Kenny Lynch

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For the American film and TV actor, see Ken Lynch.
Kenny Lynch
Birth name Kenny Lynch
Born (1938-03-18) 18 March 1938 (age 76)
Stepney, London, England
Genres Rock and roll, pop
Occupations Singer, songwriter, entertainer, actor
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1960–present
Labels HMV, Satril Records

Kenny Lynch, OBE (born 18 March 1938) is an English singer, songwriter, entertainer and actor from London. Lynch appeared in many variety shows in the 1960s. At the time, Lynch was among the few black singers in British pop music.[1]

Early life[edit]

Lynch grew up in Stepney, east London as one of 13 children and his sister, Gladys (stage name Maxine Daniels) was a jazz singer of some note. After leaving school at 15 and various jobs, he did National Service in the Royal Army Service Corps and was the regimental featherweight boxing champion. He was also a semi-professional singer.


He had several UK hit singles in the early 1960s, including the two Top Ten hits, "Up on the Roof" in December 1962, and "You Can Never Stop Me Loving You" in June 1963.[1] Lynch is also famous for a single he issued, also in 1963, which flopped. That was "Misery", the first cover version of a Beatles song to be released.[1] In early 1963, Lynch had been on the same bill as The Beatles on the group's first British tour; John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote "Misery" in January 1963, in the hopes that the artist on top of the bill, Helen Shapiro, would record it.[1] Shapiro's record producer turned it down, but Lynch took the composition and gave it a much more pop oriented arrangement than The Beatles would use when they recorded "Misery" themselves on their debut album, Please Please Me. Whilst on a coach with The Beatles (on tour with Helen Shapiro), Lynch reportedly offered to help them write a song, but quickly became frustrated and criticised their ability to compose music – at the time Lennon and McCartney were writing "From Me to You".[2] Years later he appeared on the album cover of Wings' 1973 album, Band on the Run, along with other celebrities.

Much of Lynch's material was self-written, but he also covered songs by writers of the Brill Building.[1]

Lynch also wrote songs for others, including the Small Faces' No. 3 UK hit, "Sha-La-La-La-Lee", in collaboration with American songwriter Mort Shuman.[1] "You'd Better Believe It" (co-written with Jerry Ragavoy) and "Sorry She's Mine", which also appeared on the Small Faces' 1966 debut album, were both Lynch works.[1]

Lynch took part in the A Song For Europe contest in 1962 with the song "There's Never Been A Girl", but failed to win through to represent the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest. Lynch had more success in 1978, as a songwriter. That year, his song "Don't Bother To Knock", written for the group 'Midnight', placed second in the contest.

Lynch has appeared on various television programmes, including Celebrity Squares, Mooncat & Co., Room at the Bottom and Curry & Chips. He has also appeared on Z-Cars, The Sweeney, Til Death Us Do Part and Treasure Hunt.[3]

Lynch has played in several charity football matches and has taken part in Michael Parkinson's 'Celebrity Cricket' fundraisers.[3]


In the early 1980s, Lynch formed a songwriting partnership with former tennis player Buster Mottram, a long-time white nationalist political activist.[4][5]


Lynch's appearances on the UK Singles Chart include:[6]

  • "Mountain of Love" (1960 – No. 33 UK)
  • "Puff" (1962 – No. 33 UK)
  • "Up on the Roof" (1962 – No. 10 UK)
  • "You Can Never Stop Me Loving You" (1963 – No. 10 UK)
  • "Stand By Me" (1964 – No. 39 UK)
  • "What Am I To You" (1964 – No. 37 UK)
  • "I'll Stay By You" (1965 – No. 29 UK)
  • "Half The Day's Gone and We Haven't Earned a Penny" (1983 – No. 50 UK)



  1. ^ a b c d e f g Unterberger, Richie. "Kenny Lynch Biography". Retrieved 30 October 2009. 
  2. ^ The Beatles Bible: From Me To You Retrieved 4 October 2008.
  3. ^ a b "Kenny Lynch OBE". The Newham Story. Retrieved 4 January 2014. 
  4. ^ Tennis: Whatever happened to Buster Mottram? The Independent, 18 May 2002
  5. ^ UKIP rejects BNP electoral offer BBC News 3 November 2008
  6. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 334. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.