The Topspots 1960s Enjoying a glass of milk, on the stage of the world famous Cavern Club

Ricky Gleason & the Topspots began life in the early 1960s. The Liverpool dock area of Bootle being their stomping ground. Managed by local impresario Dave Forshaw, the band soon became established on the Mersey Beat scene.

During 1963 Ricky and the Topspots appeared at all the favourite Mersey Beat haunts including: The Cavern Club, The Orrell Park Ballroom, The Klic Klic Club, St John's Hall, The Rialto Ballroom, etc. The band travelled to Hamburg to appear at the famous Star Club. The Milk Marketing Board photographed Ricky and the lads drinking milk on the Cavern stage to promote the product in all the national papers.

While supporting The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, Ricky Gleason & the Topspots became so popular that Cavern DJ Bob Wooler tipped them to be the next big Mersey Beat success to follow in the footsteps of Ricky's old school mate Billy J Kramer.

In 1964, after the split up of the Topspots, Ricky joined Ormskirk band The Rebels, performing alongside their lead guitarist Keith Hubbard . For a while the line up was known as Ricky Gleason & the Topspots and they appeared as support to the Merseybeats at the Cavern. However, the band eventually reverted to their original name of The Rebels.

Ricky eventually left the Rebels in 1965 to form a new Topspots. Kelvin Harrison of the original Topspots then joined the Rebels, signifying Keith Hubbard's relationship with today's Topspots line-up.


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The Band Now L/R    Back Row : Keith H - Keith D - Tommy
Front Row : Kelvin - Ricky

For a number of years Keith Dodd and his wife Maja, who he met while playing a stint at Hamburg's Star Club, have been supporters of Liverpool based Mersey Beat musicians' charity 'MerseyCats'.

In January 2009, Ricky decided to visit the MerseyCats band-night, which is held each Thursday at Old Roan British Legion Club in Aintree, Liverpool.

With a view to rekindling old acquaintances, Ricky met ex Topspots guitarist Keith Dodd and drummer Tommy Limb. They contacted bass guitarist Kel Harrison and guitarist Keith Hubbard, to invite them to a re-union.

The meeting was well received, so much so that the 'lads' decided to have a bash to see if they could still cut it as a band.

The session at Keith Hubbard's studio in Southport was a success.

The new band's first performance was in March 2009 at MerseyCats, they received a fantastic reception.



Ricky Gleason - Vocals. Founder member of Ricky Gleason & the Topspots. Ricky was born Derek Banks in Bootle, within the sound of the Merseyside docks. Taking in all the influences of his teen years he was a natural to become a front man vocalist. Ricky was a great fan of Buddy Holly and Buddy's influence can be heard in Ricky's vocal performance. Ricky has been the driving force in the re-formation of the band.

 

Kelvin Harrison - Bass guitar. Kel is also a founder member of The Topspots. Kel was regarded as one of the best exponents of the bass guitar on Merseyside. Following the Topspots, Kel was a member of The Mersey Monsters before joining The Rebels.
Kel immigrated to Canada where he kept up his musical interests. Since his return to England he has been involved with various musical projects before coming back to The Topspots.

 

Tommy Limb - Drums. Another Bootle-ite and founder member of The Topspots. Tommy, like Kel, became a member of The Mersey Monsters, Later he joined The Defenders and has since been a cabaret compere and resident drummer.

 

Keith Hubbard - Guitar. Keith began his career in various Merseyside bands during the mid 60s. In 1963 Keith helped to form The Rebels. In 1969 he became a member of the British cast of the rock musical Hair. Keith helped to form the rock band Caliban, who were regulars at Liverpool's legendary Cavern Club and on 27th May 1973, played at the Club's closing night, making Keith one of a select group of musicians to finally grace the original Cavern stage. During the mid 70s Keith enjoyed a term with hit pop band Chicory Tip then, after stints with various bands, he formed his present band, Shooter.

Keith Dodd - Guitar - Retired from the band 2011: Keith joined the Topspots after appearances with a number of Liverpool bands. Keith's influences include, Hank Marvin, Duane Eddy, Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry etc. Keith joined The Principles before becoming a member of hit Mersey Beat band: The Swinging Blue Jeans. Keith and his wife have been long time supporters of children's charity 'MerseyCats'.


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CD


For details of how to purchase this CD and all booking enquiries
email: topspots@jkhmusic.co.uk
Track Listing

1.     36 24 36
2.     F.B.I.
3.     Mean Woman Blues
4.     Candy Man
5.     Someday
6.     Summertime Blues
7.     Oh Boy
8.     It Doesn't Matter Any More
9.     It's So Easy
10.   Blue Days Black Nights
11.   Hello Mary Lou
12.   Honey Don't
13.   You Got Me Running
14.   Johnny B Good

All tracks were recorded at
JKH Music Productions
Stable Studios
Merseyside

Produced & Engineered by Keith Hubbard

This CD is ongoing evidence
that good musicians never lose
the will to create great music
...

Listen to the TOPSPOTS - recorded May 2009

Click to Play CANDY MAN

 

To Download an MP3 of CANDY MAN
Right Click Here and "Save Target As..."

For the latest News & Gig details see Ricky's Blog


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