Gerry and The Pacemakers
Newsletter No 119. Winter 2013/2014
Where does time go ? They say as you get older it goes quicker, they are certainly right. Anyway I hope you are all well. What a year it has been for Gerry and the boys. Tours of Australia, New Zealand, Canada plus their own iconic Gerry Cross the Mersey shows which covered the U.K. in between, have all been completed this year plus the latest:-
SIXTIES GOLD 50TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR
As the advertising bill said, it was “The Ultimate Line-Up” with Gerry and The Pacemakers, The Searchers, P.J. Proby, The Fortunes, Brian Poole and Chip Hawkes. It certainly lived up to the billing as virtually every show was sold out with some theatres accommodating two shows on a particular day. The Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury sold out so quickly they filled another night at the first date available.
Talking to Gerry, he said it had been a fabulous tour with great crowds and certainly a 100% success. He would like to thank all for coming to see the shows.
Obviously there are thousands of miles to be travelled whilst working on a tour such as this one and unforeseen circumstances can arise. For example on the 31st October the tour was at Llandudno. The following day it was on the other side of the country in Doncaster. Many of the artistes travel across in the afternoon. On this particular day the M62 was closed as a lady had decided to sit on the parapet of a high bridge above the motorway. This resulted in lengthy delays with some of the artistes arriving at Doncaster with literally minutes to spare. You will be pleased to know that the certain lady in question came down off the bridge after the police had spoken to her.
When the tour visited Dundee in Scotland the artistes and the road crews were invited out for a meal after the show where they were all presented with a glass plaque as a thank you for all their work in making the tour a huge success.
Several reviews for the tour can be found on the internet by using google, for example as your search engine. One that I noticed was when the tour hit the Royal Concert Hall in Nottingham and was written by a Kevin Cooper and I quote……..
“to many of the mature audience there has never been a more significant decade in the history of popular music packed with vibrant colourful sounds from artists whose hits were built to last and who set the standard by which every generation is measured”………’.Closing the show was Gerry and The Pacemakers, a group who were massive in the 60’s. They were The Beatles nearest competitors in Britain, Gerry Marsden and his band burst out of the musical gate being the first to have three consecutive No1’s with their first three releases, ‘How do You Do It?’, ‘I Like It’ and ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’………. There is nothing that has not already been said about Gerry Marsden. His bands are nothing less than brilliant, and Gerry himself is a great comedian and certainly one of our most talented scousers. The hits they performed ‘Don’t Let The Sun’ ‘It’s Gonna Be Alright’, ‘Ferry Cross The Mersey’ are the iconic ones that we all know and love. Finishing with ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’. Marsden showed that truly good songs will be with us forever……..
…here we have gentlemen of advancing years who are performing nightly on a 40 date tour, who simply love their fans and are grateful that their gigs sell out. Take note young artists, for longevity in this business, take some tips from these great artists.
The show was billed as Sixties Gold and for me was pure Gold…….
Thanks to Kevin for excerpts from his review. There are many like this praising this wonderful tour.
As a footnote to the 2013 Gold Tour, plans are already in the pipeline for the Autumn 2014 Tour.
GERRY’S 50 YEARS ANNIVERSARY 1963-2013 CD
This CD was released to coincide with the recent Sixties Gold Tour. This is certainly a unique CD in that it contains archive footage of live recordings of Gerry and The Pacemakers from 1963 -1966. Most of the material is from BBC’s Light Programme (the forerunner for BBC Radio 1 and 2). It features mainly Brian Matthew and his Top Of The Pops radio programme. Yes the same Brian Matthew that hosts Radio 2’s Sound Of The Sixties every Saturday morning.
Thirteen tracks feature live interviews and recordings. They are all great tracks featuring a young Gerry. Nothing has changed as you hear Gerry full of confidence and humour. The live recordings include Ferry Cross The Mersey, I’ll Be There, Slow Down, Chills, Girl On A Swing, Guantanamera, Fool To Myself, La La La, plus a rare treat ‘You’d Better Shop Around.’
A further six tracks complete the CD with live studio recordings from the 80’s.
It is definitely a great CD for any Gerry fan in that it is different with these superbly sounding recordings from the sixties.
GERRY CROSS THE MERSEY TOUR 2014
Gerry and The Pacemakers hit the road at the end of January 2014 with their ever popular show. If you browse the tour dates for this show, it covers most corners of the UK and runs from January-May.
As we all know, Gerry wrote ‘Ferry Cross The Mersey’ in 1964 for his feature film of the same name which he starred in with The Pacemakers. As many of you will know if you have travelled on the famous ferry, when it berthes at the Pier Head, Gerry’s song is always played. Well now Gerry is the new voice of the Mersey Ferry.
As well as his song being played, every trip Gerry will voice the new commentary for the River Explorer Cruise. Gerry said “It’s an honour to be asked. I’ve always had a real affection for the ferries. Everywhere I go in the world people ask me about the ferry that crosses the Mersey. When I wrote that song for the film ‘Ferry Cross The Mersey’ I had no idea that people would still be asking me to play it today”.
In 1985 Gerry was awarded the Freedom Of The Ferries and to date is still the only person who holds the title.
To see Gerry on the ferry talking about his new role visit www.youtube.com.
Gerry hosted his annual charity golf day in September at Frodsham for the Wirral Holistic Centre. Several teams competed on the day. Gerry’s team comprised himself, Ian Ashton (Gerry’s P.A.) Ian Beckett (Gerry’s son in law) and country singer Charlie Landsborough. After the days golfing it was Gerry who announced the winners. Now it’s not often that Gerry gets embarrassed but he did this time as he announced his own team as winners. Ian Ashton had the highest individual score, so well done to him. A great day out and loads of money for the charity.
Over the last few months, apart from Gerry’s 50th Anniversary, we have had the 50th Anniversary of President Kennedy’s assassination, which has resulted in programmes on the TV. On the radio we have heard programmes remembering 1963. With most of these programmes Gerry and The Pacemakers have been mentioned and their music played. In particular Walk Alone being adopted as the football anthem.
Plans are being prepared for a possible USA Tour next summer. Details on this website when to hand.
I would like to thank Gerry, Ian Ashton and Kevin Cooper for their help with this newsletter.
Finally on behalf of Gerry, The Pacemakers, Ian Ashton, Robert Pratt (Gerry’s Manager) and myself, I would like to wish you all and your families a Very Happy Christmas and healthy New Year.
Thanks for your support.
Until Next Time,