Duffy Power obituary

Monday, March 03, 2014

When Duffy Power, who has died aged 72, recorded I Saw Her Standing There on 20 February 1963, he was only the second artist to cover Lennon/McCartney on record. At that time Paul McCartney and John Lennon were trying to establish themselves as songwriters for other artists already considered successful and had written the song with him in mind.

Duffy was backed by the Graham Bond Quartet, including John McLaughlin (guitar), Jack Bruce (bass) and Ginger Baker (drums); and the producer was Ron Richards for Parlophone. When word came back that "the boys" found it "too jazzy", it was re-recorded, toned down, a month later. The group, plus Duffy, toured together and guested on the BBC radio show Pop Go the Beatles. Only three years earlier, under the name the Silver Beatles, John, Paul and George, then without a permanent drummer, had auditioned for the rock'n'roll svengali Larry Parnes, then Duffy's manager, for the chance to back either Duffy or Johnny Gentle (another of Parnes's stable of stars) on Scottish tours. They fell short on the day and had to settle for a tour backing Gentle. Duffy was born Ray Howard in Fulham, south-west London, and had been obliged by his parents to leave school at 14 and work in a bakery to help them buy a house.

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Source: The Guardian, UK

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