for Sunday 21st May 1967
Ed Stewart departed this week to Estartit on one of the first Big L 'Holidays With Deejays'

Transportation features heavily in the Fab Forty for 21st May 1967, with stations Waterloo and Finchley Central at #1 and #3, My Old Car travels down Two Streets (#11) and along Denny Laine (#26). Take your Detroit Wheels (#36) into the Traffic (#27), but try to avoid the Rush (#37) at Six O'Clock. Some like to Fly Me High, others prefer Walking In The Rain, but make sure you Don't Sleep In The Subway.

For those suffering from chart anoraxia, Alan Field notes that the #23 and #24 positions in his chart are the reverse of the order shown in Brian Long's 'The London Sound', i.e. Brian has Tears Tears Tears at #23 and Walking In the Rain at #24. Wolfgang Buchholz in Germany concurs with Alan's version, as do Geoff Posner and Hans Peters. As previously mentioned, Brian took much of his information from the chart issued by the Radio London Curzon Street office, which had frequently changed by the time the Fab Forty was aired. There's many a slip 'twixt shore and ship!

Last
This
Presented by Ed Stewart
Week
Week
1
1
Waterloo Sunset Kinks
5
2
The Happening Supremes
6
3
Finchley Central New Vaudeville Band
12
4
Get Me To The World On Time Electric Prunes
29
5
A Whiter Shade Of Pale Procol Harum
3
6
24 Sycamore Wayne Fontana
17
7
My Old Car Lee Dorsey
1
8
Silence Is Golden Tremeloes
21
9
Groovin' Young Rascals
19
10
Okay! Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mick & Tich
16
11
Two Streets Val Doonican
18
12
Love Eyes Nancy Sinatra
10
13
Take Me In Your Arms And Love Me Gladys Knight & the Pips
14
There Goes My Everything Engelbert Humperdinck
35
15
Day Time, Night Time Simon Dupree & the Big Sound
26
16
Just One More Chance Outer Limits
23
17
Fly Me High Moody Blues
31
18
Tabatha Twitchit Dave Clark Five
11
19
The Wind Cries Mary Jimi Hendrix Experience
4
20
Then I Kissed Her Beach Boys
21
When You're Young And In Love Marvelettes
22
When I Was Young Eric Burdon & the Animals
33
23
Walking In The Rain Walker Brothers
8
24
Tears Tears Tears Ben E King
25
Don't Sleep In The Subway Petula Clark
7
26
Say You Don't Mind Denny Laine
27
Paper Sun Traffic
32
28
The Wedding Of Ramona Blair Mirage
28
29
I Can't Turn Back Time Vince Edwards
30
Give Me Time Dusty Springfield
31
Holiday For Clowns Brian Hyland
13
32
Pictures Of Lily Who
33
Kansas City James Brown & the Famous Flames
34
I'm All Ears Los Bravos
35
My Back Pages Byrds
36
Too Many Fish In The Sea & Three Little Fishes Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels
37
Happy Rush
38
Portrait Of My Love Tokens
38
39
I'm Under The Influence Of Love Felice Taylor
40
This Time Long Ago Guess Who

29
5
A Whiter Shade Of Pale Procol Harum Deram 126

Music-wise, April and May were momentous months in the life of Big L. Not only did Radio London obtain the exclusive preview of the Sgt Pepper album, but it was the first station to air A Whiter Shade Of Pale.

Deram's promotions man, Tony Hall, had been played a worn acetate of the single by its producer, Denny Cordell. Although Cordell loved the single, he thought it completely non-commercial, and was convinced it wouldn't stand a chance of being a hit. Hall, however, was 'blown away' by it. He saw it as a smash hit, but he had difficulty convincing Cordell. Hall phoned Big L's Programme Director, Alan Keen, and arranged for the record to be given a trial play on Radio London. Mark Roman spun the disc at around 4.00pm on a Monday, (probably April 17th) telling listeners if they liked it, to call the Curzon Street office. When the office was inundated with calls, Alan Keen realised they had a hit single aboard the ship. However, it took around four weeks to get the record on sale in the shops.

