The cast

Oral histories




There were two rock & roll bands in Leicester, The Choise and The Golden Hammers. This being the early-70s, when overmanning was all the rage, they amalgamated and ended up with two bassists, two drummers, two guitarists and two singers. Renamed Showaddywaddy, they leapt rapidly from the northern club circuit onto TV's talent show New Faces and found themselves courted by several major labels. Amongst other offers was one from Polydor who had 'Sugar Baby Love' lined up for them (before The Rubettes existed as a band), but they opted instead for a deal with Bell Records where they were to be allowed to write their own material.

Although credited to all eight members, the first singles were actually written by singer Dave Bartram and guitarist Trevor Oakes, and they were wonderful: 'Hey Rock & Roll', 'Rock & Roll Lady', 'Hey Mister Christmas' and - particularly -'Sweet Music' blended the 50s influences with the characteristic glitter stomp that all self-respecting Bell singles had to have. Unfortunately the band went on to have even bigger hits with cover versions that weren't as good, and Showaddywaddy are now more commonly associated with 'Under the Moon of Love' than with 'Sweet Music' or the Trocadero album. In fact 'Hey Rock & Roll' was the only original composition to reach the British top ten.

As a commercial venture the policy of releasing cover versions couldn't be faulted - 'Under the Moon of Love' hit #1 in Britain at the end of 1976 when none of the group's contemporaries could get anywhere near the charts. And they were still having hits into the next decade, their popularity untouched by punk or disco. Of the 70s pop bands, only Hot Chocolate enjoyed greater longevity as a chart act. Even so, when you heard them doing 'Blue Moon' in 1980, you couldn't help thinking that a decent rock & roll band had been emasculated.

Showaddywaddy never split up and are still playing regularly. Unusually for the revival circuit, they're pretty close to the original article - five of the eight founders are still there, including Dave Bartram, whose Jive Management company now manages the group.

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'Clement Freud wanted to talk about my teeth'
Showaddywaddy appear on New Faces

Eddie Amoo
Ken Andrew
Dave Bartram
Mike Batt
Wayne Bickerton
David Blaylock
Trevor Bolder
Jacko Boogie
Tony Burrows
Sally Carr
Tina Charles
David Courtney
Rob Davis
Richard Dodd
Patrick Doonan
Ray Dorset
Herbie Flowers
Ken Gold
Graham Gouldman
Dave Hill
Harvey Hinsley
John Hughes
Jim Irvin
Jimmy James
Steve Jones
Lorraine Kelly
Paul Layton
Les McKeown
Russell Mael
Johnny Moore
Mike Moran
Chris Norman
Bill Oddie
David Paton
Lyn Paul
Phil Pickett
Suzi Quatro
Chris Rae
Chris Redburn
Norman Rogerson
Ron Roker
John Rossall
Andy Scott
Eddie Seago
Mat Snow
Chris Spedding
John Springate
Ray Stiles
Alwyn W Turner
David Van Day
Phil Wainman
Johnny Wakelin
Jeff Wayne
Alan Williams
Pip Williams