Born in 1968, I don't really remember the 1960's. I did grow up, however, becoming a fan of the era's music. So an opportunity to see Gerry Marsden, at Newport Riverfront on Friday night was a chance I didn't want to pass by.
Gerry and his band, the Pacemakers were an integral part of "The Mersey Sound". They were the second band (after the Beatles) to sign to manager Brian Epstein in 1963. Gerry and The Pacemakers were also the first recording act to go to number one with their first three singles.
Their first hit, Mitch Murray's How Do You Do It? came to them after been turned down by both Adam Faith and The Beatles. Gerry recounted John Lennon as saying to producer George Martin "Its rubbish, give it to Gerry Marsden, he needs a song".
Ably supported by a new version of The Pacemakers (these guys were too young to be the originals) Gerry took the audience through many hits including I'm The One', I Like It, Ferry Cross The Mersey and You'll Never Walk Alone, while also paying homage to heroes Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis and Fats Domino.
I wondered if 40 years after his initial success, Gerry would still have the voice that soared him to number one. I shouldn't have worried. That voice transported me back to a golden era I'd have loved to have grown up in. Thank you Gerry!
- A version of this review was published in The South Wales Argus during March 2007
- Read Andy Howells review for Gerry Cross The Mersey at Newport Riverfront, 2011