The Escorts - From The Blue Angel (1964-1966 Merseybeat)
CD (1995) To Mp3 320 mbit/s
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Review by Richie Unterberger allmusic.com
The only Escorts LP, this compiles both sides of their six 1964-66 singles. It's lovingly packaged, complete with a four-page history of the group, but one has to wonder whether the effort was really necessary for such a slight band.
Biography by Richie Unterberger allmusic.com
A distinctly lower-echelon Merseybeat band, the Escorts' commercial impact was slight indeed. Only one of their six singles made the British Top 50, and at number 49 at that. They covered "Dizzy Miss Lizzie" before the Beatles, and the single made some noise in Texas, but besides that they were unheard beyond their Liverpool hometown. Their 45s were pleasant, moderately catchy, and featured close harmonies, but were basically unmemorable. The Escorts lacked a distinctive sound and wrote virtually none of their own material (many of their A-sides were tame covers of U.S. rock and R&B hits; many of their B-sides were shallow Merseybeat numbers written by their manager). After a lineup change in 1966, the group recorded their sixth single with Paul McCartney on tambourine, showing a much more pronounced soul feel. Guitarist Terry Sylvester left the Escorts near the end of their recording career to join the Swinging Blue Jeans, and eventually replaced Graham Nash in the Hollies in the late '60s.
The Escorts were a Merseybeat band from Liverpool, England. In 1963, they were voted the ninth most popular group in Liverpool by readers of Mersey Beat magazine.
They originally consisted of:
Terry Sylvester - guitar/lead vocals (born Terence Sylvester, 8 January 1946, Liverpool)
John Kinrade - lead guitar/vocals (born 1946)
Mike Gregory - bass guitar/vocals (born Michael Gregory, 7 November 1946, Liverpool)
Pete Clarke - drums (born Peter Gaskell, 1946) replaced by Kenny Goodlass from The Kirkbys - replaced by Pete Clark; replaced by Tommy Kelly of Earl Preston's Realms; replaced by Paul Comerford of The Cryin' Shames.
Sylvester was replaced by Frank Townsend from The Beechnuts who was later to become a member of Harmony Grass. Paddy Chambers (born Patrick John Chambers, 3 April 1944, Liverpool - died 18 September 2000) (ex-Faron's Flamingos, The Big Three, Paddy, Klaus and Gibson) replaced Townsend.
Paul McCartney played tambourine on their last record "From Head To Toe" in 1966.
Sylvester would leave to join The Swinging Blue Jeans in 1966 before replacing Graham Nash in The Hollies. He now lives in Toronto and travels all over the United States and Canada playing concerts with such as Billy J. Kramer, Peter Noone, Joey Molland and other British Invasion acts. Sylvester also does a one man show.
Gregory would also leave The Escorts in 1967 to join The Swinging Blue Jeans, and stayed until 1971, whereupon after leaving and doing sessions for a couple of years, he formed a group with Johnny Goodison of the original Brotherhood of Man called Big John's Rock 'n' Roll Circus in 1975. Gregory stayed in 'The Circus' until its demise in 2005, and is now a solo artist.
Kinrade stopped playing after The Escorts split up in 1967, and is now a hairdresser with two salons. Clarke became the in house session drummer for Apple Music. He did sessions for Kiki Dee and Billy Preston and, after a brief stint in Badfinger, is now living in the U.S.
Although they never released a full album, during their short time together, at the instigation of Elvis Costello, Edsel Records released an LP containing all twelve songs from the six singles in 1983. It was released on CD in 1995 as EDCD 422 and entitled From the Blue Angel, as a reference to the club where they began performing in 1962. Costello also released a single which was a copy of The Escorts last recording - "From Head To Toe" / "Night Time".
01. Dizzy Miss Lizzy
02. All I Want Is You
03. The One To Cry
04. Tell Me Baby
05. I Don't want To Go On Without You
06. Don't Forget To Write
07. C'Mon Home Baby
08. You'll Get No Lovin' That Way
09. Let It Be Me
10. Mad Mad World
11. From Head To Toe
12. Night Time