The Roman Emperor admits that he was so amazed by the record, it practically left him speechless. Very unusual for the Emperor! Interestingly, the single was never awarded official climber status, merely appearing in the Fab from nowhere on May 14th.

A Whiter Shade Of Pale was also a massive success during the Radio London 'Holidays With Deejays' promotion. Cardboard Shoes, Mark Roman, Chuck Blair, Tony Blackburn and Ed Stewart spent a week each in the Spanish resort of Estartit, accompanied by Big L listeners who had paid £28 apiece for the privilege. Travelling abroad on holiday was a relatively new idea to the British public, and package tours were just beginning to become popular, so this was a forward-thinking venture for the station. According to Stewpot, who went on May 27th, the now-massive Estartit was a, "One-horse, very quiet resort" in the summer of '67 and the accommodation was, "A bit of a tip".

It seems to have ended-up as an 'all-white' situation. The Big L jocks had a white label pre-release copy of A Whiter Shade Of Pale and in Estartit, people flocked nightly to the appropriately-named White House Discotheque, Casa Blanca, where the currently-visiting Radio London DJ would spin records alongside the resident jocks. The disc proved so popular that Stewpot estimated it was requested to be played about every ten minutes! (Read John Church and John Chadwick's accounts of working at the Casa Blanca during the 'Holidays With DJs' promotions here).

Pete Frame, writing in ZigZag magazine, 27, December 1972, and quoted on the Procol Harum website, 'Beyond the Pale', wrote:

Everyone in the world bought that single (backed with Lime Street Blues on Deram 126), which topped just about every chart in the Western hemisphere – and quite rightly so. (That was a great single, was it not? How well I remember the first time I heard it, on Radio London... I couldn't believe it – never heard anything like that before).

According to 'Beyond the Pale', A Whiter Shade... had additional verses that were not included on any recording, but were often included in live performances. Appropriately for a single pioneered by offshore radio, one of the missing verses is all about sea, shore-leave and mermaids. The only nautical reference amongst the familiar lyrics is to something horribly familiar to offshore jocks – feeling kind of seasick!

Procol Harum's Gary Brooker, guested on a show during Radio London's final day, August 14th. He appeared on pre-recorded sponsored show, The Juicy Fruit Spectacular, which was broadcast between 1.30 and 2.00pm.

In 2007, the famous song's authorship was under legal dispute. Organist Matthew Fisher issued court proceedings against Gary Brooker and Onward Music Limited, claiming a share of royalties for his alleged co-authorship. Brooker argued that he wrote the song with Keith Reid before Fisher joined the band. The outcome of the case, which ended up before the House of Lords before being decided in Matthew Fisher's favour, is here.

Matthew Fisher writes, "I have always treasured this page as the one reliable account of the Radio London preview of A Whiter Shade of Pale. The truth is that without Tony Hall and Radio London, A Whiter Shade of Pale would have been consigned to the dustbin!"

Secrets of the Hive: The Best of Procol Harum is a 35-track double CD. Naturally, A Whiter Shade of Pale is the first track on there, but it's good to be able to enjoy the lesser-played ones such as Conquistador and Homburg. Click on the picture of the CD sleeve to see a full track listing and purchasing information.

26
16
Just One More Chance Outer Limits Deram 125

Alan Field on another Deram track:

Outer Limits included Jeff Christie in its line-up. He wrote Just One More Chance, and subsequently penned Yellow River and San Bernadino for his eponymous group of the early Seventies, both songs charting in the Nationals on either side of the pond.

22
When I Was Young Eric Burdon & the Animals MGM 1340

"From 1955, if it was Friday and five to five, that meant only one thing: CRACKERJACK!" So says www.whirligig-tv.co.uk

The lyrics of When I Was Young, which talk about smoking at the age of ten and meeting girls at thirteen, were deemed unsuitable by the BBC for a children's TV show. Eric Burdon & the Animals were banned from performing the song on Crackerjack. Between 1973 and 79, the popular programme was hosted by Big L's own Ed Stewart.

