroll left "Oh Boy" to appear on the BBC rival show "Six-Five Special" for a six week period.

On the day before this broadcast Larry Parnes had criticized Jack Good in the NME for not allowing his protege Marty Wilde to sing his new single release"Misery Child" on the "Oh Boy!" show. He stated Wilde would not be appearing after the 18th October show.

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Article by Jack Good, September 1958

The following article was written by me, Jack Good,  towards the end of  September 1958 and was published in the music press at that time.

The bell rings for the end of the first round in the great slogging match between the reigning champion "Six Five Special" and the contender for the title, "Oh Boy!"

Now the fight is really on, how does it feel? Well, it's thrilling. At first I didn't like the idea of competing with 'Six Five' for which I had a great affection. I didn't want to see the programme's viewing figures nibbled away by the other channels. And anyway it was hard to imagine what programme could top the old "Six Five". But now it has all changed so much from the early days that it is virtually a different show, so I don't feel that in opposing it I am violently changing loyalties. In fact in "Oh Boy!" I feel that the excitement we used to feel in early Six Fives has been regenerated - only 10 times more intensely. Then again Oh Boy is crammed with friends with whom I had the pleasure of working on 6.5. Both Red Price & Rex Morris, the two Rockingham tenors, have played tenor in Don Lang's famous Frantic Five, Eric Ford (electric guitar) played on Six Five - as had the Vernons Girls, who by the way are a perpetual wonder to the rest of the cast, looking as they do lovelier every day (have they been using THAT soap) - & giving better & better performances (thanks vocally to Peter Knight & visually to Leslie Cooper). Harry Robinson, our musical director, used to be very much in evidence as Jim Dale's musical arranger & advisor.

Just in case this recitation gives you the impression that 'Oh Boy' is run by a crowd of old has-beens let me hasten to point out that the 'Oh Boy' team must be about the youngest in television. Harry Robinson is only twenty-four;  Trevor Peacock & I are 27. I haven't dared to ask Rita Gillespie the director, Bill Nuttall & Jim Boyers - our brilliant sound & lighting men - how old they are - but they all look far too young to have learned all the know-how at their command.

Many people say - & I used to agree with them - that it is unfair to the public that, for the sake of cut throat competition, two programmes of similar content should be transmitted at the same time. For the very people who would like to view one programme would also like to see the other - & the people who dislike one will probably hate the other & yet have no alternative kind of viewing. Well, of course, all this is very true. But you can't have your cake & eat it. If you accept that competition is a good thing because it keeps both sides on their toes to give the public the very best, then the public cannot logically complain at the necessary results of competition - programme clashes. To have competition that didn't compete might be desirable but it is impossible.
And in any case, the pop music haters can be reassured. The situation cannot last. Sooner or later the battle will be won or lost and the losing side will naturally replace the victim with a programme that will compete by attracting a different sort of viewing.

Well? And who will win? obviously I'm about the most biased person possible on this question - except perhaps Russell Turner. But here's why I think we will win. When 'Six Five' started, it was a mammoth sized task to try to peruade the powers-that-were that it was not only safe but essential to let our studio audience loose all over the set. This, I felt sure, would create a new & exciting atmosphere. The idea, luckily, seemed to pay dividends. But it is now definitely for the scrap-heap. It used to be fun but now, over the months, it has become a bore. The kids in Six Five now ought to be relegated to an auditorium out of vision. But this means that the whole production of Six Five would have to change in style. There would be no longer any grounds for snap-happy camera work catching spontaneous movement & expression. Everything would have to become more precise. In fact my impression is that Six Five would really have to run on the lines of 'Oh Boy'. But there's a snag to this. The terrible task of assembling the 'Oh Boy' team has convinced me that there are certainly not enough of the right people to form two 'Oh Boy' type programmes. There are only just enough to form one. So there it is . . . . meanwhile the battle rages. The first clever move was, I have to admit, made by Russell Turner who had it announced the week before the first Oh Boy that Bernard Bresslaw the star of last week's show would have to leave "before 6.30". - the time 'Oh Boy' finishes. The tactics of this move are unimpeachable.

'Fried Onions' has just been released in America, where rumour from fairly unreliable sources suggests that the Rockingham sound is causing quite a stir among D.J.'s over there. It is perhaps safe to assume that the record has been played at least once in U.S.A. Meanwhile Lord Rockingham has been at it again. A new 78 is being released late next week and it will be pursued hot-foot by an E.P. - the sides being "Lord Rockingham's Lament"; "Hoots Mon"; "What the butler saw"; & "Lord Rockingham Meets the Monster." This last epic title had the XI in hilarious fits of the dreaded screaming Nadgers during the session. Voices by H. Robinson & - J. Good had to be dubbed on to the record thrice every time we wanted an effect. One for Stereophonic sounds, once for Monaural & once for Funereal.

Most artists in 'Oh Boy' come to rehearsal by themselves. Some occasionally turn up with their wives or girlfriends, sometimes they come with their agent or accompaniest. Not our Marty. He comes with his Press Officer - who I hasten to say is a very nice and imaginative chap.

Quite a few people have asked how Lord Rockingham's XI get that rasping, edgey sax noise. Well here is one trade secret. Before a session whilst every other band would tune up, Lord Rockingham's XI carefully detune. The saxophones then, being fractionally out-of-tune have that cutting noise. The musicians in the band are amused by this 'sharp practice' & suggest that this sort of noise should be called "Un-Music", and that the Rockingham XI should form the nucleus of a newly formed "Un-Musicians DisUnion" and all those who did not join would automatically be branded as  "Whitelegs". The DisUnion would insist that UnMusicians should be contracted for a minimum number of 3-hour tea-breaks; and they would also decree that these tea breaks should be broken at regular intervals by a minimum of 20 minute rehearsal sessions. I only hope the idea doesn't catch on.

The week before last Marty Wilde lost his voice & Vince Eager had to take his place at the Finsbury Park Empire. This week Marty's voice has always been the object of concern & it was thought by most people at rehearsals of 'Oh Boy' that Vince Eager's furtive presence in the background was just incase he had to replace Marty again. But in fact Vince was waiting for Marty to have (a) spare moment to rehearse 'Bird Dog' with him - the number these two strapping 6ft 2" boys are going to perform together on the 'Oh Boy' of October 4th.


Many, many thanks to Jack Good who allowed this article to be reproduced from his original 1958 notes which he kindly loaned for copying purposes.

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Saturday 4th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 4 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Marty Wilde
Ronnie Carroll
Vince Eager
Don Lang

Cliff Richard returns for his third appearance after missing the previous week’s show to find his first single “Move It” has entered the charts at number 19. Jack got him to perform it again and the audience went wild. Cliff recalls his memories of this show in his 1977 autobiography “Which One’s Cliff?”

“Despite all the careful preparation the first 'Oh Boy!' appearance didn’t rouse a murmur. Marty Wilde got screams, I got genteel applause. A newspaper review the following day didn’t mention my name but referred to a ‘sour-faced young man, apparently chewing gum.’ That was me singing!” “Then, suddenly, 'Move It!' made the charts and everything changed. Three weeks later  (4th October) I did 'Oh Boy!' again and I couldn’t hear myself sing for the screams. I wore the same outfit, sang the same song in the same scowly way. One week nothing, the next I was nearly torn to bits and couldn’t get out of the studio.”

Vince Eager and Marty Wilde perform The Everly Brothers song "Bird Dog" together.

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Sunday 5th

Cliff Richard begins a 12-date tour with the Kalin Twins at the Victoria Hall, Hanley. This was the first time Cliff and the new Drifters (later known as the Shadows) performed live together.

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Monday 6th

Cliff versus Marty row makes headline news. Marty Wilde’s agent Larry Parnes complains to Jack Good that Cliff Richard is getting the best songs to sing and receiving more publicity than Marty Wilde. He once again threatens to withdraw Marty from the series after the 18th October show. Jack Good suspected Parnes of being greedy, as his stable of stars already dominated the series. So Jack cheerfully released Marty who had wanted to remain, leaving Cliff solely as the main star attraction.

Parnes was to quickly regret the decision but although a reconciliation was eventually reached between the two men, Marty was to remain off air for over three and a half months, not returning to “Oh Boy!”  until 7th February 1959.

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Saturday 11th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 5 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
'Cuddly' Dudley
Ronnie Carroll
Valerie Shane

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Saturday 18th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 6 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer, The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Terry Dene
Marty Wilde
Ronnie Carroll
John Barry Seven
Jackie Dennis

Cliff Richard had been billed to appear on “Oh Boy!” this evening but due to a mix up with dates was unable to appear on the show. They appeared at the Rialto, York, instead, which was Cliff’s penultimate booking on the Kalin Twins tour which had begun on the 5th October. Terry Dene deputized at short notice for Cliff, and he rehearsed and appeared in the show within 24 hours of being asked.

Marty Wilde makes his final 'Oh Boy!' appearance for three and a half months, not returning until 7th February 1959.

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Sunday 19th

The 'Oh Boy!' official LP was recorded before a specially invited audience on the evening of Sunday 19th October 1958 at the Abbey Road Studios, St. John's Wood, London.

Cliff Richard and Peter Elliott were otherwise committed to live bookings on the 19th and recorded their tracks for the album at Abbey Road Studios on Tuesday 21st October. Cliff and The Drifters were appearing at the Colston Hall in Bristol…which was the final night of the Kalin Twins tour.

The LP was released on the UK Parlophone label: PMC 1072 in December 1958.

(See Oh Boy! LP for cover, label scans and track listings) [RR: create LINK!!!]

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Friday 24th

The NME announces that the “Oh Boy!” series has been extended a further 3 months to run until the end of March 1959 and that Tommy Steele had been booked to appear on the 1st November show:

"Oh Boy!" is a hit! It has been booked to continue until at least next March. And next week the show presents the first TV appearance of Tommy Steele for four months. Contracts are not yet signed, but Tommy has agreed to appear on the show next Saturday if he can fit in the date with his other commitments, which are not expected to provide dificulties. He had not planned any more television appearances this year, but agreed to do the show for Jack Good. Steele appeared in the early '6.5 Special' programme, which Good originated. They carried both singer and show to a peak wave of success.

Good is also hoping to use an American singer in future "Oh Boy!" programmes. She is Edna McGriff, who was unknown here until the beginning of March, when her first records were released by the Gala low-price label. She has quickly established herself as the labels principal artist and Gala chief Monty Lewis is planning to bring her to Britain for TV and other dates. Exact time of her visit cannot be arranged as she has just had a baby. "I certainly hope to get her for "Oh Boy!" as soon as she can come over," Good told the NME.

Both developments came at the same time as ABC-TV decided to extend the run of the programme. Due to end on December 6, the company has booked it for at least thirteen more weeks. It will continue to be seen on the entire ITV network at 6p.m. on Saturdays, but the producer has not yet had time to consider any possible cast changes for the extended period. Making a TV debut in tomorrow's show is Tony Scott's Cha-Cha Band, appearing with Don Lang, making his second showing on the programme.

Cliff Richard returns tomorrow after his absence last week, when a conflict of dates meant he had to appear at a York concert instead. The surprise deputy was Terry Dene who rehearsed and appeared in the show within 24 hours of being asked.

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Saturday 25th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 7 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Peter Elliott
Tony Scott's Cha-Cha Band
Don Lang

For the first time Cliff Richard and the new Drifters are given star billing and close the show. Audience response was so wild Good placed Cliff at the top of the bill for all of Cliff’s remaining 8 appearances until the end of the year. (1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd November and 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th December 1958).

Ronnie Carroll, who left the series last week, begins a 6 week residency on the rival '6.5 Special' TV show on the BBC. He is replaced by balladeer Peter Elliott who is booked until the end of the year.

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November 1st

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 8 (Compered by Tony Hall)
RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI,
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Cliff Richard
'Cuddly' Dudley
The John Barry Seven
Peter Elliott
Tommy Steele

Tommy rocks up a storm with the Dallas Boys during the live broadcast.

Tommy Steele makes his one and only guest appearance in the entire “Oh Boy!” series. Above is a rare picture of Tommy on the “Oh Boy!” set flanked by the Dallas Boys, the Vernons Girls and Lord Rockingham XI featured in the “Disc” music paper published later that week.

Tommy chats to Jack Good backstage. Tommy Steele rehearses with Neville Taylor and Cliff Richard. The organ featured is Cherry Wainer’s.

Tommy was also booked to appear on the 4th April 1959 edition of the show, but this was postponed for a week until 11th April due to other prior commitments. However a day before the live broadcast, Tommy broke his ankle in an accident and had to cancel the booking. He was due to perform his new single “Hiawatha.”

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November 7th

The NME announces that “Oh Boy!” may become a twice-nightly show. This was the first of two spurious reports to make the headlines in a fortnight:

As producer Jack Good was this week booking Cliff Richard and Don Lang to star in his ABC-TV show "Oh Boy!" until next March, rumours were spreading that it is soon to be extended in a novel form.

From early next month the programme may become a 60-minute production split into two parts - the present show at 6 p.m. and another at the end of the evening. The late show would not be a repeat, but a separate production.

ABC-TV managing director Howard Thomas told the NME: "We have not decided to go ahead with this idea yet. We think "Oh Boy!" is a great success and are considering if it should be extended in some way."

The programme was originally booked until December 6 but a fortnight ago it was extended for at least another three months. Good plans to feature Cliff Richard on the show weekly until the end of the year and then at three-weekly intervals.

Also from January, Don Lang will be seen every three weeks on "Oh Boy!" He has already guested twice on the series.

Lord Rockingham's XI, The Vernons Girls and The Dallas Boys will continue as regulars into the New Year.

Later bookings include Pat Laurence (November 15), a return by Lorrie Mann (22nd), and newcomers Emil and George Ford (29th).

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November 8th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 9 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard
'Cuddly' Dudley
Peter Elliott
Bill Forbes

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Friday 14th

NME reports that “Oh Boy!” may be made into a film. This plan did not come to fruition:

ABC-TV's Saturday evening teenage show "Oh Boy!" may follow in the footsteps of its television rival "6.5 Special" in being adapted for the cinema screen.

Talks are currently in progress for the making of an "Oh Boy!" film at the ABC studios in Elstree. It would be a full-length feature film, probably with a story-line, as was the film version of "6.5 Special" which proved a big box-office attraction.

If details are concluded, the film will be directed by Duke Goldstone, one-time director of the Liberace telefilms, who is new in this country directing the Mantovani telefilms. He visited the TV studio two weeks ago when Tommy Steele appeared.

Latest booking for the "Oh Boy!" TV show is American rock singer Vince Taylor, who came to Britain to seek success. He cut his first record last week for Parlophone, "Right Behind You Baby" for release on November 28.

NME reports that Marty Wilde wants to end his contract with manager Larry Parnes. Marty Wilde was deeply upset with Parnes' decision to pull him out of the”Oh Boy!” series and within just 4 weeks of his final 18th October appearance was consulting lawyers with a view to terminating his contract.

Marty had always enjoyed a good working relationship with Jack Good and he believed it was only Parnes who was putting ‘flies in the ointment’ and creating difficulties. Jack Good himself held Marty in high esteem and was keen for him to return to the fold, which he did eventually on 7th February 1959. Once back Jack promptly secured Marty by signing him up to appear in 12 or the remaining 17 shows of the series. Indeed he made Marty both host and star attraction for his subsequent TV series “Boy Meets Girl” which aired for 6 months from September 1959 to March 1960.

Dynamic Marty Wilde is seeking release from his contract with artists' manager Larry Parnes "for personal reasons" - though the agreement is still valid for a further three years.
Marty told the NME: "My father is consulting our solicitors about legal aspects of the contracts. I will go ahead with the dates Larry has arranged, including variety, concerts and pantomime at Stockton."

