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Johnny Campbell and The Detours
A précis of the band's inception, rise, successes, demise  –  and beyond .....

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John Richard Campbell was born at St George's Hospital, Christchurch, New Zealand on March 26th, 1947 at 1:15pm.  He completed his first day of school at the local St Albans School in 1952, but the family soon had a change of address, and as it was closer to his new home, he transferred to the newly-built Mairehau Primary School as a first-day pupil.  He continued on at Mairehau Primary until Standard 2 in 1955 when he won a Choir Scholarship to The Cathedral Grammar School, becoming a Chorister in the famous Christchurch Cathedral Choir.  Having completed his primary education, and his first year of High School in the Senior Division at The Cathedral Grammar School, he moved on to the burgeoning Shirley Boys' High School early in 1961.  Shirley Boys' was then in its first year as a complete school - with third through to upper-sixth (now known as seventh) form classes and facilities.  Johnny soon became very keen to learn the guitar, having heard the Shadows "Apache" on the local AM radio station, and having been captivated by the sound, he began trying to develop and hone his latent fingerboard skills on a ukelele!  Also, at that same time he was learning modern piano from local bandmaster Bob Bradford, tuition that would provide him with a very good understanding of chord structures and musical forms, soon to be a valuable part of his musical career in the yet-to-be-formed band he was destined to front.  Johnny's first guitar was a Futurama III (which his father purchased for him as part of a package to encourage scholastic diligence and, more particularly, the acquisition of School Certificate) – at first the incentive was going to be a 50cc motor-cycle, but "Apache" had changed that!  Johnny can be seen playing this instrument in the picture (circa early 1963) to the right - the venue is unconfirmed, but it is most likely that it was the Shirley Intermediate School assembly hall.  At this point the concept of a band was just taking shape, and other Shirley Boys were ideal "pop-star companions" as those first steps towards a band were being taken.  Johnny's Futurama III guitar was soon to be replaced with a brand spanking new Fiesta Red Fender Stratocaster - just like our Hank's .......
Johnny Campbell

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The first serious attempt at putting a band together was with what was known as The Torments.  The group was formed during early 1963, and featured female vocalist - Judith Turtill, whose then boyfriend Garry "Gus" Mullholland was on rhythm guitar, Garry's brother Peter was on piano, Bob Barrett on drums, and Michael Robinson on bass.  Sunday nights would see  The Torments  playing at the "Friendship House" coffee club on Cambridge Terrace, Christchurch.
This group was not however a long-term project, and Garry soon decided to leave.  He was best mates with Judith's brother Tyrell Turtill and together they had a passion for engineering and for fast cars.  Tyrell and Garry designed and built a revolutionary racing car which was known as "The Continental Special" — so called because it was designed around a massively powerful 7.7-litre Continental aero engine - original equipment in a Cessna 180.  They raced the car extensively from 1968 up until they were both tragically killed in a car crash in February 1971.  Garry's sister, Christchurch playwright Wendy Steeds, has recently immortalised the boys' story in her musical tribute "The Continental Special : The Car That Flew", and a TVNZ "Close Up" documentary on the subject has been broadcast.  Judith Turtill (now Judy Glen) who has achieved international success as a comedienne, actress and operatic soprano was heavily involved in the production.  Bob Barrett and Mike Robinson continued on to be part of the group which would become known as The Detours.  The group's new name was taken from "Detour" the title of the second track of The Ventures self-titled LP of the day.  At that point, Johnny (who had come up with "The Detours" as a name), was unaware that there were at least two groups operating in Europe under the name of "The Detours" - the most famous of which went on to become "The Who".
The Torments/The Detours - Early Newspaper Advertisement The Torments/The Detours - Early Newspaper Advertisement


The Torments / The Detours
Early Newspaper Advertisements
The Torments/The Detours - Early Newspaper Advertisement
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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  The Shirley Boys' High School Dance Band

The Shirley Boys' High School Dance Band  (performing at the 1963 Leavers' Dance)
Arthur Muir (Rhythm), Johnny Campbell (Lead), Bob Barrett (Drums) and Clive Brunton (Bass)
 

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Johnny Campbell

The image above shows Johnny playing his new Fender Stratocaster at the Shirley Boys' High School
leavers' dance in late 1963, also clearly visible on the top of the speaker cabinet is a JVC Nivico spring reverb unit.
At this particular point The Detours were well and truly featuring on the Christchurch entertainment map ....

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Original Detours Late 1963 ... the first serious Detours lineup ...

The picture to the left was taken as a promo for the local "Have A Shot" television talent quest, on which The Detours performed "April In Portugal".  Taken at St Theresa's Church Hall, Riccarton, it shows (from left) ... Michael Robinson - bass guitar, Bob Barrett (another Shirley Boys' High School lad) - drums, Johnny Campbell - lead guitar, Paul Sargison - rhythm guitar and Jimmy Phillips - saxophone.  At this point John and Bob were still at high school.  This was the lineup which was responsible for the first commercial recordings the group undertook (although, an acetate had been cut prior).
Original Detours Original Detours
Original Detours Original Detours
The four pix in the block above were taken at St Matthews Church Hall, Cranford Street, St Albans.

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  Jimmy Phillips  
  Jimmy Phillips on saxophone ...  

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The Detours as a commercial reality ...

It was very much the norm for bands to compete for local jobs, and The Detours were no exception.  As seen from this promotional card, the band was readily available and able to be booked via Johnny's home 'phone number.  The Detour's popularity grew, and bookings became more substantial.  The group secured many prestigious jobs in the Christchurch area, with the ultimate Church gig of the day falling to them after Max Merritt and The Meteors departed town.  St Mary's Merivale was definitely the prize, but additionally, The Detours were very soon thereafter to take over Max Merritt's parents' Sunday Youth Club gig at Carlyle Street ....
Early Detours Promotional Card

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Unreleased acetate cutting of "Buckeye" / "Lessons In Love" by The Detours

 Buckeye       Click to Play the Lessons In Love SoundClip Lessons In Love 
The very first Detours studio recordings ...

"Buckeye" was a "Johnny and The Hurricanes" number which perfectly enhanced the the newly formed Detours lineup with Johnny's schoolboy friend Jimmy Phillips on saxophone.  It had a bouncey drive to it and some effective (if somewhat uninspiring) lead work in between the dominant sax lead parts.  At the time these recordings were made, the rhythm guitar slot was not firmly occupied and Paul Sargison was yet to join the group.  In this case the rhythm part was handled by Kevin Nicholls, who was the elder brother of a school friend of Johnny's.  Although largely experimental, the recording studio outing was a good exercise for the nucleus of the group.  "Lessons In Love" was a Cliff Richard number from the popular 1962 film "The Young Ones" and this was Johnny's first attempt at singing since his choirboy days.  Nothing ever came of these recordings, and they never saw the light of day beyond this solitary acetate.  They were never used for any kind of promotional activity, and this is probably the only copy of the recording in existence (realistically, there would have been no good reason to reproduce it at that time).

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The Detours on the Christchurch Dance Circuit

The Detours with new faces Trevor Wright and John Clinton, out on the Church Dance Circuit  
Jim Phillips (Sax), Trevor Wright (Bass), Johnny Campbell (Lead), Paul Sargison (Rhythm), and John Clinton (Drums)

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The band substantiates ...

Once the band had established a reputation as a polished and reliable act (particularly on the dance circuit), many specialist events became available, and one such venture at the time was the "Al-Di-La" weekly dance which was held at the St John Ambulance Hall in Peterborough Street, Christchurch.  The band was only involved in this venture for a short time, but it was an exceptionally well organised event, and proved to be beneficial for the band's stage performance as they matured and built towards more future residencies, which were just around the corner.
Al-Di-La Promotional Card

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In the early stages of the group it was always interesting to do raw recordings at home with an old vintage tape, and here are some basic (read primitive for that), unrefined and unadulterated three-piece examples from that magic era ... Johnny (Lead), Trevor (Bass) and John (Drums) ...

