A REUNION? COMING SOON!


Occasionally we hear from old fans, who invariably ask:  Wouldn't a re-union of Mel, Mel & Julian be wonderful?

A REUNION IS "IN THE WORKS"!
The band is planning to re-unite in South Africa in 2018 for a few dates in the Johannesburg area... Where? When? To be arranged soon, so please watch this space for details!

We are pleased to announce our booking agent: Please contact Rael Birns at Rael@raelbirns.co.za or 082 452-1100

 

Mel, Mel & Julian from an interview in a Durban newspaper, drawn by Jock Leyden, who got it right!

 

   Mel Miller continues his stellar career as Grandfather of South African comedy at shows around South Africa.
   Julian Laxton continues to make his own great music, plus sessions, sound-tracks, commercials around South Africa.  
   Mel Green is a professional Graphic Designer and Illustrator by day, is a songwriter and sings solo around Boston, USA...
   So, please watch this space and your local media for news of future shows!

Once upon a time in the 60s...

How Mel & Mel met: where they performed; when Julian joined the band; who they met along the way; their influences and the key people in their brief, but sweet career ... and what they're up to today. Enjoy!

Links in the M,M&J Chain...

Influences & Earworms...

Two young guys singing in an art school classroom at lunch hour to appreciative listeners, and the realization that they had something special.

Key people and places in their career:

The Troubadour Coffee/Steakhouse in Johannesburg, THE folk club where it was happening!

Gary Bryden, Brit folkie, who got Little Mel up on stage at the Troub in the first place.

Keith Blundell, who auditioned Mel & Mel and who without hesitation offered them a weekly gig at the Johannesburg Troubadour..

Des Lindberg who kept them on at the Troubadour as headliners, when they weren't playing full-time at their long hotel residencies.

Ben Segal, quiet folk fanatic and founder of SAFMA, the South African Folk Music Association, and 3rd Ear Music, who opened his vast collection of music and his hospitality to the guys. 

Johnny Kongos, friend and a hit-making rock & roller, who encouraged them & introduced them to...

John E. Sharpe, a wonderful bluesman, who was managed by...

Billy Forrest, South Africa's greatest C&W singer and mentor to many young musicians, who became their manager, friend and guiding light.

Brenda Newfield, a wonderful folksinger, who gave Mel  & Mel some of their first gigs, and who opened up her home & her record collection to them, thus helping them expand their repertoire. 

David Sapire, a photographer and a fan who also helped with their repertoire, and who most significantly... introduced Mel and Mel  to his brother Julian!

Mike Dorsey, entrepreneur & club owner on the Durban music scene, became a fan, a mentor and helped the band in many ways.

Their influences. They  listened to everything possible, at parties, record shops, friend's living rooms, records and reel-to-reel tapes... absorbing everything that appealed to their evolving musical tastes and their developing musical skills. 

See the BLOG PAGE which has a list of recording artists and songs which first caught their ear(s) and whose styles and genres were adapted to suit their style, carrying on the "the folk-process" down in South Africa.

 

Historic Reference

In 1994 Mel, Mel & Julian were acknowledged and included in the book, "History of Contemporary Music in South Africa"...taking their place as one of few notable folk groups to make an impression on the evolving contemporary music scene.

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No Money Down

02:31
Mel, Mel & Julian welcome you!
Chuck Berry

Story

This great song by Chuck Berry, is a favourite. The band first heard it on a recording by John Hammond Jr. and they loved it. Julian listened to it once and had it figured out immediately. Here Little Mel adds one of his first voyages into Blues Harp, backing up Big Mel's vigorous vocals! The audiences loved it and it was a must for inc;usion on their last LP "Miscellanea".

Lyrics

As I was motivatin'
Back in town
I saw a Cadillac sign
Sayin' "No Money Down"
So I eased on my brakes
And I pulled in the drive
Gunned my motor twice
Then I walked inside
Dealer came to me
Said "Trade in your Ford
And I'll put you in a car
That'll eat up the road
Just tell me what you want
And sign on that line
And I'll have it delivered to you
Yeah, in a hour's time"

I'm gonna get me a car
And I'll be headed on down the road
Then I won't have to worry
About that broken-down, wrecked Ford

"Mister, I want a yellow convertible
A four-door de Ville
With a Continental spare
And a wire chrome wheels
Power steering
And power brakes
I want a powerful engine man
With a jet off-take
Air conditioning
And automatic heat
And I want a full roll-away bed
In my back seat
I want shortwave radio
I want TV and a phone
You know I gotta talk to my baby
When I'm ridin' alone"

Yes, I'm gonna get that car
And I'm gonna head on down the road
Yeah, then I won't have to worry
About that broken-down, wrecked Ford

"I want four carburettors
And two straight exhausts
I'll put in' aviation fuel
No matter what the cost
I want railroad air horns
And a military spot
And I want a five-year guarantee
On everything I got
I want ten dollar deductible
On a  twenty dollar notes
Thirty thousand dollars
That's all she wrote”.

I got me a car
And I'm headed on down the road
No money down
I don't have to worry
About that broken-down, wrecked Ford