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Saturday 15th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 10 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
'Cuddly' Dudley
The John Barry Seven
Pat Lawrence
Peter Elliott

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Sunday 16th

Cliff’s act creates crowd hysteria when he appears at the Trocadero, Elephant and Castle, in south east London. Many fans, not content with just seeing him weekly on “Oh Boy!” wanted to see their idol in the flesh too.

Cliff was also causing jealousy among the ‘teddy boys’ in south and east London, too, who disliked the frenzied reaction Cliff was generating among his fast growing female audience. They began a campaign of trying to sabotage the shows when he appeared at some London venues through the latter part of 1958 and early 1959. (See scan of photo taken at Trocadero concert {Left} and NME article scan {below}) :

L-R Wee Willie Harris, Johnny Duncan and Cliff Richard at the Trocadero, Elephant & Castle, S. London

In order to avoid fans rioting outside the Trocadero, Elephant and Castle after last Sunday's all-star package show, Cliff Richard had to be smuggled out of the theatre through the foyer into a waiting police car. He was taken at high speed through South London to a pre-arranged rendezvous where he transferred to his own car. Between houses, Cliff Richard, Larry Page, Wee Willie Harris and the other artists had to stay in their dressing-rooms due to dense crowds thronging the stage door. On stage during the show, compere teenage d-j Gus Goodwin was showered with coins as the almost full house went wild with excitement. Tension grew to bursting point as the show closed and the predominantly teenage audience left the auditorium. The stage door was completely blocked by a sea of waving arms and chanting girls intent on securing autographs and a glimpse of the singers.

Cliff, now with two discs - "Move It" and "High Class Baby" - in the current hit parade, is set for a string of major provincial concert engagements before the end of the year. His complete Sunday date schedule is Walthemstow Granada (Nov. 23). Slough Adelphi (Nov. 30), Colchester Regal (Dec. 7), Worcester Gaumont (Dec. 14), Bristol Colston Hall (Dec. 21), and Hanley Victoria Hall (Dec. 28).

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Monday 17th

Cliff makes his variety debut at the Metropolitan, Edgware road, London. This was a gruelling three-week tour (42 shows) arranged by his manager Franklyn Boyd and intended to give the young Cliff an intensive crash course in the art of stagecraft.

The NME write up on the following Friday (21st) gives an interesting and not oft given detailed account of the songs in Cliff’s early act. Many of the songs here were undoubtedly featured on “Oh Boy!” too during the last quarter of 1958. Both “Move It” and “Don’t Bug Me Baby” were favourites performed on the opening show of the series, and “High Class Baby” (his 2nd single) was performed on “Oh Boy!” around late November as well. The Conway Twitty hit “It's Only Make Believe” was another number Cliff loved performing live with a wonderful look of ‘anguished pain’ on his face and grabbing his arm as if jabbed by a hypodermic syringe. It is probable that Cliff sang this track on “Oh Boy!” too. In fact when Conway Twitty himself visited Britain to appear on 2 shows in May 1959 he closed one of the shows with this number.

There are also a few surprise inclusions in this variety debut. Cliff had first seen Marty perform “Poor Little Fool” and “Baby I don’t Care” at his first “Oh Boy!” audition in September and liked them so much he decided to incorporate them into his own act. Cliff closed his 30 minute set with Jerry Lee Lewis’s “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” (as he did on his first live debut album “Cliff” in February 1959). During the song he would go down on one knee during its quieter moments and an actual picture from the show is reproduced here. (See photo above left)

Cliff Richard isn't going to forget this week in a hurry. When he woke up on Sunday morning this is what faced him: a concert at the huge Trocadero Cinema, Elephant and Castle, London; two days in the film studio for "Serious Charge"; a Wednesday afternoon recording session at Columbia; a Jack Jackson Show" the same evening; two days rehearsal for, and the actual transmission of "Oh Boy!" Dominating all this was his first week in variety - almost a full-time job in itself. Eighteen-year-old Cliff never flinched. In between houses at the Metropolitan Theatre, London, on Monday, Franklyn Boyd, his manager, suggested the friends that had gathered in his dressing room should leave to let the singer rest. "No don't go," Cliff said, "I'm not tired."

Neither was his later performance a tired one. Richard slogged hard all through his act, swinging his pelvis in the widest arcs yet seen in Britain, vocally forcing his numbers over and compelling the female part of the audience, at least, into an ever increasing frenzy. In the Drifters, Cliff has the best group yet to tour with a rock singer. It has an enormous power and compelling beat, yet was never too loud to drown out Cliff's singing. As the "Move It" boy was announced, it thundered out from behind the curtain. The excitement had already started. "Baby, I Don't Care" was his first number. Scarcely a pause and straight into "Summertime Blues," "I've Got A Feelin," and "Don't Bug Me Baby."

Wisely he cut his talking to the minimum. He introduced the members of the group: Hank B. Marvin, Bruce Wells (guitars), Jet Harris (bass) and Terry Smart (drums). Then the smouldering Cliff went into "King Creole," a slow, struggling "Only Make Believe" and a nonchalant, hand-in-pocket "Poor Little Fool," before coming to his record hits "Move It" and "High Class Baby."

Came his finale and he set out to include and exceed everything that had gone before with "Whole Lotta Shaking." Fast, slow; loud, soft; wild, quiet; shaking or kneeling - Richard scored a notable triumph. DON WEDGE.

Harry Robinson, musical director of “Oh Boy” marries model Ziki Arnot. The couple take a short honeymoon in Paris until Friday 21st November. Cy Payne deputizes at rehearsals for four days.

Bertice Reading, a star of the two trial “Oh Boy!” shows in June 1958, falls ill and cancels her cabaret commitments in Britain.

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Friday 21st

The NME announces Larry Parnes will not release Marty Wilde from his 3 year contract. (See first scan below)

NME announces Michael Holliday is booked for “Oh Boy!” in December. (See second scan below)

LARRY PARNES announced this week that, despite requests from the singer, he would not release Big Beat star Marty Wilde from his current contract.

He told the NME: "I intend to go ahead with my plans for Marty. At present they involve a film and a Scandinavian tour next year."

COLUMBIA'S Michael Holliday is the latest big name attraction booked by producer Jack Good for his ABC-TV Saturday evening "Oh Boy!" show. Mike is set to appear on December 6, while the following Saturday (13th), marks the debut of Parlophone's Glen Mason.

Bill Forbes, discovered by Jack Good at an audition, has been signed by Columbia records. He makes another appearance on December 13.

One week later, American rock singer, Vince Taylor, undertakes the first of several guest spots. Fontana's new artist, Carmita, is booked for the same date. (20th).

The King Brothers appear on December 27th, replacing the Dallas Boys, who will be appearing on "6.5 Special" on that date.

Resident singer Peter Elliott has been booked for a further seven appearances, plus an option of six more, making a total of 13. Comperes Tony Hall and Jimmy Henney have also been booked until March.

EXPANSION

It is likely that the show will shortly be increased in length, rather than presented as a two-part production. A gala December 27 production may launch the first of these longer shows.
Jack Good is confident of the show being extended still further, probably until June.

Midland viewers may have an opportunity of attending a performance of "Oh Boy!" in December. It is planned to run a special train from Birmingham to London one week-end next month so that fans in the area may form the audience in the studio.

Talks have progressed this week for the TV show to be presented on stage. The full TV cast are likely attractions, but television rehearsal rquirements will probably restrict the show to the London area.

EMI's LP record featuring most of the "Oh Boy!" company is scheduled for release on Dec. 5.

Harry Robinson, musical director of the series, was married on Monday to model Ziki Arnot. He returns from a brief Paris honeymoon today (Friday). Meanwhile, Cy Payne has deputised for him at rehearsals.

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Saturday 22nd

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 11 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard
'Cuddly' Dudley
The Drifters
Lorie Mann
Peter Elliott

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Sunday 23rd

Rioting breaks out once again at a Cliff Richard concert, the NME reports on Friday 28th November. (See scan below)

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Friday 28th

For the second week in succession, Cliff Richard was mobbed by fans when he left the Granada, Walthamstow, last Sunday. Once again Cliff was whisked off in a police car whilst fans invaded the stage door. A number were injured. At the end of the first house a number of teenage girls climbed on to the stage and jived with the stars. After half-an-hour's frantic rock 'n roll with The Drifters, Cliff appeared on stage for the finale with the rest of the cast, including Wee Willie Harris, Larry Page and the Bachelors. Over 500 teenagers screamed their approval and rose from their seats and surged forward and crushed against the apron stage.

Between shows, a girl fell from a ladder while attempting to enter a first floor dressing room through the window to get autographs. In the rush to the stage door after the second house, a number of teenagers were injured. One girl was taken to hospital by ambulance with a suspected fractured ankle. She was not detained. Police were called when youths began to throw newspaper placards on to the heads of the crowd from a nearby wall.

Theatre manager Ralph Papworth told NME: "I've had Johnnie Ray here - but it was never like this. I've never seen anything like it, they just went wild."

NME announces Jack Good has booked Colin Hicks, (Tommy Steele’s brother), for the Christmas show:

COLIN HICKS, Nixa's teenage beat singer, is the latest recruit to the ranks of ABC_TV's Saturday evening "Oh Boy!" show. He makes his debut on December 27 - the date originally planned for a special Christmas edition, but which will now retain its usual format. The following week, January 3, marks the return of Terry Dene. This will be his second appearance - he was previously seen last month, when he deputised at short notice for Cliff Richard.

NME reports that singer Mike Preston, who made several appearances on the “Oh Boy!” series, is popular in America:

SUCH was the impact of new British singer Mike Preston in America that his return, already delayed a week, was postponed a further three days by additional radio and television appearances. Mike came home on Wednesday. Despite his initial success as a singer Mike is continuing with his job as a cameraman for a firm of commercial television cartoonists.

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Saturday 29th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 12 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
'Cuddly' Dudley
Emile Ford
John Barry Seven
Peter Elliott

Only one of three 1958 broadcasts in which Cliff Richard did not appear. The others being Show No. 3 from 27th September & 18th October 1958 when there was a mix up over dates.

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NME announces the “Oh Boy!” stage show is to go ahead

NME announces the “Oh Boy!” stage show is to go ahead for a week in January 1959.

TOP-SELLING British recording group, Lord Rockingham's XI, makes its first public appearance on Sunday, January 25, when the long-projected "Oh Boy!" stage show opens for a week at the Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith. Producer Jack Good told the NME: "Although the show has yet to take shape, I hope that Cliff Richard and all the regular members of the "Oh Boy!" TV company will take part."

Further guest bookings for the Saturday evening TV show have been announced. Terry Dene's date has been put back one week to January 10, and Mona Baptiste appears on January 10 and 17. Actor William Marshall has been engaged for December 27 and January 3. Good says Marshall has a deep voice resembling Paul Robeson and sings "up-tempo spirituals." Neville Taylor's supporting group, The Cutters, will have a new line-up from tomorrow onwards. Wilf Todd and Basil Short have dropped out and are replaced by Al Timothy and "Shake" Keene.

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Saturday 6th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 13 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
'Cuddly' Dudley
The John Barry Seven
Michael Holliday
Peter Elliott

Cliff Richard turns in an even more than usual sexually suggestive performance in this show, while impersonating his idol Elvis Presley, which evokes some strong criticism in the NME. the following Friday.

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Sunday 7th

Cliff was unable to appear at the Regal, Colchester, as he was suffering from an acute sore throat. Singer Vince Taylor deputized at short notice. Organist Cherry Wainer also fell ill and had to cancel the booking.

During early December Cliff collapses with exhaustion. Performing twice-nightly on the variety circuit, rehearsing for “Oh Boy” during the daytimes as well as filming “Serious Charge” at Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, takes its toll on Cliff’s health. Angry at the apparent exploitation and overworking of his son,  Cliff’s dad sacks Franklyn Boyd his manager.

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Friday 12th

THIS columnist has always high praise for the "Oh Boy!" TV series. But producer Jack Good must be held responsible for permitting the most crude exhibitionism ever seen on British TV - by Cliff Richard last Saturday. His violent hip-swinging during an obvious attempt to copy Elvis Presley was revolting - hardly the kind of performance any parent could wish their children to witness. Remember, Tommy Steele became Britain's teenage idol without resorting to this form of indecency. If we are expected to Believe Cliff Richard was acting "naturally," then consideration for medical treatment before it's too late may be advisable.

While firmly believing Cliff Richard can emerge into a top star and enjoy a lengthy musical career, it will only be accomplished by dispensing with short-sighted, vulgar tactics. Finally, ABC-TV has a reputation to uphold and an obligation to viewers. Its first duty is an order to producer Jack Good to forbid any repeat of last Saturday's disgraceful antics.

 

NME announces more of Cliff Richard's touring dates and appearances on “Oh Boy!”:

CLIFF RICHARD has been booked to appear in a cabaret spot at London's Lyceum Ballroom - the biggest in the West End - for six nights from February 2. This is the first time in recent years a leading disc artist has been featured at this top dancing venue. This follows negotiations with Mecca Ballrooms, who originally wanted Richard for cabaret at the plush Cafe de Paris in November. That date could not be fixed due to Cliff's heavy commitments, but it is now hoped he will be able to appear at the Cafe de Paris in March or April.

Cliff continues to appear in ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" until the end of the year. After that, his appearances will be at irregular intervals. The only one at present settled is for January 17. Next month, Richard also heads an eight-day package booked by Gerald Cohen, to tour Star Cinemas in the North of England. The tour will be split into two parts - three days from January 12 and five more days from January 19.

TOWNS ON LIST

Towns he will visit include Wombwell, Dewsbury, Leeds, Pontefract, Scunthorpe, Newark and Burnley. On January 24 he appears at the Rialto, York. Cliff's Sunday concerts continue at Wolverhampton Civic Hall (January 4), Guildford Odeon as well as the NME Poll Winers' Concert at the Royal Albert Hall (January 11) and Romford Odeon (January 18). He also appears at Manchester Free Trade Hall (January 10) and the Dome, Brighton (January 16).


Hundreds of teenage fans were disappointed last Sunday evening when Cliff Richard was unable to appear on stage at Colchester Regal. He was suffering from an acute sore throat. Vince Taylor, who guests in "Oh Boy!" tomorrow, deputised. Also absent from the bill through illness was Cherry Wainer. The Tracy Sisters stood in at short notice.


NME announces Marty Wilde to return to “Oh Boy!”:

MARTY WILDE and his manager, Larry Parnes, have patched up the quarrel which caused Marty to ask for release from his contract.

Marty told the NME: "Everything is straightened out now. I was really upset about leaving the "Oh Boy!" show, but Larry and I have had a discussion, and have agreed to co-operate fully." Following this, Larry Parnes has had talks with Jack Good and ABC-TV, and now expects renewed dates for Marty on "Oh Boy!" commencing at the end of January.


NME announces “Oh Boy!” guest star Glen Mason is booked for BBC’s “Black and White Minstrel Show.”:

GLEN MASON has been booked for every edition of the "Black and White Minstrel Show" which, following its return on December 20, will be a monthly series on BBC-TV. Norrie Paramor will appear with the Big Ben Banjo Band. George Inns produces and is at present negotiating for Benny Lee and Rosemary Squires to continue in the series.

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Saturday 13th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 14 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
'Cuddly' Dudley
Glen Mason
Peter Elliott

Bill Forbes makes his second “Oh Boy!” appearance.

Glen Mason makes his only appearance in the series and is immediately snapped up by the BBC to appear in every episode of its new “Black and White Minstrel Show” beginning later in the month.

 A special train runs from Birmingham to London so fans can see the show live.

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Monday 15th

The “Oh Boy!” LP is officially released this week. It had been recorded live at Abbey Road Studios on Sunday 19th October 1958. The album, which. surprisingly did not chart, was reviewed, albeit briefly, in the NME by ‘Alleycat’ on 12th December 1958, who on the same page had lambasted Cliff’s “Oh Boy!” performance the previous Saturday (6th December) as “crude exhibitionism".

