Glenn Shorrock

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Glenn Shorrock
Glenn Shorrock in 2007.jpeg
Shorrock in 2007
Background information
Birth nameGlenn Barrie Shorrock
Also known asAndré L'Escargot
Born (1944-06-30) 30 June 1944 (age 75)
Chatham, Kent, England
Origin Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Genres Rock, pop, soft rock
Occupation(s)
  • Musician
  • singer-songwriter
  • radio presenter
  • television presenter
  • actor
InstrumentsVocals
Years active1962–present
Labels MAM, Capitol, Mushroom, Liberation Blue
Associated actsThe Checkmates, The Twilights, Axiom, Esperanto, Little River Band, Birtles Shorrock Goble
Website glennshorrock.com

Glenn Barrie Shorrock AM (born 30 June 1944) is an English-born Australian singer-songwriter. He was a founding member of rock bands The Twilights, Axiom, Little River Band, and post LRB spin-off trio Birtles Shorrock Goble, as well as being a solo performer.

Contents

The Twilights had eight consecutive national hit singles including "Needle in a Haystack" and "What's Wrong with the Way I Live". Axiom's top 10 hits were "Arkansas Grass", "Little Ray of Sunshine" and "My Baby's Gone". Little River Band had national and international chart success, including the Shorrock-penned "Emma", "Help Is on Its Way" and "Cool Change".

Shorrock was inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame as a solo artist in 1991 and as a member of Little River Band in 2004. In May 2001 the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA), as part of its 75th-anniversary celebrations, named "Cool Change" as one of the APRA Top 30 Australian songs of all time.

Early years

Glenn Barrie Shorrock was born on 30 June 1944 in Chatham, Kent, England. His family migrated to Adelaide, South Australia on the Orcades [1] in August 1954 when he was ten. [2] His father, Harry Shorrock was a Yorkshire-born fitter and turner at the Weapons Research Establishment in Salisbury. [3] The 1954–55 summer had days of 42 °C (108 °F) and Black Sunday bushfires ravaged the Adelaide Hills in January 1955. [4] His London-born mother Joyce Shorrock was not impressed with Australia, and she took Shorrock and his younger sister back to UK on the Strathmore , [5] only to return to Australia on the Fairsea [6] for a second attempt in 1956. [3] The family settled in Elizabeth, 20 km (12 mi) north of Adelaide. [7]

Shorrock's first public performance took place in 1958 at St Peter's Lutheran church hall in Elizabeth when he mimed to Elvis Presley's recording of "All Shook Up" on a gramophone and strumming on a cardboard guitar. When the record player stopped he was forced to continue singing by himself and realised he had a good voice. [8]

In 1962, Shorrock formed his first band, the Checkmates, with Clem McCartney, Mike Sykes and Billy Volraat. [9] They were a doo wop harmony group covering The Platters and The Crew Cuts material. [10] Sometimes teaming up with instrumental groups The Vector Men or The Hurricanes, The Checkmates performed in Adelaide cafes and folk clubs. [11] As a result of The Beatles' popularity, members of The Checkmates and The Hurricanes merged to form The Twilights in 1964. [10] [11]

The Twilights

Timeline
1962 The Checkmates
1964 The Twilights
1969 Axiom
1971 Glenn Shorrock
1972 Esperanto
1974 Glenn Shorrock
1975 Little River Band
1982 Glenn Shorrock
1988 Little River Band
1996 Glenn Shorrock
2002 Birtles Shorrock Goble
2007 Glenn Shorrock

