Georgie Fame - Organ, piano, vocal
Born Clive Powell on June 26, 1943 in the English industrial town of Leigh, Lancashire, Georgie Fame’s interest in music initially grew out of his family entertaining in the home and musical evenings in the church hall across the street, where his father also played in an amateur dance band. Although young Clive began piano lessons at age seven, he didn’t stick too long with the formal training. But when rock and roll started to be broadcast on the radio during the mid-fifties, a then-teenage Clive began to take the piano more seriously, playing piano in various pubs and with a local group, “The Dominoes.”
In July 1959, he joined up with Rory Blackwell, the resident rock and roll bandleader and his band Rory and the Blackjacks In October of that year, the Marty Wilde Show was performing at the Lewisham Gaumont and Rory Blackwell arranged for Clive to audition “live” for impresario Larry Parnes, who after hiring him, he renamed “Georgie Fame,” and the name has stuck to this day. By the age of 16, Billy Fury selected four musicians, including Fame, for his personal backing group and the “Blue Flames” were born. At the end of 1961, after a disagreement, the band and Fury parted company.
Another gloomy out-of-work period finally ended in March 1962, when Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames took up what was to be a three-year residency as the house band at the Flamingo Club in London’s Soho district. In 1963 their first album, “Rhythm and Blues at the Flamingo” was recorded live at the club. Georgie also pursued his interest in jazz, recording the milestone album, “Sound Venture,” with the Harry South Big Band. This led directly to successful tours of the UK and Europe in 1967 and 1968, which found Georgie singing with the Count Basie Orchestra.