Many well-known stars have penned titles featured on Jack Good's "Oh Boy!" album presented by Columbia - including Bobby Darin's Early In The Morning" (performed by Cliff Richard), plus tracks by Cliff of Jerry Lee Lewis' "High School Confidential", Bobby Day's "Rockin Robin, and Melvin Endsley's "TV Hop".  Jack Scott's "Leroy" is sung by Neville Taylor, aided by the Dallas Boys and instrumental John Barry Seven group, a version of of Little Richard's "Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey," sung by Cuddly Dudley; also a combination of Cliff Richard and a vocal group led by Neville Taylor offering "I'll Try" (from the pen of Conway Twitty) and "Pancho", John Barry's own composition, presented by The John Barry even.

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Friday 19th

Cliff Richard rents his own central London flat at 100 Marylebone High Street, North West London. Within weeks the spacious six-roomed apartment quickly becomes an occasional ‘crash pad’ for his backing group The Drifters and other members of the "Oh Boy!" cast who can't get to their homes in the sticks after gigs.

Its location was ideal for Cliff to attend “Oh Boy!” rehearsals and other London stage venues and in addition it was  within easy walking distance of his close friend Cherry Wainer’s flat and the famous Lotus House Chinese restaurant (where he often dined) in the Edgware Road.

Cliff’s mother and elder sister maintained the flat while Cliff was away working on whistle-stop tours around the country.

(See NME article dated 23rd January 1959 for feature on 'Cliff Richard’s New Flat.')

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Saturday 20th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 15 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,  
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:

Cliff Richard & The Drifters
'Cuddly' Dudley
The King Brothers
Peter Elliott
Vince Taylor

The King Brothers (right) make their only appearance in the series, replacing the Dallas Boys who appeared on the rival "6.5 Special” pop show at the same time on the  BBC.

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Saturday 27th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 16 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price, 
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:

Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Colin Hicks
'Cuddly' Dudley
Peter Elliott
Vince Taylor
William Marshall

The BBC air the last “6.5 Special” pop show, which had been broadcast at the same time as Jack Good’s “Oh Boy!” in direct competition at 6pm on Saturday evenings.

The hour long “Oh Boy!” Christmas special planned in November for this date did not materialize.

During 1958 Cliff Richard had appeared in 13 of the 16 shows broadcast since 13th September 1958 and topped the bill on many of them. However he would only make 7 appearances during the remaining 22 shows broadcast from January to end of May 1959 due to a gruelling schedule of live appearances. He would appear on 17th & 31st January and then not be seen for five weeks until 7th March. He would make just 4 more appearances-  28th March, 3rd May, 23rd May, and the last show on 30th May, which is the only surviving one where Cliff is featured.

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Saturday 3rd

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 17 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
'Cuddly' Dudley
Don Lang
Peter Elliott
Vince Taylor & His Playboys
William Marshall

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Saturday 10th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 18 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
'Cuddly' Dudley
Don Lang
Mona Baptiste
Peter Elliott
Terry Dene
Vince Taylor & His Playboys

Mona Baptiste returns  for the first of two appearances.  This is her first appearance since the two trial "Oh Boy!” broadcasts in June 1958.

Terry Dene makes his second and last appearance. He had previously appeared on Saturday 18th October 1958 when he deputised at short notice for Cliff Richard.

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Saturday 11th

The New Musical Express annual Poll Winners Concert is held at the Royal Albert Hall, London. Unfortunately not recorded for television, it featured many stars who made guest appearances on “Oh Boy!” including Alma Cogan, The Mudlarks and Lonnie Donegan.

The shows biggest attractions were Marty Wilde and Cliff Richard and a review of each of their short sets was published in the NME on the following Friday (16th January.)  - see scan below.

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Friday 16th

Two artists - dynamic Cliff Richard and lanky Marty Wilde  -suffered from too much applause! There were times when their singing was drowned by continual screaming and shouting from the fans, but both conjured up an exciting, electrifying atmosphere. Young Cliff all but raised the roof with the inevitable "Move It," slowed down the pace for "One Night," and finally whipped the audience into a near-frenzy again with "High Class Baby." Backed by The Drifters, he writhed and wriggled inside his pink jacket and black trousers in the best Elvis tradition.

Marty was accorded a tumultuous reception for "RockinRobin" but I think the loudest screams were heard during the slow, reflective "Fire Of Love" - one of the mournful, melancholy songs in which he seems to specialise. His up-beat interpretation of the old standard "I Can't Give You Anything But Love" climaxed his vigorous, applause-winning act.

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Saturday 17th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 19 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Mona Baptiste
Peter Elliott

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Friday 23rd

NME reports that the Cliff and the Drifters debut album will be a tribute to some of the great stars of rock ‘n’ roll:

THE long-awaited news of Cliff Richard's first album has been revealed. Many fans will be able to attend the special sessions at EMI's St. John's Wood studios on February 9 and 10. Titled "Cliff Richard With The Drifters," his group will also be featured in two instrumental numbers.

On this LP Richard pays tribute to six famous rock 'n' roll personalities by including titles he considers to be the most exciting they have recorded. These include "My Babe" (Ricky Nelson), "It's Only Make Believe" (Conway Twitty), "Ready Teddy" (Little Richard), "Too Much" (Elvis Presley), "Down The Line" (Jerry Lee Lewis), and "Nothin' Shakin' " (Eddie Fontayne). Norrie Paramor, Columbia's recording manager, who is organising this LP, told the NME it is planned to convert the studio into the atmosphere of a dance club - including refreshments and a Press bar - with facilities for teenagers to dance during the sessions. Release date for the album is April 1.

Because of changes in several concert and TV dates for Cliff Richard, here is a revised list until March 30, when Lew and Leslie Grade launch a nationwide tour of 30-weeks' duration.

"Oh Boy!" TV appearances are set for Saturdays, January 31, February 7, and March 7 and 28. Cliff and the group pre-record a "Saturday Club" broadcast for February 21. Cliff follows a week's "Oh Boy!" stage show presentation - starting this Sunday at the Commodore, Hammersmith - with six days cabaret at the London Lyceum Ballroom, from February 2. Concerts next month in Hull (February 11), then consecutive dates at Wigan, Newcastle, Sheffield and Edmonton. On February 21 he is in Birminham. The Richard group starts a six-day tour of Granada cinemas at Cheltenham on February 23, then go to Doncaster (March 1). One-nighters revealed by Cliff's manager, Tito Burns, for March include Guilford (March 15) followed by consecutive days at Cardiff (17th), Swansea, Bradford, Stockton, Sunderland and Liverpool: a later date is Plymouth (March 29).

John Foster, who launched Cliff Richard's career as his personal manager but later became his touring representative, will terminate his association with Cliff during the next fortnight. Foster is hopeful of discovering other promising artists.


NME publishes the news that Jack Good is seeking some big American artists to appear on “Oh Boy!” This is a particularly interesting story because behind the scenes much more was going on than this article reveals:

ABC-TV's Jack Good is hoping to use top American rock artists in his weekly "Oh Boy!" show. He has asked the big London agencies to see if they can line up some topline American stars for him. He told the NME: "I would like to book people like Jerry Lee Lewis and Gene Vincent, if they are available." Rehearsals have been progressing this week on the "Oh Boy!" stage show, which opens for seven days at the Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, on Sunday. Bookings are already heavy, particularly for Thursday, and many coach-loads of fans are travelling from the provinces specially for the show.


When Marty Wilde returns to "Oh Boy!" on February 7, he will be teamed with Cliff Richard on three numbers. This programme will present 32 items in 26 minutes. Shirley Bassey makes her second appearance on February 14, and includes a comedy duet with Marty Wilde. Newcomer Rikki Henderson is booked for the following week (21st).


CLIFF RICHARD, despite his almost jet-speed rise to fame, still manages to retain a naturalness that is thoroughly refreshing. This is perhaps the main reason why he has captured so many fervent young admirers in such a short time. He really knows the secret of how to enjoy life and he likes nothing better than to see other people sharing in the fun with him. Whenever his extensive schedule allows, he delights in inviting friends round to relax with him at his new Marylebone flat. With his nationwide tour of one-night stands in full swing, it wasn't until early last Sunday morning that we were able to fix a few hours together. Just after eight o'clock, my phone rang.

Breakfast

It was Cliff, full of joy at having a few hours to spare, suggesting that I might like to drop round for breakfast and also listen to a few new LP's he has had flown in especially from the States. A great idea! Within a few minutes I was heading north through Hyde Park, along Oxford Street, and then turning left into Marylebone.

Cliff's flat, located in a busy shopping centre, is on the first floor of a three-storied building. At the moment the front door is a little the worse for wear, for it seems that late the other night Cliff and his road manager found they were locked out wthout a key between them, and so there was nothing for it but to do a spot of house-breaking! Once inside the large lounge - three walls are painted cream and the fourth an olive green - I spotted the NME cup presented to Cliff earlier this month for being voted by readers the Most Promising New Singer of 1958. It stands in pride of place on the oak mantlepiece and Cliff still can't always realise that he has actually won it!

Dressed casually in his green and black striped silk dressing gown and wearing the new suede slippers he bought in Dewsbury last week, Cliff offered to give me a conducted tour of his six-roomed apartment. Next to the lounge is the spare bedroom. It is simply furnished in a maroon and grey colour scheme and on one of the walls there's a collection of photographs of top rock 'n' roll stars. The next room along is the bathroom, which on Sunday was being used as a drying room for the three pairs of pink socks, presents from fans, that Cliff had just washed through. By the soap cabinet, I noticed the electric razor that Cherry Wainer had given him as a Christmas present. The next room is the nerve centre of the whole flat - the kitchen. Equipped with a new electric cooker, a modern, blue coloured refrigerator and the table with its gay yellow top, it is large enough to seat four people. The chairs, made in metal, are of bright contemporary design. Leading off the kitchen is another spare bedroom wher comedian-compere Jim Tarbuck, or members of the Drifters group, often sleep when they are unable to get back to their own flats.

Jet's gift

On one of the walls is a watercolour of a Hertfordshire village given to Cliff by Jet Harris, the blonde bass guitarist in the Drifters. Our last port of call was Cliff's bedroom, which is dominated by a huge lucky mascot, aptly named "Lord Rockingham." This is a three-foot-tall soft toy rabbit, which his fans presented to him at the party he held recently in the Holborn Hall. Cliff thinks the world of this gift and while it is too large for him to carry around on his tours, he always keeps a photo of it in his wallet. Cliff sleeps in a single bed with a light-oak headboard, and by the side is a small cabinet which on Sunday was covered by a four-pound box of chocolates given to him by two fans - Meg and Ann, of Leicester. Back in the lounge again, Cliff switched on the radiogram, and played a disc by Pat Boone singing a number from "Mardi Gras," which is the latest film Cliff has been able to see. With this holiday music playing in the background and with Cliff by now nestling snugly in a comfortable corner armchair playing with his six-week-old black kitten, we were soon discussing summer vacations. He is at present busily collecting pamphlets on the Mediterranean Riviera, where he is planning to go for three weeks later this year.
He can just remember some wonderful sunny holidays in India and this summer he is determined to follow the sun once again.

Everly disc

After the "Mardi Gras" record, Cliff put on a brand new Everly Brothers LP, and then suggested I might like to browse through one of his favourite science fiction books while he prepare breakfast. Before many minutes had passed, he was calling me into the kitchen where he proudly presented his breakfast speciality, consisting of scrambled egg served with chopped, grilled bacon and tomato. It tasted really good and apart from one burnt peice of toast, the whole breakfast was cooked and served without a hitch. After his third cup of tea ("four lumps, please"), we went back into the lounge and listened to one of his many Presley discs.


Cliff was just telling me that he was planning to buy a hi-fi stereophonic gramophone with the royalties from "Move It," when the telephone bell rang. It was Martin Jackson of ABC television, asking the number of tickets Cliff wanted for his family at next Sunday's first performance of the "Oh Boy!" show, when it opens at the Commodore, Hammersmith, on Sunday for seven days. This gave me the opportunity to look around the room and I noticed that Cliff's liking for food and articles with an Oriental flavour had spread to the lounge. On the walls were several Chinese prints and in one corner was a really enormous reading lamp of a famous Malayan design. After talking and listening to more records by such stars as Stan Freberg, Ricky Nelson and Neville Taylor, it was eventually time for Cliff to bath and change before going to lunch with his grandmother and "uncle" Chris at Windborough Road, Carshalton, Surrey. "Uncle" is in inverted commas because it so happens that Chris is only seventeen - a whole year younger than his famous nephew!

Just as he was about to put on his white shirt, Cliff noticed that one of the buttons was missing. Without hesitation, and with his careful upbringing coming to the fore, he found a needle and cotton and in a very short while Operation Sewing had been successfully caried out. While on tour, he is by now sufficiently well trained in domestic matters to do any necessary emergency darning as well. What with that, and cooking, Cliff will make someone a wonderful husband!


As a nearby church was striking twelve, we closed the front door and Cliff said how much he was looking forward to being in the flat all next week while playing Hammersmith, particularly as he wanted to try out the new cooker with some fancy Chinese concoctions he had found out about at the Lotus House.

This will be the first opportunity he will have had since taking over the lease of the flat a month ago of staying there for more than two consecutive nights. As we were driving away, I realised how fortunate this 18-year-old artist was in having the qualities that make him not only a first-class modern entertainer, but also a first-class host and friend as well. It had been an extremely pleasant morning spent with one of the nicest young personalities in British show business today.


During January 1959 Jack had met with senior American television executives from ABC TV with a view to selling some of the “Oh Boy!” shows for broadcast in the States. Jack revealed in his weekly column in “Disc” music paper that after being shown some telerecordings of a few of the shows, the executives were highly impressed with our British rockers. Indeed one commented how much more raw and energetic they were compared to some of the lame US rock stars at the time. However, for a deal to be finalised they insisted on some changes. They requested some US celebrities needed to star in the shows if they were to appeal at all to an American audience back home. Jack of course needed time to do this, but he eventually managed to book several stars, including Brenda Lee and Conway Twitty for April and May 1959. The agreement reached was that 13 shows would be telerecorded for export to the United States beginning on Saturday 7th March 1959 and run weekly until the very last edition on Saturday 30th May 1959. See “WHERE HAVE THE SHOWS GONE?” page for more detail on this.


The news of the successful deal eventually made the headlines in the NME on Friday 13th March 1959 by which time the first show had already been telerecorded for export the previous Saturday. (7th March)


“Oh Boy!” did air on ABC TV in America from Thursday 16th July to Thursday 3rd September 1959. Eight of the original 13 were broadcast with some editing of the masters, including cutting out compares Tony Hall and Jimmy Henney and replacing them with Brenda Lee who did the introductions and announcements. It is believed some or all of these 13 shows have survived over the last 45 years and are in the hands of a private collector in the United States. Just as intriguing are these unanswered questions :-

“Which editions of “Oh Boy!” did Jack Good show to these American TV producers back in January 1959 to clinch a deal?”

How many of the earlier shows did Jack telerecord prior to 7th March 1959 and most importantly where are they now?

SEE ALSO WRITE-UP FOR THE FIRST “OH BOY!” SHOW FOR BROADCAST IN THE UNITED STATES ON 7th MARCH 1959 (IN THE MARCH 1959 DIARIES)

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Saturday 24th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 20 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI,
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
The Hewitt Singers
Lonnie Donegan & His Skiffle Group
Mike Preston
Roy Young

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Sunday 25th

The week long “Oh Boy!” stage show presentation kicks off at the Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, West London. On the opening Sunday there were two performances 5pm and 8pm with just one performance at 7.45pm during the remainder of the week. SEE “TRAVELLING SHOW” heading for more details. The shows were reviewed by the NME the following Friday (30th January) who described it as “Uncolourful”. Due to stringent licensing regulations the artists were stopped from wearing their usual flamboyant stage costumes and the dancing routines were drastically curtailed.