(Yes, we can hear you all shouting "Crackerjack!". So, how many of you actually got to appear on the show and did you end up with a prize or a cabbage? Click here to let us know)

DJ Climbers:    
With A Little Help From My Friends Young Idea Tony Blackburn
The Man I Love Chantelles Chuck Blair
Sunday Will Never Be The Same Spanky & Our Gang Tony Brandon
Here Comes The Nice Small Faces Pete Drummond
Send Her To Me Gary 'US' Bonds Paul Kaye
She Was Perfection Murray Head Lorne King
The Changing Of The Guard Marquis Of Kensington John Peel
Do It Again Just A Little Bit Slower Jon & Robin Mark Roman
I Kiki Dee Keith Skues
Carrie Anne Hollies Ed Stewart
Six O'Clock Lovin' Spoonful Willy Walker

The Changing Of The Guard Marquis Of Kensington Immediate IM052

Kinks manager Robert Wace and renowned producer Mike Leander collaborated on three singles as Marquis Of Kensington. Written by Leander, The Changing Of The Guard appears to be an attempt to cash in on the popularity of the New Vaudeville Band, currently riding high with Finchley Central. Although the vocals are Wase's, (Dave Davies described them as a "kind of mixture of Noel Coward and Buddy Holly") it's Leander whose face appears on the picture sleeves. However, when the record became a continental hit, a young man with a passing resemblance to Donovan (below, right) was recruited to mime to the song for TV appearances. Unfortunately, his name is unknown.

Or, as a Google translation of a German site so picturesquely puts it, "While his voice for singing at the disposal of, occurred as a figure of the Marquis on the record covers only Leander."

The single's B-side, Reverse Thrust, credited to 'The Marquis of Kensington's Minstrels' is the backing track of the 'A' played backwards.

Leander was responsible for producing/arranging Fab Forty hits too numerous to mention. As Tears Go By, In Thoughts of You and First Cut Is the Deepest are just three of them, and he can also take credit for the lovely string arrangement on the Fab Four's She's Leaving Home.

The Changing Of The Guard appears alongside many other Fab Forty alumni on the soundtrack of Peter Whitehead's 'Beautiful People' documentary, Tonite Let's All Make Love in London.

Aboard the Galaxy this week

May 21st
Lorne King hosted the evening slot from 1800. Spy movies were still in fashion and the latest cinema release starring Yul Brynner and Britt Ekland, 'The Double Man', was receiving heavy promotion. It received no less than three plugs during the first hour of Lorne's show.

May 23rd
Willy Walker was Keith Skues's Coffee Break guest. He had left on July 8th 1966, but returned to the Galaxy after an absence of ten months, to replace American, John Yorke (sometimes spelt 'York'), who had quit the station after being aboard for around two weeks. (Yorke was given climbers for the weeks commencing April 30th and May 7th.) .

May 25th
A High Court ruled that Radio 390, based aboard the Red Sand WWII fort in the Thames estuary, was within territorial waters and therefore, illegal. The station was given eighteen days to lodge an appeal, but it closed for good on July 28th.

May 26th
The Daily Mail printed a story concerning talks between soon-to-be outlawed offshore broadcasters and Radio Andorra, operating from the small independent Pyrenean Mountain State. The Mail named management of both Radio London and the just-declared-illegal Radio 390, as interested in joining with Radio Andorra to launch a new station operating on similar lines to Radio Luxembourg. In his memoirs, Big L's original Programme Director Ben Toney explains why the project failed.

Ashore

May 26th
Ed Stewart was the first of the Big L jocks to depart for Estartit on a 'Holidays With Deejays' package. Commercials were still being aired for subsequent trips, which presumably had yet to sell out.

Besides climbers that were played at the time of the broadcast of the Sunday Fab Forty, Alan kept a note of others he heard later in the week and incorporated them into his list.

