Aussie legend Normie Rowe discusses 60s rock n roll, publicity stunts, contentious conscription, PTSD, and his upcoming show, on ANZAC Day Eve, at Memo Music Hall.
The Normie Rowe Show – “Shakin’ All Over” – MEMO Music Hall – Sat 24 Apr 2021, 6:30pm
NORMIE ROWE & The Playboys
Make no mistake, Normie Rowe & The Playboys were huge! The nearest to them was The Easybeats. They’ve never sounded better – and they’ve never had more fun.
In December 1964 they were playing dances in the Northern suburbs of Melbourne, experimenting with sounds and songs. Within months they were appearing on the GO!! Show and Normie was about to become the most successful Pop artist in Australian music history.
An extra-ordinary run of hit singles followed – “It Ain’t Necessarily So”, “Que Sera Sera”, “I Who Have Nothing” and “Shakin’ All Over” were the monsters but then there was “Pride & Joy”, “Stubborn Kinda Guy”, and on…on it went to England and “It’s Not Easy” and “Ooh La La”. The current line-up sees original drummer Graham “Trotta” Trottman joined by “new boy” of 25 years, Steve Kelson (keyboards) and ex-Aztec Gil Mathews (guitar).
From 1961 to 1965 MEMO Music Hall was the home of TELEFIL recording and film studios under the supervision of legendary sound engineer Bill Armstrong. The stars of Channel 7’s weekly variety program Sunnyside Up, including Olivia Newton-John, recorded the audio at MEMO miming to the pre-records live on-air. The Channel 9 Big Band also recorded at MEMO due to its size and acoustic splendour.
Amongst its claim to recording history fame is its location for Normie Rowe’s 1965 hit, It Ain’t Necessarily So. Banned initially for its lyrics, it was the first number one record in both Sydney and Melbourne, by a Melbourne-based artist.
Photo caption: 05/08/1996 PIRATE: JULY 1968 – Singer Normie Rowe in uniform. published Melbourne Herald 10th Jul 68. CREDIT PETER CARRETTE -PHOTOGRAPHER. Vietnam war