Marvin in 2007
|Birth name||Brian Robson Rankin|
28 October 1941 |
Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
|Genres||Rock, instrumental rock, rock & roll, gypsy jazz|
|Instruments||Banjo, guitar, piano, singer|
|Associated acts||The Shadows, Cliff Richard|
|Hank Marvin Signature Stratocaster
Burns "The Marvin" and the "Shadows Custom Elite Guitar"
Hank Brian Marvin (born 28 October 1941), also known as Hank B. Marvin, is an English musician, a multi-instrumentalist, as well as a vocalist who is best known as the lead guitarist for the Shadows. The group, which primarily performed instrumentals, was formed as a backing band for vocalist Cliff Richard. Marvin has a distinctive guitar sound and appearance, primarily using a clean sound with distinctive echo and vibrato giving a dreamy effect.
He chose the name Hank Marvin while launching his music career. The name is an amalgamation of his childhood nickname of Hank, which he used to differentiate himself from a number of friends also named Brian, and Marvin Rainwater, a country and western singer.
When Marvin was 16, he travelled with his Rutherford Grammar School friend Bruce Welch to London, where he met Johnny Foster, Cliff Richard's manager, at The 2i's Coffee Bar in Soho. Foster was looking for a guitarist for Cliff's upcoming tour of the UK, and Marvin agreed to join as long as there was also a place for Welch. Foster had actually been looking for guitarist Tony Sheridan at the 2i's, but by chance he encountered Marvin. Marvin and Welch joined The Drifters, as Cliff's group was then known, beginning their careers as professional guitar players.
Marvin met Cliff for the first time at a nearby Soho tailor's shop, where Cliff was having a fitting for a pink stage jacket. The Drifters had their first rehearsal with Cliff at the Webb family home (Cliff's parents) in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire.
Since 1986, Marvin has lived in Perth, Western Australia. He has been known for brief impromptu appearances on stage when musician friends visit the Perth area, such as in February 2013 when Cliff held a concert at Sandalford Winery. He is a devout Jehovah's Witness. Marvin runs a recording studio: Nivram studios (part of Sh-Boom studios in Tiverton Street, Perth, owned by Trevor Spencer and Gary Taylor).
Marvin influenced many guitarists, including George Harrison, Eric Clapton, David Gilmour, Brian May, Mark Knopfler, Peter Frampton, Steve Howe, Roy Wood, Tony Iommi, Pete Townshend, Ritchie Blackmore and Jeff Beck.
In Canada, Cliff and The Shadows met with success, especially from 1961 to 1965 when they enjoyed several top 10 hits. Canadian guitarists Randy Bachman and Neil Young have credited Marvin's guitar work as influential.
As well as playing with The Shadows, Marvin has had a successful solo career. His first critically lauded self-titled solo album consisted of instrumentals, which featured his guitar set to more orchestrated backing, was released in 1969 following the first disbanding of The Shadows in late 1968. The single 'Sacha' taken from this topped the singles chart in New South Wales, Australia. His solo career was then suspended for a time due to various Shadows reunions, first for a Far East tour and 'live' album in 1969, then a studio album in 1970 ("Shades of Rock") and again later on in the early seventies. He has been willing to experiment with styles and material, doing some purely instrumental albums, some with mostly vocals (e.g. "Words and Music", "All Alone With Friends"), one with only acoustic guitars and one with a guitar orchestra ("The Hank Marvin Guitar Syndicate").
In 1970, Marvin and Welch formed Marvin, Welch & Farrar, a vocal-harmony trio which failed to appeal to many Shadows fans or to contemporary music fans, despite cutting two critically acclaimed albums later re-evaluated by many fans. 'They became 'Marvin & Farrar' for a vocal album early in 1973 and then reverted to being The Shadows in late 1973, for the all instrumental Rockin' with Curly Leads album. The Shadows then represented the United Kingdom in the 1975 Eurovision song contest coming second.
As a writer, Marvin was solely responsible for "Driftin'", "Geronimo", "Spider Juice" (his daughter's name for orange juice), "I Want You to Want Me" for The Shadows, and "The Day I Met Marie". He co-wrote Cliff's 1960 hit; 'Gee Whizz It's You' (with Ian Samwell), As co-writer with Welch, Brian Bennett, and John Rostill, he wrote other hits, mainly for Cliff, including; "On The Beach", "I Could Easily Fall in Love with You", " Time Drags By", and "In the Country".
In 1969 and 1970 he teamed with Cliff Richard for two 'Cliff & Hank' hit singles, his own song;'Throw Down A Line' (also recorded by Marvin, Welch & Farrar), and 'The Joy of Living', while Cliff also had a hit with his ecology themed song 'Silvery Rain'.
He co-wrote Olivia Newton John's 1977 hit 'Sam' (with John Farrar and Don Black), and has produced albums for the British singer/TV personality Des O'Connor.