Climbers:  
No Good To Cry Jimmy James & the Vagabonds
Sympathy Five Americans
Night Of The Long Grass Troggs
To Be Loved Casinos
Patterns Small Faces
Lola Los Brincos
My Old Flame Nino Tempo & April Stevens
With A Little Help From My Friends Joe Brown
Disc of the Week:  
I Get The Feelin'/I'll Come Runnin' (*) Cliff Richard
Album of the Week:  
Here Come The Tremeloes Tremeloes


Two new climbers added June 2008
Alan Field observes: "For Pete Drummond's climber I have listed the Small Faces' new Immediate release, Here Comes The Nice, instead of Patterns which was brought out at the same time by their old company, Decca." However, a recording of the Lorne King Show broadcast between 1800 and 1900 the same day as this chart (21/05/67), reveals that Patterns was also played as a Big L climber (unallocated to a DJ) during the same week. It seems the Small Faces were in competition with themselves, as seven days later (28/05), Patterns arrived in the Fab Forty at #29 while Here Comes The Nice was held back as a climber. Then on June 4th, both Small Faces releases tied at #17, while their eponymous LP held the Album of the Week slot. Whether or not the rival record companies went off to fight it out with their lawyers is unknown, but after one week of glory, both singles sunk wihtout trace. The band bounced back on July 30th, with Itchycoo Park selected as Ian Damon's climber.

It seems that E to D, the B-side of Patterns, written by Steve Marriott and Ronnie Lane, had been in the vaults for a while, as Brian Long notes that the original contract for the song with Leading Music Ltd, was dated 25th March 66. In '67, the track was assigned to Pall Mall Music for the princely sum of one shilling (five new pence). The Pall Mall connection probably explains why two Small Faces singles were competing for Big L airplay. The Decca single is extremely collectable and can command between £60 and £100 - or twice that if you happen to have one in a promotional picture sleeve.

The Ultimate Collection is a 2-CD, 50-track set, containing both Patterns and Here Comes The Nice. Click on sleeve photo for full track listing.

Also announced by Lorne as a climber, is Lola by Los Brincos, which enters the chart on June 4th. It is a completely different song from the Ray Davies-penned Kinks relase from 1970.

(*) Alan Field has noted I Get The Feelin' played as Disc of the Week, with a subtle shift in favour of the other side, I'll Come Runnin', over the next two weeks. Brian Long has I'll Come Runnin' listed instead, while Wolfgang Buchholz has noted hearing both sides played during the week. I Get The Feelin' was the side receiving heavier promotion on air at this time, being the only side played on the Fab 40 show.

Soul Set:
Knock on Wood Eddie Floyd
Sweet Soul Music Arthur Conley
New Orleans Wilson Pickett (*)


Green additions to the climbers indicate singles sourced from 'Monty's Diary'. (See Fab Forty for 010167). Monty has noted that My Old Flame continues to be played as a climber for a second week. He also notesWith A Little Help From My Friend as an unassigned climber by Joe Brown. The Young Idea's version hasbeen assigned to Tony Blackburn, but next week, the two versions enter the Fab Forty together.

Alan Field did not hear the records sourced from Monty's Diary played or announced as climbers
.

(*) This addition to the Soul Set was discovered by Kees Brinkerink on a recording of the Roman Empire from this week.

The last 'Caroline Countdown of Sound' was broadcast on Sunday 21st May 1967 and was presented by Tom Edwards. Although Caroline no longer broadcast a weekly countdown programme, the disc jockeys did sometimes mention a chart position of a record. It appears the DJs were still using a chart, although the programme itself had been discontinued.

Webmaster's note current August 2016: The 'Caroline Countdown of Sound' for 21/05/67 is still missing from our lists. Some subsequent placings have been gleaned painstakingly from recordings, to provide additional information concerning Caroline listings, but there are no more complete charts.

Tune in next week for another Field's Fab Forty

This week's Radio Scotland Top 50 on the Pirate Radio Hall of Fame is here


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