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Monday 26th

“Oh Boy!” Travelling Show. Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, West London.

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Tuesday 27th

“Oh Boy!” Travelling Show. Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, West London.

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Wednesday 28th

“Oh Boy!” Travelling Show. Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, West London.

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Thursday 29th

“Oh Boy!” Travelling Show. Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, West London.

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Friday 30th

“Oh Boy!” Travelling Show. Commodore Theatre, Hammersmith, West London.

NME announces that the “Oh Boy!” series is such a success that it has been extended yet again. Due to end in March 1959 it will now extend to 30th May. The approval to continue the series was no doubt helped by the clinching of the deal to sell some of the shows to the United States, which was nearing completion at this time:

"Oh Boy!" has been extended again! ABC-TV told producer Jack Good this week it will now continue weekly until May 30. He then plans a holiday and presumes the show will return in the autumn. By the time the series ends, Good predicts that it will have produced at least one other star. "Marty Wilde, Cliff Richard and someone else will form the spearhead of "Oh Boy!", Jack told the NME. "I think the someone may be Bill Forbes. He has appeared in the programme four or five times and is definitely catching on."

Forbes appears on February 14 and 28 and then at least five more times before the final programme on May 30. Either he, Cliff, or Marty is expected to be in each programme until the end. Producer Good expects all the regulars to continue during the extension. Neville Taylor and The Cutters miss the February 7 and 14 programmes, however. There will also be occasional guest appearances by established stars and Jack Good still hopes to book suitable visiting American artists.


The stage presentation of "Oh Boy!" started with an uncolourful first-night at Hammersmith Commodore on Sunday. Because of licensing regulations, artists were stopped from wearing their normal stage costumes. Lord Rockingham's XI, Britain's most unconventional band, appeared in very conventional dinner-jackets instead of its pink television uniforms. The Vernons Girls' dance routines had to be drastically curtailed.

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Saturday 31st

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 21 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Don Lang
Shirley Bassey

A memorable show featuring both Cliff Richard and Shirley Bassey on the same bill.

This was Cliff’s last “Oh Boy!” appearance for 5 weeks – not returning until the important live broadcast of 7th March, which was the first of the shows recorded for broadcast on ABC in the United States.

This was the first of two appearances by Shirley Bassey. She returned in a fortnight  (14th Feburary 1959) singing solo and performing a comedy duet with Marty Wilde.

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Monday 2nd

A traumatic three week period begins for Cliff Richard who loses his voice with laryngitis and is in a near state of collapse due to the hectic work schedule placed on him.
He was due to begin a week long residency at the famous Lyceum Ballroom in Charing Cross, London, but rioting broke out on the first night. Cliff was pelted with tomatoes and eggs and the concert was abandoned before he even sang a note of his opening number “Baby I Don’t Care”.

Cliff recalled on the Gloria Hunniford TV show in 1986 that the show opened with Jet starting up the bass line for “Baby I Don’t Care” as the revolving stage swung into action and slowly revealing the group in silhouette. Within seconds a barrage of missiles including eggs, fruit and large penny coins were aimed at Cliff, who was already feeling rough and succumbing to illness by this time. “The revolving stage didn’t even stop,” laughed Cliff, “it just carried on full circle. The curtains came down and that was the end of the show. I hadn’t even sung the first line of the first song.”

Cliff lost his voice completely at the worst possible time as on the following Monday and Tuesday 9th and 10th February he was due to record his debut album live before a selected audience at the Abbey Road Studios in London. In order to get himself fit again he cancelled the remainder of the Lyceum Ballroom dates until Saturday 7th February and an appearance on ATV’s Jack Jackson Show on Wednesday 4th February. The one booking Cliff didn’t want to miss was his “Oh Boy!” appearance the following Saturday (7th February) as he was due to sing five solo numbers and three duets on the show. But his condition deteriorated rapidly and he was forced to cancel on Friday, the day before the live broadcast. SEE NME ARTICE 6TH February “CLIFF’S SORE THROAT LEAVES 'OH BOY!' DOUBT.

Cliff managed to fulfil the debut album recordings despite the laryngitis. He had appealed to Columbia (EMI) for them to postpone the sessions but they insisted it went ahead as they had spent £200 on setting up the studio and arranging travel and refreshments for the 200 fans drafted in from both this country and Europe. “I sang some duff notes on that album” noted Cliff, but nevertheless it has still come to be regarded as one of Cliff’s classic recordings.


On the Wednesday morning after the recordings (11th February) Cliff had totally lost his voice again. He was due to embark on a five day concert tour that day, but he was almost speechless. A doctor was called who warned Cliff not to sing for two weeks and a holiday break was advisable. Cliff however refused to disappoint his northern fans. Throughout a 200 mile motor journey from London to Hull he treated his throat as medically prescribed, but on arrival at the theatre his condition had not improved. He bravely undertook both performances that night (11th February) but singing was physically impossible. The audience still applauded and cheered however at his courage.

To make matters worse both Drifters drummer Tony Meehan and rhythm guitarist Bruce Welch went down with the ‘flu’ after the show. As a result the other four dates on the tour at Wigan, Newcastle and Sheffield were cancelled. After recuperating at home for two days he joined his friends Ray Ernstone and Dave Riley and travelled on impulse to Brighton for the weekend of (14th and 15th February) to get away from it all . (SEE NME ARTICLE “MY LOST WEEKEND “ 20th FEBRUARY.) He finally regained his voice and returned to his live concert schedule the following Saturday 21st February at the Town Hall, Birmingham.

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Friday 6th

NME reveals the extent of Cliff's throat problems:

CLIFF RICHARD had to miss his guest spot in ATV's "Jack Jackson Show" on Wednesday because of throat trouble, and there is a big doubt whether he will be fit enough for "Oh Boy!" tomorrow (Saturday). He also had to cancel his appearances at the Lyceum Ballroom, London, where he had been at the centre of sensational scenes on Monday.
Rioting among the dancers broke out as he made his entrance for the first of the week's cabaret spots in this major London dance hall.

Rock 'n' roller Vince Taylor, who was in the audience, said: "They even threw people at Cliff! I don't think they liked his pink jacket."

On Tuesday it was announced that Cliff would be unable to fulfil his engagement as he was suffering from laryngitis. The extent of his illness was more serious than was originally thought.

Young singer Terry Wayne ably stood in at short notice. Billy Fury deputised in the Jack Jackson Show on Wednesday.

Due to his condition, there is grave doubt whether Cliff will be appearing on "Oh Boy!" on Saturday night. Jack Good expressed concern as Cliff was due to sing five solo numbers and three duets on the show.

Next week Cliff is due at EMI recording studios to record his new LP. There will be an audience of boys and girls from different countries.

NME announces more guest stars lined up for “Oh Boy!” appearances:

NEW Columbia signing Dickie Pride makes his television debut in ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" on Saturday, February 28. Dickie, another Larry Parnes discovery, was signed by Columbia a and r man Norrie Paramor this week.

Ronnie Carroll returns to the show on the same date. Another re-booking is that of discovery Roy Young, who guests tomorrow (Saturday).

Among other bookings are: Riki Henderson and Jerry Dorsey (February 21). Billy Fury (February 14 and March 14), Mike Preston and Vince Eager (March 7) and Don Lang (February 14 and 21, March 14 and April 14).

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Saturday 7th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 22 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Betty Miller
Bill Forbes
Marty Wilde

Bill Forbes deputizes for Cliff Richard who was suffering from larynigitis. Cliff had hoped to appear in this show that marked the long awaited return of Marty Wilde, who had been out of the series since 18th October 1958 as a result of a wrangle between his agent Larry Parnes and Jack Good. Cliff was due to sing 5 songs and duet on 3 numbers with Marty Wilde.

Neville Taylor and the Cutters miss the 7th and 14th February shows. This is their first absence since the start of the series in September 1958.

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Monday 9th

Cliff records his live debut album  at the Abbey Road studios. (See Tuesday 10th for photos and sleevenotes).

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Tuesday 10th

Cliff records his live debut album at the Abbey Road studios:

Issued on the classic shiny green and gold Columbia label 33SX 1147, this LP was, and still is, an exciting piece of rock 'n' roll, despite Cliff being plagued with laryngitis! - Here's what the sleevenotes said:

On February 9th and 10th, 1959, a rock 'n' roll galaxy transformed the famous E.M.I. recording studios in London's select St. John's Wood. Several hundreds of Cliff's fans were invited along to see this young star make his first LP and it was some party! Cliff selected all the tunes himself for this record and pays tribute to other stars and the songs that made them famous. With their great solo instrumentals The Drifters, Britain's greatest ever rockin' group, contribute to make this a truly memorable disc.

To give you an idea of the exciting atmosphere, on-the-spot photos were taken by Ken Palmer and are reproduced on this cover.

Track listing:

Side 1
APRON STRINGS/MY BABE/DOWN THE LINE/I GOT A FEELING/JET BLACK (the Drifters)/BABY I DON'T CARE/DONNA/MOVE IT
Side 2
READY TEDDY/TOO MUCH/DON'T BUG ME BABY/DRIFTIN' (The Drifters)/THAT'LL BE THE DAY/BE-BOP-A-LULA (The Drifters)/DANNY/WHOLE LOTTA SHAKIN' GOIN ON

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Wednesday 11th

Cliff loses his voice again after recording for his debut album “Cliff” on Monday and Tuesday. This morning, about to embark on a five day concert tour, he was speechless. A doctor was called who warned Cliff not to sing for two weeks and a holiday break was advisable.

Cliff however refused to disappoint his northern fans. Throughout a 200 mile motor journey from London to the Cecil Theatre in Hull he treated his throat as medically prescribed, but on arrival at the theatre his condition had not improved.

He bravely undertook both performances but singing was physically impossible. Fellow “Oh Boy!” star Bill Forbes agreed to help at short notice and sang all of Cliff’s songs for him offstage while Cliff mimed. The audience still applauded and cheered however at his courage.

To make matters worse both Drifters drummer Tony Meehan and rhythm guitarist Bruce Welch went down with the ‘flu’ after the show. As a result the other four dates on the tour at Wigan, Newcastle and Sheffield were cancelled.

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Thursday 12th

Alma Cogan returns from France to begin rehearsals for her appearance on “Oh Boy!" this Saturday.

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Friday 13th

The NME continues to report on Cliff’s continuing throat troubles:

THE sore throat which forced Cliff Richard to cancel engagements last week continues to give him a great deal of discomfort. While completing his first Columbia LP on Monday and Tuesday this week, he experienced difficulty with his throat, resulting in medical treatment.

On Wednesday morning when about to embark on a five-day concert tour, he was almost speechless. A doctor's further visit was necessary. Cliff was warned not to attempt to sing for two weeks, and that complete rest was necessary, if possible in the South of France.

Cliff, however, refused to disappoint his Northern fans. Throughout a motor journey to Hull on Wednesday he treated his throat as medically prescribed, but on arrival at the theatre, his condition had not improved.

Under the circumstances he bravely undertook both performances by contributing everything he could to the shows, but singing was physically impossible.
The crowds cheered and mobbed him and admired his courage.

When promoter Arthur Howes telephoned Cliff's manager, Tito Burns, in London, regarding the remainder of this week's tour, he requested that Cliff be allowed to continue even if his voice did not return. Howes felt audiences would prefer to see Cliff rather than be disappointed with a substitute or cancellation of any concerts.

Accordingly, Cliff remains with the package show, promising to sing if his throat condition improves.

Tito Burns said promoter John Smith, who presents Cliff Richard next week, would have the chance of cancelling his bookings or accepting him on the conditions that no guarantee could be given of his ability to sing.

NME reveals a dispute has arisen in the “Oh Boy!" camp over ownership of the 'Lord Rockingham' name:

A BOMBSHELL was dropped by the "Oh Boy!" musical director-arranger Harry Robinson this week, when he consulted solicitors concerning the use of the now-famous name Lord Rockingham, today one of the leading recording and TV attractions.

The NME understands that Harry Robinson considers he is entitled to financial benefits derived from the use of the Lord Rockingham name on the grounds that he conducts the orchestra for TV and records, created the musical sound which made this a best-selling disc outfit, and writes many of the arrangements associated with the XI.
We are informed that Robinson consulted legal advisers after an advertisement appeared in the last issue of the MNE in which Jack Good announced he was the sole originator and proprietor of Lord Rockingham's XI, with the entire goodwill of the name vested solely in him.

Robinson's attitude causes great surprise to Edward Sommerfield, chief of the management office representing producer Jack Good and Lord Rockingham's XI, who told the NME: "From the outset, the name was created by Jack Good who is responsible for the recording and TV contracts on behalf of the band.

The whole idea was pioneered by him. After formulating the sound he required, he engaged Harry Robinson and conveyed to him the musical treatment required.
There was never any question of Robinson having the rights to the Lord Rockingham name, which remains Jack Good's exclusive property. But Robinson's composing royalties from the XI's disc sales amounts to several thousand pounds."

Asked to make a statement on the situation, Harry Robinson replied "I am very sorry but there is nothing which can be said by me at this stage."

His present contract with with the weekly "Oh Boy!" TV presentation ends next month but although the series has been extended until the end of May, no decision has been reached for Robinson to continue after next month, which is subject to the outcome of this dispute.

Meanwhile, under Decca's auspices next week, Harry Robinson waxes the first album under his own name - comprising a collection of Latin-American tunes.
Previous negotiations for Lord Rockingham's XI to be featured in the Max Bygraves London Palladium revue from June to December, have not materialised.

NME reveals that Alma Cogan is booked to appear on “Oh Boy!":

ALMA COGAN makes her debut in ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" tomorrow. She was flying back from France yesterday (Thursday) to start rehearsals with producer Jack Good the same day.

She'll sing her record hit "Last Night On The Back Porch" and is also expected to do duets with Marty Wilde and Don Lang.

Last Saturday, Cliff Richard was absent due to illness. His routines were taken over by Bill Forbes.

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Saturday 14th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 23 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Alma Cogan
Billy Fury
Don Lang
Marty Wilde
The Mudlarks
Peter Elliot
Shirley Bassey

Alma Cogan makes the first of two appearances in the series. She sings her new single “Last Night on the Back Porch” and duets with Marty Wilde. Alma returned for the 2nd May show when she dueted with  Cliff Richard. The pair developed a good friendship and they made frequent guest appearances on each others  forthcoming TV spectaculars for the ATV network in 1959 to 1961.

Shirley Bassey makes her second and final appearance.

Billy Fury makes his first of six appearance on the show.

British vocal group The Mudlarks make their only appearance in the series.

Cliff Richard, still recovering from laryngitis takes an impromptu weekend holiday break to Brighton with two friends and watches the show in a seafront coffee bar much to the surprise and amazement of the other patrons

Neville Taylor and the Cutters are absent for the second week running.

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Friday 20th

NME reports on Cliff Richard’s ongoing illness:

ALTHOUGH Cliff richard had planned to complete his northern concert tour last week, even after losing his voice at the Wednesday night performance in Hull, he found it impossible to continue.

Hurriedly, "Oh Boy!" TV personality Cuddly Dudley was secured for the remainder of the week, joining other members of the package show Wee Willie Harris and Tony Crombie and his Rockets.

After promoter Arthur Howes said last Wednesday night that Cliff Richard was agreeable to fulfil the remaining dates in spite of having lost his voice completely, later the same evening Cliff encountered insurmountable problems.

Two members of his group, The Drifters, were victims of influenza and Cliff's own difficult position deteriorated as well.

Under the circumstances, the unit were reluctantly forced to abandon their brave attempts and returned to London.

It is pleasing to report that after a few days of complete rest Cliff's vocal chords were functioning easily again earlier this week, enabling him to commence rehearsals on Wednesday afternoon for the "Oh Boy!" show on February 28.