In 1988, Marvin collaborated with French keyboardist and composer Jean Michel Jarre on the track "London Kid", which appeared on Jarre's Revolutions album and took a guest role in the Jarre's Destination Docklands concert at London's Royal Victoria Dock. Jarre stated that The Shadows' success had a huge influence on him and his decision to devote the majority of his career to instrumental music.
Marvin and The Shadows reformed for a 2004 Final Tour, which was successful and a 2005 European tour was also organised.
Marvin dueted twice with French guitarist Jean-Pierre Danel – on his 2007 and 2010 albums, both top-ten hits and certified gold. Their two singles hit the iTunes charts in France, Norway, Finland and Germany. Marvin also participated on one of his DVDs and wrote the foreword for Danel's book about the Fender Stratocaster.
While his Shadows colleagues Welch and Bennett accepted the honour of an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2004 Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to music, Marvin declined, citing "personal reasons".
Early career groups (pre-Shadows/Drifters)
- 1956 – Riverside Skiffle group → Crescent City Skiffle Group
- Marvin (banjo), John Tate (guitar), Derek Johnson (guitar), Joe Rankin (bass), Mal Malarky (mandolin), and Howard Muir (wb)
- 1956–1957 – The Railroaders (#1)
- Marvin (guitar), Welch (guitar), George Williams (guitar), Jim (drums)
- 1956–1957 – The Railroaders (#2)
- Marvin (guitar), Welch (guitar), Eddie Silver (guitar), George Williams (bass), and Jim ? (drums)
- 1958 – The Vipers (aka The Vipers Skiffle group)
- live concert
- Wally Whyton (vocals), Johnny Booker (guitar), Hank Marvin (guitar), J. Harris (bass), and Johnny Pilgrim (wb)
- 1958 – The Five Chesternuts
- 7" single – ("Jean Dorothy" on Columbia)
- Gerry Hurst (vocals), Marvin (guitar), Welch (guitar), Neil Johnson (bass), and Pete Chester (drums)
UK solo tours
- 1994 – w/Brian Bennett (drums), Ben Marvin (guitar), Warren Bennett (guitar/keyboards), Mark Griffiths (bass)
- 1995 – w/Ben Marvin (guitar), Warren Bennett (guitar/keyboards), Mark Griffiths (bass), Matthew Letley (drums)
- 1997 – w/Ben Marvin (guitar), Warren Bennett (guitar/keyboards), Mark Griffiths (bass), Matthew Letley (drums)
- 1998 – w/Ben Marvin (guitar), Warren Bennett (guitar/keyboards), Mark Griffiths (bass), Matthew Letley (drums)
- 2000 - w/Ben Marvin (guitar), Warren Bennett (guitar/keyboards), Mark Griffiths (bass), Peter May (drums)
- 2002 – w/Ben Marvin (guitar), Warren Bennett (guitar/keyboards), Mark Griffiths (bass), Fergus Gerrand (drums)
- Spaghetti Junction Work's Nice – If you can get it/Step right Up Columbia DB 8935
- Des O'Connor – Another Side Des O'Connor – LP – NSPL 18559.
- Flair – Stop look & listen – LP – MLP 15611.
- Flair – Fair – LP – CC 227324
- Flair – Fair play – LP – CC 327224
Duets and guest appearances
- 1972: Spaghetti Junction Work's Nice – If you can get it/Step right Up Columbia DB 8935
- 1976: Evita: guitar on "Buenos Aires"
- 1977: Dennis Waterman Waterman album (also features Brian Bennett)
- 1977: Roger Daltrey One of The Boys album – guitar on "Parade" and "Leon"
- 1978: Des O'Connor Another Side of Des O'Connor album
- 1979: Wings Back to the Egg album – "Rockestra Theme" and "So Glad To See You Here"
- 1982: British Electric Foundation Music of Quality and Distinction volume 1
guitar on "Anyone Who Had A Heart" with Sandie Shaw and "It's Over" with Billy MacKenzie
- 1983: Tracey Ullman You Broke My Heart in 17 Places album: guitar on "Move Over Darling" and "You Broke My Heart in 17 Places"
- 1983: Leo Sayer Have You Ever Been in Love album: guitar on "Don't Wait Until Tomorrow"
- 1984: Shakin' Stevens "Teardrops" single
- 1985: Dire Straits plays "Going Home" ("Local Hero's Theme"), with the band, as a special guest at Live at Wembley
- 1986: Cliff Richard and The Young Ones "Living Doll" (UK charts #1)
- 1988: Jean Michel Jarre Revolutions guitar on "London Kid" (UK charts #52)
- 1989: Jean Michel Jarre Destination Docklands: guitar on "London Kid" and "Rendez-Vous IV"
- 1995: Alan Jones A Shadow in Time album: guest on title track "A Shadow In Time"
- 1998: Jane McDonald "You're My World" single
- 2004: The Strat Pack: guitar on "The Rise and Fall of Flingel Bunt," "Sleep Walk" and "Apache"
