Karl Denver

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Karl Denver
Birth name Angus Murdo McKenzie
Born (1931-12-16)16 December 1931
Springburn, Glasgow, Scotland
Died 21 December 1998(1998-12-21) (aged 67)
Manchester, England[1]
Genres Pop
Years active 1956–1998
Labels

Karl Denver (16 December 1931 — 21 December 1998)[2] was a Scottish singer, who, with his trio had a series of UK hit singles in the early 1960s. Most famous of these was a 1961 version of "Wimoweh", which showed off Denver's falsetto yodelling register. He reached the Top 20 with his first five yodel-based singles.[3]

Career[edit]

Denver was born Angus Murdo McKenzie in Springburn, Glasgow and was well travelled by the time he took up singing, having had a previous career in the British Merchant Navy. He also had a country music influence, having lived in Nashville, Tennessee for a short time before being deported from there as an illegal immigrant in 1959. In the US, he adopted the new name that he retained for the remainder of his singing career.[4]

In the early 1960s he formed a trio which included Kevin Neil (born 25 July 1931, Manchester, Lancashire; died 13 March 2010, Blackley, Manchester) and Gerry Cottrell (born Gerard Cottrell, 18 December 1933, Manchester, Lancashire; died 24 November 2006,[5] at Trafford General Hospital, Urmston, Manchester).

Denver's song, "Never Goodbye", was an entry in A Song for Europe in 1962.

After the mid-1960s, Denver worked mainly on the cabaret circuit. However in 1989 he enjoyed a brief raise in profile after guesting on Madchester band, the Happy Mondays' single, "Lazyitis (One-Armed Boxer)", on Factory Records (FAC 222). Denver also appeared in The Happy Mondays' video for the song, although he contracted pneumonia whilst filming the video.[1] Following this collaboration Factory released two further Denver recordings, "Wimoweh '89" (FAC 228) and "Indambinigi" (FAC 278; credited to Karl Denver and Steve Lima).

In 1993 he released his final album, Just Loving You, aimed at the country music market. In mid-1998, Denver began recording a new album, but died before full recording of the album was completed. The finished tracks were included on a re-release of Just Loving You entitled Movin' On in 1999. The final song he recorded was I Can't Go On This Way.

Death[edit]

Karl Denver's wooden grave marker, Stockport Cemetery

Denver died from a brain tumour[6] in December 1998, at the age of 67. His ashes are buried in Stockport Borough cemetery.

Family life[edit]

Three times married, Denver left two sons, and had another son, named Karl, who predeceased him.[1] Karl Denver also has a daughter called Jean

Discography[edit]

Singles[edit]

  • "Marcheta" - 1961 - UK #8
  • "Mexicali Rose" - 1961 - UK #8
  • "Wimoweh" - 1962 - UK #4
  • "Never Goodbye" - 1962 - UK #9
  • "A Little Love a Little Kiss" - 1962 - UK #19
  • "Blue Week-end" - 1962 - UK #33
  • "Can You Forgive Me" - 1963 - UK #32
  • "Indian Love Call" - 1963 - UK #32
  • "Still" - 1963 - UK #13
  • "My World of Blue" - 1964 - UK #29
  • "Love Me with All Your Heart" - 1964 - UK #37
  • "Lazyitis - One Armed Boxer" - 1990 - UK #46 $

$ Happy Mondays and Karl Denver

[3]

Albums[edit]

  • Wimoweh - 1961 - UK #7
  • Karl Denver at The Yew Tree - 1964

[3]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Obituary by Spencer Leigh". London: Independent.co.uk. 20 January 1999. Retrieved 2 July 2009. 
  2. ^ IMDb biography
  3. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 151. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  4. ^ 45-rpm.org.uk
  5. ^ Hankypark.co.uk
  6. ^ IMDb biography page

External links[edit]