Tuesday 3 December 2013, 21:37
In the 1950s and 60s every band played on BBC Radio had to first audition in front of the forbidding Talent Selection Group.
Safe to say, Auntie’s gatekeepers weren’t impressed with this bunch of musical blow-ins (to be fair, many in the early stages of their careers) - although this doesn’t always mean that they didn’t book them. Here are the audition notes...
1. David Bowie [& the Lower Third]
“Quite a different sound especially in the Mary Poppins number… Strange choice of material. Amateur sounding vocalist who sings wrong notes and out of tune.”
2. Elton John
“Pretentious material, self-written. Sung in an extremely dull fashion without any feeling and precious little musical ability. Thin piercing voice with no emotional appeal.”
3. Marc Bolan/Tyrannosaurus Rex
“This, unless you understand exactly what they are trying to do, is crap. And pretentious crap at that.”
4. The Who
“The first two members of this group turned up 25 minutes late. Quite co-operative once started. The lead vocalist seemed quite ‘with it’ in the R&B field although the voice quality was harsh and rather unpleasant. Backing not so good, although lead guitar seemed to be more sure of himself. Overall not very original and below standard.”
5. Pink Floyd
“The Producer gives me to understand that one member of the group left our studio without explanation during the recording of the first number. Despite attempts by the rest of the group to find him, he did not return for the remainder of the session… [I] wonder… whether you would be good enough to tell me which gentlemen ‘freaked out’ - this strange expression was being bandied about the studio - together with any explanatory comments which may come to your mind.”
Join the discussion...