In the U.K., the most startling transformation was achieved by a Londoner born Bernard William Jewry, who, in the early 60s, took the name Shane Fenton as vocalist fronting the group Shane Fenton & the Fentones. They were very popular in the UK from 1961-63, despite, paradoxically, never reaching the UK Top 10, having only lower chart hits.
Their first hit, in 1961, was a song called ' I'm A Moody Guy ', but the flipside has equally endured with U.K. oldies fans. ' Five Foot Two Eyes of Blue ' is thought to have been originally written in 1914, but the most popular version was laid down and put to sheet music in 1925, becoming a great 20s favourite as a vehicle for dance exponents of the ' charleston '. Shane & the guys put their own spin on it, and here it is:
The group's biggest hit, making No.19 in the UK charts in 1962, was a version of Johnny Crawford's U.S. hit 'Cindy's Birthday' :
It is worth mentioning that The Fentones attempted to follow the example of The Shadows by recording independently of their vocalist, and scored a couple of minor instrumental hits, including a reading of the popular melody ' The Breeze and I ' , a pre-World War 2 composition by cuban composer Ernesto Lecuona :
Music, as it does, quickly moved on, and nothing further was heard from Shane Fenton & the Fentones after 1963. However, in 1972, we were suddenly presented with one Alvin Stardust, to be marketed and known as 'The Man In Black', and, lo and behold, there was the re-imagined Shane Fenton, changing his smart suit for all-leather gear and immersing himself fully into the latest UK music trend ' Glam Rock '.
Bernard Jewry's 2nd incarnation managed something in the 70s that his 1st couldn't in the 60s - crack the UK Top 10, which he did on 4 occasions, including a No.1 with this:
Bernard / Shane / Alvin died, aged 72, in October 2014 following a short battle with cancer.
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