In 1964 Shorrock, with McCartney as co-lead vocalist, formed the Twilights by merging with the Hurricanes' Frank Barnard on drums, Peter Brideoake on guitar, Terry Britten on guitar and John Bywaters on bass guitar. [10] [11] Their debut single, "I'll Be Where You Are", co-written by Shorrock and Britten, [12] was released in June 1965. [11] The band had eight consecutive hit singles, including covers of the Velvelettes' "Needle in a Haystack" and the Hollies' "What's Wrong with the Way I Live" (recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London). [11] With two lead singers, two guitarists and five vocalists, the Twilights performed note-perfect covers of pop-rock songs and were famed for their live prowess. [11] They relocated to Melbourne late in 1965 and were popular with teenage audiences and respected by fellow musicians. In July 1966, they won Hoadley's Battle of the Sounds with the prize including a trip to London. [11] In 1967, shortly after returning from London, the group regularly performed the entire Sgt Pepper's album live in sequence, weeks before it was released in Australia. [11] Shorrock married Sue while he was a member of the Twilights. [2] The Twilights disbanded in January 1969 and Shorrock became band manager for Brisbane pop group the Avengers. [7]

Axiom

In May 1969 in Melbourne, Shorrock formed an early Australian 'supergroup', Axiom, with Brian Cadd on keyboards and vocals, Don Mudie on lead guitar (both ex-The Groop), Doug Lavery (The Valentines) on drums and Chris Stockley (Cam-Pact) on guitar. [13] They recorded two highly acclaimed albums, Fool's Gold and If Only...; and had three top 10 singles, "Arkansas Grass", "Little Ray of Sunshine" and "My Baby's Gone" on the Go-Set national charts. [13] Axiom travelled to UK but disbanded there in March 1971. [3] [4]

Shorrock remained in the UK to pursue his solo career; he signed with MAM Records and released the self-penned "Let's Get the Band Together" single in October 1971. [7] This was followed by a cover of "Rock'n'Roll Lullaby" (written by Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil) in March 1972. [7] As Andre L'Escargot and His Society Syncopaters, he released "Purple Umbrella" with his backing band being Quartet members Britten, Kevin Peek, Trevor Spencer and Alan Tarney. [7] He joined the multinational progressive rock band Esperanto, which released their debut album Esperanto Rock Orchestra in 1973 with the Shorrock written track "Statue of Liberty". [7] He left Esperanto before their third album was released in 1974 and performed backing vocals for Cliff Richard. [2] [7]

Little River Band

Mississippi was an Australian rock band which was working in UK with Beeb Birtles on vocals and guitar, Graham Goble (later Graeham Goble) on guitar and vocals and Derek Pellicci on drums. They contacted Glenn Wheatley (former bass guitarist for The Masters Apprentices) to become their manager. Birtles, previously in Adelaide band Zoot, called Shorrock to take part in the line up. Shorrock returned to Australia in October 1974 and joined Mississippi in January 1975 in Melbourne. [14] They were soon renamed as Little River Band with the original line up of Birtles, Goble, Pellicci, Shorrock and lead guitarist Ric Formosa and bassist Roger McLachlan. [3] The group went on to become one of the most successful bands ever to come out of Australia, and the first to achieve major commercial success in the United States. [4] For Little River Band, Shorrock wrote the hits "Emma", "Help Is on Its Way" (Australian No. 1) and "Cool Change". [7]

While still a member of Little River Band, Shorrock released a solo single, a cover of Bobby Darin's 1959 hit "Dream Lover" in April 1979 on EMI, which peaked at No. 8 on the Kent Music Report Singles Chart. [9] [15] In February 1982, Shorrock left Little River Band and was replaced by John Farnham, who was managed by Wheatley. [11] Shorrock returned to Little River Band in 1988 but, despite several quality albums, they did not regain the earlier stellar recognition. He left again in 1991 leaving the naming rights with guitarist Stephen Housden. [4] In May 2001 the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA), as part of its 75th-anniversary celebrations, named "Cool Change", as one of the Top 30 Australian songs of all time. [16]

