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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.


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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