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Alvin Stardust

September 2014

ALVIN Stardust will be back in his home county tonight for a gig that will span his 54 year career.
And it’s all down to an old friend who Alvin, born Bernard Jewry, used to watch on TV back in the Fifties.
“He was one of the original Oh Boy! rock ‘n’ rollers alongside our idols like Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran and Billy Fury,” says the 75-year-old of Vince Eager, who has organised the gig at Grange Hall in Radcliffe-on-Trent to raise funds for the RSPCA.
“Vince was great and he’s still got a great voice,” says Alvin, who grew up in Mansfield, where he formed his first band Shane Fenton and the Fentones.
“We’d play Mansfield Palais and Nottingham’s Odeon Cinema, before touring with Billy Fury, Joe Brown and Marty Wilde.
“We were playing 50s rock ‘n’ roll and a few American covers, before making a couple of records.
“We became household names before we’d even had a record deal because we played The Saturday Club, the TV show that had 25 million viewers. We sent a tape asking if we could go on it. It was that simple.”

By 1961, they’d signed to EMI, picked up by A&R man George Martin, who would soon begin his legendary role as The Beatles producer. It was during the 70sthat the renamed Alvin Stardust would become a household name, famed for the black quiff, leather jacket and gloves, with a string of hits including My Coo Ca Choo and the number one Jealous Mind.
“We will play such a cross section of stuff,” he says of tonight’s show.
“We do 50s rock n roll, a few 60s bits and bobs, the 70s hits and the 80s hits. I actually sold more records in the 80s than the 70s. It started with Pretend on Stiff Records, which was a street cred label.”
Over the years he has appeared in a number of West End musicals, including Godspell, David Copperfield, Phantom of the Opera and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

“But they became UK tours and I didn’t want to sign up for six months or a year of being away from my family,” he says.

Instead he has hopped aboard a wave of 70s nostalgia, which sees him playing his past hits right across Europe. “We do festivals and stadiums. Tens of thousands of people. But at the same time I’ll do little clubs, because I love it. I’m lucky that I can pick and choose.”

Alvin, who lives in Surrey with his third wife and 13-year-old daughter, is working on his first album of new material in 30 years.
He says: “We’ve recorded a few tracks but nobody knows for sure where it’s going to go.”

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