After decades of music hall and pantomime in Britain, the link between various forms of jazz and various forms of comedy (many of them low) was well-forged indeed. This link was very well understood by the people involved with The Goon Show, a BBC Radio comedy show starring Peter Sellers, Harry Secombe and Spike Milligan, with the occasional appearance from Michael Bentine -- this kind of surreal comedy would give rise to the Alberts, the Scaffold and the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, with the influences traveling across the Atlantic to inspire such bent comedy-with-brass outfits as the Roto Rooter Good Time Christmas Band.
The Temperance Seven first appeared in 1957, led by the flamboyant Alexander Hitchcock Galloway, who provided vocals and periodic bellows and commentary through a brass megaphone. The band had some direct links with the Alberts, in that members of the expanded version of the Alberts (known as the Massed Alberts) found their way to the Temperance Seven. Ted Wood, brother of Rolling Stones member Ron Wood, was a member for some time. In 1966, they appeared in The Wrong Box, providing some of the more hilarious moments in the film.
While the band has, in its various lineups, recorded a number of albums, they achieved only a few hits in Britain -- although these included a #1 with "You're Driving Me Crazy." Other chart successes included "Pasadena" and "Chili Bom-Bom," a song so pervasive that it approached the saturation of a national fad.
The band continues to perform and record as of 1998. ~ Steven McDonald