- 2005: Richard Hawley "I'm Absolutely Hank Marvin", b-side of "Coles Corner" single
- 2007: Peter Frampton "Fingerprints" album: guitar on My Cup of Tea (also features Brian Bennett)
- 2007 Jean-Pierre Danel "Nivram" (French Charts No. 15, #8 Norway, No. 86 Germany) + Blues jam session on DVD
- 2008 Jason Donovan "Let It Be Me" on Dreamboats and Petticoats album
- 2008 Le QuecumBar Patrons "Stars of Gypsy Swing" ("Coquette", "Noto Swing")
- 2010 Jean-Pierre Danel "M Appeal" (Norwegian charts No. 7, Finland #99)
In addition to the above, Marvin also plays guitar on the following tracks of library music recorded for Bruton Music:
- "Fighter Plane" (with Alan Hawkshaw) on Top of the Range
- "Conquest of Space" (with Alan Hawkshaw) on Grandiose Impressive Panoramic
- "Human Desert" (with Alan Hawkshaw) on Human Desert
(V) – Vocal
|Year||A-side||B-side||UK Singles Chart||Notes|
|1968||London's Not Too Far (V)||Running Out of World (V) (The Shadows)||
||Columbia DB 8326|
||Columbia DB 8552|
|1969||Sunday For Seven Days||Sacha||
||Columbia DB 8601|
|1969||Throw Down A Line (V)||Reflections||
||Columbia DB 8615 (Cliff and Hank)|
|1969||Slaughter on 10th Avenue (The Shadows)||Midnight Cowboy||
||Columbia DB 8628|
|1970||The Joy of Living (V)||Leave My Woman Alone (V) Boogatoo||
||Columbia DB 8657 (Cliff and Hank)|
|1970||Break Another Dawn||Would You Believe It (V)||
||(Unreleased, promo only)|
|1970||Break Another Dawn||Morning Star||
||Columbia DB 8693|
|1970||Morning Star||Evening Comes||
||(Australia and New Zealand only)|
||EMI 2744 (Hank Marvin Guitar Syndicate)|
|1981||Sacha / Sunday For Seven Days||Morning Star / Evening Comes||
||(New Zealand only) Hank Marvin EP|
|1982||Don't Talk (V)||Life Line (V)||
|1982||The Trouble With Me Is You (remix) (V)||Captain Zlogg||
|1983||The Hawk and the Dove (V)||Janine||
|1983||Invisible Man (V)||All Alone With Friends||
||(Cliff Richard and The Young Ones featuring Hank B. Marvin)|
||(Jean-Michel Jarre featuring Hank Marvin)|
|1992||We Are The Champions (with Brian May)||Moontalk / Into The Light (CD)||
||Polydor PO 229|
|1993||Wonderful Land (with Mark Knopfler)||Hot Rox (CD) / Nivram||
Studio and live albums
- 1969 Hank Marvin No. 14
- 1977 Hank Marvin Guitar Syndicate (no chart position)
- 1982 Words and Music No. 66
- 1983 All alone with friends (no chart position)
- 1992 Into the light No. 18
- 1993 Heartbeat No. 17
- 1995 Hank plays Cliff No. 33
- 1996 Hank plays Holly No. 34
- 1997 Hank plays Live No. 71
- 1997 Plays the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber No. 41
- 2000 Marvin at the Movies No. 17
- 2002 Guitar Player No. 10
- 2007 Guitar Man No. 6
- 2013 Django's Castle (Download only - no chart position)
- 2014 Hank No. 8
- 1987 Would You Believe It...Plus (reissue of 1969 LP with bonus tracks)
- 1994 The Best of Hank Marvin & The Shadows No. 19
- 1995 Handpicked (no chart position)
- 1997 The Very Best of Hank Marvin & The Shadows The First 40 Years No. 56
- 1998 Another Side of Hank Marvin (no chart position)
- 2001 The Singles Collection 'The 80's & 90's' Hank Marvin & The Shadows (no chart position)
- 2004 Shadowing The Hits (no chart position)
- 2004 Guitar Ballads (no chart position)
- 2007 Hank Marvin & The Shadows Play The 60's (no chart position)
- 2008 The Solid Gold Collection (no chart position)
- Hank Marvin – Guitar God.
- The London Gazette: . 4 January 1963. Retrieved 17 June 2009.
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- "H". London Slang. 4 May 2010. Retrieved 31 December 2011.
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- "Hank Marvin: Everyone Has To Move On". ultimate-guitar.com. 25 September 2007. Retrieved 24 June 2014.
- Balmer, Paul (2007). The Fender Stratocaster Handbook: How to Buy, Maintain, Set Up, Troubleshoot, and Modify Your Strat. MBI Publishing. p. 7. ISBN 0760329834. "Hank Marvin had a huge influence on guitarists such as Brian May of Queen, Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits,..."
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- Gulla 2009, p. 237
- Barnes, Jim; Dyer, Fred; Scanes, Stephen (1986). The Book Top Forty Research 2nd Edition 1956-1985 (doc). Top Forty Research Services, N.S.W. Australia.
- "Actor Hurt leads Queen's honours". BBC News.
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