Saturday 4th April 1959 to Saturday 29th August 1959
"Drumbeat was certainly a wonderful and exciting experience for me. Every week we were rehearsing our solo numbers, the backing for artists and any camera movements that we might be involved in. I have been involved with many TV series but never one that was as innovative, exciting and had such a team spirit."
|Drumbeat was released on CD in 2010|
Drumbeat has often been unfairly overlooked when compared with similar pop shows such as Six-Five Special and Oh Boy. Yet this one-off, 22-week BBC series deserves much more attention. Apart from the fact that it launched the careers of Adam Faith & John Barry, song-writers Les Reed, Johnny Worth and Trevor Peacock, it also managed to include guest stars of the calibre of Petula Clark, Billy Fury, Dickie Valentine, Paul Anka, Cliff Richard & Anthony Newley.
Below you will find details of the majority of the programmes, both artists and songs. Over the next few weeks and months we hope to add further information about the show, the artists and the songs – some of which may never have been heard since!
Sadly none of the episodes appears to have survived, but as one of them was telerecorded there is just a chance it has.
Dates below link to pages. Please enjoy our tribute to DRUMBEAT!!
|1.||4th April||12.||20th June|
|2.||11th April||13.||27th June|
|3.||18th April||14.||4th July|
|4.||25th April||15.||11th July|
|5.||2nd May||16.||18th July (Telerecorded)|
|6.||9th May||17.||25th July|
|7.||16th May||18.||1st August|
|8.||23rd May||19.||8th August|
|9.||30th May||20.||15th August|
|10.||6 June||21.||22nd August|
|11.||13th June||22.||29th August|
|John Barry – The Lost Tracks|
|Related External Links to artists' websites|
March 17, 2013
I too used to go regularly to Drumbeat at Hammersmith and Shephards Bush. John Barry used to send me tickets following my getting to know him and first wife Barbara at Redcliffe Gardens.
I had to decline an invite to audition for guitarist in The JB7 which Vic Flick later filled.
I am certain these shows were recorded on a thursday and transmitted on saturdays. Prior to one particular show JB told me he wanted it done in one run through as he was eager to get on the road up to York straight afterwards. Right in the middle of the Ponytails number one of the trio had a coughing fit so, much to the delight of the audience, the whole show had to be re-run.(there was no editing facilities in those days).
I complained to Stewart Morris that there were no close-up camera shots of finger fret work - his reply being that, being television, he had to emphasize rhythm visually (so all we got was strumming or pick work) I also suggested to him that the Drifters (Shadows) be given their own spot - as they did on stage shows! At least this later happened!
And as far as Jack Good goes - he destroyed Gene Vincent by giving him the black leather image!
Footnote by Geoff Leonard:
There is often some confusion about Drumbeat. However, studies of the BBC "programmes as broadcast" records confirm that apart from one episode, it was transmitted "live" on Saturday evenings.
Where the confusion can arise is that many of the performances of The Poni-Tails were filmed for later insertion into the otherwise live shows. This was because they were a visiting American group who would either no longer be in England, or on tour elsewhere in the country, at the time of the broadcast.
So, although the Drumbeat episodes the Poni-Tails appeared in were broadcast "live", Stewart Morris would cut to a filmed insert for their contribution at the appropriate moment - often as the final act.
The one exception, as I said, was the episode that was pre-recorded in its entirety, in which the Poni-Tails also appeared. That was recorded on a Thursday.
July 22, 2011
My dad (Harry Taylor) was the lead singer in the Kingpins. The 3 guys in the red suits at the front on the cover, Harry was the one in the middle.
Simon James Taylor
July 9, 2011
Although I enjoyed Drumbeat, it never had the same buzz as Oh Boy!
Adam Faith hadn't really developed his style, and sang horrible things like Runk Bunk. Roy Young was, and still is terrific. Sylvia Sands looked lovely, but was really a band singer. I think Dusty appeared, when still in the Lana Sisters.
April 2, 2011
My Dad was in Bob Miller and the Millermen. His name was Bill Golding. He is on the Drumbeat cover (above)directly behind Danny Williams. He was the Tenor Saxophone player. Denise Golding.
I did my best to identify all the people on the cover of Drumbeat when it was recently re-issued on CD, mainly through asking some of the ones there I recognised, but sadly nobody identified your father. Geoff Leonard.
As a teenager growing up in Shepherds Bush, I attended many of the Drumbeat shows. Some were at the Riverside studios in Hammersmith and others at the Television theatre in Shepherds Bush.
I remember one show when before the show started John Barry and his band were doing sound checks and he noticed someone in the audience.
Waving aknowledgement he then went off and Stewart Morris came on to warm up the audience and then introduced the mystery man as "The producer of the greatest rock n roll TV show Oh Boy....Jack Good. And he was sitting a few seats away from me...
Vince Eager was the first and last singer each week. I remember one programme not ending with Vince, he was second last. This particular progamme ended with three drummers on the studio floor in front of the bandstands. The three drumkits were on a low step-high platform. I never forgot the sight of three drummers soloing.