Later solo career

In 1982 Shorrock released a solo album Villain of the Peace and a single, "Rock and Roll Soldier" on Capitol Records recorded in Los Angeles with John Boylan (Charlie Daniels, Little River Band) producing. "Rock and Roll Soldier" reached the Australian top 40 in November but he did not achieve the international success attained with Little River Band. Late in 1982 he toured Australia and then teamed with Renée Geyer to release a duet, "Goin' Back" on Mushroom Records in February 1983. One of his backing singers was Wendy Matthews who had been a session singer in Los Angeles. [17] "We're Coming to Get You", which peaked at No. 6 in October, was recorded with folk group, The Bushwackers it was the theme for the film, We're Coming to Get You. He released "Don't Girls Get Lonely?" in November. In 1984, he recorded "Restless" for the documentary World Safari II: The Final Adventure . [7]

In 1985, Shorrock released The First Twenty Years, which was a double-LP album compilation of his career work with tracks by The Twilights, Axiom, Little River Band and solo work. [18] He was compere of Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) TV music series, Rock Arena in 1986 and as a breakfast announcer for radio station Magic 11 in Sydney. [19] His solo single, "American Flyers" appeared in July. He performed on the tour of stage show One for the Money in 1986–87. [19] He appeared in other stage shows including his own showcase productions Go Cat Go (1990–91) and Two Up (1996).

On 25 March 1991, Shorrock was inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame, alongside contemporary rocker Billy Thorpe, bass-baritone Peter Dawson and jazz musician Don Burrows. [20] In 1993, he re-joined with Axiom bandmate, Brian Cadd, to record Blazing Salads and three singles for Blue Martin Records, and a subsequent two-year tour. [21] On tour Shorrock played his hit songs, along with those of Axiom accompanied by Cadd and a backing band of Rex Goh on guitar (ex-Air Supply), Kirk Lorange on guitar (Richard Clapton Band) and Mark Kennedy on drums (Spectrum, Ayers Rock, Marcia Hines Band). [7] [21]

Long Way to the Top was a 2001 ABC TV six-part documentary on the history of Australian rock and roll from 1956 to the modern era. [22] Shorrock provided interviews, "In Awe of The Beatles", "Being Pop Stars" and "Coming from the UK", on his early years with The Twilights. [23] Long Way to the Top Tour followed in August–September 2002 with Shorrock appearing with The Twilights in the first set performing "What's Wrong with the Way I Live?" and "Needle in a Haystack"; he returned in the second set with Axiom to perform "Arkansas Grass" and "Little Ray of Sunshine". [19] [24]

In 2002 Shorrock reunited with other Little River Band founders Beeb Birtles and Graeham Goble to form Birtles Shorrock Goble. [19] On 17 October 2004, the 1970s members of Little River Band: Birtles, David Briggs, Goble, George McArdle, Derek Pellicci and Shorrock, were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame. [25] The later members including fellow Australian, John Farnham, and US-based musicians, were not included in this induction. [25] Due to a 2002 legal ruling on their right to use the band's name they performed "Help Is on the Way" as the Classic Lineup of Little River Band. [25] Birtles Shorrock Goble recorded a successful DVD and CD, Full Circle (2005) and toured until 2007. In August–September, the trio played a medley of Little River Band hits at the Countdown Spectacular 2 concert series.

In 2005 Shorrock also undertook his career-spanning The Reminiscing Tour – Glenn Shorrock & Friends with invited guest singers including Doug Parkinson and Wendy Matthews. [19] In May–June 2006, he partnered actress Judy Nunn on the first season of reality TV singing competition, It Takes Two , they were voted off after week three. [26] His first solo CD for seven years, Meanwhile, which contains acoustic versions of his career hits was released in 2007 on the Liberation Blue label. He performed The Beatles tribute show Let It Be with Parkinson, Sharon O'Neill and Mark Williams. [27]

In 2008 Shorrock toured with the musical Shout! The Legend of the Wild One, based on the life of Australian rocker Johnny O'Keefe. [27] [28] In July 2010, Shorrock performed a retrospective of his 45 years in the music industry. [3] [8] Currently Glenn Shorrock continues to tour Australia performing for public and private events in Australia and promotes new local music artists. In early 2013 Glenn and his band were headlining performers in Macau, New York and London for the media launch of the Titanic II project. This was at the personal invitation of Australian entrepreneur Clive Palmer. [29]

