The Honeycombs Biography

Formed in north London, England, in November 1963, the Honeycombs were originally known as the Sherabons and comprised Denis D’ell (Denis Dalziel, 10 October 1943, London, England, d. 6 July 2005; vocals), Anne ‘Honey’ Lantree (b. 28 August 1943, Hayes, Middlesex, England; drums), John Lantree (b. 20 August 1940, Newbury, Berkshire, England; bass), Alan Ward (b. 12 December 1945, Nottingham, England; lead guitar) and Martin Murray (rhythm guitar), later replaced by Peter Pye (b. 12 July 1946, London, England). Producer Joe Meek had selected one of their songs as a possible single and the band’s chances were enhanced following a management agreement with Ken Howard and Alan Blaikley. Although several record companies passed on the quintet’s debut, ‘Have I The Right’, Pye Records’ managing director Louis Benjamin agreed to release the disc. First, however, there was the obligatory name change, with Benjamin selecting Honeycombs after a track by Jimmie Rodgers. The fact that the focus of attention in the band was the red-haired female drummer ‘Honey’ made the renaming even more appropriate. When ‘Have I The Right’ hit number 1 in the UK in the summer of 1964, the band’s pop star future seemed assured. However, a dramatic flop with the follow-up ‘Is It Because’ caused concern, and although Howard and Blaikley came to the rescue with ‘That’s The Way’, the Honeycombs faltered amid line-up changes and poor morale, before moving inexorably towards cabaret and the revivalist circuit.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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