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Faron's Flamingos

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Faron's Flamingos
OriginLiverpool, England
Years active1960s, 1970s
LabelsOriole, Raw, Mastersound
Past membersFaron Ruffley
Ronald "Ronnie" Plimmer
Paddy Chambers
Dave Cooper
Nicky Crouch
Trevor Morais

Faron's Flamingos were an English Merseybeat band. Despite their lack of commercial success, they remain an important part of Merseybeat history and have the distinction of being the first major example of the "Mersey Motown" sound with their release of "Do You Love Me".


Fronted by William "Faron" Ruffley (born 8 January 1942 in Liverpool[1]), the group was considered one of the best live groups on the Merseybeat scene.[2] Bob Wooler, the DJ from The Cavern nicknamed him Faron, 'the panda-footed prince of prance'.[3] Their blistering version of "Do You Love Me was the first major example of the Mersey Motown sound.[4]


The Hi-Hats and The Ravens[edit]

The group's history can be traced back to the Hi-Hats which came together at the Liverpool Mercury Cycling Club. The group then changed its name to Robin and The Ravens with the lead singer Robin dressed in a yellow silk suit and the band in pink jackets.[5] In January 1961, Ruffley left the band to join Gerry and the Pacemakers on an eight-week tour in Hamburg, Germany, appearing with them at The Top Ten Club.[1]

The Flamingos[edit]

When Ruffley came back from touring with the Pacemakers, he formed Faron's Flamingos. They made their first appearance at The Cavern in 1962 with the Beatles singing backup.[6] Also that year and with a growing following, they were offered a chance to go to France and play at the US army bases. Band member Eric London did not want to give up his job, so he did not travel. He was replaced by Dave Cooper. Bands touring France had to bring a female singer with them and they took a lady called Pam Connolly on tour with them. In spite of doing well, there were some issues with Billy Jones leaving the band. When the group returned to the UK, the line up was Nicky Crouch on lead guitar, Paddy Chambers on rhythm guitar, Faron Ruffley on bass and vocals and Trevor Morais on drums.

In May 1963, the group accepted an invitation to record some material for the album This Is Merseybeat.[3] Also in 1963, their version of "Do You Love Me" was released on the Oriole label. Their lack of success with this song may have had something to do with publishing company Leeds Music pushing the other side of the single which was "See If She Cares".[7] Writer Bill Harry and his wife Virginia were there at the Oriole Studio when the group recorded the song. It differed from the version that was recorded by the Contours. He said that John Schroeder asked them to go out to the street to ask some young folk to come in and dance to the recording. Some crates of beer were also brought in. People in the studio control room were surprised and everyone thought it had had chart hit written all over it and Schroeder said that it had the potential to top the chart.[4]

In 1965, Faron reformed the band and performed in France until the late 1960s.[8] He also had a version of the group running in the 1970s.[6] Later versions of his Flamingos have included Brian Jones, Arty Davis, Phil Melia, Ken Shalliker, Billy Burton, Arthur Hayes, Nicky Crouch, Bernie Rogers and others.[9]


  • Ronald "Ronnie" Plimmer - Tenor Saxophone
  • Paddy Chambers - Guitar/ worked with Paddy Klaus and Gibson, The Big Three, Sinbad
  • Dave "Mushy" Cooper - Bass/ worked with The Undertakers
  • Pam Connolly - vocals
  • Nicky Crouch - Guitar, vocals/ worked with The Mojos, The Undertakers
  • Billy Jones - Guitar
  • Eric London - Bass/ worked with Group One, Mojos
  • Trevor Morais - Drums/ worked with The Peddlers, Rory Storm & the Hurricanes, Quantum Jump
  • Bill "Faron" Ruffley - Vocals/bass/ worked with The Big Three, Gerry and the Pacemakers[10][3]
  • Peter Campbell- Bass guitar/ worked with Fontanas
  • Vic Grace - lead guitar/ vocals/ worked with The Secrets, Hi Cats
  • David Harris - drums
  • Pete Jones - lead guitar/ worked with The Renegades, Red Fire (alias Pete Smith and Pete Jones)
  • Arty Davies - drums/ worked with Pressure Points, Lee Curtis and the All Stars, The Tempos, Korner Kafe, Knight Crew, Kingsize Taylor band, Chris Curtis
  • Keith Karlson - Bass guitar/ worked with The Mojos
  • Johnny Jay Rathbone - drums/ worked with Mastermind's Almost Blues, Karl Terry cruisers
  • John Mitch - drums/ worked with The Stopouts, Ice Cream Robots
  • Arthur Rigby - Bass guitar
  • Chris Evans - lead guitar/ worked with The Undertakers, Earl Preston TTs
  • Max Peckham - drums
  • Brian Jones - Tenor sax/ worked with The Undertakers, Gary Glitter band, Ykickamoocow
  • Mogsy Cook - Backing vocals
  • Peter Cook - lead guitar/ worked with Earl Royce and the Olympics, Kansas City 5
  • Derek Smallridge - drums/ worked with The Four dees
  • Owen Ricketts - Bass guitar/ worked with Jeannie and the Big Guys
  • Dennis Collins - lead guitar
  • Steve Robinson - Tenor sax
  • Phil Melia - lead guitar/ worked with Mojo Filter, Pete Best band
  • Ross Sullivan - keyboards (his father was Peter O'Sullivan, horse racing commentator)
  • Steve Roberts - lead guitar/ worked with Cliff Roberts rockers
  • Dennis Swale - Bass guitar/ worked with The Dimensions, Eddie Cave & The Fyx, Karl Terry & The Cruisers.
  • Colin Drummond - keyboards
  • Ronnie Plummer - Tenor saxophone
  • Bernie Rogers - drums/ worked with Denny Seyton and the Sabres
  • Arnie Neale - Rhythm guitar/ worked with Tempos, Hy-Tones
  • Dave(Mac)McDowell - Lead guitar
  • Mike Rudd - bass guitar/ worked with The Avengers, Johnny Kidd and the Pirates, Karl terry Cruisers
  • Billy Burton - Tenor sax/ worked with Pete Best Combo
  • Arthur Hayes - bass guitar
  • Nic Johnston - harmonica
  • George Fletcher - Lead guitar
  • Bill Good - bass guitar/ worked with The Buzz band, Undertakers
  • Richie Ballard - bass guitar/ worked with Wheels on Fire, Cliff Roberts Rockers
  • Tommy Hughes - keyboards/ worked with Kansas City 5, The Swinging Blue Jeans, The Mojos
  • Will Lloyd - harmonica
  • Rachel Frost - vocals
  • Ritchie Perkins - lead guitar/ worked with The Tempos
  • Frank Hopley - keyboards/ worked with The Mastersounds
  • Denis Malkin - Rhythm guitar
  • David Blackstone - Lead guitar/ worked with The Tabs, Gerry Deville City king,s Big Three
  • Alan Hanson - Lead guitar/ worked with The Brumbeats, Shane Fenton and the Fentones
  • Gary McInnes - keyboards/ worked with The New Applejacks
  • David Morgan - Lead guitar /worked with The Fourmost, Dominoes
  • Phil Berube - keyboards/bass guitar/ worked with The Beach Boys, Monkees, Joe Cocker
  • Albie Donnelly - Tenor sax/ worked with Clayton Squares, Fix, Supercharge
  • Al Peters - Harmonica/ worked with Almost Blues
  • Barry "Basher" Robinson - rhythm/bass guitar/drums/ worked with Billy Heartbeats, Excerts, Gerry Deville City kings, The Kop, Georgies Germs
  • Mick Moon - keyboards
  • Phil Hopkins - Tenor sax/ worked with The Dominoes
  • Mike Jones - lead guitar/vocals

