The Syndicats

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The Syndicats was a beat band formed in 1963 in England. With Thomas Ladd on vocals, Steve Howe on guitar and backing vocals, Kevin Driscoll on bass and backing vocals, Jeff Williams on organ and piano, and John "Truelove" Melton on drums. The latter was replaced by Paul Holm on their last single in 1965. This is the first group of Steve Howe. When Steve left The Syndicats to join the band The In Crowd in November 1965, which would later be known as Tomorrow, he was replaced by guitarist Ray Fenwick, the latter would eventually give way to Peter Banks. The same Peter Banks would eventually be replaced by Steve Howe within Yes in 1970.

Their first single appeared on April 8, 1964, is a cover of Chuck Berry's Maybellene on the A side and on the B side, a joint composition of Steve Howe and Tom Ladd, True To Me. Later, they produce a second single, with yet another cover, a song by Willie Dixon, Howlin' For My Baby with on B side, a song signed by the entire band (Tell Me) What To Do. Their third and final single On the Horizon is a composition of Jerry Leiber & Mike Stoller on the A and on side B, Crawdaddy Simone a song by Ray Fenwick and pianist and organist Jeff Williams. It's Ray Fenwick who plays the guitar solo on this song. Crawdaddy Simone was also covered by a british band called The Horrors on their eponymous EP released in 2006.


  • On Steve Howe's Mothballs Groups & Sessions 64/69 compilation produced in 2001, there are also the aforementioned singles, Little Willie John/Titus Turner/ James McDougal's Leave My Kitten Alone and Don't Know What To Do by Steve Howe.
  • On Steve Howe's latest compilation, Anthology 2: Groups & Collaborations, published in 2016, we find Maybellene and On The Horizon . And finally, Ray Fenwick plays with Steve Howe on an unpublished song called Slim Pickings on this same compilation, the late Virgil Howe accompanied them on drums.


  • "Maybellene" (Chuck Berry) / "True to Me" (Ladd/Howe) (8 April 1964, Columbia DB 7238)
  • "Howling For My Baby" (Willie Dixon) / "What To Do" (Howe/Truelove/K. Driscoll/T. Driscoll) (January 1965, Columbia DB 7441)
  • "On the Horizon" (Leiber/Stoller) / "Crawdaddy Simone" (Fenwick/Williams) (10 September 1965, Columbia DB 7686)[1]


  • Bassist Kevin Driscoll died on August 16, 1982.
  • Guitarist Peter Banks left us on March 7, 2013.


  • Thomas Ladd
  • Steve Howe
  • Ray Fenwick
  • Peter Banks † March 7, 2013
  • Kevin Driscoll † August 16, 1982
  • Jeff Williams
  • John Melton
  • Paul Holm


  1. ^ "The Syndicats Discography - UK". 45cat. 10 September 1965. Retrieved 22 August 2014.

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