Archive: First posted back in September 2010 from the Rock'n'Roll London walk…
Meet The Stringtones!
“The Stringtones are back! A mere 44 years after they last graced our shores, 60s Swedish rock’n’roll sensations The Stringtones are back!
That’s them pictured below: six of the nicest fellas I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting on a London Walk.
Their story is this: back in 1966, this vocal and instrumental combo arrived on these shores for an audition with Vicki Wickham, the producer of legendary pop TV Show Ready Steady Go!
On the same visit they stopped off to hear some live music at the famous Marquee Club – one of our ports of call on the Rock ‘n’ Roll London Walk. I had to ask: ‘Who was playing that night?’ Their casual answer: ‘The Yardbirds.’
In 1966 this would have been the incarnation of The Yardbirds with Jeff Beck on guitar – the man who succeeded Eric Clapton in the role of lead guitarist. Beck played lead on the successful singles Heart Full of Soul and Shapes of Things.
As it turned out, another path beckoned The Stringtones and the Ready Steady Go! gig didn’t materialize. But they made it back to see us here in London. And it only took them 44 years. Of 1966, they said:
‘We had a great time. AND we got to see The Yardbirds.’
Thanks for joining us guys.”
A little later I added this…
Remember The Stringtones? The chaps from Sweden who joined us on my Rock’n’Roll London Walk a few weeks back? They were back in London for the first time since 1966 when they’d been auditioning for the greatest TV pop show of them all, Ready Steady Go.
Well, Anders Ericson of The Stringtones has been back in touch.
“We, The Stringtones, had a wonderful weekend in London remembering most of the moments we had in 1966. We even had a wonderful start Thursday before our Rock'n'Roll Walk, listening to Alan Price and Zoot Money at the Bulls Head in Barnes.
“Please find enclosed,” he writes, “a photo of The Stringtones at Piccadilly Circus in 1966.”
Here it is…
Anders also included…
“Photos from Marquee and the concert with The Yardbirds with Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page, 44 years ago.”
The first remarkable thing about the picture is that fabled guitarist Jimmy Page is playing bass guitar, the role in which he originally became a Yardbird – he would later move on to dual-lead guitar alongside Beck.
The second point of note is that the photo captures Page in his live debut with The Yardbirds at the Marquee. The date is 21st June 1966. At the mic is Keith Relf, the Yardbirds frontman who passed away in 1976.
“I also have a photo of the band who played before Yardbirds. I do not know the name.”
Having done a little digging, we can tell Anders and the rest of The Stringtones that the support band is Clayton Squares, a Liverpool group noted for their twin saxes. Signed to Decca (forever the label who turned down The Beatles) Clayton Squares broke up a few months after this picture was taken.
As a P.S Anders adds this pic of the Rock'n'Roll London Walk on Denmark Street…
Thanks to Anders and the guys in The Stringtones for sending these great photos.
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