The Easybeats, thought to be one hit wonders in the U.S., were a
very successful Rock and Roll band from Australia. Formed in Sydney in 1964 and
together until late 1969, they were considered to be the first Australian
band to be an international success on the pop charts in 1966. (Note: The seekers were also from
Australia but they were categorized as folk-rock, not pop or rock and
The five founding members: lead singer Stevie Wright and drummer
Gordon "Snowy" Henry Fleet were from England; rhythm guitarist George
Young was from Scotland; lead guitarist Harry Vanda and bassist Dick
Diamonde were from The Netherlands. The Easybeats were like the Beatles of
Australia. In fact by the end of 1965 they were the most popular and
successful group in their country. Their shows and appearances often
turned into hysteria which the media called; "similar to'Beatlemania'" and
was soon dubbed 'Easyfever'. Stevie Wright's performances, which included
energetic dancing and onstage backflips, were also matched with his strong
songwriting abilities. They became so popular, The Easybeats were signed
to one of Australia's oldest and largest music publishing companies, the
family owned J. Albert & Sons.
Their singles included: "For My
Woman" - "She's So Fine" - "Wedding Ring" - "Sad, Lonely and Blue "
(1965) - "Women" - "Come and
See Her" - "Sorry" - "Friday on My Mind" (1966) - "Do You Have a Soul" -
"Heaven and Hell" - "The Music Goes Round My Head" (1967) - "Hello How Are
You?" - "Good Times" - "Lay Me Down and Die" (1968) - "St. Louis" - "H.P.
After touring into 1967, the band started to experience
personnel changes. Stevie Wright and Gordon Henry Fleet left the group to
be replaced by Tony Cahill and Freddie Smith. This then began the
songwriting partnership of Harry Vanda and George Young.
The Vanda and
Young songwriting team wrote many successful hit songs over the years
including "Bring a Little Lovin'" covered by Los Bravos, "Come In, You'll
Get Pneumonia", by Paul Revere and the Raiders and they wrote and produced
several major hits for John Paul Young including "Love Is in the Air" and
"Yesterday's Hero", recorded by Bay City Rollers. The duo would eventually
form ‘Flash In The Pan` and have numerous hits into the 1990s.
and Young also produced the first six albums for AC/DC which
incidentally featured George's
younger brothers Angus Young and Malcolm Young.
By 1968 the group began
to drift apart and by the end of 1969 they officially disbanded but not
before they recorded several more songs, some of which were included on
their last album "Friends".
There would be the only 2 songs actually by
the band on the "Friends" album, which was in fact not a real Easybeats
album at all. It was for the most part, with the exception of "St. Louis" and "Rock & Roll
Boogie”, a compilation of tracks that were recorded in England by Vanda
and Young, intended as 'demos' for other artists. The album was issued in
the UK in October, then in the USA in November on the Rare Earth
It is the next to last single that we feature here today. It
entered the Billboard chart on November 15, 1969, and peaked at a whopping
# 100 for 1 week. Regardless, it still received lots of airplay on small
to medium market radio stations across the country.
Click below to hear
a great forgotten song - the rockin' "St. Louis" by the