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Merseybeat Nostalgia

Gerry and the Pacemekers

Gerry and the Pacemakers at the Cavern

Gerry & the Pacemakers

Left to right:

Les Chawick - Bass Guitar

Gerry Marsden - Guitar

Freddie Marsden - Drums

Les McGuire - Piano

When Gerry’s father bought him an acoustic guitar he decided to form a skiffle group with his elder brother Fred on drums, Tommy Ryan and ‘Dixie’ Dean on washboards Jimmy Tobin on tea-chest base and Marty Summers on guitar and when Brian O’Hara later joined, they became Gerry Marsdens Skiffle Group.

At the age of 16, Gerry bought his first electric guitar, a Futurama, at Frank Hessy’s, a well known (on Merseyside) music store. Around this time they changed their name to Gerry and the Mars Bars, Gerry’s father, who was managing them at the time, wrote to Mars Confectionary Company for permission to use the name but they refused. According to Gerry, he was watching an athletics programme on the TV when the commentator mentioned a ‘pacemaker’ . . . . . ‘Gerry and the Pacemakers’ where born. Around the time of the name change the group members changed, Les Chadwick joined them on bass guitar and Les McGuire joined a short time later. Gerry, Freddie, Les Chadwick and Les McGuire became the line up through their most successful period.

The group started to build up a strong following on Merseyside and were a ‘bigger’ name than The Beatles, this is proved by the fact Allan Williams, a top Merseyside promoter, booked them on the same Liverpool Stadium bill as American artiste Gene Vincent. They were approached to appear at the ‘Top Ten Club’ in Hamburg, they agreed and turned professional. The trip was a success, returning later in the year for a three month season taking with them a local singer, Faron (of Farons Flamingos) as a second vocalist. In 1962, Brian Epstein signed up ‘Gerry and the Pacemakers, he now had the two top Merseyside groups under his management.

Press ‘Play Button’ to listen to the original recordings.

How Do You Do It?

It’s Gonna Be Alright

You’ll Never Walk Alone

A Shot Of Rhythm And Blues

I Like It

Rock ‘n Roll Music

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