Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Herma Keil in front, Bill Fairs to his left, Norman Akers then Olaf Keil at top
with Lou Miller and Klaus Keil.

One of the greatest NZ groups of the early 60's. Stars of the Jive Centre (where Johnny Devlin got his start) they started at the Orange Hall at the top of Symonds Street around 1958.

The Orange Hall was also Bill Sevesi's home - Bill was the backing band for many others such as Ronnie Sundin, under the name of Will Jester & his Jesters.

Freddie Keil also played for a while before going solo as Freddie Keil & The Kavaliers.

I saw the Keils perform in 1961 at the Auckland Town Hall with Cliff Richard and The Shadows and the next year with Bobby Rydell and Del Shannon.

Later in the mid-late 60's they became the resident act with the Pete Sinclair hosted, Kevan Moore produced TV show C'Mon.

The Twist, the biggest seller for Herma, was recorded because the NZBS refused to play Chubby Checker's original version, considering it to be too loud (they also wouldn't have Bobby Rydell on TV as they didn't like his looks!!).
As I have said before they were the Post Office in Show Business.

Today Herma and the group perform -

Around the world
The Twist
Quarter to 3
Goodnight Irene
What a night
Say mama
If you want to be happy

(Previously I have posted their version of Be My Guest)

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