Vintage Recorder
Vintage Grundig Recorder
 Baby What's Wrong 
Vocals: Johnny and Trevor

 Long Tall Shorty 
Vocal: Johnny

 Johnny B. Goode 
Vocal: Trevor

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The Detours - Caledonian and era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Caledonian and era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Caledonian and era Newspaper Advertisement
The Detours - Caledonian and era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Caledonian and era Newspaper Advertisement
The Detours - Caledonian and era Newspaper Advertisements
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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Detours Surf City Tee Shirt
T-shirt concept, design and production by Myles Johnson to whom eternal thanks are due !
The first major "break" for The Detours was in mid-late 1963 .....

..... and this involved the securing of the residency at the new Surf City which had been established in the Pleasant Point Domain Hall at South Brighton, Christchurch.  It was a standing-room-only affair on Saturday nights at "The City", with the band playing free sound-shell concerts in New Brighton on a Saturday afternoon as well, to the delight of the twisting, stomping multitudes (see the Christchurch Photo Review report from March 1964, below).  Surf City was conceived by Australian ex-professional wrestler, Bob Novak and was bank-rolled by Dick Jamieson, the owner and operator of the ritzy local American Health Studios.  The band's reputation waxed dramatically during the Surf City era, and a significant (and very loyal) fan-base was built up.  The Surf City residency included a tour to New Plymouth for gigs in the local Sports Hall, and this was very good for the band which by now was a very stable 5-piece unit, and included the young John Clinton on drums, and Trevor Wright on bass.

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The Detours - on stage at Surf City

The Detours on stage in front of the Surf City banner.  This was the band's first major residency.
Johnny Clinton (Drums), Paul Sargison (Rhythm), Johnny Campbell (Lead), Jim Phillips (Saxophone) and Trevor Wright (Bass)

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The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement
The Detours entertain at Surf City

The Detours - on stage at Surf City

Jimmy was always more than happy to show off his ability to play his sax behind his back and Johnny is obviously impressed.  The Detours were noted for their solid rhythm section.  Trevor would always provide a big solid bass platform, under the John Clinton drums.
The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement
The boys struggled to make their point of difference in the competitive world of Friday and Saturday nighting on the Christchurch scene, and it appeared to pay off well as they built up an almost cult-type following from within the surfie community.
The Detours - Early Surf City era Newspaper Advertisements
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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New Brighton Sound Shell Concerts - Surf City era
New Brighton Sound Shell, Christchurch - March 1964
Article taken from PHOTO REVIEW Christchurch - March 1964,  Volume 2 Number 1

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The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement
Surf City - Pleasant Point Domain ...

The promoters of Surf City went out of their way to cater for the surfing community, and endeavoured to always present a varied and interesting programme with lots of competitions and prizes.  This modus worked well, and the dance was extremely well supported by surfies, and young people in general.
The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisements
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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New Brighton Sound Shell Concerts - Surf City era
New Brighton Sound Shell, Christchurch - March 1964
Article taken from PHOTO REVIEW Christchurch - March 1964,  Volume 2 Number 1

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  The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement   The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement   The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement   The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement   The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisement  
The Detours - Surf City era Newspaper Advertisements
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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  Elly Hijgemann is Miss Surf City   Elly Hijgemann and Arch King (3ZB)  
Elly Hijgemann wins Miss Surf City Contest
Elly Hijgemann is interviewed by 3ZB's Arch King after winning the contest

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The Detours - Laredo era The Detours ..... "Dancing With The Stars" ....

Bob Novak (who had become The Detours unofficial, official manager), had a good friend who was connected with Harry Miller, and he arranged for The Detours to set up their gear at a house in Merivale.  One imagines this was an endeavour to get The Detours noticed by some important show-biz people!  After the show, the performers came to the Merivale address, and what transpired was a free-for-all session with mostly everyone there taking turns to play during course of the party.  Eventually it was time to think about moving over to The Shirley Lodge Hotel, where the cast were staying, and Johnny recalls having Dennis Wilson and Mike Love of the Beach Boys in the back seat of his 1949 side-valve Morris Minor heading to Shirley Lodge.  They were telling him how they had written a million-selling song about Dennis' old 1932 Ford Model B Coupé —  the famous "Little Deuce Coupe".  Having made the journey safely across town, the party recommenced in one of the Joyboys' units, where the Joyboys' drummer, John Bogie, provided a demonstration of a certain dance involving a loosely rolled-up newspaper and fire!  This was a totally revealing experience for the hitherto sheltered young Detours, and is indeed one which is still well remembered even unto this very day .....
The Programme from Harry M. Miller's Surfside '64 Tour

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Unreleased acetate cutting of "April In Portugal" by The Detours

Click to Play the "April In Portugal" SoundClip April In Portugal Click to Play the "April In Portugal" SoundClip
Unreleased acetate cutting of "My Blue Heaven" by The Detours

 My Blue Heaven 
The Detour's first commercial record .... (well almost) ....

Prior to the Surf City residency coming to fruition The Detours had recorded two numbers featuring the Campbell, Sargison, Robinson, Clinton, Phillips line-up, and "April In Portugal" was the intended A-side with "My Blue Heaven" on the flip.  This combination, however never made it to release, as the band was presently made aware of the infinitely more topical, surfing oriented number "Murphy The Surfie" (written by Joy Boys guitarist Norm Day).  As it turned out (for unknown personal reasons), Mike Robinson unexpectedly never made it to the "Murphy"recording session.  In the Robbins control room that night, as Keith Robbins was blowing bubbles through a straw into a glass (highly miked-up) to represent the wiped-out Murphy, a bass line was being dubbed in by Johnny, using his thumb picked Stratocaster on the neck pickup with the tone control on full treble cut - (this was of course immediately prior to Trevor Wright joining the band as bass player).  The record was moderately successful, however, Keith Robbins strongly resisted all temptations to suddenly head off to the Bahamas, so one can assume the record, had little impact on the Robbins company's fiscal performance.  Being from a very limited production run this record is highly collectable these days !
Commercially released pressing of "Murphy The Surfie" by The Detours

 Murphy The Surfie 
Commercially released pressing of "April In Portugal" by The Detours

 April In Portugal 
The commercial pressing of RRSP 36 featuring "Murphy The Surfie" b/w "April In Portugal"

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1964 ends, and school's out ... forever ...

The end of 1964 saw the end of the last year of high school for Johnny, and he and several mates headed north to the famous Tahunanui camping ground for the summer holidays.  As is evidenced by the photo, the fashion byword of the moment was the so-called "jock-strap and jandals", and it was impossible not to adhere to the majority decree.  Music did not feature heavily in this little sojorn, and it was all appreciation rather than participation for our hero.  He did, however have the mandatory acoustic guitar in the tent, and would oblige the inhabitants each morning with opening riffs from The Beatles (then current) single "I Feel Fine" at the insistence of "good old boy" Mike Huls (who regretably is no longer with us).  The summer holidays were the lay-over period between the end of school and the start of term at Canterbury University, to which Johnny was headed for his intermediate year, shortly after his return from holiday.  One of the first jobs for The Detours for 1965 was the annual students' orientation party (held that year at the Addington Racecourse) - and 1965 was to prove to be a very good year for the band with the securing of the prestigious Laredo residency as second stringers (but very soon to be the top dogs) to The Playboys, who were Auckland-and-beyond-bound - reinvented as Dave Miller and The Byrds.
Johnny on holiday at Tahunanui Motor Camp, Nelson, NZ
The Detours - Laredo era The Detours move to The Laredo Nightspot ....

The Laredo Nightspot was clearly Christchurch's No. 1 dance attraction of the day, and it was always very well patronised.  Friday nights produced good crowds, but Saturday nights were a standing-room-only affair, with many of New Zealand's major pop acts appearing in a seemingly endless Saturday night procession.  The venue for The Laredo was the now demolished "Horticultural Society Hall" running between Gloucester Street and Oxford Terrace (which sported the main entrance).  It was run by a natural gentleman, Jimmy Rhydings, and his wife, and it was a well organised and happy working environment for the bands working there.  The hall was well appointed, being fitted with a state-of-the-art Philips p.a. system, but even this system struggled to provide clear vocals over the very loud guitar backings (which were assisted by an incredible slap-back echo from the very large window at the opposite end of the hall from the stage).  There was a hierachical structure within the resident bands - with the "top dogs" able to enjoy the best time slots, and of course to back the visiting artists, but there was great camaraderie between bands, and many long-term friendships were struck between supposed "rivals".  Local hero compere was Les Stott, who rather fancied himself as an Elvis-alike, and he tended to align himself with the second-string band to sing Elvis numbers during the evening - this was a habit Les wouldn't break.

