Lost or Forgotten Oldie of the Day 09/06/2019

Unit Four Plus Two was formed when guitar player Brian Parker and Buster Meikle invited schoolmates singer Tommy Moeller and Peter Moules to join them in 1962. The group was initially named the Unit Four. The later addition of more instrumentalists led to the appendance of Plus Two.

Two singles were released in 1964 but they did not chart well.

In 1965 Brian and Tommy wrote their next single, Concrete and Clay, and hit paydirt. The single topped the charts in the UK and reached #28 in the US. (You’ve) Never Been In Love Like This Before followed it onto the charts in the UK and reached #14 before fading but only managed two weeks as high as #95 in the US. The group never found its way into the top forty again.

The group shot a video for Concrete and Clay at an interesting site: the Barbican in London was under construction and the group wandered around the piles of concrete and clay on the street.

A video for (You’ve) Never Been In Love Like This Before appears to have been shot as part of a guitar ad.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the group was the later addition of the “Plus Two.” On the recording of Concrete and Clay, Russ Ballard played guitar and Bob Henrit played drums even though at the time they were both simply studio musicians. They later both joined the band as regular members.

The two of them left the band a few years later and joined Rod Argent of the Zombies to form Argent. That band’s biggest hit was Hold Your Head Up on which Ross sang lead. The single reached #5 in the US and received a gold record for selling over a million copies.

Bob and one other member of Argent (Jim Rodford) eventually joined the Kinks in 1984 and remained with the group until they disbanded in 1996.

Russ went on to become a successful songwriter. Songs he wrote include Three Dog Night’s Liar, Kiss’ God Gave Rock and Roll To You II, Ace Frehley’s New York Groove, America’s You Can Do Magic, ABBA singer Anni-Frid Lyngstad’s solo record I Know There’s Something Going On, and many, many more.


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