MUSIC fans can step back in time to the golden era of pop music when the sensational Sixties band The Searchers play the Palace later this month.
With a string of hits to their name including ‘Needles and Pins’, ‘When you Walk in the Room’ and ‘Sweets for my Sweet’ the four piece outfit have defied the decades playing music that sounds as fresh as when it was first released.
“Age hasn’t slowed us down – I still feel 25 – and although the line-up has changed over the years and we still have founder member John McNally in the group,” said bass player and front man Frank Allen who joined the band in 1964.
“The other thing is that we’ve always liked what we were doing, we’re all friends, we love going on stage and performing, and we were never very rich so we had to keep on going!” he added.
The Searchers have had a remarkable history; Liverpool stablemates of The Beatles they too found fame playing the clubs and dives of Hamburg in the early 60s before breaking big in the UK with a string of hits.
If the 60s were kind to The Searchers the 70s were tough as their music gradually fell out of favour.
“You wanted the hits period to go on forever, but it didn’t, and we went from the Hit Parade to the cabaret circuit and I consider that our university education,” said Allen.
“It was tough, we were working all hours and we had to entertain adults, not youngsters, create a show, have light and shade, pace and tempo, and I had to find the words to introduce the songs and create a mood.”
By the mid 70s the cabaret market had gone as well but the band once again found its feet by playing one-nighters, cruise ships and constantly touring, particularly the Commonwealth countries and Germany, Holland and Denmark where their star has never fallen.
“We kept going, and looking back I’m sure that if all those bands in the 60s that broke up had known that the 60s sound would be back and so popular they’d still be playing too,” said Allen.
And it’s that pure joyful sound that gig-goers at the Palace will be able to hear later this month.
“The music is live, nothing is programmed or choreographed like modern music, we play all the instruments ourselves and can respond to the mood audience.
“We’ve played the Palace so many times in the past – it’s such a great theatre and people will be able to hear all the hits plus many of those favourite album tracks as well they might not have heard for a while.
“I hope they’ll see it as a happy occasion with friends on stage playing the songs they love.”
The Searchers play the Palace Theatre on Saturday, October 31 at 7.30pm. Tickets are £19.75 on 01527 65203 or in person from the box office.