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The Detours - Jimmy Phillips and Paul Sargison on stage The Detours - Jimmy Phillips

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The Detours - Laredo era

Johnny Campbell with Les Stott in the background

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From Surf to Surfistication ...

The Detours had come from a surf/stomp culture at "Surf City", and were soon highly aware of the need to keep a close eye on the pop charts for hit songs to add to their already entensive repertoire.  Even though they were playing 2 nights a week, there were still two nights of band practice to be undertaken, and this was generally in Johnny's parents lounge.  There had already been a move to raise the level of the band's sophistication by the addition of a "uniform", consisting of light grey individually tailored trousers, and hand-made blue jackets, and this was of course entirely acceptable at the Laredo Nitespot.
The Detours - Laredo era

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The Detours - Laredo era

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The Detours - Laredo era

A typical Friday and Saturday night crowd at the Laredo Nitespot - a few familiar faces here !

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The Detours - Laredo era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Laredo era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Laredo era Newspaper Advertisement The Detours - Laredo era Newspaper Advertisement


On a Friday or a Saturday night ... the place to be was The Laredo  —  undoubtedly The No. 1 Christchurch nitespot of the day, and where there was always heaps going on, with Mini Talent Contests, Star Searches etc., compered by Les Stott.  Les was a flamboyant character, who loved to be the centre of attention - a personality trait which was not totally exclusive to him !


The evenings were always well organised, but there were never rehersals for "contestants", and this was a constant challenge for The Detours, who as understudies got to be the backing group for such contests.  The real buzz came when having gravitated to top slot, The Detours would back any NZ Star Guests at The Laredo, and these included Howard Morrison, Rochelle Vinsen, Jim McNaught, The Librettos, Peter Posa, Allison Durbin, Gwynn Owen, Tommy Adderley, Yolande Gibson, John Hore, Toni Williams, Anne Murphy, Ray Woolf and Ray Columbus .....
The Detours, resident at The Laredo as understudies to The Playboys
... these are some Laredo Newspaper Advertisements from the era ...

All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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Anne Murphy - "My Heart Said Bossa Nova"



Peter Posa - "The White Rabbit"
Visiting Artists' Signatures - Laredo

Ray Woolf - "Living A Lie"



Jimmy Sloggett - "Yakety Sax"
A card of signatures of local pop stars visiting The Laredo on a particular evening
Showing are (clockwise from bottom) ..... Peter Posa, Anne Murphy, Ray Woolf and Jimmy Sloggett

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Christchurch Teenager's Club Membership Card
The Christchurch Teenager's Club ...

Managed by the legendary Trevor King Q.S.M., Max Merritt and The Meteors were a very hard act to follow at the teenage club Max had established with his parents in the very late 50s.

Johnny Campbell and The Detours were privileged to have taken over Max's role entertaining the city's youth on a Sunday afternoon in Carlyle Street.  This was of course as a result of Max having taken his band north to the "big smoke and the bright lights" - he was, however to return to his old haunts whenever he was back in town.  Max - a never forgotten phenomenon.

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The Detours at the Carlyle Street Youth Club
The Detours at the Carlyle Street Youth Club

Early shots of The Detours after their arrival on the Carlyle Street Sunday Youth Club Scene

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The Detours at the Carlyle Street Youth Club Another early shot of The Detours, taken at the Carlyle Street Sunday Youth Club.  The Blue/Grey "uniform" is still in evidence, and you can see the band's original chipboard speaker cabinets with amplifiers on the stage below the cabinets.  Notice also to the left of Johnny's foot, the original Mark I Watkins Copicat Echo Unit, which Johnny's Dad had dutifully obtained from the UK with a no-remittance license, the same basis as was required to import the lovely original '62 Fiesta Red Stratocaster Johnny is holding (and which he regrets having sold).  Also interestingly, John Clinton has had the name "Clint" signwritten on his bass-drum.

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What about those colourful uniforms ... ??

Here are a couple of very interesting shots of The Detours taken outside the Carlyle Street Sunday Youth Club.  They are among the very few colour photos ever taken of the band, and the blue jackets with the light grey trousers are perfectly revealed with a full colour pallet.  Even through the "anything goes" days of the Surf City gig the band maintained a high standard of dress, and it is interesting to note the continuation of the latter day Surf City "uniform", which the band continued to wear at the beginning of the Laredo stint, prior to purchasing the trademark grey suits which were necessary to be more in tune with the "big beat" presentations of the era.

   ..... and what about that haircut ... ??

..... departing from the established hair style mode of the day, Johnny it appears (for some inexplicable reason) has gone down the "all American boy" track by the look of his short-lived flat-top!  Thankfully this trend did not continue  –  as evidenced by the many other photographs presented on this site.  It is also interesting, historically, to look carefully at the Railway Hall behind the band – there you will see Max Merritt's Dad Jim, standing in the doorway watching proceedings unfold before his very eyes.  The grey Holden-of-the-day in the picture belonged to Paul Sargison's father.

The Detours were (L-R) ..... Jim Phillips, Trevor Wright, Johnny Campbell, Paul Sargison and John Clinton (clutching his ride-cymbal)
The Detours outside the Carlyle Street Youth Club

The Detours outside the Carlyle Street Youth Club

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KH, John and Ian Johnston at Carlyle Street Johnny Campbell with an original Fender Stratocaster
Johnny Campbell talking to Ian Johnstone, and Johnny Campbell with an original Stratocaster
Many thanks to KH for shuffling through her ancient archive and tracking down one or two "gems"

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The Detours assume the No 1 spot at the Laredo Nitespot Johnny Campbell and Paul Sargison - Carlyle Street
Vocals - an important facet of any repertoire ...

In this shot (taken at The Carlyle Street Sunday Youth Club) Johnny and Paul harmonise into a mutual AIWA dynamic microphone.  Paul was at this time running into quite a heavy work-load in the course of his university studies, and was soon to quit the band - to be replaced by Brian "Barney" Bligh on rhythm guitar.  Brian can be seen in the photograph below in the middle at the bottom.  Brian playing a Fiesta Red Fender Stratocaster gave the band the mandatory "three Fenders" line-up of the day - Johnny and Brian with a Fiesta Red Strats, and Trevor with a Sunburst Jazz Bass.
The Detours - Laredo era with Brian Bligh on rhythm guitar
From understudies to top band ....

When Johnny Campbell and The Detours arrived at The Laredo, The Playboys were in the No. 1 spot, and this was the case for some considerable time - indeed until The Playboys went to Auckland having renamed themselves "Dave Miller and The Byrds".  This was not all that long a time after Max Merritt and The Meteors had taken themselves north, and the opportunity presented itself for Johnny and his Detours to take over the première spot at the Laredo, having already assumed Max's residency at his Mum's and Dad's Sunday afternoon Youth Club in the Railway Hall in Carlyle Street, Sydenham, much to the fancy of the large number of weekly Club supporters and Laredo fans.  The Carlyle Street gig was a Sunday afternoon labour of love which was to continue for a considerable time thereafter.  The newspaper advertisement to the left shows The Detours as lead band on a night when The Playboys were out of town, shortly prior to their permanent departure from Christchurch.
The Detours - A letter from a fan wanting to start an official Detours Fan Club

This letter was the beginning of the Official Detours Fan Club

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As well as a plethora of local artist premeating through The Laredo on Friday and Saturday nights, there was a constant stream of local "guest bands" and of local guest artists who would be featured in newspaper advertisements from time to time.  Nationally known stars were more likely to just turn up on the night after having played their concerts, but guest bands and artists were a significant attraction and they were utilised as a promotional drawcard for The Laredo.  It is very interesting to note some of the acts which featured over time (such as those shown in the adjacent advertisements).  Amongst the line-up were The Dynamics (later to turn themselves into The Secrets), Peter Paul and The Pursuers, The Counts, The Esquires, Our Generation, Kay Lichfield and Phil Garland.