Discography (selective)[edit]

Title Catalogue Year Notes #
"See If She Cares" / "Do You Love Me" Oriole CB 1834 1963
"Shake Sherry" / "Give Me Time" Oriole CB 1867 1963
"Let's Stomp" / "I Can Tell" Columbia Records 4-43018 1964 B side is by Rory Storm and the Hurricanes
USA release
"Bring It On Home to Me" / "C'mon Everybody" Raw RAW 27 1978 As Faron's Flamingoes
Title Catalogue Year Notes #
Faron's Flamingos 1963, See If She Cares Mastersound MS CD.585 1963 Compilation
Appears on
Act Album title Catalogue Year Song Notes #
Various artists Take Six from "This Is Merseybeat Oriole EP-7080 1963 "Let's Stomp" EP
Various artists This is Merseybeat Volume 1 Oriole PS 40047 1963 "Let's Stomp", "Talkin' 'bout You"
Various artists This is Merseybeat Volume 2 Oriole PS 40048 1963 "Sherry Sherry" / "So Fine"
Various artists The Exciting New Liverpool Sound (The Authentic Mersey Beat) Columbia CL 2172 1964 "Let's Stomp", "Talkin' 'bout You" [11][12]

Documentary and film[edit]

Title Director, Producer, etc Year Credit Notes #
Beat City Charles Squires (dir) 1963 On-screen participant [13][6]
Chasing Rainbows - A Nation and Its Music Jeremy Marre (prod) 1986 Themselves as Faron and his Flamingoes
Merseybeat Magic Wally Scott (host) 1989 Themselves


  1. ^ a b "Sixties City - Bill Harry's Sixties - articles from the creator of iconic 60s music paper Mersey Beat". sixtiescity.net. Retrieved 17 January 2024.
  2. ^ Liverpool Echo, 23 June 2013 - Flashback: Remembering Merseybeat 50 years on By Catherine Jones
  3. ^ a b c The Beat Makers: The Unsung Heroes of The Mersey Sound, By Anthony Hogan - -
  4. ^ a b Record Collector - MERSEY MOTOWN
  5. ^ Nostalgia Central - Faron’s Flamingos
  6. ^ a b c Liverpool Echo, 23 JUN 2013 - Flashback: Remembering Merseybeat 50 years on By Catherine Jones
  7. ^ Motown Encyclopedia, By Graham Betts - DO YOU LOVE ME - THE CONTOURS (SINGLE)
  8. ^ AllMusic - Faron's Flamingos Artist Biographyby Bruce Eder
  9. ^ The Beat Makers: The Unsung Heroes of The Mersey Sound, By Anthony Hogan - -
  10. ^ Nostalgia Central - Artists - F Faron’s Flamingos
  11. ^ Schwann Monthly Guide to Stereo Records, Volume 16, Issues 4-6 - Page 150
  12. ^ The Beatles in Canada: The Origins of Beatlemania!, By Piers Hemmingsen - - April 1964 -
  13. ^ British Film Institute - Beat City (1963), Fil Details, Cast & Credits

External links[edit]