In October 2014, Glenn Shorrock was inducted into the South Australian Music Hall of Fame alongside Bon Scott's former band Fraternity, Chris Finnen and David 'Daisy' Day. [30]

Shorrock released his autobiography Now, Where Was I? in June 2018. [31]

Glenn Shorrock was appointed an Honorary Member of the Order of Australia (AM) on 26 January 2020, awarded for significant service to the performing arts as a singer, songwriter and entertainer. [32]

Discography

Studio albums

List of studio albums, with selected chart positions
TitleAlbum detailsPeak chart positions
Australia [15]
Villain of the Peace32
Spin Me 'Round
  • Released: 2000
  • Label: Streetwise Music Group
  • Format: CD
-
Meanwhile... Acoustically-
The Story of Sharky & The Caddman (with Brian Cadd)
  • Released: 2013
  • Label: Fanfare Records
  • Format: CD, Digital download
-
Rise Again-
Glenn Shorrock Sings Little River Band
  • Released: 8 March 2019
  • Label: Social Family Records
  • Format: CD, Digital download, streaming
-

Live albums

List of live albums
TitleAlbum details
45 Years of Song
  • Released: August 2013
  • Label: Aztec Music
  • Format: 2xCD,

Compilation albums

List of compilation albums, with selected chart positions
TitleAlbum detailsPeak chart positions
Australia
Beginnings (Before Little River Band)
(with Beeb Birtles & Graham Goble)
-
Beginnings Vol. 2 (Before Little River Band)
(with Beeb Birtles & Graham Goble)
  • Released: 1980
  • Label: Capitol Records
  • Format: Vinyl
-
The First Twenty Years63

Singles

Year Title Peak chart positions Album
AUS
KMR [15]
AUS
ARIA [33]
1972 "Let's Get the Band Together" 'Non-album single'
1972 "Rock and Roll Lullaby"
"Purple Umbrella" (released by Andre L'Escargot and His Society Syncopaters)
1975 "Daydream Sunday"
1979 "Dream Lover" 8
1982 "Rock and Roll Soldier" 39 Villain of the Peace
1983 "Angry Words"
"Goin' Back" (with Renée Geyer) 'Non-album single'
"We're Coming to Get You" (with The Bushwackers) 6 Villain of the Peace
"Don't Girls Get Lonely" 75
1985 "American Flyers" The First Twenty Years
2000 "Orchestra of Grunt" Spin Me 'Round
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that country.

See also

Related Research Articles

Little River Band Australian rock band

Little River Band (LRB) are a rock band originally formed in Melbourne, Australia, in March 1975. The band achieved commercial success in both Australia and the United States. They have sold more than 30 million records; six studio albums reached the top 10 on the Australian Kent Music Report albums chart including Diamantina Cocktail and First Under the Wire, which both peaked at No. 2. Nine singles appeared in the top 20 on the related singles chart, with "Help Is on Its Way" (1977) as their only number-one hit. Ten singles reached the top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 with "Reminiscing" their highest, peaking at No. 3. Only First Under the Wire appeared in the top 10 albums on the Billboard 200.

Beeb Birtles Dutch-Australian musician

Beeb Birtles is a Dutch Australian musician, singer, songwriter and guitarist. He has been a member of various Australian groups including Zoot (1967–71), Mississippi (1972–74), Little River Band (1975–83), and Birtles Shorrock Goble (2002–07). He has also worked as a solo artist, including releasing an album, Driven by Dreams (2000). In 2004 Birtles and other members of the classic line-up of Little River Band were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame.