Not surprisingly, The Laredo was the major social focal point of the day, and it was fashionable to be there.  There were of course a good number of other "nitespots" around the city, and their number increased over time.  It is fair to say, however, that The Laredo was generally the first port of call for an evening out, as the doors closed at midnight, and most of the other establishments were just getting warmed up at that stage of the evening.
More newspaper advertisements featuring support groups at The Laredo Nitespot
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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  The Detours - Laredo era with Brian Bligh on rhythm guitar

The last shot taken of The Detours as a 5-piece group.  Jim Phillips (Sax) left soon after.
 

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Unreleased acetate cutting of "Jezebel" by Johnny Franklin with The Detours

 Jezebel 
Unreleased acetate cutting of "The Chapel In The Moonlight" by Johnny Franklin with The Detours

Click to Play the "The Chapel In The Moonlight" SoundClip The Chapel In The Moonlight 
The original (unreleased) acetate cuttings of "Jezebel" and "The Chapel In The Moonlight"

Recorded at Robbins Recordings just around the time that Brian Bligh was joining the band, these tracks were intended as recording company demonstrations for a little known Christchurch singer, Englishman Johnny Franklin.  Johnny had a lovely voice, and he requested The Detours to accompany him on these demos which he intended to take back to the UK with him.  "Jezebel" was arranged by Johnny and comes across as very business-like, with some intricate (almost frenetic) strumming and percussive stops and starts.  The rhythm sound reeks of Fender, and it was played by Johnny on his own guitar through Brian's amplifier.  "The Chapel In The Moonlight" was a double take with Johnny on rhythm and lead - amazingly there appears to be no tape echo in use although the studio reverb is there in abundance!  Trevor Wright plays bass and John Clinton is as solid as ever on drums.

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Unreleased acetate cutting of "Carol" by The Detours featuring John Clinton - Lead Vocal

 Carol 
Unreleased acetate cutting of "You Really Got Me" by The Detours

Click to Play the "You Really Got Me" SoundClip You Really Got Me Click to Play the "You Really Got Me" SoundClip
The original (unreleased) acetate cutting of "Carol" and "You Really Got Me"

For whatever reason, the band had become rather rhythm and bluesy, and one of their hottest stage numbers was the old Chuck Berry masterpiece "Carol".  This featured the group's extremely talented drummer John Clinton on vocals, with backing from the rest of the boys.  Handclaps were over-dubbed, and it is recalled that it was heaps of fun standing around and changing clap-patterns as the track eeked out.  The sound is very very typical of The Detours with a thin razorish lead guitar, and fat background.  "Carol" wound up only to be an experiment and was never taken beyond this acetate, although it was always one of the group's most significant stage numbers, as was the Kinks standard "You Really Got Me" which features John Clinton and John Campbell on vocals with Trevor and Brian backing up.  Take a listen to either "Carol" or "You Really Got Me" using the embedded media players above.

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The Detours - Carlyle Street Newspaper Advertisment The Detours - 4-piece band at Carlyle Street The Detours - Carlyle Street Newspaper Advertisment
No suits at Carlyle Street on Sunday afternoons ...

Having invested in a full set of very dapper grey suits (most groups, and especially The Beatles were setting high dress standards - but nobody was telling The Rolling Stones), The Detours (despite their upwardly mobile Laredo image) chose to stay with a full casual approach to the Carlyle Street Youth Club on a Sunday afternoon, where large numbers of loyal Detours supporters would be within easy touching distance of their heroes!  At this point it is interesting to note the "VOX" style amplifier cabinets, which Johnny made.  The newspaper advertisement to the left represents one of (and probably THE) biggest Sunday afternoon at the Youth Club (1964), with the return of Max Merritt and his not inconsiderable entourage.  As can be seen in the advertisement, The Detours are at this stage firmly established as the resident act at the Club, appearing as the main act with Max and his Famous Meteors as Special! Special! Guest Artists.  Visit to the Club by significant artists were a semi-regular thing, with Max's parents commanding great respect from the Rock 'n Roll fraternity.  On this particular day guests included the artist's from the touring "Peter Posa Show" - they included Peter Posa himself, the sensational Dinah Lee, and Dinah's fashion mentor, Jackie Holme, the proponent of Dinah's "mod" page-boy hair-style and the white leather boots. Jackie was Max Merritt's girlfriend at that time.

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The Detour's drummer in the No. 1 pozzy ...

In line with the established pecking order, and with The Detours now resident as top group at The Laredo, newcomers The Vigilantes came in as second band, and John Clinton was able to acquire rights to the elevated plinth to the right (audience left) of the stage.  Note the Beatles-style "The Detours" on the bass-drum.  By now, Brian Bligh was well entrenched as rhythm guitarist, and the band had morphed into a four-piece outfit, with Trevor Wright on bass, Johnny on lead and John Clinton on drums.  This was the beginning of the band's golden era, and many prominent artists were hosted at the Laredo.
The Detours - No. 1 at The Laredo Nitespot

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JC and KH at Carlyle Street Inspiration for a hit song ...

Johnny's girl-friend was undeniably The Detours' greatest fan of the day, and it's not entirely surprising that she was the inspiration for the Detour's hit single "My Girl", which was of course written by Johnny (in his final year at Shirley Boys' High School in 1964, although the record was not released until early in 1965).  The number was particularly strong in the Hamilton area for some unknown/obscure reason.  In those days, the "Hit Parade" was the gauge by which records stood or fell, and each area had its own locally produced 30 minute programme slot each week.
Sadly "My Girl" received no serious attention from the prestigious (nationally syndicated) "Lever Hit Parade".

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Original (pre-release) acetate cutting of "My Girl" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

 My Girl 
Original (pre-release) acetate cutting of "I Just Can't Go To Sleep" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

 Just Can't Go To Sleep 
The original (pre-release) acetate cutting of the single "My Girl" b/w "Just Can't Go To Sleep"

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Commercially released pressing of "My Girl" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

 My Girl 
Commercially released pressing of "I Just Can't Go To Sleep" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

 I Just Can't Go To Sleep 
A production pressing of the single "My Girl" b/w "Just Can't Go To Sleep" (Robbins RRSP54)

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Group signed commercially released pressing of "My Girl" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

 My Girl 
Group signed Commercially released pressing of "I Just Can't Go To Sleep" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

 I Just Can't Go To Sleep 
Signed (circa 1965) production pressing of the single "My Girl" b/w "I Just Can't Go To Sleep" (Robbins RRSP54)
SIDE A:  Trevor Wright (Bass) and Johnny Campbell (Lead and Vocals)       SIDE B:  Brian Bligh (Rhythm) and Graham Hanham (Drums)
NOTE:  John Clinton was the drummer for these recordings.  Graham Hanham had not yet joined the group when the record was made.

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"My Girl" by Johnny Campbell and The Detours

   My Girl  "The Video"   
Johnny Campbell and The Detours perform My Girl 1997 (with original 1964 audio)
This video is an amalgam of old and new.  It features the original 60s audio track, along with video footage shot live at John's 50th Birthday Bash in 1997.  The group which reunited on that night featured Larry McKay (Rhythm Guitar), John Clinton (Drums), Trevor Wright (Bass Guitar) and John Campbell (Lead Guitar and Vocals).

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Graham Hanham joins the group ...

Whilst John Clinton was still at high school his father took a transfer to Wanganui, and John was regretably forced to leave the band and move away from Christchurch (although he did subsequently return).  John was replaced by a superb technician on drums in Graham Hanham (holding the tree).  Graham had long been admired by "the boys" and he added a solid polish to the group, which was at that stage very focussed on quality instrumental music - especially The Shadows, but even to showpieces like "Baby Elephant Walk", "El Combanchero" and diverse others.  There was also a major trend towards group-harmony vocals from emerging groups such as Brian Poole and The Tremeloes and The Beatles.  This style was ever-increasingly being included in The Detours' repertoire.
The Detours - Laredo era with Graham Hanham on drums

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Click to Play the "My Girl" SoundFile
Click to Play the "I Just Can't Go To Sleep" SoundFile

"On The Beat" - a regular Christchurch Star newspaper column
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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Sultry Detours - Laredo era That sultry look catches on ...

