Thursday, September 10, 2009

Beatle People: Peter and Gordon

Peter and Gordon were a British Invasion-era performing duo, formed by Peter Asher and Gordon Waller, that rocketed to fame in 1964 with "A World Without Love" and had several subsequent hits in that era. Gordon passed away on July 17, 2009 at the age of 64.


Peter Asher's sister (the actress Jane Asher) was dating Paul McCartney (of The Beatles), and so Peter and Gordon recorded several songs written by McCartney, without John Lennon (though still credited, as all compositions by either were at the time, as Lennon/McCartney). Those hits included "A World Without Love" (U.S. #1), "Nobody I Know", "I Don't Want To See You Again" and "Woman." The writing credit for "Woman" is given to "Bernard Webb," which was in fact an alias for Paul McCartney. McCartney used the pseudonym to see if he could have a hit song even without his famous name attached to it. The song reached number 14 in the US and number 28 on the British charts. Peter and Gordon also recorded the John Lennon penned Lennon/McCartney song, "If I Fell".

Other hits for the group included "I Go to Pieces" (U.S. #7), which was written by Del Shannon and given to the duo after the two acts toured together, and remakes of "True Love Ways" by Buddy Holly and "To Know Him Is To Love Him" by the Teddy Bears, retitled "To Know You Is To Love You." Peter and Gordon had their last hits in 1967 with "Lady Godiva" (U.S. #6), "Knight In Rusty Armour" and "Sunday for Tea."

Asher became head of A&R for Apple Records. Asher has continued his career as a recording executive in California and has managed and produced Linda Ronstadt, James Taylor, Cher, Diana Ross and more.

In August 2005, Peter and Gordon reunited onstage for the first time in over 30 years, as part of two tribute concerts for Mike Smith of the Dave Clark Five in New York City. This was followed by more complete concerts at The Festival for Beatles Fans (formerly Beatlefest) conventions beginning the following year. Paul McCartney heard about the reunion shows, and sent a message to them congratulating them for deciding to reunite. They have since performed at the Chicago, New Jersey and most recently two shows at the Festival for Beatles Fans convention in Las Vegas July 1 and 2 where according to a report by Journalist Peter Palmiere for Beatlefan magazine, the pair was the performing highlight of the convention. Peter and Gordon both told Palmiere at the Las Vegas Festival for Beatles Fans that they were to perform at the 2006 Adopt-A-Minefield show with Paul McCartney until it was canceled by Paul himself due to his impending divorce from Heather Mills. On August 21, 2008, they performed a free concert on the pier in Santa Monica, California.


Singles (Columbia, UK)

* A World Without Love/If I Were You

Released February 28, '64 in UK Columbia #DB7255 & April 27, '64 US Capitol #5175

* Nobody I Know/You Don't Have To Tell Me

Released May 29, '64 in UK on Columbia #DB7292 & June 15, '64 on US Capitol #5211

* I Don't Want To See You Again/I Would Buy You Presents

Released September 9, '64 UK Columbia #DB 7356 & September 21, '64 on US Capitol #5272

* I Go To Pieces/Love Me Baby

Released November 20, '64 on UK Columbia #DB 7407 & December '64 on US Capitol #5335

* True Love Ways/IF You Wish

Released March 23, '65 UK Columbia #DB 7524 & March '65 on US Capitol #5406

* To Know You Is To Love You/I Told You So

Released June 11, '65 UK Columbia #DB 7617 & June '65 on US Capitol #5461

* Baby I'm Yours/When The Black Of Your Eyes Turn To Grey

Released October 15, '65 on UK Columbia #DB 7729

* Don't Pity Me/Crying In The Rain

Released in October 1965 on US Capitol #5532

* Woman/Wrong From The Start

Released January 10, '66 on US Capitol #5579 & Feb. 11, '66 on UK Columbia #DB 7834

* To Show I Love You/Don't Pity Me

Released in June 1966 on UK Columbia #DB 7951

* Lady Godiva/Morning's Calling

Released September 9, '66 on UK Columbia #DB 8003 & September '66 US Capitol #5740

* The Knight In Rusty Armour/The Flower Lady

Released November 1966 on UK Columbia #DB 8075 & US Capitol #5808

* Sunday For Tea/Start Trying Someone Else

Released February 1967 on UK Columbia #DB 8159 & German Columbia #C 23 481

* The Jokers/Red, Cream And Velvet (Version One)

Released in May 1967 on UK Columbia #DB 8198 & US Capitol #5919

* I Feel Like Going Out/The Quest For The Holy Grail

Released in April 1968 on UK Columbia #DB 8398

* You've Had Better Times/Sipping My Wine

Released July 12, '68 UK Columbia #DB 8451 & July '68 on US Capitol #2214

* I Can Remember (Not Too Long Ago)/Hard Time, Rainy Day

Released in May 1969 UK Columbia #DB 8585 & US Capitol #2544


* A World Without Love (1964)
* I Don't Want to See You Again (1964)
* I Go to Pieces (1965)
* True Love Ways (1965)
* Sing and Play Hits of Nashville (1966)
* Woman (1966)
* Best of (1966)
* Lady Godiva (1967)
* Knight in Rusty Armor (1967)
* In London for Tea (1967)
* Hot, Cold & Custard (1967)

Albums (Capitol-EMI, Canada)

* A World Without Love (S)T 2115
* I Don't Want To Be Around You Again (S)T 2230
* I Go To Pieces (S)T 2334
* True Love Ways (S)T 2368
* Sing and Play the Hits of Nashville (S)T 2430
* Woman (S)T 2477
* The Best Of Peter And Gordon (S)T 2549
* Lady Godiva (S)T 2664
* Knights In Rusty Armour (S)T 2729
* In London For Tea (S)T-2747 (1967)


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