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The Barron Knights
Origin Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, England
Genres Pop, Rock, Comedy, Novelty song
Years active 1960–Present
Labels Columbia, Epic
Website http://www.barronknights.com/
Members
Peter Langford
Len Crawley
Lloyd Courtenay
Micky Groome
Former members
Duke D'Mond
Barron Anthony
Butch Baker
Dave Ballinger

The Barron Knights is a British humorous pop group, originally formed in 1959 in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire as The Knights of the Round Table. They became the Barron Knights on 5 October 1960. Although the Barron Knights undoubtedly had their own style and produced regular 'beat group' recordings in their own right, it was their production of humorous parodies that brought them the greatest success. In fact, their catalogue of recordings - although impressive - does not reflect their success as stage entertainers. By adapting their act to each new wave of emerging performers they were able to survive longer than their more conventional contemporaries, and even today can still be regularly found in cabaret or performing a seaside summer season.[1]

Contents

Career

They started out as a straight pop group, and spent a couple of years touring and playing in English dance halls before making their way to Hamburg, Germany. In 1963, at the invitation of Brian Epstein, they were one of the support acts on The Beatles' Christmas shows at the Finsbury Park Astoria in London. They became one of the few acts to tour with both The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.

They first came to fame in 1964 with the number "Call Up the Groups". It overcame copyright restrictions and parodied a number of the leading pop groups of the time including The Searchers, Freddie and the Dreamers, The Dave Clark Five, The Bachelors, The Rolling Stones, and The Beatles. The song imagined the various artists singing about being conscripted, or "called up" into the British Army. Actual conscription had ended a few years before. The single climbed to number 3 in the UK Singles Chart.[2 ] As an example, the song "Bits and Pieces" by the The Dave Clark Five was parodied as "Boots and Blisters".

In 1967 the group released the single "Lazy Fat People", a satirical song written by Pete Townshend of The Who. In 1974 they toured South Africa with Petula Clark.[3] By 1977 CBS Records signed the group and "Live in Trouble" reached number 7 in the UK Singles Chart.[3] It was their first hit for over nine years. "Angelo" was just one song parodied on "Live in Trouble".[4][5] 1978's "A Taste of Aggro" became the group's biggest hit with sales of over one million records.[3]

They achieved four other hit singles in the 1960s and 1970s but their only U.S. Billboard Hot 100 charted single, "The Topical Song", was another comedic parody written by the American poet, Robert Spring White. Based upon Supertramp's "The Logical Song", White, who also took the 1980 American Song Festival award in the folk category for "Where Does The River Go", confined his humorous lyric compositions for The Barron Knights.

As of 2008 the group continued to perform for a worldwide audience.

Original lead singer Duke D'Mond died 9 April 2009.

Original band member details

As of 2007, only Langford remains from the original line-up. Fellow founding member, Butch Baker, retired in January 2007, and was replaced by Len Crawley.[3]

Discography

UK singles chart hits

  • "Call Up the Groups" (1964) Number 3 - Columbia
  • "Come to the Dance" (1964) Number 42 - Columbia
  • "Pop Go the Workers" (1965) Number 5 - Columbia
  • "Merry Gentle Pops" (1965) Number 9 - Columbia
  • "Under New Management" (1966) Number 35 - Columbia
  • "An Olympic Record" (1968) Number 35 - Columbia
  • "Live in Trouble" (1977) Number 7 - Epic
  • "A Taste of Aggro" (1978) Number 3 - Epic
  • "Food for Thought" (1979) Number 46 - Epic
  • "The Topical Song" (1979) (U.S. Number 70)
  • "The Sit Song" (1980) Number 44 - parodying dog trainer Barbara Woodhouse - Epic
  • "Never Mind the Presents" (1980) Number 17 - Epic
  • "Blackboard Jumble" (1981) Number 52 - CBS
  • "Buffalo Bill's Last Scratch" (1983) Number 49 - Epic

[2 ]

UK albums chart hits

  • Night Gallery (1978) Number 15 - Epic
  • Teach the World to Laugh (1979) Number 51 - Epic
  • Jesta Giggle (1980) Number 45 - Epic

[2 ]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d 45-rpm.org.uk
  2. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 43. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.  
  3. ^ a b c d e Barron Knights official fansite
  4. ^ listology.com - Barron Knights parody
  5. ^ Chart Stats - The Barron Knights - Live In Trouble

External links








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