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Sounds Incorporated

A six-man, all-instrumental rock & roll combo, Sounds Incorporated was one of the first British rock groups to do more than imitate Cliff Richard's backing band the Shadows, and wound up supporting a number of legendary artists while landing a few British hits in their own right. Formed in 1961 in their home area of northwestern Kent, the band included saxophonists/woodwind players Alan "Boots" Holmes and "Major" Griff West (born David Glyde), organist/pianist/baritone saxophonist Barrie Cameron (born Baz Elmes), guitarist John St. John (born John Gillard), bassist Wes Hunter (born Dick Thomas), and drummer Tony Newman (born Richard Anthony Newman). They gigged extensively on a local basis and occasionally played London as well, where they quickly made an impression as one of the few British rock & roll bands led by a horn section. Early on, they backed visiting American rockers like Gene Vincent, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Sam Cooke (among many others), learning the artists' repertoires before their arrival in the U.K. They soon got an opportunity to record with the legendary producer Joe Meek, and in 1963 released several singles on Decca. They also began traveling to Hamburg to entertain American servicemen; there they played the famous Star Club and met and befriended the Beatles. Late in 1963, Beatles manager Brian Epstein signed Sounds Incorporated to his company; the following year, the group not only became singer Cilla Black's regular backing band, but also toured the world as the Beatles' opening act, and released their self-titled debut album (plus several more singles, including an arrangement of "William Tell" that topped the charts in Australia) on Columbia.

During the mid-'60s, they augmented their own recordings with numerous gigs on the U.K. ballroom circuit and plenty of session work; they also landed a fairly sizable hit with an arrangement of "Hall of the Mountain King." A second album, also (confusingly) titled Sounds Incorporated, appeared on the Studio Two label in 1966; the following year, the Beatles invited Cameron, Holmes, and West to be the saxophone section on their Sgt. Pepper track "Good Morning, Good Morning." The same year, however, Newman left to pursue a full-time session career and was replaced by Terry Fogg; Cameron also departed to become an arranger and manager, and his place was taken by Trevor White, who gave the group its first vocalist. As the circuit for traditional-style rock & roll shifted from ballrooms to more upscale cabarets, Sounds Incorporated landed better-paying gigs and used the money to travel to Australia in 1969 and play extensively around Sydney. In 1971, they finally called it a career; some remained in Sydney, while others returned to England and took low-profile, music-related jobs. ~ Steve Huey
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Sounds Incorporated - Studio TWO Stereo

1. Goldfinger

2. Little Bird

3. If We Lived On Top Of A Mountain

4. Grab This Thing

5. Yesterday

6. Boil Over (Orig Bee's Hide)

7. What Now My Love

8. Zorba's Dance

9. Bahama Sound

10. On The Rebound

11. The Old And The New

12. Legends Of Lyndos (Original Greek Melody)

13. Twilight Of An Empire (Original Epic In C)

14. Time For You

15. Hall Of The Mountain King

16. My Little Red Book

17. Justice Neddi

18. I'm Comin' Through

19. On The Brink

x

Track List: Sounds Incorporated

1. William Tell

2. Fingertips

3. I'm In Love Again

4. Rinky Dink

5. Bullets

6. Last Night

7. Sounds Like Movin'

8. One Mint Julep

9. Ready Teddy

10. Crane (Theme From TV Series)

11. Maria

12. Light Cavalry

13. Top Gear

14. The Spartans

15. Spanish Harlem

16. Detroit

17. Mogambo

18. Emily

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