The Everly Brothers – Two Yanks in England (1966): Forgotten Series

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The late 1950s and early ’60s were prime time for the Everly Brothers. “Bye Bye Love,” “Wake Up Little Susie,” “All I Have to Do Is Dream,” “Walk Right Back” and “Crying in the Rain” are but a short list of great tunes by siblings Phil and Don Everly that visited the hit parade.

Armed with strummy guitars, glistening harmonies and tightly stitched songs, the American-born Everly Brothers inspired many of the British artists that rocked and remodeled the music industry in the mid-’60s. The Hollies, in particular, never failed to cite Phil and Don as a core influence, so it was quite a thrill when the Manchester band had the opportunity to collaborate with their childhood idols.

Recorded at Pye Studios in London, Two Yanks in England (Warner Bros.) additionally features the handiwork of Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones, who were then session musicians. Page, of course, soon joined the blues-wailing Yardbirds, while both he and Jones made further history at the end of the decade as one-half of the mighty Led Zeppelin.

Two Yanks in England involves a dozen tracks, eight which were written by the Hollies, and were already or later relayed to vinyl by the band. Among some of these cuts are the pretty and poetic “Signs That Will Never Change,” the spunky “I’ve Been Wrong Before,” the aching tug of “So Lonely” and the bright-and-beaming “Have You Ever Loved Somebody.” (The Searchers also covered the latter, and attained a bout of success with it.)

From the pen of the Everly Brothers comes a pair of melody rich marvels, “Kiss Your Man Goodbye,” and “Hard Hard Year,” which was co-authored with Crickets guitarist Sonny Curtis. A fine rendition of the Spencer Davis Group’s “Somebody Help Me” is also included here.

Composed of conventional British beat pop rock sounds, Two Yanks in England rolls in as a pleasant and plucky affair. The album finds the Everly Brothers and the Hollies doing what they do best, which is singing like songbirds. There’s no question these guys were blessed with amazing voices, and Two Yanks in England is a nice memento of such talent.

Beverly Paterson

Beverly Paterson

Beverly Paterson was born the day Ben E. King hit No. 4 with "Stand By Me" -- which is actually one of her favorite songs, especially John Lennon's version. She's contributed to Lance Monthly and Amplifier, and served as Rock Beat International's associate editor. Paterson has also published Inside Out, and Twist & Shake. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Beverly Paterson
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