Rest_In_Peace's current selection is:
Let True Love Begin
by The Big Three, feat. Johnny Hutchinson, drums/backing vocals
Johnny Hutchinson (1939 to 2019) was an English 'rock and roll' drummer, with 'The Big Three'. John Howard Hutchinson was born in Valletta, Malta, on July 18th 1939 to a British army soldier posted abroad, and was then raised in Toxteth, Liverpool, England. After leaving school, he trained as an upholsterer and dabbled with playing the clarinet, but after instead learning to play the drums was recruited by 'rock and roll' group 'Cass and the Casanovas' in 1959. Two years later, with bandmates Adrian Barber and Johnny Gustafson, he formed 'The Big Three' in 1961 with the intention of playing 'rhythm and blues' music. Often affectionately known as 'Hutch', he had turned down a two-year contract with 'Johnny Kidd & The Pirates' in order to stay local with the Liverpool group, and also took on lead vocal duties with them. As a band, they were noted for their loud, aggressive 'live' performances, and during the summer of 1962 played a month-long residency at Hamburg's Star Club (where 'The Beatles' themselves had honed their stage act). On their return to the concert circuit in the northwest of England, he was asked by 'The Beatles' manager Brian Epstein to play with the group that night (he had just sacked Pete Best, who had initially agreed to play the date but changed his mind). He had done this previously in 1960 when (known as the 'Silver Beetles') the Fab Four had auditioned for pop impresario Larry Parnes and singer Billy Fury as a possible backing group - he gladly stepped in when their then-drummer Tommy Moore failed to arrive on time. So he agreed to sit in at their gigs in Chester, Birkenhead and New Brighton while they waited for ex-'Rory Storm & the Hurricanes' drummer Ringo Starr to become available. After this brief distraction, he resumed with 'The Big Three', who also became part of Epstein's roster of acts. 'Decca Records', attempting to cash in on the 'Merseybeat' craze, also signed them, so after returning from Hamburg they cut "Some Other Guy", written by Americans Leiber, Stoller and Barrett (it was also often included in the repertoire of 'The Beatles'). The single peaked at a modest No. 37 in the UK chart in March 1963, after which 3 further singles plus an EP all failed to capture the imagination of the public. By mid-1963, they had split with Epstein and twelve months later were ditched by 'Decca'. Hutchinson had become the group's leader, and played on from the front as different personnel came and went. In 1966 though, he finally dissolved the group, retreating into the building trade and eventually making a living buying and renovating property. He had still attended International Beatleweek a number of times over the last few years, and made a special appearance in 2015 at a memorial show for Cilla Black at the rebuilt Cavern nightclub cellar. Johnny Hutchinson died in Liverpool on April 12th 2019, aged 79.
Posted: 15th May 2019
Hundreds of very talented musicians pass away each year, some without much recognition at all. On "Rest In Peace", I aim to give them a fitting 'send-off', with a decent Tribute. I hope you will join me in marking their passing.....
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