Furthermore , it was planned that, together with the Drifters, concerts and other commitments would re-commence at Birmingham Town Hall tomorrow (Saturday).
At Edmonton last Sunday, Marty Wilde filled the breach( besides broadcasting in "London Lights" the same evening) with Cuddly Dudley and Wee Willie Harris.

NME reports on the ongoing dispute between Jack Good and musical director Harry Robinson:

A HIGH COURT injunction sought to prevent Jack Good from continuing to use the name Lord Rockingham...bandleader-arranger of the "Oh Boy!" TV series forming his own group, Harry Robinson's "Hootsmen"...a statement suggesting several musicians in TV's Rockingham's XI are breaking away in order to join forces with Robinson's new line-up...a solicitor's statement that contracts will be signed this week by Harry Robinson's Hootsmen with a leading disc label - these are the startling highlights of a raging inferno which has emerged since the NME's exclusive revelation last Friday of an attempt by Robinson to secure the Lord Rockingham name.

Today ( Friday) in the High Court, Harry Robinson will seek an injunction to prevent further use of the name Lord Rockingham by TV producer Jack Good.
In a lengthy statement issued by Robinson, he alleges that his action is not over money, but the principles involved. He suggests Good's manager, Edward Summerfield, made a statement in last week's NME which was innacurate and in his words, "must be corrected."

Apart from variations of Robinson's views, printed by the NME last week, additional information in his statement includes the following: "I greatly admire Jack Good as a brilliant producer with fresh ideas, but he is not a trained musician."

Robinson continues with the admission that the name and title "Lord Rockingham's XI" was invented by Good - but it had now become inseparably attached to him and in the public eyes it would be harmful for him to present any music under any other name.

Also it would be unfair to him (Robinson) if any other bandleader was to be regarded as Lord Rockingham.

Robinson alleges that after refusing to sign an exclusive contract with Good's manager Edward Summerfield, there followed advertisements in musical papers stating Jack Good owned copywright of the Lord Rockingham name.

This prompted Robinson to instruct solicitors that an immediate letter demanding a withdrawal of this statement be made. He admits however, that the request was refused and the High Court injunction he seeks now is concerned with establishing the right to the name Lord Rockingham.

WHO GOES WHERE?

Earlier this week, Robinson expressed the view that with only one exeption (aprt from featured organist Cherry Wainer and her own drummer), the remaining members of the "Oh Boy!" resident Rockingham band would not be continuing after March 7, but instead had signed with his new group.

By Wednesday, the resignations were not as anticipated, when Jack Good announced that five instrumentalists had agreed to remain, leaving only four players uncertain.
According to Robinson, when the musicians of the TV XI were offered contracts by ABC for the remainder of of the "Oh Boy!" series (from March 14-May13), he did not receive any extension after his current obligation, which ends on March 7.

On Good's behalf, Edward Summerfield commented: :Having already sent a solicitor's letter making claims to the title, how could Robinson expect to be signed to the remain with the show after that?

Summerfield's statement in last week's NME alleging thet the whole idea of Lord Rockingham's XI was pioneered by Jack Good, and that after formulating the sound required, Good engaged Robinson and conveyed to him the musical treatment rquired, was strongly denied by Robinson. He asserted that besides arranging and composing all the bit tunes for their Decca records, he was bandleader of Lord Rockingham's XI from the outset.

He further added: "Jack Good asked for a distinctive sound, I was the one who experimented and found one."

Questioned by the NME regarding his immediate plans Harry Robinson would not reveal the recording company which had signed his new "Hootsmen" orchestra, nor would he intimate the name of any business representatives who would be connected with his future.

However, our independent enquiries indicated, on reliable authority, that Pye-Nixa is the disc label concerned; furthermore, it is envisaged that Bunny Lewis (who represents the Mudlarks), is connected with the question of future management.

Finally, Edward Summerfield made the comment: "This hardly seems like gratitude for the opportunity Jack Good has created for Robinson to amass several thousand pounds as composer of Lord Rockingham disc titles."

Decca, in providing recent Press material concerning the group, stated (in writing) thsat the "Hoots Mon" record sales alone had yielded Robinson composer royalties of over 5,000 pounds.

Despite the dispute, Robinson is expected to fulfil his "Oh Boy!" contract until March 7.

NME runs a full page feature on Cliff’s throat problems which had plagued the singer over the last three weeks:

No one could be more frustrated and disappointed than I was when my doctors ordered me to rest my throat and take a holiday last week.

I'm glad to say everything is fine now and I'm rarin' to go on Saturday at Birmingham. My quick recovery is thanks to my surprise "lost weekend" - or rather the weekend I got lost!

I'd like to tell you about it here in my favourite paper. First - why it happened.

After managing to struggle through six hours recording my Columbia LP-"Cliff Richard And The Drifters"-last Monday and Tuesday, my voice went completely on the Wednesday morning. The doctors assured me that the throat was not affected by a germ, but was seriously strained and was a culmination of ceaseless work during the past week-travelling up and down the country, one night stands, appearing on the weekly "Oh Boy!" show, making a film and playing in variety.

Even with my voice gone last Wednesday, I refused to give up, and rather than let my Hull fans down that night, I insisted on undertaking the 200-mile journey from London and appearing on stage there, even though I couldn't sing.

This northern audience gave me a wonderful reception. But, unfortunately the trip was too much for me and two of the Drifters - Tony and Bruce - also were sick with the flu after the show.

In these sad circumstances, we very reluctantly had to give up the rest of the tour and I'd like to say to all those who had booked for it "I'm very sorry."

My doctors insisted that I take a complete holiday and I made arrangements to go to the South of France.

Seats were booked on a BEA flight to Nice last Saturday, but, unfortunately, as luck would have it, there was a last-minute hitch and it was impossible to get the passport through in time.

Just as this disappointing news was being phoned through to me, and made me feel blue after the joy the many Valentines I received had brought me, two friends - Dave and Ray - happened to call in to see how things were going and immediately they heard my difficulty they hit on the idea of all three of us motoring "into the blue" for a couple of days, not letting anyone know where we would be.

I thought it wasa a great idea! So, after hurriedly packing a toothbrush, a few belongings, my portable gramophone and a stack of records, we set off in Dave's Riley in a southerly direction without anyone - not even my parents knowing where we were going.

Oncethrough London there was a quick discussion as to where we should make for, and eventually on my suggestion we headed for Brighton.

After stopping en route for some medicine and capsules that the doctor had prescribed, we reached Brighton at three in the afternoon.

We selected a small hotel right on the front, with rooms overlooking the west pier and beach. Booked in, we set out for a short walk along the sands, as my doctors told me to get as much fresh sea air as I could. I was muffled in a woollen scarf and overcoat, and hoped I would be able to walk around unrecognised.

But my pink socks gave me away. It was not long before I had the feeling of being followed.

After signing autograph books, we went into a record shop and bought several discs, including Little Richard's "Baby Face," Nancy Whiskey's "Johnny Blue" and "Problems" by The Everly Brothers.

I was determined not to miss the "Oh Boy!" show and searched around until I found a coffee bar with a television set.

From 6 to 6.30. I spent a busman's holiday watching Jack Good's programme, and felt very envious of everyone having such a good time on the show, and I determined more than ever to get better quickly.

Films I like

A little later my attention was caught by a large poster advertising a science fiction film. I go for them, but rarely have the time to see any. So the evening was spent watching "The Cage Of Doom," supported by an even more blood-curdling film, "The Screaming Skull"! I don't think they'll mae the hit parade, but I loved them. I forgot my frozen orange on a stick, and there wasn't very much left apart from the stick.

After the show we had a barbecued chicken supper and a brisk walk along the beach back to the hotel and were in bed with the lights, by 10.30 p.m

Breakfast of bacon and eggs, twelve hours later on the Sunday morning was served in bed and then, after writing cards - pictures of myself and captioned "Cliff's at Brighton"- to my parents and three sisters. I decided to pay a quick visit to the local sports stadium where the Show Biz Eleven were due to play soccer against a team of managers.

Well protected with two scarves around my neck, I spent a brief 20 minutes seeing my friends - Jim Henney, Glen Mason and his ex manager, Franklin Boyd - playing some highly entertaining soccer.

This made me feel suddenly energetic, because driving away from the stadium, still being hotly persued by fans, I thought I would like to try my hand on the Sea View golf course.

Much to the amusement of some fans from nearby Roedean School, this turned out to be really hilarious, but as the game progressed I soon got the hang of handling the various clubs, and by the 15th green managed to hole the ball in a record three. (Want some lessons, Lonnie?)

All this exercise built up a good appetite and so I enjoyed poached egg on top of a Welsh rarebit in a nearby cafe.

Back once more at the hotel, I switched on my gramophone, and for the next two hours listened to discs by Elvis Presley, Tommy Sands and Ricky Nelson, who I think are the greatest.

During this time I was feeling rather sad because it coincided with the time that I was supposed to be appearing at the Regal, Edmonton. I only hope I can make it up to everyone there soon.

This had been a date to which I had been looking forward to for many weeks.

To round off the day, an expedition was made to the Nanking Restaurant in the famous Brighton Lanes, where I ordered my favourite dish of chicken curry.

On Monday morning I spent a very enjoyable hour at the Pier Pleasure Grounds on the dodgems, the pin-ball machines and the rifle range.

On holiday, I have always enjoyed taking home presents for my family, and so the rest of the morning was spent in choosing suitable gifts.

After quite a lot of looking around, I finally selected a 3lb presentation box of chocolates for Mum and a new shaving brush, soap and blades for my Dad, and extra large sticks of rock for my sisters.

Shortly after midday it was time to leave Brighton and return to London. And as I said in the car, it was a fabulous break. I felt much brighter than I had 48 hours previously. The sea air during my "lost weekend" had certainly done me a power of good!

Now to make up for "lost" time. I'm all set to "Get Movin'" again!

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Saturday 21st

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 24 (Compered by Tony Hall)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Betty Miller
Don Lang
Gerry Dorsey
Marty Wilde
Rikki Henderson

Gerry Dorsey, later to change his name to Engelbert Humperdinck, makes the first of  2 appearances on "Oh Boy!".

Newcomer Rikki Henderson makes his one and only appearance.

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Saturday 28th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 25 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
'Cuddly' Dudley
Dickie Pride
Marty Wilde
Mike Preston
Tony Sheridan

Dickie Pride the "Sheik of Shake" makes his debut performance on "Oh Boy!".

This show also marks the debut appearance of Tony Sheridan.

 


Jack Good's attentions during these weeks in February were focused on the all important 7th March 1959 edition which would be the first show of 13 to be telerecorded for export to ABC in America. Although he had no big American names for this key broadcast (the earliest bookings of US stars he could manage to clinch were in April and May) Jack secured the cream of British talent, including Cliff Richard and Marty Wilde to ensure this  particular show was a memorable one.

SEE ALSO:

“Oh Boy!”  show details for 7th MARCH  in the MARCH 1959 diaries.

“Where Have The Shows Gone?” page and the NME article  “JACK GOOD SEEKS AMERICAN ROCKERS” from 23RD JANUARY in the JANUARY 1959 DIARIES
for more details of the American “Oh Boy!" broadcasts.

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Saturday 7th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 26  (Compered by Tony Hall)
ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 1. (of 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Marion Ryan
Marty Wilde
Mike Preston
Vince Eager

A crucial showcase for Jack Good - as this was the first of 13 shows to be telerecorded for broadcast on ABC in the United States later in the year. On the requests of  U.S. ABC television executives back in January, Jack had attempted to secure some big American names in seven short weeks to star in this first American broadcast of  7th March, but there was insufficient due to many major artists prior commitments. Jack had more success in the latter shows, when he netted big names like The Inkspots,  'Little Miss Dynamite’ Brenda Lee and Conway Twitty for broadcasts in April and May.

Denied access to American artists, Good marshalled the cream of British talent such as Cliff Richard and the Drifters, Marion Ryan and Marty Wilde to appear in this milestone broadcast. His intention was to make a big impact on the fresh American audiences by getting the best of the English rockers to perform their major hits in a fast paced action packed show.

A number of these American telerecordings are known to survive in private hands in the United States, including "Move It" among others, to introduce them to this huge new overseas audience. Time to clinch any deals for the first few weeks his first show, in which it is believed Cliff and the Drifters performed. If ever found this will become the earliest Cliff and the Drifters performance ever discovered on celluloid. To promote the series and ensure maximum publicity and exposure in the United States many photographs from this show were taken and sent out to the media in the USA.


Jack was a keen follower of  true American rock ‘n’ roll and he was quick off the draw in flying to the USA again in early May to secure some big name artists for the new series of “Oh Boy!” envisaged to begin in mid September 1959. However when the new series did return its name was changed  to “Boy Meets Girl” . More noticeably and to its detriment the genuine atmosphere of excitement was lost as the cast had to move from the live Hackney Empire to the sedate and reserved setting of Manchester’s ABC studios in Didsbury. Reviews of the new series said it had lost the excitement and edge so characteristic of the live “Oh Boy!" shows!

SEE ALSO:

“Where Have The Shows Gone?” page and the NME article “JACK GOOD SEEKS AMERICAN ROCKERS” from 23RD JANUARY in the JANUARY 1959 DIARIES for more details of the American “Oh Boy!" broadcasts.

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Friday 13th

The news that “Oh Boy!” has been sold to America belatedly makes the headlines in NME:

Later this year telerecordings of the "Oh Boy!" series are likely to be shown regularly in America, the first British musical TV show to be so honoured. Films of recent shows have already been shown to executives of U.S. networks. ABC expect to sign contracts very shortly.

Programmes would not be transmitted there for some time. A big snag is artists' contracts and musical copyrights which, though valid in Britain, might not necessarily apply in America. When the new series starts in September provision will be made for American repeats.

Tommy Steele appears again on "Oh Boy!" on April 4, with Lonnie Donegan scheduled for a fortnight later as part of Jack Good's policy of booking big stars.
Steele was the first star producer Jack Good introduced to guest on the show, when he debuted on November 1. Donegan's only previous appearance in the series was during February.

Also booked for the April show is Dean Webb, a new rock singer being managed by John Foster, who was associated with Cliff Richard's early career.
Two MDs - Bill Shepherd and Harry Robinson - have been attending "Oh Boy!" rehearsals this week. ABC-TV announce that Shepherd and John Barry will be among the arrangers for the show in future.

The company has failed to name Robinson's successor as musical director of the series at press time.

In the High Court on Tuesday, the dispute between Harry Robinson and Jack Good over the name "Lord Rockingham" was put back a week.

Good's counsel, Mr. Neil Lawson, Q.C., told Mr. Justice Vaisey the parties had come to terms in principle.

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Saturday 14th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 27  (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 2. (of 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Billy Fury
Chris Andrews
Don Lang
Peter Elliott
Terry & Freddy
Tony Sheridan

This is the second show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is probable that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

Newcomer Chris Andrews makes his debut appearance. He would also appear in show 30 (4th April 1959) singing a cover of Cliff Richard’s “Move It.”  This 4th April edition is the first surviving show of two found in a search of the British archives.

Terry and Freddy (Adam Faith and Freddy Lloyd)  make their one and only appearance in the series.

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Friday 20th

The NME reveals that Marty Wilde loses out to Cliff Richard in the starring role in the new film “Expresso Bongo.”:

CLIFF RICHARD has secured a starring role in the screen version of "Expresso Bongo." Cliff edges out Marty Wilde, who was also considered for the leading part of Bongo Herbert. Instead, Marty has a new screen role lined up in another big feature film - "Paradise for Baby."

The screen version of "Expresso Bongo" will greatly differ from the successful stage satire. Producer Val Guest told the NME: "A complete new score is being written and will incorporate only three of the original numbers." Cliff's own famous accompanying group, The Drifters, join him in the film. A number of other big beat personalities, not yet chosen, will also be featured.

