The Shadows At Sixty – A Great BBC Four Documentary (2020)

The Shadows were one of the greatest (if not the greatest) English instrumental rock band of the 1950s and 1960s. They managed to make a significant name for themselves in the music business in England at an early age and thereby solidify their status as rock stars for the rest of their musical career.

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Being one of the dominant musical groups in late 1950s and early 1960s England, the Shadows greatly contributed to the influence of other emerging rock groups of the ‘British invasion’ which occurred later on throughout the 1960s. They were one of the most significant bands in the pre-Beatles period England and helped to popularise the rock music in the United Kingdom, making electric rock music mainstream.

Their music was a very fine mixture of rock and roll, rockabilly, and instrumental rock, being the popular choice of many teenagers and young adults growing in England during that period of time. Some of them were influenced to such a significant extent that they would pick up a Fender themselves, as it was later on the case. Major English rock artists which have been influenced by The Shadows include Syd Barrett of Pink Floyd (the first frontman of the band), David Gilmour (the fantastic guitarist of Pink Floyd) or the amazing guitarist Pete Townshend of The Who. The latter were featured in a one hour-long BBC four 60th anniversary documentary on the career of The Shadows (which you can watch two paragraphs below embedded via Youtube).

With great hits and very catchy songs such as ‘Apache’, ‘Atlantis’, ‘Wonderful Land’, ‘Man of Mystery’, ‘Kon Tiki’, and many others, the fantastic instrumental rock group The Shadows created an enduring and very beautiful musical legacy which lives on to this day and has influenced, made happy, and enriched the lives of many generations of fans from all across the world.

The following BBC Four documentary released in 2020 to mark the 60th anniversary of the band follows the amazing musical path of a band which made history in England and in the rock genre, from their modest roots to national fame. Below you’ll find out more about the great rock heroes Hank Marvin, Bruce Welch, Cliff Richards, or Brian Bennett as well as the story behind the first electric Fender Stratocaster model in England. Enjoy, all the best, many blessings, and rock on!

P.S.: Here’s a great small ‘taste’ of how The Shadows sounded like back in the beginning of their career (also with vocals):

Part of the moral of the story, in short:

‘Bah bah bah bah
Bah bah bah bah
Bop’ 🎶❤

When I firstly watched this documentary it truly made a big positive artistic and emotional impact on me (and still does). Much respect Hank & Co. for your great music! All the best and hats off! Rock on! 🤘

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