It is interesting to reflect on this sepia-style shot which was intended to capture the sultry looks which at that time were being associated with The Rolling Stones (and little did the boys know they would be appearing on The Stones' show very shortly thereafter).  This was at a time when The Detours were very much a pop "cover-band", recognising the demand for current hits at all times.  Such was the nature of The Laredo Nitespot, and the massive regular crowd which fanatically turned up weekend after weekend to soak up the music and be entertained with surprise appearances by many of the country's leading artists.  Keeping abreast of the latest pop tunes was a full-time job, and the band used to rehearse at least twice a week as well as playing Fridays and Saturdays at the Laredo, and Sunday afternoons at the Merritt's Sunday Youth Club.  This amount of playing was also very hard on instruments, and John used to change his strings every Friday prior to the Laredo outing.  Beggs and Sedley Wells were the places to go to buy strings in those days (directly opposite one another on Christchurch's High Street), Charlie Jemmett and Alan Irvine are in the business to this very day.  John was fanatically into "Gibson Spanish Electrics" (which were slightly thinner) than the more popular "Gibson Sonomatics".

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  Review of the Rolling Stones Concert (Christchurch)
The Rolling Stones
  Review of the Rolling Stones Concert (Christchurch)
Roy Orbison
  Review of the Rolling Stones Concert (Christchurch)
The Newbeats
  Review of the Rolling Stones Concert (Christchurch)
Ray Columbus and The Invaders
 
  Undoubtedly a high point in The Detours career ...

Trevor King had arranged for The Detours to open the Christchurch concert of the Rolling Stones' Tour at the Theatre Royal in February 1965.  John and Brian Bligh were at the movies in the afternoon and an usher came with a message for John to contact Trevor King - for what was, as it turned out, VERY good news.  The line-up that night was:  John Campbell (Lead), Brian Bligh (Rhythm), Trevor Wright (Bass) and Graham Hanham (Drums), and playing to a packed theatre was a very nervous time for "the boys".  Trevor Wright had to beg to use Bill Wyman's bass amplifier - our Bill was not wildly enthusiastic about this, but duly agreed.  The show kicked off with The Detours playing Manfred Man's "Do Wah Diddy Diddy" which was a huge hit and gaining lots of air-play at that time.  You can see from the review (adjacent), that The Detours were suitably well received but alas not musically impressive enough to register on the reviewer's buzz scale.  John mentions that the boys were gob-smacked that the Rolling Stones should be wearing stage make-up (something which The Detours were yet to be subjected too).  Having met Roy Orbison on the previous ('64 Beach Boys) tour, John was sure that Mr. Orbison would know who he was, so he confidently walked up to "The Big O" and shook his hand saying "Hi Roy, do you remember me ??" - to which Mr. Orbison replied "NO !".  A huge blow to a young fella's ego on the brink of a night in front of the lights, but John recovered well and moved forward with minimal counselling.

 
Review of the Rolling Stones Concert (Christchurch) Big Beat '65

Review of the Rolling Stones Concert (Christchurch)

Detours on the Big Beat '65 Show
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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The Detours - Laredo fun The Detours - Laredo fun

Those days at The Laredo were happy ones ...

... and the band enjoyed an excellent camaraderie on and off stage, with a very stable line-up, which was dedicated to presenting to the best of its ability.  Sadly, around this time, Brian Bligh was to quit the group due to a National Service obligation.

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The Detours - Laredo fun The Detours - Laredo fun

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DanceTime Spectacular Poster

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Quite soon after this Brian Bligh left the group ...

... after having been a key player through the band's halcyon days - to be replaced by the virtuoso Larry McKay.  The band was experiencing amazing popularity, and with increasing work-load and regular practices, there wasn't much time for anything else.  "DanceTime Spectacular!" was Brian's last performance, and a new era was about to unfold with the band focussing on the then super popular Mersey-type sounds in lieu of the big-echo instrumental material for which they had been best known.  John would turn his back on his beloved Fiesta Red Fender Stratocaster, and Larry his equally loved Gibson ES335TDC for Beatles inspired Gretschs.
Dance Time Spectacular Ticket

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The Detours - Larry McKay era

The Larry McKay era ...

Larry was the original rhythm guitarist for The Vigilantes, and John appreciated and admired his playing immensely.  He was an inspirational, highly spirited player, and he and John readily gravitated together musically.  The band started to do complex numbers which showcased both guitarists' techniques, and allowed for interactions and harmonies between them.  The shot shows
(L-R) John Campbell, Larry McKay, Trevor Wright and Graham Hanham.  Amplifiers visible are John's VOX-alike, Trevor's bass amp and Larry's lovely acoustic-sounding Selmer (which he imported at great pain and expense) from Mother England.  This was a very creative era for the band, and one in which the sound became very tight and polished.  There is no doubt that the "new wave" of in-band collaborative writing and the wider influences of the increasing sophistication of group sounds in general, had an impact on The Detours at that time.  The group remained firmly entrenched at the Laredo Nitespot, and reluctantly continued to pander to Les Stott's obsession with singing Elvis songs.  John continued to try hard to shake Les's enduring impression of him as a "jumped up schoolboy", and thankfully, music was the winner at the end of the day.  The Detours would go on from strength to strength, with a huge local following.

Larry got his box out from under the bed and found the image to the left .....
The Detours - Larry McKay era

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"Walk With Me" ...

... was Larry's baby and he trotted it out one afternoon at his place when John came around.  Between them, Larry and John polished the song, and John came up with the suspension introduction along with the lead embellishments.  Later in the week at band practice, the completed song was presented to Trevor and Graham who added their own various parts, and response harmonies were introduced.  Trevor's fine walking bass is particularly catchy, and the song was a regular part of the band's performance.  The track was recorded at Robbins studios in one evening only.  The plan was to return to the studio at a later time to over-dub proper vocal tracks, but, having spent several hours recording the backing track, and wanting something tangible to take away for the evening's work, rough vocals were added in one extra take with Larry singing lead and the rest of the guys backing up.  Fate decreed that the project would never be completed, and thus it remains an unfinished masterpiece!  You can listen to a SoundClip sample of "Walk With Me" by using the embedded player opposite.
Unreleased acetate cutting of "Walk With Me" by The Detours

 Walk With Me 

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Unreleased acetate cutting of "Wake Up Little Susie" by The Detours

 Wake Up Little Susie 
"Wake Up Little Susie" ...

Around about the time this track was recorded, The Detours were being featured as an out-of-town headline act for a newly established Timaru night spot, a job over which period meant heading south on a Friday afternoon.  Timaru had been crying out for its own piece of night-life, and "Downtown" was the name chosen for the Stafford Street venue, organised by local second-hand dealer Ray Wright, with very popular local group - "The Boys" (featuring Maurice Sammons), in residence.  The Detours and The Boys became good friends even after The Detours finished their gig, and the local "Boys" continued on at "The Downtown".  One of the songs which had crept into The Detour's repertoire, and which always seemed to "get the crowd going" was the old Everly Brothers' song "Wake Up Little Susie".  Larry's very distinctive and very "choppy" Gibson ES335TDC features prominently.  The vocals feature John and Trevor with Larry and Graham harmonising.  This hastily conceived recording was, however one of those which was destined to go absolutely no further, and the quality of the performance, along with the acetate cutting, leaves a lot to be desired.

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John's Gretsch Tennessean .... kinda! John's Gretsch Tennessean .... kinda! Larry's Gretsch Tennessean .... sorta!
Enter two Gretsch Tennesseans ...

Absolutely no Dean Martin influence here .... and that's a promise!  Nevertheless the music did somehow "take us back to Tennessee".  With Beatles and Mersey-type-sounds having taken a serious hold on the band, John and Larry almost inevitably decided to purchase matching Gretsch Tennesseans and run with a more "country" oriented sound-scape.  John very bravely abandoned his trusty Watkins Copicat tape echo unit in deference to the spring reverb built into his new Jansen Quad Amp.

