Dave Clark Fives Dave Clark
Though he began his professional career as a movie stuntman, Dave Clark
went down in music history as leader of the quintet that briefly rivaled
the Beatles in popularity among young British music lovers.
Dave Clark was born Dec. 15, 1942, in London. While working in films,
Clark and a friend advertised in Melody Maker for musicians to
form a pop band. After recruiting singer Stan Saxon, Clark formed the
Dave Clark Five, which went through several personnel changes, including
Saxon's departure, before settling on the lineup that began cutting records.
The 1961 version of the Dave Clark Five comprised members of the Tottenham
Hotspurs soccer team. It featured Clark on drums (though he had never
played in a band before), Mike Smith on lead vocals and piano, Rick Huxley
and Lenny Davidson on guitars, and Denis Payton on sax.
After recording a few singles for different record labels, the Dave Clark
Five signed with Columbia Records and issued a rock version of the nursery
rhyme 'The Mulberry Bush.' Then the band's cover of the Contours' 'Do You
Love Me' went to #30 in the UK, while Brian Poole & the Tremeloes' version,
released at the same time, topped the same chart.
'Glad All Over' ( RealAudio
excerpt ), the first of many of the band's hits written by Clark
and Smith, pushed the Beatles' 'I Want to Hold Your Hand' from the top
of the UK chart in 1964. The song also went to #6 in the U.S., where the
Dave Clark Five became the first British Invasion group after the Beatles
to make it big (though the Rolling Stones soon overtook them).
The Dave Clark Five, whose music was louder than that of the Beatles,
thanks to Clark's heavy drumming and production, also went to #2 in the
UK and #4 in the U.S. with 'Bits and Pieces.' Other 1964 hits for the
group included 'Can't You See That She's Mine' and 'Because.' Their
recognition factor in the States increased due to the band's 18 appearances
on the popular 'Ed Sullivan Show.'
The following year the group scored with the U.S. #1 'Over and Over,' 'I
Like It Like That' and 'Catch Us If You Can.' They also appeared in films
such as 'Get Yourself a College Girl' and 'Having a Wild Weekend.'
The Dave Clark Five's last relatively big hit in the U.S. was the #7 'You
Got What It Takes' in 1967. They had minor chart successes in the States
for the next year, including their final U.S. entry 'Everybody Knows.'
Until the band split in 1970, it continued to score hits in its home
country. These included a cover of the Youngbloods' U.S. hit 'Get Together'
titled 'Everybody Get Together.' Upon the group's demise, Smith and Clark
recorded as Dave Clark and Friends for three years to fulfill a contract
with EMI Records. Clark also took acting lessons. In the '70s he settled
into music publishing.
In 1986 Clark wrote and produced the musical 'Time,' which first featured
Cliff Richard and then David Cassidy. The soundtrack LP, featuring Freddie
Mercury, Dionne Warwick and others, included Julian Lennon's take on the
Dave Clark Five hit 'Because.' In 1993 Clark compiled a double-CD Dave
Clark Five retrospective, History of the Dave Clark Five.
At the time, when asked by Ice magazine about a reunion, Clark
said: 'No. I was offered a fortune 10 years ago and five years ago. I'm
sure we could pack out certain venues, but we've done that. Leave it to
all the new exciting bands that are around.'
Other birthdays on Wednesday: Cindy Birdsong (Supremes), 60; Carmine Appice
(Vanilla Fudge), 53; Don Johnson, 50; Paul Simonon (Clash), 44; Doug
Phelps (Kentucky Headhunters), 39; Nick Beggs (Kajagoogoo), 38; Kito
Trawick (Ghostown DJs), 22; Jesse Belvin, 19331960; Alan Freed,
19211965; John Hammond II, 19101987; Harry Ray (Moments/Ray,
Goodman & Brown), 19461992; and Max Yasgur, 19191973.