Back In The garage 2: The Easybeats

The Easybeats – “I’ll Make You Happy” August 1966

The Beatles arrived at Sydney, Australia in mid 1964, and five European hoodlum transplants from Leeds, Glasgow, Liverpool and The Hague are inspired to form the Easybeats. Getting thrown out of a club in Sidney for being “too loud and too filthy” lands them a residency in another local bar and they play non-stop for the next 3 months resulting in them being the most popular local band in the city. First single ‘For My Woman’ spills out in March 65 and they’re off. Mostly playing originals written by Stevie Wright (vocals) and George Young (guitar), this is, for the most part. standard mid 60s beat/pop fare and it filled 1965.

January ’66 starts with the release of the ‘Women’ 45, and the beat has harshened considerably. Now it’s the sound of distorted guitars, snarling vocals and tough punchy rhythms, not too far removed from the Kinks of ’65. And thus we arrive at “I’ll Make You Happy”

At the time, released only as a second track on an EP called ‘Easyfever’, this buried beatmaster practically spits off your record player. Why play 4 notes when 3 will do. This is superbly arranged, uptempo, dynamic and beligerent pop music executed in a fashion that the Stones and the Beatles could never do, even though they both tried hard enough.

Two weeks on, and the band have moved to London. At the insistence of management, Harry Vanda and George Young are now the main songwriters and three months later, “Friday On My Mind’ is a hit across the world. It was all downhill after that.

Dick Diamonde, the Dutch bass player came from a strict Johavahs Witnes family, which, I guess, is why he looks so stern in this clip from the Coca-Cola sponsered Australian Easybeats TV Special!

The Easybeats ‘I’ll Make You Happy’ from Australian TV 1966

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