Were you part of Eurovision duo’s fan-mania?
PUBLISHED: 11:05 18 June 2009 | UPDATED: 16:50 25 August 2010
THE singer of Andrew Lloyd Webber s favourite Eurovision song is trying to trace people who attended one of their infamous gigs. John Allison, singer and songwriter for The Allisons who came second in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1961 with their song A
THE singer of Andrew Lloyd Webber's favourite Eurovision song is trying to trace people who attended one of their infamous gigs.
John Allison, singer and songwriter for The Allisons who came second in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1961 with their song Are You Sure?, is keen to contact people who came to three controversial gigs in Welling and Dartford.
Weeks before they knocked Elvis's Wooden Heart off the number one spot in the UK charts, hundreds of fans flocked to record shops to mob the duo, who went on to get a gold disc for their single.
According to the Record, Retailer and Music Industry News, printed on March 9, 1961, the gigs became chaotic as hundreds of people tried to squeeze into record shops to catch a glimpse of John Allison and his singing partner Bob Day.
A report read: "The Allisons made three personal appearances at record shops last Saturday. First call was at Robby's in Welling where a large crowd became out of control and destroyed one of the shop counters.
"Later visits to Discyland and Discus in Dartford were equally well attended but more orderly. The personal appearances were arranged between proprietor Mr C Putt and Philips sales manager."
Mr Allison, real name Brian Alford who lives in Fulham, said: "It resulted in scenes of friendly if chaotic fan-mania!
"The police had to rescue us at one shop but it was not the only occasion during that exciting period. Amazingly, it seems not to have featured in the local papers - so how many Tiimes readers were there with their cameras?"
Mr Allison said they went from being "nobodies to stars" days after their Eurovision bid, coming top of the charts in 22 countries, selling a million copies of Are You Sure?
Earlier this year, Andrew Lloyd Webber who composed this year's British entry It's My Time for Jade Ewen who came fifth with 173 points, claimed Are You Sure? was his favourite entry.
He told the BBC: "I remember because I was a kid in school at the time. I remember thinking what a shame it was that Britain didn't win it that year. It is a very good song." Mr Allison, who has continued to work in the music industry for more than 40 years, is now planning to follow in Lloyd Webber's footsteps and compose a musical.
He added: "I am immensely amazed and flattered for my song to be chosen as Mr Lloyd Webber's favourite Eurovision song of all time. I am now planning to contact Lord Webber with an idea I have had for a musical since the 1960s."
Do you remember The Allisons coming to town? Contact Kate Mead on 020 8269 7021 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.