British 1960s 'pop' band

Not to be confused with the Shadows, an ancient species in the Babylon 5 series. As far as I know, they never played guitars.

The Shadows as we know them began in London in 1958 as the Drifters, a backing band for Cliff Richard. Renamed to avoid confusion with the American R&B band, the original line-up consisted of Hank Marvin, Bruce Welch, Jet Harris and Tony Meehan. Tony and Jet left in 1961 and were replaced with Brian Locking and Brian Bennet and the group worked with Cliff until 1968 when they disbanded, Hank continuing to work with Cliff.

An all-guitar, purely instrumental band, they recorded many well-known British hits, including Apache, Kontiki, Man of Mystery, FBI, Wonderful land and Guitar Tango. They also provided the music for Cliff's films, including the memorable Summer Holiday.

Their success and influence was extraordinary, especially as they were an instrumental group. They had their own moody and melodious sound which was an impetus for many other guitarists, but the major player was undoubtedly Hank Marvin himself - his guitar style and sound made this a unique group with a special place in the hearts of the British music fans.

The group reformed in the 1974 with a new line-up, including John Rostill, with such hits as Don't Cry for Me, Argentina and Theme from The Deerhunter, and represented Britain in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1975, although their days seemed to be over, apart from the occasional trip down Memory Lane.

Occasionally, you'll still hear or see them trotted out during those interminable Sixties specials. Man, they're almost as old as the Rolling Stones.

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