Before making a final decision between the two rock singers, producer Guest saw both Cliff's film " Serious Charge," now awaiting release, and rushes of Marty's current picture, "Jetstream," which is still in production. "I chose Cliff because I saw him as the most likely of the two to fit the part," Guest said. "I thought they were both excellent on the screen."

"Expresso Bongo" filming is expected to begin on location in Soho on August 10, followed by interior shooting at Shepperton Studios. No contracts have actually been signed yet, but Peter Sellers and Diane Cilento are expected to co-star with Cliff.

Marty Wilde is to star in "Paradise for Baby" for Hughie Green Productions. Shooting is set to begin on June 1. This film is about rival dance halls and has been under discussion for many months. Now both terms and script have been approved by Marty's agent, Larry Parnes. Tomorrow (Saturday) a final script conference is to be held. It is expected that other top name signings will be announced next week.

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Saturday 21st

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 28  (Compered by Tony Hall)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 3. (of 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
'Cuddly' Dudley
Dickie Valentine
Gerry Dorsey
Marty Wilde
Tony Sheridan

This is the third show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is probable that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

Cuddly Dudley returns for his 15th appearance in the series. His beaming smile and exuberant dancing made him an all-time favourite with “Oh Boy!” viewers. In total he would make 19 appearances (just one less than Cliff!) in addition to the two trial broadcasts back in June 1958.

Gerry Dorsey (Engelbert Humperdink) returns for his second and final time. He had first appeared on the 21st February edition.

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Saturday 28th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 29  (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Cliff Richard
The Drifters
The Marino Marini Quartet
Pierce Rodgers
Ronnie Carroll

This is the fourth show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. The original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, is in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom, and is currently being restored, hopefully for eventual release.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

The Marino Marini Quartet make their one and only appearance.

Pierce Rodgers makes the first of  four guest appearances in the series.

Crooner Ronnie Carroll, who had appeared in the first six shows of the series during September and October 1958, makes a final return visit for tonight’s show.

This is Cliff Richard and the Drifters last appearance for five weeks, not returning until 2nd May.

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Friday 3rd

NME announces Terry Dene is offered “Oh Boy!” date. It is unclear whether Dene did honour this booking on 25th April:

TERRY DENE, demobbed from the army last Thursday, plans a comeback. An appearance on ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" may mark his return to show business. Negotiations are going on for him to follow this with a series of Sunday concerts.

His agent, Hyman Zahl, said: Jack Good is interested in Terry for "Oh Boy!" on April 25. I have also been offered a series of Sunday concerts teaming him with his wife, Edna Savage."

Looking tanned and fit, Terry spent a long time with music publishers in Tin Pan Alley (Denmark Street) on Tuesday, listening to new songs.

Terry hopes to cut a new disc within the next fortnight under his new agreement with Decca revealed in last week's NME.

CHERRY WAINER IN PALACE VARIETY

ORGANIST Cherry Wainer makes her West End debut on Monday. She is the latest name to be added to the big variety bill headed by American comedian Alan King at the Palace Theatre, London.

The mudlarks and singer-comedienne Audrey Jeans have already been named as other attractions.

The first performance on Monday has been sold entirely as a charity performance in aid of the Jewish National Fund.

The legal battle between Harry Robinson and Jack Good over the use of the Lord Rockingham name ends amicably, the NME reveals:

INTO my office on Tuesday morning, heavily laden with suit cases, struggled "Oh Boy!" producer, Jack Good - a refugee from ABC-TV's move from its Wardour Street address to its handsome new studios at Teddington.

"Got to find somewhere away from the chaos, so that I can do some work," he declared - and promptly transformed my office into the "Oh Boy!" administration centre.
Jack made a succession of telephone calls from my desk regarding artists he proposes booking for the next "Oh Boy!" series, when it resumes after a summer recess in September.

Since he is still in the throes of negotiations, I am not yet able to reveal the names he's attempting to secure. Let me just say that if certain plans materialise, "Oh Boy!" viewers are in for a very exciting time next autumn.

I was most anxious to know if Jack envisages any change in format when the show returns after its summer rest. Jack assured me that it would be "very different" from the present show.

I'm not quite sure what changes I shall make," he told me. "But I think it's most desirable that we shouldn't get into a rut.

When we started 'Oh Boy!' our lighting effects were very much of a novelty. Now they are no longer news, so I shall have to find some additional innovation.

"The secret of successful television lies in keeping one jump ahead."

Delicate

I tackled Jack on the rather delicate subject of his legal tussle with Lord Rockingham MD, Harry Robinson.

"It was an unfortunate misunderstanding," explained Jack. "Harry has always been a good friend of mine, but I realised that he felt he had a good reason for taking this attitude. Anyway, I am very glad that the complications have now been ironed out and that it's smooth sailing from now on."

Tomorrow (Saturday), "Oh Boy!" comes to the nation's screens for the first time without any direct competition from the BBC, who have switched their new "Drumbeat" series to the 6.30 time slot. "It's very flattering," grins Jack.

Reflecting upon the days when he was in such keen competition with "6.5 Special," Jack pointed out that it was rreally the this latter programme which was responsible for kicking off "Oh Boy!"

"It was a result of doing the stage presentation of '6.5 Special' that I gained sufficient insight into presentation and lighting for me to be able to think in terms of a show like 'Oh Boy!'."

Ambition

Jack's present beat-show commitments occupy practically all his time, but he still retains a burning ambition to produce a television drama. He also tells me that he would not be averse to devoting some time to films or the theatre.

"I should want to retain my contact with television," he said, "as obviously it is the medium of the day. But by exploring fresh fields, it's always possible to bring something fresh back into television."

Jack intends to have a complete break from the rigours of production, for when the show concludes its present run on May 30, he is going to Italy for ten weeks-"to get away from it all!"

Meanwhile, Harry Robinson looks as though he will have a hectic schedule of one-nighters with Lord Rockingham's XI, though he and his wife, Ziki, also hope to be able to snatch a mid-summer rest.

At any rate, it is pleasing to know that there is no longer internal controversy within the "Oh Boy!" camp, and that Jack Good-that stalwart creator of new television ideas - still hopes to find something fresh for the next series.

Final word from Jack, regarding BBC-TV's new "Drumbeat" series: "I should think they have a very good chance of succeeding!" Indeed it is possible that both channels will increase their audience rating, as a result of no longer being in direct competition.

DEREK JOHNSON

But lack of presentation mars Rockingham Band on stage

LORD ROCKINGHAM'S XI and Harry Robinson stood on their own feet on stage for the first time on Sunday. At Birmingham Hippodrome, topping a concert bill, they made their debut away from "Oh Boy!" surroundings.

The gutty sound and the impressive beat was there in full measure. They produced as much excitement on the stage as in the TV or recording studios. This was surprising. Cherry Wainer is not appearing with the band; indeed, there was no organ at all, yet it seemed to make little difference.

But the presentation - or lack of it - was very disappointing.

A pity

The ABC-TV show is so slick and polished and the dramatic lighting builds the excitement. It was a pity more was not done to preserve these features in the band's stage presentation.

Harry Robinson, the band's MD and arranger, displayed an unsuspected ability as a light comedian in introducing the show. He did an impression of Bill Haley, made the distinctive Rockingham comments (Moose loose," etc.) and did the novelty instrumental bits - kazoo and penny whistle, as well.

Red Price has two spots - a vocal of "Rumble, Tumble," and a tenor solo, "Week-end." Also featured were pianist Ian Fraser in "Gazachteshagen," guitarist Ernie Ford ("Cannon Ball") and the percussionists in "Topsy II."

Most of the band's numbers were drawn from its recordings - "Fried Onions," "Blue Train" "Wee Tom" and, of course, "Hoots Mon."

The music certainly scored. When the stage presentation is as good, Lord Rockingham's XI will be really sensational.

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Saturday 4th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 30 (Compered by Tony Hall)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 5. (OF 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI,
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Brenda Lee
Chris Andrews
Dickie Pride
Dean Webb
Don Lang
Lorie Mann
Mike Preston
Tony Sheridan

This is one of only two shows found in a search of the old ABC archives.

The other surviving show is the final edition from 30th May 1959 (No.38), clips of which have been widely used on commercial television.

The original 16mm telerecordings of both shows are retained in the archives of Canal Image Plus who now own the copyright to ABC material.

During the sixties it is believed ABC retained 13 titles of “Oh Boy!” on it shelves (given catalogue numbers 1- 13, these originals were then copied for export to America.)

In the intervening years, eleven of the original 13 have disappeared, (leaving just shows 5 and 13) much to the chagrin of John Heron, head of British sales at Canal Image, who would dearly love to see the missing shows returned. “They are one of the most popular titles requested from our catalogue,” said John, “ Television researchers making documentaries are having to re-use the same old clips time and time again due to the scarcity of material available.”

In this surviving edition, Lord Rockingham's XI perform a lively rendition of “Long John”, Neville Taylor and his Cutters perform the Coaster's hit, “Charlie Brown” and Tony Sheridan and his Wreckers perform the infectiously catchy “I Like Love”. During this song, a camera located behind the artists on stage pans the theatre and captures the animated audience in ebullient mood packed into the balcony.

Another highlight is Dickie Pride’s full performance of Little Richard's “Slippin n’ Slidin, which was also performed on the surviving final show of 30th May 1959. However this latter rendition contained only one verse of the song as Jack attempted to cram in abridged highlights of all the best songs in the series in this final show.

Without doubt, THE highlight of the show was the dynamic appearance of "Little Miss Dynamite" - Brenda Lee… her one and only appearance in the entire series.

Compare Tony Hall announces 14 year old Brenda as a young American singer making here debut television appearance in Britain. As the trademark “Oh Boy!” circular spotlight hits the mike at centre stage, the pint-size singer breezes on to perform her new single “Humming The Blues Over You” with a voice so strong, lucid and distinct there is little to tell it apart from the original recording.

To close the show Brenda lets rip with a superb rendition of “Wont You Come Home Bill Bailey.” The stage lights hit Lord Rockingham's band during the instrumental breaks and Brenda excels in some brilliantly executed vocals as the closing credits roll.

The famous final signature tune (as featured at the close of the Oh Boy! LP) is played at the end as Lord Rockingham’s brass section joins Brenda at the front of the stage to play out.

SEE ALSO:

“Where Have The Shows Gone?” page for further info and the NME article “JACK GOOD SEEKS AMERICAN ROCKERS” from 23rd. JANUARY in the JANUARY 1959 Diaries for more details of the American “Oh Boy!" broadcasts.

Both the BBC's "Six-Five Special" & short-lived "Dig This" series had been broadcast in direct competition with Oh Boy!, but, probably because they were losing out in the ratings war, it was decided the successor, "Drumbeat", would be scheduled at the slightly later time of 6.30 p.m -- just as the Oh Boy! broadcasts finished. On hearing the news Jack Good said in a NME interview – "I should think they now have a very good chance of succeeding!  Indeed it is possible both channels will increase their audience rating as a result of not being in direct competition."

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Monday 6th

Cliff’s debut album, recorded before a live teenage audience on 9th and 10th February 1959, is officially released. Many of the tracks featured here were performed live on the “Oh Boy!" shows too.

SEE Diary entry for Tuesday February 10th for details and album cover/label scans.

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Saturday 11th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 31 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)
ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 6. (of 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI,
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
'Cuddly' Dudley
Dickie Pride
Lorie Mann
Marty Wilde
Pierce Rodgers

This is the sixth show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

Tommy Steele had been booked to appear on tonight’s show, after postponing the 4th April appearance, but he broke his ankle in an accident a day before the live broadcast and had to cancel.

Jack Good books Billy Fury for a further four shows on 25th April, 9th May, 23rd May and the very final show of 30th May 1959.

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Friday 17th

The NME announces that big American star Conway Twitty is to fly to England to make two appearances on “Oh Boy!" during May:

ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" has made its most exciting capture so far! Top American recording star Conway Twitty is the first star to fly direct from the States to appear on these programmes - on May 9 and 16! In addition, producer Jack Good has lined up a glittering array of Britain's top stars headed by Alma Cogan, Marty Wilde and Cliff Richard to appear in the show during May, and hopes that another American, Jackie Wilson, will also be featured. Twitty, originally scheduled to visit Britain this month in a package show, is the second visiting American star to appear on "Oh Boy!" It is possible that he will also undertake concert dates while he is here, but none have yet been negotiated. His recording of "It's Only Make Believe" became a No. 1 seller on both sides of the Atlantic, and MGM here are to release his new disc, "Hey Susie," to coincide with his visit.


Cliff Richard returns to the show as a special attraction on May 2, 23 and 30, joined on the first date by Alma Cogan as the guest star.

Marty Wilde is booked for every Saturday in May, while Billy Fury and Dickie Pride appear fortnightly - April 25, May 9, 23 (and 30).

Other block bookings go to Don Lang (April 25, May 16 and 30). Cuddly Dudley (April 25, May 16, 23 and 30), and Mike Preston (May 2, 16 and 30).

An unusual booking is Renee Martz, American teenage preacher, who appears with Nicky Martin and Michael Cox next week (April 25).

Other single dates so far confirmed are Maureen Kershaw, Dene Webb and Tony Sheridan (May 9), Lorie Mann and Pierce Rodgers (May 16) and Terry White (May 23).

Negotiations are taking place for American rock singer Jackie Wilson, whose disc successes include "Reet Petite" and "To Be Loved," to appear in the show on May 23.

Producer Jack Good plans a May visit to America with a view to signing attractions for the new series in the autumn.

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Saturday 18th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 32 (Compered by Tony Hall)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 7. (OF 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI,
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Dickie Pride
The Inkspots
Lonnie Donegan & His Skiffle Group
Lorie Mann
Pierce Rodgers
Tony Sheridan

This is the seventh show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is now thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

Lonnie Donegan makes his second and final appearance in the series. He had previously appeared on show No.20 on 24th January 1959.

The American vocal group The Inkspots make their only appearance. Jack Good’s attempts to secure big US names for “Oh Boy” begins to pay dividends.

Renee Martz, an American teenage preacher, makes the first of two appearances in the series. He later appeared on the 23rd May edition.

Jack Good secures appearances for Cliff Richard and the Drifters for 3 dates in May: 2nd, 23rd and the final show on the 30th. Their appearances on “Oh Boy!" were increasingly sporadic in 1959 while they performed a heavy schedule of provincial theatre dates around the country. The group did not appear in the series for the entire months of February and April. Jack wanted them for the final shows in May to ensure the series went out with a bang!

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Saturday 25th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 33  (Compered by Jimmy Henney)
ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 8. (OF 13)  

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Billy Fury
'Cuddly' Dudley
Dickie Pride
Don Lang
Michael Cox
Nicky Martin

This is the eighth show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is now thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

This is Michael Cox’s only appearance. He and Billy Fury were photographed with a couple of the Vernons Girls on the day of this broadcast.  (See photo at right)

Nicky Martin makes his only appearance, singing Jerry Lee Lewis' "Big Blon' Baby"

(For list of songs performed in this show, see the "Who sang what?" page)

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Sunday 26th

Riotous scenes greeted Cliff and the Drifters when they gave two concerts at the the Gaumont, Lewisham, in south east London. The police were called to disperse fans amassing outside the theatre after the show which halted traffic along Lewisham High Street.

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friday 1st

It is announced the BBC’s rival pop show “Drumbeat” series has been extended to at least August and books Adam Faith, Roy Young, Terry Dene, Vince Eager and John Barry to appear in the series. With just five “Oh Boy!" shows to run before the end of the series, “Drumbeat” makes a concerted attempt to secure big name artists for its broadcasts over the summer of 1959 when it holds a monopoly over teenage viewers without any competition. They immediately snatch up Cliff Richard and the Drifters to appear on the 9th May edition (his BBC debut) and book him for a further 2 appearances on 20th and 27th June 1959.

The NME announces Cliff Richard is to make his BBC TV debut on Saturday 9th May:

CLIFF RICHARD breaks entirely new ground on May 9, when he makes his first appearance on BBC-TV - starring in the peak-hour Saturday evening variety presentation next week!