Axiom were an Australian rock band formed in Melbourne, Victoria, in 1969 and included musicians, former The Twilights frontman Glenn Shorrock and Brian Cadd of The Groop

Brian George Cadd AM is an Australian singer-songwriter, keyboardist, producer and record label founder, a staple of Australian entertainment for over 50 years. As well as working internationally throughout Europe and the United States, he has performed as a member of numerous bands including The Groop, Axiom, The Bootleg Family Band and in America with Flying Burrito Brothers before carving out a solo career in 1972. He briefly went under the pseudonym of Brian Caine in late 1966, when first joining The Groop.

<i>Diamantina Cocktail</i> 1977 studio album by Little River Band

Diamantina Cocktail is the third album by the Little River Band. The U.S. version of the album was actually a partial compilation of the Australian versions of After Hours and Diamantina Cocktail. Also noteworthy was that three songs--"Broke Again", "The Inner Light" and "Another Runway"--were radically different mixes from those released on the original Australian "After Hours" LP, remixed especially for the US market. In 1980 Capitol Records released the remaining tracks on a U.S. version of After Hours.

Graeham Goble Australian musician

Graeham George Goble is an Australian musician, singer-songwriter and record producer, best known as a founding member of Australian rock group Little River Band.

Mississippi were an Australian soft rock band (1972–1975), which included Graham Goble on lead vocals and guitar, Beeb Birtles on lead vocals and guitar, and Derek Pellicci on drums. The band had started as Allison Gros in Adelaide in 1970 and moved to Melbourne in 1971 where they recorded as Allison Gros, Drummond and, early in 1972, became Mississippi. As Drummond they issued a cover version of "Daddy Cool", which peaked at No. 1 on the Go-Set National Top 40 for eight weeks. As Mississippi they reached No. 10 with "Kings of the World". In early 1975, with Birtles, Goble and Pellici aboard and the addition of Glenn Shorrock, the group were renamed, Little River Band.

<i>Whispering Jack</i> 1986 studio album by John Farnham

Whispering Jack is the twelfth studio album by Australian adult contemporary pop singer John Farnham. It was produced by Ross Fraser, and released on 20 October 1986, peaking at #1 on the Australian Kent Music Report Album Charts. Whispering Jack has become the second best-selling-album in Australia, behind Meatloaf's album Bat Out of Hell, and the highest selling album in Australia by an Australian artist - 24x platinum indicating sales of over 1.68 million copies sold. It spent 25 weeks at the No. 1 spot on the Album Charts during 1986–1987, it was awarded the 1987 ARIA Award for "Album of the Year", and was the best charting album for the decade of the 1980s in Australia. It was the first Australian-made album to be released on Compact Disc within Australia. One of Farnham's biggest hits, "You're the Voice" was issued as the lead single from this album and peaked at No. 1 on the Kent Music Report Singles Charts.

Birtles Shorrock Goble

Birtles Shorrock Goble are an Australian pop/rock group composed of the three original singers and songwriters of Little River Band, namely Beeb Birtles, Glenn Shorrock and Graeham Goble. The members are known for their extensive writing and performance of hit songs and distinctive vocal harmonies. They are sometimes referred to by the initials BSG.

David Hirschfelder is an Australian musician, film score composer and performer. As a musician he has been a member of Little River Band and John Farnham Band. He has composed film scores for many films, including Strictly Ballroom, Australia, The Railway Man, The Water Diviner and The Dressmaker. He was nominated for Academy Awards for his scores for Shine and Elizabeth.

<i>Little River Band</i> (album) 1975 studio album by Little River Band

Little River Band is the debut studio album by the Australian rock group Little River Band which was released by EMI in November 1975. It peaked at No. 12 on the Australian Kent Music Report Albums Chart. The band's first single, "Curiosity ", was released in September ahead of the album and peaked at No. 15 on the Kent Music Report Singles Chart. The following single, "Emma", appeared in January 1976 and peaked at No. 20. In May, the band released "Everyday of My Life" together with its album, After Hours.

