STORY BE­HIND THE SONG

The Sunday Post (Dundee) - - Advice -

Can you tell me much about Tel­star by The Tor­na­dos? – L.

The Bea­tles swept all be­fore them in the early ’60s but, con­trary to pop­u­lar be­lief, they weren’t the first UK group to top the US charts.

That hon­our went to The Tor­na­dos, who rock­eted to No 1 in 1962 with a fu­tur­is­tic in­stru­men­tal named after the telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions satel­lite. Un­like the Fab Four, they couldn’t count on lav­ish stu­dios and in­stead recorded in pi­o­neer­ing writer-pro­ducer Joe Meek’s north Lon­don flat.

Meek was fas­ci­nated by outer space and used a clavi­o­line key­board, a fore­run­ner of the ana­log syn­the­sizer, to cre­ate sci-fi-in­spired sound ef­fects.

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