The occasion, which introduces Columbia's teenage sensation to a host of new viewers, to whom his many previous ITV appearances have not been accessible, is the BBC's 35th anniversary tribute to Henry Hall, "Here's To The Next Time." Among the stars announced earlier for this programme are Dickie Valentine, Joan Regan, Dickie Henderson, Arthur Askey and the Michael Sammes Singers. Bernard Bresslaw cannot now appear, and is replaced by Eric Sykes. Following a cavalcade of stars with whom Henry has been associated, the show will close with Cliff and The Drifters - as representatives of the new artists with whom Henry is always coming into contact.

Cliff is also lined up for later BBC-TV appearances. After being seen in ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" at the end of May, he moves to the rival channel for "Drumbeat" on June 20 and 27.

There is now uncertainty whether Cliff will begin filming "Expresso Bongo" in June. Laurence Harvey is now cast for a lead role for which Peter Sellers had originally been named. Harvey has a Hollywood commitment already pencilled-in, which may precede or follow "Bongo." Meanwhile, Cliff's first film "Serious Charge" will be one of three British pictures to be shown at the Berlin Film Festival.

EXTRA DATES

More one-nighters have been added to Cliff's May programme - a hastily arranged tour next week. He plays dates at Bristol, Liverpool and Preston on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. On May 17, he enters fresh fields, starring at the first Sunday concert ever staged in Peterborough - at the Embassy Theatre.

Last Sunday, there were incredible scenes during the first house at Lewisham Gaumont. Manager B. Richardson told the NME: "The fans were a bit naughty. They enjoyed the show but got carried away. Girls left their seats and rushed to the front of the stalls. "One girl clambered past attendants on to the stage. The safety curtain had to be lowered while Cliff was singing "A Whole Lotta Shaking." After the show a large crowd gathered at the rear of the theatre under Cliff's dressing room window and would not move. This caused an obstruction to traffic until the police were called to disperse them.


On Tuesday, he recorded an EP of the four songs he sings in the film "serious Charge." Plans are under way for him to record a new single, which for the first time will include a ballad, on Monday. His group, The Drifters, who record in their own right for Columbia, waxed new titles yesterday (Thursday).


The NME announces that Jack Good’s bid to get American singer Jackie Wilson for the 23rd May edition of “Oh Boy!" has failed:

BIDS for "Reet Petite" singing star Jackie Wilson to star in the "Oh Boy!" show on May 23 seem to have fallen through, cables Nat Hentoff. Latest information is that he will probably be available for a visit to Britain in July.

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Saturday 2nd

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 34  (Compered by Tony Hall)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 9. (OF 13)  

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Alma Cogan
Cliff Richard & The Drifters
Marty Wilde
Mike Preston

This is the ninth show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is now thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

Red Price is in hospital and did not appear in this edition.

This is Cliff and the Drifters first appearance since 28th March. Cliff  duets with both Marty Wilde and Alma Cogan.

This is Alma Cogan’s second and final appearance in the series. She had first appeared on the 14th February edition (show no. 23)

(Above) Marty Wilde, Alma Cogan and Cliff Richard close this 2nd May edition singing "That's Love".

(Left) Two shots of a moody looking Cliff singing "Choppin' n' Changin"

(Right) 2 shots of Cliff and Marty duetting on "Tell Him No"

Cliff and Alma became good friends and they made frequent guest appearances on each others  forthcoming TV spectaculars for the ATV network in 1959 to 1961.

Jack Good books Marty Wilde for all the remaining “Oh Boy!" shows until  30th May. (the final edition.)


MEMORIES OF 2ND MAY SHOW BY STAN EDWARDS.

Former Butlins Redcoat and club entertainer Stan Edwards (pictured at left) remembers attending the Hackney Empire Theatre to see the live broadcast of the 2nd May “Oh! Boy!” show. He recalls his excitement of being seated in the front row of the gallery alongside friend and former Drifter Ian Samwell and the memorable meeting with guest star Alma Cogan backstage after the show. Stan was the man who made the earliest ‘live’ recording of Cliff Richard and The Drifters in existence during their short term residency at the Butlins Holiday Camp in Clacton–On–Sea in Essex, on the east coast of England in August 1958.

Cliff had arrived at Butlins with two school friends, drummer Terry Smart and lead guitarist Ian Samwell - the composer of Cliff’s first ever chart hit “Move It”.  Redcoat Stan was to quickly become good friends with Ian, affectionately known as ‘Sammy' , and when unemployment loomed at the end of the Summer Season, Stan moved down to London in November 1958 and shared a flat with ‘Sammy’ in Kilburn, North London, fairly close to Cliff’s own flat in the Edgeware Road.  Sammy wrote nearly all of Cliff’s early single hit recordings including “Move It” (Cliff’s first hit) “High Class Baby/My Feet Hit The Ground” (2nd single) “Mean Streak/ Never Mind” (4th single) as well as other frenetic rockers like “Dynamite” and “Choppin n' Changin”. In fact he wrote most of those tracks while he was resident at the flat with Stan. Ian invited Stan to several live “Oh Boy” shows between December 1958 and May 1959. This was a truly exciting time for Ian….seeing his own compositions performed live on national television by Britain’s fastest rising young rock star  - Cliff Richard. The 2nd May 1959 show was a particularly exciting event for Sammy as Cliff was due to perform both sides of his envisaged new single release “Choppin’ n’ Changin’ and “Dynamite” on the show… both Ian Samwell compositions! Ian had even invited Stan to the original recording sessions of both these tracks at the Abbey Road recording studios on the Monday evening of 9th March 1959. In addition, Cliff was to perform a duet with Marty Wilde and a big finale number with both Marty and that week’s star guest- Alma Cogan. "The screaming from the girls in the audience was unbelievable” said Stan. “It was such an exciting atmosphere.”  It was a welcome and long overdue return for Cliff who had been on a gruelling whistle stop tour of concerts around Britain and who had not appeared on “Oh Boy!” since 28th March. "After the show, Ian and I went backstage and we met Alma Cogan. I always remember it was quite a squeeze as Alma’s dress seemed to fill the entire dressing room” said Stan. "Choppin’ n’ Changin” never did become Cliff’s 4th single release. EMI Columbia a week later decided to release another two Ian Samwell compositions “Mean Streak” b/w “Never Mind” instead and Cliff went on to promote the single when he next appeared on “Oh Boy!” on the 23rd May. Choppin n' Changin found an eventual and much  delayed release on the  feted “Me and My Shadows” LP in October 1960 while the brilliant rocker “Dynamite” made the B side of Cliff’s 6th single  “Travellin’ Light” in October 1959.

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Friday 8th

The NME announces that BBC rival pop show "Drumbeat" is booking some big names to appear over summer:

MUSIC fans are assured of a weekly beat music show on BBC-TV this summer. "Drumbeat" has been extended at least until the end of August.

Compere Gus Goodwin makes his last appearance tomorrow, but the contracts of John Barry, Adam Faith, Roy Young, Sylvia Sands and Vince Eagar are being extended to the end of June. Bob Miller was already booked until then. In addition to Cliff Richard, Sheila Buxton guests in tomorrow's show and Terry Dene returns for another appearance.

Although Fontana recorded a "Drumbeat" EP last week, EMI have decided to go ahead with the plan for a Parlophone LP to be recorded on Sunday.

The NME announces Cliff will make a double BBC debut tomorrow with two television appearances:

TOMORROW (Saturday), Cliff Richard becomes the first pop singer to star in two BBC-TV shows on the same night! He appears in "Drumbeat," in addition to "Here's to the Next Time" later in the evening.

Originally booked as a surprise item in the Henry Hall tribute programme, manager Tito Burns arranged for Cliff to also appear in "Drumbeat," which takes the air just one hour earlier.

The concert Cliff missed, through illness, at Hull on February 11, he hopes to give there on May 27. This would be included in a proposed one-nighter tour, commencing May 26 at Hanley Victoria Hall. Other dates include Reading Palace (28th), Chelmsford Odeon (29th) and Woolwich Granada (30th).


The NME announces that Jack Good is to fly to America to recruit some big named artistes to appear in his new series beginning in September 1959:

JERRY LEE LEWIS, Jackie Wilson and The Coasters are three of the top-line American recording attractions ABC-TV producer Jack Good aims to clinch for his autumn "Oh Boy!" series - when he makes a dramatic visit to America next week.

Good flies to New York on Monday night, hoping to finalise terms for each to play two "Oh Boy!" dates, with one-night concerts on intervening evenings.

Speaking of Jerry Lee Lewis, Good told the NME: "I am very intersted in him as an artist, despite the controversy surrounding his last visit. After all, look at his hit parade successes."

Now that Jackie Wilson cannot appear on May 23, hot gospeller Renee Martz has been booked for her second appearance on the show. Already Good has tentatively booked Cliff Richard for the first programme of the autumn series (September 19) and Dickie Pride for several shows.

There is a possibility that Lord Rockingham's XI will not be in the show when it returns in September. In this event, it is probable that Bill Shepherd will become musical director, leading an entirely new type of combination. The Rockingham Band recorded again for Deca this week. Title of its forthcoming releases are "Ra Ra Rockingham" and (significantly?) "Farewell Rockingham."

When in the States, Good will spend one week in New York and three days in Memphis, where he hopes to pick up ideas for use when he begins his a-and-r activities for Decca in August.

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Saturday 9th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 35 (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 10. (OF 13)

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI,
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Billy Fury
Conway Twitty
'Cuddly' Dudley
Dean Webb
Dickie Pride
Marty Wilde
Maureen Kershaw
Tony Sheridan & The Wreckers

This is the tenth show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is now thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

Conway Twitty flies in from the United States especially for the first of two consecutive performances on this show and next week's 16th May edition. In the show he sang his number 1 smash hit “It’s Only Make Believe.” (see photo on left)

Cuddly Dudley makes his 18th and penultimate appearance. He would appear again in the final show on 30th May in which many of the “Oh Boy!" stars were booked to perform abridged versions of their songs in an action packed show.

Dean Webb makes his second and final showing.

Tony Sheridan and his Wreckers make their sixth and last appearance.

Maureen Kershaw makes her only appearance in the series.

After the show many viewers switched channels to watch Cliff Richard and the Drifters make their BBC debut appearance on “Drumbeat.”

Cliff makes his BBC television debut with not one, but TWO appearances on the same night! At 6.30 pm he and the Drifters starred in BBC’s pop show “Drumbeat” along with Terry Dene. It is probable he promoted his new single release “Mean Streak” which he did the previous week on “Oh Boy!" (2nd May 1959).

An hour later on BBC at 7.30pm Cliff and the Drifters topped the bill in “Here’s To The Next Time” a 35th anniversary tribute show to Henry Hall. Both shows were broadcast live and probably never telerecorded. As a result these performances are presumed lost forever.

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Monday 11th

Jack Good flies to the United States in a bid to book some big name American acts for the envisaged new “Oh Boy!” series beginning in September 1959. He spends 10 days in America in total – with 7 days in New York and 3 days in Memphis - where he meets up with television executives to try to clinch deals selling his new TV series. He returns home to England on the 22nd May. Frenetic Jack was looking forward to a 12 week holiday in Italy to relax after the final “Oh Boy!" show on 30th May.

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Tuesday 12th

Jack is in New York promoting his new series and signing up American artistes for forthcoming appearances.

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Saturday 16th

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 36  (Compered by Tony Hall)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 11. (OF 13)  

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Conway Twitty
Don Lang
Marty Wilde
Mike Jackson
Mike Preston
Pierce Rodgers
This is the eleventh show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is now thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

American star Conway Twitty makes his second and final appearance on “Oh Boy!". He had flown especially to Britain to make his debut appearance on last week’s show (16th May) when he sung his smash hit “It’s Only Make Believe.”   This week he promoted his new single release “Hey Susie” backed by the resident “Oh Boy!” band.

Stalwart Marty Wilde, one of Jack’s favourite artistes, makes his 15th of 17 appearances in the series. Marty went on to host and star in Jack’s forthcoming ABC pop series “Boy Meets Girl” in September 1959.

Newcomer Mike Jackson makes his only appearance in the series.

Pierce Rodgers makes his fourth and final showing.

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Monday 18th

Jack Good still in America on business, flies from New York to Memphis promoting his new television series (called “Boy Meets Girls”) beginning in September 1959. He would return to England on Friday 22nd to oversee the production of the last two “Oh Boy!” shows  on 23rd and 30th May.

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Friday 22nd

Jack Good returns from his 10 day business trip to America where he clinches deals to sell his new forthcoming series and secures several famous names for forthcoming appearances.

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Saturday 23rd

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 37  (Compered by Jimmy Henney)

ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 12. (OF 13)  

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes
Billy Fury
Cliff Richard
Dickie Pride
Marty Wilde
Renee Martz
Terry White

This is the twelfth show of 13 recorded for export to the United States. It is now thought that this original telerecording, once catalogued with ABC at Teddington, Middlesex until 1968, may be in the private hands of someone in the United Kingdom.

Also some of the 13 copies sent to America are known to exist and in the possession of a private collector in Arizona or New Mexico.

This show is unique at present because an extract from it survives to this day. A two minute clip of Cliff and the Drifters performing their latest single “Mean Streak” was lifted from the show for inclusion in a documentary made in April 1966 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of ABC Television.

The hour long show, called the “ABC of ABC”  which is mostly a documentary on the cultural changes in Britain from 1956 to 1966 and co-presented by Eamon Andrews and actress Billie Whitelaw, survives and is retained by the British Film Institute in London.

At present this is the only “Oh Boy!" footage found other than the two surviving editions of 4th April and 30th May 1959

See “Where Have The Shows Gone?” page for further details on this 23rd May outtake.

Jack’s attempts to secure American singer Jackie “Reet Petite” Wilson for this show did not materialize.

Jack ensured that his all-time “Oh Boy!” favourites were booked for the final two shows of the series. They included Cliff Richard, Marty Wilde, Billy Fury, Dickie Pride and Bill Forbes.

Renee Martz, an American teenage preacher with a deep soulful voice makes his second and final appearance in the series. He had previously appeared on the 18th April edition.

Newcomer Terry White makes his one and only appearance (see picture on right of him with Cliff and Jack Good).

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Saturday 30th

THE FINAL SHOW OF THE SERIES!

'OH BOY!' SHOW # 38  (Compered by Tony Hall & Jimmy Henney)
ABC CATALOGUE SHOW NUMBER 13. (OF 13)  

RESIDENT WEEKLY BAND & PERFORMERS:
Lord Rockingham's XI, 
Red Price,
The Dallas Boys,
Neville Taylor & The Cutters,
Cherry Wainer,
The Vernons Girls.

THIS WEEK'S SPECIAL GUESTS:
Bill Forbes                                           
Billy Fury
Cliff Richard
'Cuddly' Dudley
Dickie Pride
Don Lang
Lorie Mann
Marty Wilde
Mike Preston
Peter Elliott

One of only two known surviving shows from the entire series. This is the show which has been played on network television in Britain during the “TV Heaven” series on Channel 4 in the  early 1980s and from which extensive clips have been taken for inclusion in numerous documentaries for more than 25 years.

Cliff Richard’s sultry take on Fabian’s 1959 hit “Turn Me Loose” has been used on television hundreds of times, one of the earliest repeat showings being on the “The Kenny Everett Video Show" (Thames TV) back in 1978.
Another clip frequently used is the novelty song “Three Cool Cats” sung by Cliff Richard, Marty Wilde and Dickie Pride with some unusual ‘seductive’ choreography provided by three of the Vernons Girls during the instrumental break. Other more memorable moments demanded as clips by producers include Billy Fury’s performance of “Don’t Knock Upon My Door” and Cliff and Marty fronting the entire “Oh Boy!” cast on “When The Saints Go Marching In”.