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The Detours were engaged for an exclusive summer gig at The Blue Moon, Paraparaumu Beach .....
Space Travelling Detours (l-r) - Dixon McIvor, John Clinton, Trevor Wright, Larry McKay and John Campbell Racing Detours (l-r) - Trevor Wright, John Clinton, Larry McKay and John Campbell
High-Flying Detours (l-r) - John Clinton, John Campbell, Larry McKay and Trevor Wright Pre-Historic Detours (l-r) - Trevor Wright, John Clinton, John Campbell and Larry McKay
Honorary Detour, Dixon relaxes on the Wanganui trip The Detours/The Chikadees - Newspaper Advertisement
This three-week summer job was an amazing experience for the band, and on this occasion they were joined by The Vigilantes' vocalist Dixon McIvor (shown in the shot above).  The deal was that the band would live in Paraparumu for three weeks in the house of a relative of Jimmy Rhydings — the house being within easy walking distance of the near-the-beach venue.  As it was the only dance in the area, and being on almost every night meant that it became a holiday focal point, and excellent crowds were guaranteed.  Despite best efforts with limited security from the promoters, there were frequent erruptions in and around the hall, and this was a concern for the boys, who were supported by Tommy Kahi's all-girl band "The Chikadees" (also to appear shortly thereafter in a Christchurch "*Startime* Spectacular" in the Majestic theatre).  Dixon remained a member of The Vigilantes, even though he was singing with The Detours, and when the summer entourage returned to Christchurch, he went back to work with The Vigilantes.  All these shots were taken in Wanganui, the city to which John Clinton's parents had moved some time earlier.

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The Detours backing Gwynn Owen - Laredo Nitespot, March 1966
The Detours (Larry and John with Gretsch Tennesseans) backing Gwynn Owen at the Laredo Nitespot - March 1966
Trevor Wright (Bass), Larry McKay (Rhythm), Gwynn Owen, and (obscured) John Campbell (Lead)
Great looks, a heap of talent, and arguably one of the best singers to come out of the Wellington scene in the sixties - Gwynn Owen carved her niche in mid 1966.  She toured the country following the release of her single "In My Room", and followed up quickly with "That's When Happiness Began".  Her career was however relatively short-lived and she moved to Auckland to raise a family shortly after releasing her last single "Hard Lovin' Loser".  The Laredo was on her list of spots for her tour.     Larry would subsequently rejoin The Vigilantes, as ultimately would Detours long-standing Bass Player, Trevor Wright.

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The final incarnation of The Detours ..... On return from the immensely enjoyable summer gig at Paraparaumu, John Campbell, Trevor Wright, and John Clinton (who would subsequently move to Australia and join the award-winning country music group The Wolverines) purchased new suits and joined forces with the Peter and Paul Talbot to form what was to be the last ever Detours line-up.  A residency at "The Mecca" ensued, and the group set about changing its style to maximise the vocal impact of Peter and Paul, who were superb harmonists.  This de-focussed the group from its instrumental base-line, and it was soon apparent that the New Exclusive Mecca Nitespot, and the (new) Detours were not going to be a forever combination.  A series of publicity pictures, similar in nature to the one shown to the right, were taken.

Top: Peter Talbot and John Clinton
Centre: John Campbell
Bottom: Trevor Wright and Paul Talbot.
The Detours - The Mecca era

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  Detours/Mecca newspaper article  
  A Christchurch newspaper narrative on the Detours, issued
shortly prior to the band's securing the "Mecca" residency

All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell
 

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  JC at the Mecca  
The last known picture of John Campbell at the "Mecca" Nitespot
- complete with Gretsch Tennessean and Jansen Quad Amplifier

Many thanks to Kaye Millar (née Bassett) for this old gem !

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Detours/Mecca newspaper advertisement

New Exclusive MECCA Nitespot Logo
Header/Logo for the New Exclusive "MECCA" Nitespot
 
Detours/Mecca newspaper advertisement Detours/Mecca newspaper advertisement
Detours/Mecca era newspaper advertisements
All the newspaper clippings on this site were diligently collected by John's father Ron Campbell

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*Startime* Spectacular Concert Newspaper Advertisement

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Star Trek Slipper Dance advertisement
  Star Trek Slipper Dance article
Christchurch Star - Friday June 3rd, 1966
 
Star Trek Slipper Dance Crowd
Typical Star Trek Slipper Dance Crowd
Star Trek Slipper Dance Publicity
These clippings (ex Ronnie Enright collection) appeared shortly before The Detours broke up

The Detours disbanded in mid-1966 .....

Detour ends .... Detour ends .... Detour ends ....
One particular evening  —  after having practised at the "Mecca"  —  John Campbell came to the inevitable
conclusion that his brief musical career should come to an end,  and so he loaded his equipment into his 1949
side-valve Morris Minor and headed off into the sunset to seek his fortune in the big bad commercial world.

...... but the story did continue ......

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Commercially released pressing of "I Love You And I Don't Care" by Ronnie and Dougal on the EON label

 I Love You And I Don't Care 
The EON recordings ...

Subsequent to the demise of The Detours, John was in touch with Dougal McEachen (another ex Christchurch Cathedral chorister) who had written several great songs.  These were raw and needed arranging and commercialising, so John collaberated with him on "I Love You And I Don't Care" and "Leave Me Alone".  A number of others, including "The Lady Angeline", "Mercedes" and "Just A Heartbeat Away", were regretably never published.  The project was to record (at Robbins again!) two numbers for release on the new "EON Recording Company" label.  EON was the love/brain-child of Maurice Enright, father of Veronica (Ronnie) Enright (see the *Startime* Spectacular advertisement above), who was Dougal's partner in a Sonny & Cher-type duo.  The recordings featured John's Gibson Jumbo acoustic, and included former Detours bassist Trevor Wright along with a clutch of seasoned session-men - "The Individuals".  EON records are categorised by a very distinctive sleeve (and now, in the retromania era, are highly collectable).
This disc was signed by Maurice Enright and given to John in appreciation of his efforts in coordinating the production of the recordings
Distinctive EON Record sleeve

Commercially released pressing of "Leave Me Alone" by Ronnie and Dougal on the EON label

 Leave Me Alone 
A production copy of the single "I Love You And I Don't Care" b/w "Leave Me Alone" (EON 1001)
Digitally remastered CD   Ronnie and Dougal
A digitally remastered (2009) CD of EON1001 "I Love You And I Don't Care" and "Leave Me Alone"

Vintage Recorder  Vintage Recorder  Vintage Recorder  Vintage Recorder   Vintage Recorder Vintage Recorder  Vintage Recorder
The faces of the "individuals" involved in the EON 1001 project are revealed (from left to right)  —  Ronnie (Veronica Enright), Dougal (Dougal McEachen), Johnny Campbell, Andy Joines, Trevor Wright, Neil Falconer and John Sanchez-Lloyd.
43 years on - a reunion of the individuals for Ronnie's 60th Another vintage tape recorder rears it's head - but this time it's a SONY machine, on which lots of home recording was done prior to the visit to Robbins Recordings for the actual EON 1001 recording session.

Vintage Sony Recorder
EON Individuals

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John's 50th Birthday Invitations
1997:  John's 50th Birthday Invitations were in the form of a CD - here's the folded-out jewel case insert

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John's 50th Birthday Celebration

 Baby What's Wrong ?       I Saw Her Standing There 
John's 50th Birthday Bash ...

April 26th, 1997 - one month after John's actual birthdate, The Detours performed together again for the first time in 31 years, and what a (long) night it turned out to be.  John Clinton had flown over from Australia especially for the event (arriving that afternoon to watch John Campbell car racing at Ruapuna), but to be safe, the others (John Campbell, Trevor Wright and Larry McKay) had put in a couple of strategic practices in the weeks prior - just to make sure!  An hour-long rehersal was held at 5:00pm that afternoon prior to the 7:00pm kick-off, and things went off extremely well, especially considering none of the boys had even clapped eyes on John Clinton for over 30 years - let alone be on stage ripping up a storm with him.  The SoundClips under the image to the left and following images, were all recorded live to digital tape on the night.
An invaluable addition to the band ...

