TMRZoo.com’s Chief Film Editor Joe Viglione was given the honor of writing the foreword to the glossy, new collection of historic photos. TMRZoo.com has permission to reprint that foreword:
If a picture’s worth (at least) a thousand words the 300 photos in this book should generate 300,000 ideas to float in your mind while simultaneously compiling a unique look back for those who appreciate one of the most enduring personalities in rock history. The look back is important as Peter Noone has new ideas forthcoming and a fertile imagination to keep those who appreciate his artistry perpetually entertained.
There’s photograph evidence of Peter appearing as Stanley Fairclough in Coronation Street, the world’s longest running television soap opera currently on the air (as of September 2010 according to Wikipedia) along with adding his talents to other British television programs such as Family Solicitor, Monro’s Saki Stories and Noone as the Knight-Errant…serious TV work before Herman would take the Ed Sullivan Show by storm with additional appearances on Mr. Ed, As The World Turns, Quantum Leap and his own VH-1 series, My Generation, all a perfect soundcheck for the rendition of “There’s A Kind of Hush” 55 million earthlings saw Mr. Noone perform on American Idol in 2007.
Don’t let the pretty face disguise the fact that it was also Peter’s impressive voice that launched Herman’s Hermits eighteen U.S. hits on the Billboard charts from 1964 to 1968. Beginning with the Gerry Goffin/Carole King classic “I’m Into Something Good” and reigning supreme on radio around the world with nuggets like “Can’t You Hear My Heart Beat”, “Mrs. Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter”, a superb cover of The Kinks’ “Dandy” and so many others, the H.H. group was so overwhelmingly huge that they eclipsed The Beatles in sales in 1964 and 1965, touring with the Fab Four in 1967.
While selling zillions of recordings, Herman’s Hermits could take Sam Cooke’s Top 15 hit from 1960, “Wonderful World”, and give the R & B classic a new pop gloss to take it Top 5 only five years later. Credit the magic of pairing Noone’s voice with the work of Michael Peter Hayes…a.k.a. Producer Mickey Most, and you have a team that conjured up excellence in a fashion to the blend of George Martin with Lennon & McCartney, an incomparable mix that knew how to make millions of people happy for decades and decades and decades.
Herman’s Hermits may have been viewed as hitmakers, but they were innovators as well. “For Your Love” was performed by Graham Gouldman’s Mockingbirds, but it was the May 1965 release on Their Second Album! Herman’s Hermits On Tour which most likely scooped The Yardbirds top ten showing in June of that year, putting Gouldman in good company along with Leiber/Stoller, Goffin/King as one of the minds able to craft solid material to give Noone/Most great stuff to work with. More immortal melodies mined from the group 10CC’s Graham Gouldman – “No Milk Today” and “Listen People” – hit for Herman while The Hollies claimed “Bus Stop”, though it appeared on The Hermits’ Both Sides album…all the more legendary because famed Fantasy artist Frank Frazetta did the cover! And don’t forget that the Grass Roots needed a Sloan/Barri composition to launch their career in July of 1966, and utilized “Where Were You When I Needed You”, scooped again by our heroes in March of 1966 for their Music from the Original Soundtrack to Hold On! (Another exclamation point in an H.H. title!)
After Herman’s Hermits it was as a rock & roll vigilante in The Tremblers that Peter gave a bit of a jolt to Beach Boys’ Bruce Johnson’s label, the new wave band bringing some serious street cred to Pete for the punk rockers – who also appreciated the “power pop” Peter explored with covers of David Bowie and Sutherland Brothers and Quiver.
The photos here portray the relentless Peter Blair Noone in a variety of roles, while others are scheduled for another book. So if you don’t see Peter performing “Oh You Pretty Things!” on the BBC with songwriter David Bowie (nee Jones) at the piano in a dress, or the artist working next to Joel Goldstein, son of Planet of The Apes soundtrack genius Jerry Goldsmith (with Noone performing the title track of the Kirk Douglas film from 2000: “Diamonds”), …or busily writing one of the 41 of his own compositions listed on the BMI worldwide site…or if you don’t get to view Phyllis Diller introducing the Hermits on Hollywood Palace, you will get a glimpse of Peter on Broadway in Romance, Romance and as Frederic in Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance.
Performer of stage, screen, television and a behind-the-scenes songwriter, Peter Noone’s past, present and future can hardly fit into one book. This is merely the beginning…absolutely to be continued…
Elvis Presley meets the lead singer of the Herman’s Hermits in a gorgeous new photo book available from Peternoone.com for 39.95.
Producer/Host, Visual Radio