My Legends of Pop Music – Part Nine – The Hollies

If I get this right, there will be many cover versions by future bands.  I shall try and link live versions if they exist from the tellybox or a film, the sound quality may not be the best, but there is nothing like watching a real talent live.

So, in a sort of chronological order, my ninth legends are The Hollies.

Courtesy of Wiki:

The Hollies are a British pop rock group formed in 1962. One of the leading British groups of the 1960s and into the mid-1970s, they are known for their distinctive three-part vocal harmony style. Allan Clarke and Graham Nash founded the band as a Merseybeat-type music group in Manchester.  Graham Nash left the group in 1968 to form Crosby, Stills & Nash.

They enjoyed considerable popularity in many countries (with at least 60 singles or EPs and 26 albums charting somewhere in the world, spanning over five decades), although they did not achieve major US chart success until “Bus Stop” was released in 1966. The Hollies had over 30 charting singles on the UK Singles Chart and 22 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The Hollies are one of the few UK groups of the early 1960s, along with the Rolling Stones, who have never disbanded and continue to record and perform. In recognition of their achievements, the Hollies were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.

The Hollies originated as a duo formed by Allan Clarke and Graham Nash, who were best friends from primary school and began performing together during the skiffle craze of the late 1950s. Eventually Clarke and Nash became a vocal and guitar duo modelled on American duo the Everly Brothers under the names “Ricky and Dane Young.”.  Under this name, they teamed up with a local band, the Fourtones, consisting of Pete Bocking on guitar, John ‘Butch’ Mepham on bass, Keith Bates on drums, and Derek Quinn on guitar. When Quinn quit to join Freddie and the Dreamers in 1962, Clarke and Nash also quit and joined another Manchester band, the Deltas, consisting of Vic Steele on lead guitar, Eric Haydock on bass guitar, and Don Rathbone on drums, which had just lost two members including Eric Stewart, who left to join a “professional” band, the Mindbenders. During these periods the group were managed and promoted by Michael Cohen, a music enthusiast and clothing retailer from Oldham.

The Deltas first called themselves The Hollies for a December 1962 gig at the Oasis Club in Manchester. In a 2009 interview Graham Nash said that the group decided just prior to a performance to call themselves The Hollies because of their admiration for Buddy Holly. In 2009, Nash wrote, “We called ourselves The Hollies, after Buddy and Christmas”.

Graham Nash was replaced in the Hollies in January 1969 by Terry Sylvester, formerly of the Escorts and the Swinging Blue Jeans. Sylvester also substituted for Nash as part of the group’s song writing team, with Clarke and Hicks. As planned before Nash’s departure, the group’s next album was Hollies Sing Dylan, which reached No. 3 on the UK chart.

Over the years they have produced some awesome tunes, my favourite one being the featured track.  The featured track is their best seller “The air that I breathe”.  The clip is from Top of the Pops in 1974.

A full list of his songs is here:   Discography – The Hollies

Just like me – Merseybeat sound from 1963, very Beatle-esque

Searchin’ – Pleasant little ditty, also 1963

Stay – From a BBC recording in 1965. – Allan Clarke singing classic covers like this is a delight.

Just One Look – “Top of The Pops” Show (1964) – The first song that drew me to The Hollies music.  Look at their sweet cherub like faces.

Here I Go Again – From a live TV show 1964

Look Through Any Window – Sunday Night at The London Palladium on 3rd October 1965

Stop Stop Stop  from a 1969 TV show after Graham Nash had left.  Tony Hicks on banjo is phenomenal.

Bus Stop – Recorded from Top of The Pops – June 1966

On A Carousel – In the Abbey Road 1967 (Reelin’ In The Years Archives)

Carrie Anne – Recorded on the Smothers brothers show in about 1967.

Sorry Suzanne – Recorded live in concert from Docken, Copenhagen – 18th September 2019 – Just to say they are still going!

He Ain’t Heavy He’s My Brother – “Top of The Pops” Show (1970) – Utterly awesome harmonies and a classic tune.

Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress – A 1972 TV performance – Yet another classic Hollies tune.

Singalong, enjoy and be happy!

Links to previous Legend articles:

1-Buddy Holly 2-Elvis Presley 3-Everly brothers 4-Cliff Richard 5-Joe Brown
6-Gerry and the Pacemakers 7-Roy Orbison 8-The Seekers 9-The Hollies  

Featured Image: Imperial Records, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

© Phil the ex test manager 2021