In this final show there are 10  featured guest artistes (in contrast to the usual 6 or 7) in addition to the resident Lord Rockingham XI band as Jack crammed in abridged highlights of all the best songs in the series to make it go out with a bang! At the end of the show co-host Jimmy Henney announces that “Oh Boy!” will be coming off for the summer season but will be back for a brand new series commencing on 12th September 1959. However when the new series did return its name was changed  to “Boy Meets Girl” . More noticeably and to its detriment, the genuine atmosphere of excitement was lost as the cast had to move from the live Hackney Empire to the sedate and reserved setting of Manchester’s ABC studios in Didsbury. Reviews of the new series said it had lost the excitement and edge which were so characteristic of the live “Oh Boy!" shows!

Cliff, Marty and the rest of the cast perform the final number sung on "Oh Boy!"

The very last image from the last few seconds of the last show

For full details of what numbers were performed and by whom, please see the Who sang what? page

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Sunday 31st

Fresh after leaving “Oh Boy” both Marty Wilde and Cliff Richard are booked to appear in their first Royal Variety Show to be held at Manchester on 23rd June 1959. This event was not recorded for television - the 1960 show was the first recorded by ATV and survives to this day in the archives of Carlton International.

In early June Jack takes a long summer holiday in Italy, returning in August to begin rehearsals for his new television series commencing in September.

In early June Cliff Richard takes a two week break and travels by car with friends to Via Reggio in Italy before recommencing his heavy schedule of live concert dates in Britain on Saturday 20th June at the Hippodrome in Dudley.

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Friday 12th June 1959

The NME announces that fans are already missing the “Oh Boy!” series, especially Cliff and Marty, less than a fortnight after coming off air!:

THE fanatical appeal of Cliff Richard is reflected by his sudden rebooking for further concerts at Dudley Hippodrome just a fortnight after his debut there, scheduled for Saturday, June 20. In addition, Cliff plays no fewer than four consecutive dates in London at the end of the month. Three days after the management announced that Richard would appear at Dudley on June 20, every ticket had been sold, and still there were queues outside the theatre. Promoter Arthur Howes, to avoid disappointing fans, was able to rebook Cliff for a second one-night stand there on Saturday, July 5.

Between these two dates, Cliff and The Drifters have a heavy schedule, including his quartet of dates in London suburbs - Wimbledon Gaumont (June 24), Elephant and Castle Trocadero (25th), Edmonton Regal (26th) and Stepney Roxy (27th). On the last date, Cliff will also be appearing in BBC-TV's "Drumbeat." He will dash to his concerts.

Cliff follows with a one-nighter tour that includes Luton Cresta (June 30), Birmingham Town Hall (July 1), Leeds Odeon 2nd), Nottingham Odeon (3rd), Middlesbrough Town Hall (7th), Harrogate Royal Hall (8th), Blackpool Odeon (9th), Nelson Imperial (10th), Manchester Free Trade Hall (11th), and Southend Odeon (12th).

HAVING A BALL

Cliff Richard is on holiday at Via Reggio, Italy where he told NME in a long-distance phone call on Wednesday: "I'm having a ball. I'm surprised English people here know me. "Italian groups play Presley numbers and someone got me to sing in a night club. I enjoyed it and so did the Italian girls, too!"

The above dates follow Richard's Italian holiday, from which he returns this week-end. At the same time he will be recording and learning the choreography for his new film "Expresso Bongo," on which studio work starts on July 31.

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Friday 19th June 1959

Cliff returns from his fortnight holiday in Italy.

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Tuesday 23rd June 1959

Cliff and Marty Wilde take part in their first Royal Command Performance held at Manchester. It was not until 1960 that the event was televised.

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Friday 31st July 1959

The NME reveals singer Dickie Pride is in hospital:

BEAT singer Dickie Pride was rushed to hospital with suspected appendicitis, after collapsing on the stage of Blackpool's Palace Theatre on Monday afternoon.

But the diagnosis proved wrong. Dickie was released from hospital the next day and was planning to resume his appearances in the Palace matinee "2.30 Special" show on Wednesday.

Duffy Power, another young singer, made the overnight trip to Blackpool on Monday to deputise for Dickie during his indisposition.


The NME reveals that the future return of the “Oh Boy!” series has been thrown into doubt:

ABC-TV's "Oh Boy!" the series acclaimed by teenagers throughout the nation for introducing thrilling personalities, is not certain of a return for ITV as previously announced. Saturday, September 12 was the specified starting date by the television company. Several artists, - including Marty Wilde, Cliff Richard and Cherry Wainer - received contracts from ABC to rejoin the projected autumn - winter presentations. But these agreements were not signed (nor those of other artists) for various reasons.

The NME understands reluctance to rejoin "Oh Boy!" by some performers was because producer Jack Good had not settled terms and conditions with ABC-TV to continue with these new weekly shows. Accordingly the situation became more serious when those who failed to complete their contracts received a letter from ABC stating the documents had become null and void because of the artists non-co-operation.

Producer Jack Good is still on holiday in Italy. But unless ABC decide on a complete change of plans, the return of "Oh Boy!" (or a similar presentation with a different title), seems possible only if a satisfactory understanding is reached - between ABC, Good and his representatives, the Edward Sommerfield Organisation.

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Friday 21st August 1959

The NME reveals that Marty Wilde is to host the new Jack Good series “Boy Meets Girl” beginning on Saturday 12th September 1959:

SINGER Marty Wilde will get the full star treatment when Jack Good's ABC-TV show returns to commercial channels on September 12. Featured as host and compere, as well as resident singer, Marty will have the whole show built around him. The same week as this fantastic build-up, Marty will also have his first film shown in public at a London charity premiere on September 16. The film, previously called "Jetstream," but now re-titled "Jetstorm," will be generally released on the ABC circuit on October 5.

The TV show is also being re-christened. "Oh Boy!" has been dropped and the most probable new title, out of many being considered, is "Boy Meets Girls." Among other features of the new series is a new band called The Firing Squad, led by musical director Bill Shepherd. Saxist Red Price will once more be resident, together with organist Cherry Wainer and The Vernons Girls, who will be given a much bigger part in the show. Another regular artist, as predicted in the NME in June, will be Little Tony, Italian rock star. The first show in the new series will be transmitted live from ABC's Manchester studio.

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Saturday 28th August 1959

Cliff and the Drifters perform live on the last edition of the BBC TV pop show “Drumbeat.”

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Friday 11th September 1959

The NME previews Jack Good’s new television series “Boy Meets Girl” starting tomorrow.

Extract:

'Boy Meets Girls' ready to roll!

At 6.30 tomorrow (Saturday) night, ABC-TV raise the curtain on the new pop music presentation -"Boy Meets Girls." Half an hour later, programme planners will know whether or not they have a hit show on their hands capable of attaining the same phenomenal success of its memorable predecessor, " Oh Boy!". "Boy Meets Girls" and "Oh Boy!" have much in common. Same producer - ambitious young ex-Oxford student Jack Good up to a point, the same stars - including singer Marty Wilde, organist Cherry Wainer, tenorist Red Price and the versatile Vernons Girls. The subject is the same, too - pop music. But here we encounter the first major differences between the two shows, for whereas"Oh Boy!" concentrated on rock 'n' roll in particular, "Boy Meets Girls" is a determined attempt to encompass all the varying styles of popular music.

"To my way of thinking, "Boy Meets Girls" will be more up-to-date in approach, and my aim is that it should concisely represent the varied tastes of the pop music fans," producer Jack Good told me. Elaborating on his theme, he added: "I feel that tastes have changed radically over the past few months. For a start, rock 'n' roll isn't the same as it used to be - lets say it's a little more subtle these days. Additionally, I feel there's also a greater demand now for ballads and light beat numbers and we mustn't forget either that the country and western style is growing in popularity. In short" Boy Meets Girls" sets out to present something to suit everybody's tastes. "In this way, we're hoping reach a wider and more mixed audience than "Oh Boy!" and one of my ambitions is to capture adult viewers too."

The format of the show? Basically it will be less frantic though just as colourful as "Oh Boy!", with longer breaks between numbers. Marty Wilde has a plum role as host, compere and resident singer and will be more heavily featured than at any other time during his career. The Vernons Girls will be in the spotlight quite a lot of the time, both in singing and dancing sequences, and Cherry Wainer and Red price will have their own spots. Because of the contrasting musical styles, two bands will be on hand - a big string orchestra and a 10 piece" big beat" unit known as The Firing Squad. Both will be under the direction of Bill Shepherd.

How about guest stars? "I aim to make "Boy Meets Girls" an international show and want to feature artists from all over the world." Jack explained to me. "As you've already reported, country and Western star Johnny Cash is our first major American booking on September 19. "Our first continental guest is Italy's rock 'n' rolling Little Tony and his Brothers, who'll be seen in the first three shows. Marino Marini's Quartet, also from Italy, will be appearing as soon as their heavy commitments allow. "Finally, there's two Swedish artists under discussion - Little Gerhard, who I'm told is rated very highly by Elvis Presley, and Little Babs," Jack declared. He went on: "Of course, I also intend to sign British singers for guest spots - the first is Terry Dene on September 26. Who else? Well, naturally I'd love to have people like Cliff Richard, Frankie Vaughan , Lonnie Donegan and Alma Cogan, but there's nothing settled yet. Bands? That's a good idea, but I haven't gone into it at this stage," he emphasised.

In conclusion, how does Jack feel about the show? "I'm delighted to tackle something new. It's necessary to avoid stagnation - and that applies equally to artists and producers" he said.


Boom time for Marty Wilde

MARTY WILDE'S starring role in "Boy Meets Girls" - the most demanding and important assignment he's yet tackled - comes at a crucial point in his career. The success which everyone so confidently predicts should keep him at the top of the ladder for a long, long time. Why a crucial point? Right now, everything seems to be happening at once for Marty. Today (Friday), his latest Philips single "Sea Of Love" is released, tomorrow marks the debut of "Boy Meets Girls", on Sunday his first film "Jet Storm" is premiered at the Regal in London's Old Kent Road, and within a week or so his first LP "Wilde About Marty" reaches the shops.

Marty has so much on his plate at the moment that he hardly knows which way to turn. Not the least of his worries is "Boy Meets Girls," and the headlining part he will play in the production. "It's a challenge, and because of that, I'm looking forward to it. "Nervous? Who wouldn't be?" the tall gangling star told me at a crowded press conference last week. Of course, Marty has every right to feel nervous since the show is largely built around him.

"I've never done anything quite like this before, but it's what I've wanted all along. After all, singing is one thing, but on this show, I'll also be compering and doing allmanner of different things." he went on. "I'm hoping that the series will eventually help me to become a ... personality, instead of just a singer," he continued. "You see, my aim is to become an all-round entertainer, and with a show like "Boy Meets Girls" I hope to reach a wider audience. I'd really like to be accepted by adults as well as teenagers." he added thoughtfully.

One of the first songs Marty will perform on the series is "Sea Of Love," already a smash hit in America for Phil Phillips. He's hoping that it will take him to the hit parade's coveted No. 1 spot - an honour which has just eluded him on three occasions in the past.

In charts

Marty's first big disc hit "Endless Sleep" climbed as high as No. 4. "Donna" crept into third place, while more recently, "A Teenager In Love" reached No. 2. Working on the theory that progress is gradual, "Sea Of Love" seems a likely contender for top honours. At the start of the "Oh Boy!" series last September, Marty told me: "I know it's going to be a great show because we have such a fine producer - Jack Good. He feels the same way about "Boy Meets Girls" - for similar reasons. So let Jack , who is equally enthusiastic about Marty, have the last word here: "It's the hardest job he's ever had, but I know he's going to be good. In fact, I think a lot of people are going to be surprised just how good he really is"!

Little Tony From Italy

"Cliff Richard is very good - until you have heard Little Tony and His Brothers!" That was the opinion of Marino Marini, when he was over here earlier this year. You'll have a chance to judge for yourself tomorrow night (Saturday) when Little Tony and His Brothers (2) make their British TV debut in "Boy Meets Girls." And when their Decca recording of "I Can't Help It" is released next Friday (Sept. 19). Marino Marini's chance remark came while he was at rehearsals for "Oh Boy!" Producer Jack Good, ears always open, heard and was interested. A few weeks later in Italy, Jack found Little Tony and His Brothers. Jack signed them up on the spot.

Born in a war-torn Italy during the early 1940's, the three brothers were raised in San Marino. Their family was poor. The boys biggest ambition now is to become really good performers, go to the United States and make enough money so that their parents can retire and live in comfort. There's Alberto (19), Tony (18) and Enrico (17), but it is singer Tony who attracts the attention when the group appears on stage or in front of the television cameras. As you'll see...

The text of the Jack Good article - "Jack is no back room TV producer" is reproduced at the bottom of the Jack Good page.

The camera goes into a close-up shot of Marty Wilde seated next to Cherry Wainer at her keyboards, with Joe Brown standing at left of foreground.

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Introduction to episode guide & diary

Whereas this guide is not definitive, it is as accurate as we can make it -- so far!  It's not possible to be sure about certain appearances without being able to watch the shows again, because printed guides of the time, such as TV Times, occasionally included performers in the cast who ultimately did not appear, for whatever reason.

The BBC Archives have a "programme as broadcast" feature whereby one can see exactly who appeared in a show and what they sang, etc., but as far as we know, there is no commercial TV equivalent.

So if you spot any omissions of performers which you are confident *did* appear, or conversely any you are certain *did not*, please let us know!

 

MIDAS TOUCH

John Barry -
The Man With the Midas Touch

Order our book here

Our book "John Barry - The Man With the Midas Touch" is now only available for purchase at a reduced price via this website.

Over 300 pages in length, with a foreword by Don Black, the hardcover book includes many unique photos, in both black & white and colour. Order now!

UK customers who order the book before Brexit is complete will receive a free copy of the CD -- John Barry - The Early Years  -- the only CD to include all the tracks John recorded for the Chappell Music Library in 1959.

Apologies that due to the high cost of postage we can only make this offer to UK residents.

 

 

THE EARLY YEARS

John Barry -
The Early Years CD

You can order our CD here

The full track listing: 1. Be Mine - Lance Fortune; 2. It's Not Too Late - Johnny Gavotte; 3. The Clanger March - Des Lane; 4. Arrivederci Baby - Little Tony & His Brothers; 5. You Made me Love You - Johnny De Little; 6. Easy Beat - Bert Weedon; 7. Heartbeat - The England Sisters; 8. Youthful Years - Danny William's; 9. I Vibrate - Larry Page & The Saga Satellites; 10. Mood One - The John Barry Orchestra; 11. I want my Bed - Bobby Shafto; 12. Keep A Walkin' - Tony Rocco; 13. Mood Two - The John Barry Orchestra; 14. Action - Lance Fortune; 15. If the Young Ones can be Happy - Billy Cotton; 16. Mood Three - The John Barry Orchestra; 17. Love's a Secret Game - Dennis Lotis; 18. Love Me - Danny Davis; 19. Mood Four - The John Barry Orchestra; 20. The Makings of a Man - Peter Gordeno; 21. Marilyn - Larry Page & The Saga Satellites; 22. Moonbird - Des Lane; 23. Never Ending - Mark Tracey; 24. Nowhere in this World - Derry Hart & The Hartbeats; 25. Opposites - Billy Cotton & Kathie Kay; 26. Smoky Blues - The John Barry Orchestra; 27. Ramona - The Five Dallas Boys; 28. They - Johnny De Little; 29. Trouble Shooter - Bob Miller & The Millermen; 30. You're My Only Girl - Danny Davis; 31. Baby Talk - Bill & Brett Landis; 32. I Got Eyes - Peter Gordeno; 33. The Lolly Theme - The John Barry Orchestra; 34. Santa Claus is coming to Town - Nina & Frederik; 35. Silent Night - Nina & Frederik; 36. White Christmas - Nina & Frederik; Total running time 78' 59"

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