<i>First Under the Wire</i> 1979 studio album by The Little River Band

First Under the Wire is the fifth album by Australian group Little River Band. Released in July 1979 by Capitol Records, it peaked at No. 2 on the Australian Kent Music Report Albums Chart. It was the band's only United States top ten album and was certified platinum status according to RIAA. The album included two top 10 Billboard Hot 100 hits in "Lonesome Loser" and "Cool Change".

<i>After Hours</i> (Little River Band album) 1976 studio album by Little River Band

In Australia, After Hours was the second album from the Australian rock band Little River Band. It was released in 1976 by EMI. The first single from the album, "Everyday of My Life", was a top-ten hit in Australia.

The Groop were an Australian folk, R&B and rock band formed in 1964 in Melbourne, Victoria and had their greatest chart success with their second line-up of Max Ross on bass, Richard Wright on drums and vocals, Don Mudie on lead guitar, Brian Cadd on keyboards and vocals, and Ronnie Charles on vocals. The Wesley Trio formed early in 1964 with Ross, Wright and Peter McKeddie on vocals; they were renamed The Groop at the end of the year.

Reminiscing 1978 single by Little River Band

"Reminiscing" is a 1978 song by Australian soft rock music group Little River Band, from their album Sleeper Catcher. The song was written by the band's guitarist, Graeham Goble, and sung by their lead singer, Glenn Shorrock. "Reminiscing" remains the band's greatest success in the United States, peaking at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and #10 on the Easy Listening chart. The song is about a couple reminiscing about the past, with certain music reminding them of certain memories.

<i>Uncovered</i> (John Farnham album) 1980 studio album by John Farnham

Uncovered is a solo studio album by Australian singer John Farnham, produced by Little River Band's Graeham Goble, and released on 3 July 1980, which peaked at No. 20 on the Australian Kent Music Report Album Charts. Farnham's first single from the album was a reworking of The Beatles' song "Help!"; it peaked at No. 8 on the Kent Music Report Singles Chart. The second single "Please Don't Ask Me" didn't chart, however it was re-released in 1991 as a live version as part of the Full House album and became a Number #22 on the Aria music chart. in 2000, to coincide with its 20th anniversary, Uncovered the album was re-mastered by Goble and re-released.

<i>Backstage Pass</i> (album) 1980 live album by Little River Band

Backstage Pass is a double live album by Little River Band. Originally released in Australia as two separate single albums, the first in January 1980 as Backstage Pass, and the second in April 1980 as Live in America, they were merged that same year with their release in the United States as simply Backstage Pass.

Cool Change (song) 1979 single by Little River Band

"Cool Change" is a hit song by Australian rock group Little River Band written by lead singer Glenn Shorrock. It was the second single from their sixth album, First Under the Wire. Released in August 1979, "Cool Change" did not reach the Australian Kent Music Report Singles Chart top 50. It was released in the United States in 1979 on the Capitol Records label and peaked at number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 the week of 19 January 1980.

Stephen Wade is an English-born Australian-based singer, songwriter and musician. He won the Australian Songwriter of the Year in 1989 and 1990. Wade was a member of the Graham Goble Encounter (1993–95), which recorded two albums and toured Germany. During 1994 he provided guitar and vocals for another group, Tempted, on their self-titled album. From 1996, for four years, Wade was a lead vocalist for the soft rock group, Little River Band. In 2001 he issued his debut self-titled album and during 2006 he was a member of the trio Pealing Wade & Young, with Mick Pealing (ex-Stars) and Gary Young, which issued an eponymous album. In April 2013 he auditioned for series two of The Voice, but was not selected.

<i>Live Classics</i> 1992 live album by Little River Band

Live Classics is a live album by Little River Band. It was recorded during the band's 1992 world tour. The album also included two new studio songs, "Walk Together" and "My Own Way Home". It was the last Little River Band album with Glenn Shorrock as lead vocalist.

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