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GENE VINCENT FAN CLUB PRESENTS
John Braley's Photo Page
My name is John Braley (one of
the gang of four) and I have been associated with Gene's fan club since
1981, I was in Gene's fan club from 1964 when it was being run by Harry
Dodds. I hope to place photographs from my collection on this site on a
fairly regular basis. Hope you enjoy them.
Gene in the classic all leather pose perhaps
more well known to UK and European fans than American Vincentologists.
Gene arrived for the very first
time in the UK on Saturday 5th December 1959, it was very early in
the morning at London Airport and Gene was surprised at the number of
people there to meet him. This pic shows him with the Vernons Girls and
Italian rock star Little Tony.
Whilst in the UK Gene appeared on
TV on many occasions, unfortunately little footage remains. A good
photographic record exists however of Gene's Boy Meets Girls TV
appearances. He featured in five transmissions between December 1959
and February 1960. Both BMG pics are courtesy of ABC-TV and the studio
shot with Gene in the distance also shows (L - R) Joe Brown, guitar,
Cherry Wainer (slightly obscured), piano, Andy White, drums, Red Price,
tenor sax, Brian Daly, guitar, Eric Ford, guitar. It is possible that
the guy on Gene's left, obscured by the Vernons Girls on backing vocals,
is Don Storer, drums - can anyone confirm?
Gene appeared at the New Musical
Express 1960 Annual Poll Winners' concert at the Empire Pool,
Wembley (now known as Wembley Arena) on Sunday 21st February 1960. Gene
was backed, on this occasion, by the Wildcats. You can see Brian
Locking on bass guitar in the photograph, Brian later replaced Jet
Harris as a member of the Shadows. Eddie Cochran also appeared at this
fairly well-known pic taken backstage at the 1960 NME Poll Winners'
Concert, surely worth a repeat though, left to right John Barry, Eddie
Cochran, Adam Faith and Gene.
Gene & Eddie at the Glasgow Empire, the
first week of February 1960.
After the well documented car crash, which
killed Eddie Cochran, Sunday 17th April 1960. Gene was discharged from
hospital on the afternoon of Tuesday 19th April 1960 and flew home
Wednesday 20th April 1960 at midday, arriving in Vancouver, Washington,
late Wednesday night. Gene arrived back at London Airport with Jerry
Keller as shown in this shot on 29th April 1960 and recommenced the tour
at the Gaumont, Hanley on 30th April 1960.
Here is Gene at Abbey Road Studios, London
11th May 1960, at his first UK session. Gene cut two tracks - Pistol
Packin' Mama and Weeping Willow.Backing was by the Beat Boys and the
Norrie Paramor Orchestra and Chorus respectively. The session was
produced by Norrie Paramor and the arrangement was by Eddie Cochran.
Apparently Gene and Eddie had worked out the arrangement for Pistol
Packin' Mama whilst on tour. Gene's voice is double-tracked and if you
listen carefully, you can realise what a great voice Gene had. It was
often rumoured that Gene and Eddie had worked on this in the studio - I
think this is extremely doubtful. Pistol Packin' Mama did make the top
twenty in the UK
regularly appeared on the TV show Thank Your Lucky Stars, which was
transmitted early on Saturday evenings during the early 60's. If only
all the tapes had been kept, and not junked, we would have been able to
have viewed a good record of Gene's early UK career, as his singles were
released during the period 1961 - 1965. Here he is on TYLS singing She
She Little Sheila 7th May
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