The band was augmented for the occasion by Andy Carey (on the ENSONIQ mini-grand piano and synth keyboard) - who was the evening's star performer, impersonating Elton John to a trick.  Andy's brilliant organ backing added dramatically to John's "Wonderful Tonight" tribute to his wife Robyn, and the band was able to re-visit many numbers they used to play, including "Kon-Tiki", "Memphis", "My Girl", "Carol", "Johnny B. Goode", and "Dance On".  The pic shows (left to right) - Larry McKay (Rhythm Guitar), Trevor Wright (Bass Guitar), John Campbell (Lead Guitar), John Clinton (Drums) and Andy Carey on organ.  Seasoned trainspotters may well enquire as to why John was playing a Parker "Fly" guitar.  In reality there was no sound excuse for chosing the Parker "Fly" over a "Strat" ......
John's 50th Birthday Celebration

 Wonderful Tonight     Memphis Click to Play the "Memphis" SoundClip    Johnny B. Goode 
John's 50th Birthday Celebration

 40 Miles Of Bad Road     Peter Gunn     Yakety Sax 
The return of the magic saxophone ...

Being an original member of the 5-piece Detours, but not having played with the group for almost 33 years - and with no rehersal whatsoever - the boys gladly welcomed Jimmy Phillips to the stage to weave some of his old saxophone magic.  During the formative years of the band, and especially whilst the focus was on Church Dances, the group relied heavily on the sax player to provide for a variety of sounds, to keep the music flavoured and "interesting" for the audience.  At that time, there was not an overwhelming requirement for vocals, and the music supplied was 90% instrumental.  These SoundClips feature Jimmy's wailing saxophone.  First-up is Duane Eddy's "40 Miles Of Bad Road" and this is supported closely by the eternally popular hard-driving "Peter Gunn Theme".

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  Dixon McIvor singing "Sweet Caroline" with The Detours at John's 50th Bash

 Dixon McIvor singing "Sweet Caroline" with The Detours 
 

Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor Dixon McIvor

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Andy Carey
Andy Carey did his Elton John thing ......


Groupies
..... there were (of course) GROUPIES .....


Groper
...... and there were GROPIES too ......

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John Campbell's Home Studio (circa 2000)

Click for VideoClips VideoClips     Click for SoundClips SoundClips     Click for SoundFiles SoundFiles     Click to go to the MultiMedia Page MultiMedia Page
John Campbell's Home Studio (circa 2000)         Home Studio Recordings         John Campbell's Home Studio (circa 2000)
Having always been interested in music and making music, it follows logically to have home facilities to make good quality new recordings, and to be able to restore old material.  So there has always been the statutory Campbell "home-studio".  In this particular case, the targets are two TASCAM DA-88s via a plethora of rack mounted processors and effects units.  More recently the computer has started to feature heaviliy (especially with the advent of manageable video processing software etc.)  –  and there is no doubt that it hugely satisfying to be able to produce permanent recordings for on-going future enjoyment.

Click any of the links or icons to the left to go to separate pages of VideoClips, SoundClips and SoundFiles as well as to a composite MultiMedia Page with all available material.  Please take time to enjoy the various recordings presented ...

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Spencer Street Revisited 2006 Concerts Promotional Poster
Spencer Street Revisited - Rock ’n’ Roll Revival
—  Promotional Poster  —

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 Frightened City    The Savage    Kon Tiki 
 The Theme From The Deer Hunter (Cavatina) 
The Spencer Street revisitation ...

John Campbell unleashed a bevy of Shadows echoes à la Meazzi at Christchurch Cathedral's first ever "rock concert".  Turning the wheel full circle, an ex-chorister returned to the place of his musical nurture, to perform once again - albeit in blue jeans and on electric guitar.  The Cathedral had amazingly expanded its community vision to host a Rock 'n' Roll revival, which was dubbed "Spencer Street Revisited", in deference to the legendary Christchurch 1960s dance hall.  It was a combined party, marking the 150th anniversary of Christchurch City and Anglican Diocese, as well as the Cathedral's 125th Anniversary.  More than 2000 people attended over two nights, enjoying the sounds of 60s Rock 'n' Roll played by an amazing array of original musicians.  Just as in days gone by, compere Bob Consedine introduced the acts  - Johnny Parker and The Wildcats/Downbeats wearing their zany "WildBeats" T-Shirts, John Campbell toting a Fiesta Red Fender Stratocaster, the new enhanced Vigilantes line-up with Murray Wood and Wayne Allen, 60s rocker/pin-up boy turned modern folk hero Phil Garland, Dion and Cecile Murphy finally managing to break with their Copper Cat legacy, Ray Columbus (who gave an extensive theological lecture, vaguely interspersed with karaoke versions of a number of his greatest hits), Peter Nelson and the Castaways featuring Peter Gillette on Hammond Organ, and original Meteors drummer Peter Sowden along with former Invaders guitarist Brian Ringrose and their newly constituted retro-group "About Time" with spirited vocalist Norm Bland.  Saturday evening's concert also featured a cameo performance from US-based Paul Muggleston.
John plays The Shadows at Spencer Street Revisited 2006 Friday 29th September Concert
 Walk Don't Run   Apache   Wonderful Land 

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Spencer Street Revisited   The Rock 'n' Roll Revival   Christchurch Cathedral, Friday 29th and Saturday 30th September, 2006  —  principal artists in order of program appearance ...
Bob Consedine
Bob Consedine
John(ny) Parker
Johnny Parker
The Wildcats/Downbeats
Wildcats/Downbeats
John(ny) Campbell
John Campbell
Dixon McIvor
Dixon McIvor
The Vigilantes
The Vigilantes
Murray Wood
Murray Wood
Wayne Allen
Wayne Allen
The Christchurch Cathedral
–  The Cathedral  –
Phil Garland
Phil Garland
Dion and Cecile
Dion and Cecile
Ray Columbus
Ray Columbus
Peter Nelson
Peter Nelson
The Castaways
The Castaways
Peter Gillette
Peter Gillette
Spencer Street Revisited
–  Spencer Street  –

 
Brian Ringrose
Brian Ringrose
About Time
About Time
Norm Bland
Norm Bland
Paul Muggleston
Paul Muggleston

 

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John Campbell playing at the Spencer Street Revisited Concert - Christchurch CathedralJohn Campbell playing at the Spencer Street Revisited Concert - Christchurch Cathedral
John Campbell with Fiesta Red Fender Stratocaster - back in Christchurch Cathedral

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Spencer Street Revisited 2006 Concerts Programme (Outside)
Spencer Street Revisited  —  Rock ’n’ Roll Revival  —  Concert Programme (Outside)
Spencer Street Revisited 2006 Concerts Programme (Inside)
Spencer Street Revisited  —  Rock ’n’ Roll Revival  —  Concert Programme (Inside)

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Bob Consedine watches as John Campbell performs live ....
John Campbell performing in Christchurch Cathedral under the watchful eye of compere Bob Consedine

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Christchurch Cathedral Crowd ....
A portion of the Christchurch Cathedral Crowd enjoying the Spencer Street Revisited Concerts

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Spencer Street Revisited 2006 Concerts Limited Edition Souvenir Hat
Spencer Street Revisited
Rock ’n’ Roll Revival
—  Limited Edition Souvenir Hat  —

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ROCKONZ 2006 Press Newspaper Advertisement
ROCKONZ - Christchurch PRESS Newspaper Advertisement   (Image scan thanks to Wayne "Biggy Rat" Allen)

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ROCKONZ 2006 Concert Brochure Front Cover
ROCKONZ - 50 Years of Rock 'n Roll
—  Concert Brochure Front Cover  —

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ROCKONZ 2006 Concert Brochure Inside Spread
ROCKONZ - 50 Years of Rock 'n Roll  —  Concert Brochure Inside Spread

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The ROCKONZ Concert .....

