Cyril Davies was a British blues artist in the early UK blues scene, now an almost legendary figure. A natural born harmonica player and panel beater by trade. Roger Eagle had a copy of the EP in the photo below which he played often at the Brazennose Street Twisted Wheel. Today this record has become a rare sought after item.
Cyril Davies died tragically at an early age in 1964 of leukaemia just a few weeks before his booked appearance at the Twisted Wheel. His version of Country Line Special inspired many young mods to buy an Echo Vamper harmonica and try to play the instrumental note for note – with various levels of success. The ‘harp’ was often dropped in a pan of water to make the notes easier to bend but usually just had the effect of producing a rusty virtually useless instrument.
Cyril Davies and Alexis Korner formed the All Stars in the very early 1960’s (despite the fact that they apparently used to fall out quite frequently). Cyril was a great singer and harmonica player – inspiring the Rolling Stones among others. He was an original member of Alexis Korner’s Blues Incorporated in 1961 and Mick Jagger was a notable fan.
After Cyril’s death, Long John Baldry took the rest of the group and formed The Hoochie Coochie Men (or Hoochie Coochie Ladies as Rod Stewart has referred to them).
The instrumental Country line special was a HUGE hit at the Twisted Wheel.
Country Line Special
My Sweet Mary
Preachin’ The Blues
First British home grown blues singer.
Born 1932 – Denham, Buckinghamshire, UK
Died 7th January 1964 – UK
Cause of Death Leukaemia
Wikipedia: Cyril Davies