Saturday 24th March, 2007 heralded the first Christchurch "ROCKONZ Festival" which consisted of a series of outdoor events leading up to the ROCKONZ Concert and Hall of Fame Presentations in the Christchurch Town Hall that evening.  The show opened with master percussionist Wayne Allen leading John Campbell into the early 60's instrumental "Apache" with a cleverly crafted drum solo.  This was closely followed by a Cliff Richard Tribute from "Cliff-A-Like" David LaPlanche accompanied by a hand-picked backing group "The Rockits" (Wayne Allen, Neville Claughton, Murray Wood, Bob Heinz and Peter Gillette) and featuring John who remained on lead guitar for that set.  Blasts continued with John(ny) Parker, Cecile and Dion Murphy, Toni Williams, Ben Blackett (as Elvis), The Vigilantes, and Peter Nelson and The Castaways concluding the first half.  The second half featured Christchurch's international stars, and new ROCKONZ Hall of Fame inductees, Ray Columbus and The Invaders, Dinah Lee, and Max Merritt (albeit with his new-look Australian-based Meteors).  The ROCKONZ festival is expected to become an integral part of the city's annual cultural event schedule, with Mayor Garry Moore strongly endorsing the concept.  A huge vote of thanks must go to Cecile and Dion Murphy for putting this event together !
John opening the ROCKONZ Concert ....

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ROCKONZ Finale ....
ROCKONZ Morning Parade
Left to right:   Ben Blackett (Elvis),  David LaPlanche (Cliff Richard),  John Campbell

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David LaPlanche does his Cliff Richard thing ....
David LaPlanche doing his "Cliff" thing at the ROCKONZ Concert, backed by "The Rockits" (featuring John Campbell)
Left to right:   John Campbell,  Neville Claughton,  Wayne Allen,  David LaPlanche,  Murray Wood,  Bob Heinz and Peter Gillette

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ROCKONZ Finale ....
ROCKONZ Finale
Left to right:   Dinah Lee,  Jon McRea,  John Campbell,  John Parker,  David LaPlanche,  Dion and Cecile Murphy

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ROCKONZ Supporters Hat
ROCKONZ
Annual Festival of Rock ’n’ Roll
—  Supporters Hat  —

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John Storey (ex Christchurch 60s group "Johnny and The Revellers") held a bash on Sunday March 16th, 2008 to mark his 65th birthday.  The venue was John's bar – "The Miller" in Lincoln Road The BackLash Band As was to be expected there was an endless supply of 60s "icons"  —  all willing and able to step up and entertain a wall-to-wall crowd.  There was certainly no shortage at all of that "good old Rock 'n' Roll"
The BackLash Band The BackLash Band
—    The Backlashers (for the time being) were – Dean Luke (Lead Guitar), John Campbell (Rhythm Guitar), Neil Blue (Bass), John Storey (Sax) and Frank Kerrison (Drums)    —

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John Campbell
John Campbell

Click for Reunion Pix
ROCKONZ 2009
Detours Reunion
Cashmere Club Gigs
John Clinton
John Clinton



Larry McKay
Larry McKay

Johnny Campbell and The Detours - Southern Star 2009



Jim Phillips
Jim Phillips
Paul Sargison
Paul Sargison
Trevor Wright
Trevor Wright

Click for Rock Hall of Fame Pix
ROCKONZ 2009
Rock Hall of Fame
Awards Dinner
Johnny Campbell and The Detours received the prestigious   ROCKONZ Southern Star Award   at the annual ROCKONZ Awards Dinner in 2009   
The group reunited at The Cashmere Club, Christchurch as part of the annual ROCKONZ festival.  Gigs took place on Sunday May 10th and Tuesday May 12th to packed houses.

«  Click here to show the promotional poster which was used to promote the Tuesday gig  »


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Flaxwood Festival

John Campbell
John Campbell
Bob Heinz
Bob Heinz
Wayne Allen
Wayne Allen
Peter Kearns
Peter Kearns
Robbie Carpenter
Robbie Carpenter
Flaxwood Festival

«  Flaxwood Festival Website  »
Suzanne Lynch
Suzanne Lynch
Graham Wardrop
Graham Wardrop
Kevin Taylor
Kevin Taylor
Dixon McIvor
Dixon McIvor
Hans Schuitman
Hans Schuitman
The Flaxwood Shadows hand-picked and specially assembled for  Flaxwood Festival 2011  with top New Zealand artists Suzanne Lynch and Graham Wardrop
The Woolston Brass was also in attandance as a major attraction and they delivered a wide range of musical gems including some stirring military music in traditional style.
Flaxwood Festival 2011 was held on Sunday April 03rd, 2011 at the country residence of Hans and Carolyn Schuitman, raising more than $40,000.00 for the stated charities.



John Clinton

Brendan Dugan

Dixon McIvor

Darcy LeYear

Marian Burns

Toni Williams

Chris Doyle

Pat Dugan
B
Peter Nelson
Flaxwood Festival

Flaxwood Festival

«  Flaxwood Festival Website  »

John Campbell

Kevin Frewer

JC + Detours

Larry McKay

Wayne Allen

Cruise Control

Trevor Wright

Paddy Long

PN + Castaways
Australia's #1 Country Rock Group The Wolverines headlined   Flaxwood Festival 2012  which also featured Kiwi legend Brendan Dugan with his father Pat
Dugan as special guest.  Marian Burns fiddled, Cruise Control (featuring iconic Toni Williams) enthralled, while Peter Nelson and The Castaways AND Johnny Campbell
and The Detours re-formed especially for the occasion.  Once again The Woolston Brass featured prominently in support of their status as a principal charity.
Flaxwood Festival 2012 was held on Sunday February 18th, 2012 at the country residence of Hans and Carolyn Schuitman, raising almost $59,000.00 for the stated charities.


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John Campbell today ....

Most of my life I have harboured an obsession with "That Sound"  —  the totally unique sound of Hank Marvin and The Shadows.  Fortunately for those of us who love that sound, we are living in a technologically amazing age, in which we have sophisticated equipment and facilities at our command to replicate/emulate (..... according to Hoyle)  —  but unfortunately technology doesn't really make it any easier at all.  The reality is that none of us will ever be able to deliver that music just the way Hank did and does, and so we must remain in the penumbra on the skirts of the shadows.  Following are some of my late '90s Shadows-style home-studio recordings, and a raft of other Detours related Sound and Video Clips.  Please feel free to download and enjoy any or all of these Clips  —  and indeed please feel free to offer constructive comments/criticisms if you would care to do so  —  click on the e-Mail icon below, and let me have your thoughts ... please !
Click for SoundClips
«   Click on the icon to the left for a wide range of "SoundClips" by
     Johnny Campbell and The Detours and associated artists.  Many
of these are 1960s recordings which feature early group activities.

Click to go to the complete MultiMedia Page
MultiMedia Page

Click on the icon to the right for an extensive set of early Shadows   »
inspired "SoundFiles"recorded by John Campbell (circa 1999) in
his home-studio - featuring many of The Shads' best-loved works.

Click for SoundFiles
     Click for VideoClips «  Click on either Video Camera Icon for a selection of "VideoClips" by John Campbell and The Detours '97  » Click for VideoClips

Bookmark "Johnny Campbell and The Detours" and Come Back SOON ! The aim of this site is to present as broad a picture as is possible, of the times - and the many personalities who conspired to make this bygone era so unforgettable ..... click the icon to the left to bookmark this site. Visitors to this site so far If you were around in the '60s and perhaps have access to historical information, photgraphs, or sound or video recordings stemming from this era, PLEASE click the icon to the right to e-Mail John Campbell ..... Send an e-Mail to John Campbell

Click to go to John Campbell's Penumbra website http://www.penumbra.co.nz — is John Campbell's Shadows collector site, and his tribute to the recorded music and times of Cliff Richard and The Shadows in NZ ..... Click to go to John Campbell's Penumbra website http://www.penumbra.co.nz — is John Campbell's Shadows collector site, and his tribute to the recorded music and times of Cliff Richard and The Shadows in NZ ..... Click to go to John Campbell's Penumbra website

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