From January 1962 to August 1963, The Tornados ( pioneered,named and owned by Joe Meek ) were the backing band of Billy Fury (as well as recording and performing as an act in their own right); they toured and recorded with Fury as The Tornados. Their recordings with Fury were produced by Mike Smith and Ivor Raymonde.
The Tornados made a scopitone film (an early form of music video) for "Telstar" and another for their chart hit "Robot" featuring members of the group walking around woodland dressed in appropriate headgear with their guitars, flirting with various young women and being finally arrested by policemen after lighting a campfire.
For a time the Tornados were considered serious rivals to The Shadows. The Tornados single "Globetrotter" made it to No.5 in the UK Singles Chart. However, pop instrumentals began to lose popularity with British audiences during the course of 1963 as the 'Mersey Sound', most notably The Beatles, became more and more popular. In the summer of 1963,
Joe Meek induced The Tornados' bassist Heinz Burt to start a solo career, as The Tornados
' chart success as an instrumental outfit waned, and from that point onwards The Tornados
began to fall apart. By 1965 none of the original lineup remained.
On some promotional items, later lineups were credited as Tornados '65 and The New
Tornados, but these names were never used on The Tornados' releases. In the
mid-'sixties The Tornados backed Billy Fury again, with Dave Watts on keyboards,
Robby Gale on guitar and John Davies on drums. In 1968, in Israel to perform in
Mandy Rice-Davies' night club "Mandys", the band stayed for a ten-week tour after
which they disbanded, leaving Watts and Huxley in Israel,
playing withThe Lions of Judea and The Churchills respectively.
After drummer Clem Cattini left The Tornados in 1965 he became a successful session musician, playing on recording sessions for other artists, and was featured in Cliff Richard's backing bands. He holds the record for appearing the most times on UK No.1 singles.
Dave Watts continued recording at Joe's recording studio at 304 Holloway Road, Islington & performing concerts still being managed by Meek.
Rhythm guitarist George Bellamy is the father of Matthew Bellamy, the front man for British alternative rock band Muse.
Reformed as The New Tornados in the early 1970s as the backing group for Marty Wilde, Billy Fury and others on a year long UK Rock n Roll Tour. They continued for another few years with Lead Guitarist Tony Cowell and Drummer Jon Werrell touring with original members Norman Hale and Heinz Burt plus "The King Of Rock Roll" Carl Simmons. The group were often part of a '60s package with other artists including Wee Willie Harris and Screaming Lord Sutch.
It was Jon Werrell who loaned his Silver Premier drum kit to John Bonham
when Led Zeppelin played their famous impromptu December 1975 gig
at Behans St Helier whilst tax exiles in Jersey.
In 1975 Clem Cattini, Roger LaVern, Heinz Burt and George Bellamy
reunited and released a version of "Telstar" as the Original Tornados.
In the 1970s Billy Fury formed a new backing band called Fury's Tornados
with a completely unrelated line-up. They also recorded and released
a version of "Telstar" in the mid 1970s.
Clem Cattini has now officially retired from performing live concerts.
Clem Cattini (born 28 August 1938, Stoke Newington, London) - drums (1960-1965)
Heinz Burt (born Heinz Henry Georg Schwartze, 24 July 1942, Detmold, Germany — died 7 April 2000, Weston, Hampshire) - bass guitar (1960-1963)
Stuart Taylor (born 23 October 1944, in London - died 18 April 2005) - lead guitar (1964-1965)
Jimmy O'Brien - keyboards (1964-1965)
George Bellamy (born 8 October 1941, Sunderland, County Durham) - rhythm guitar (1962-1965)
Alan Caddy (born 2 February 1940, Chelsea, London — died 16 August 2000) - lead guitar (1962-1965)
Norman Hale - keyboards (1962)
Roger LaVern (born Roger Jackson, 11 November 1938, Kidderminster, Worcestershire — died 15 June 2013) - keyboards (1962-1964)
Tab Martin (born Alan Raymond Brearley, 24 December 1944, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland) - bass guitar (1963)
Brian Gregg (born 31 January 1939, London) - bass guitar (1963)
Ray Randall (born 7 November 1944, Bushey, Hertfordshire) - bass guitar (1963-1966)
Dave Watts - keyboards (1965-1967)
Bryan Irwin - rhythm guitar (1965-1966)
Dave Cameron - lead guitar (1965-1966)
Tony Marsh - keyboards (1965)
Peter Adams - drums (1965-1966)
Roger Warwick - tenor saxophone (1965-1966)
John Davies - Drums (1966-1967)
Robb Huxley - lead guitar (1966-1967)
Pete Holder -Lead Guitar Vocals (1966-1967)
Roger Holder - bass guitar (1966-1967)
Jon Werrell - Drums (1973-1974) The New Tornados with original members Heinz Burt and pianist Norman Hale
Tony Cowell - Lead Guitar (1972-1974) The New Tornados backing Billy Fury, Marty Wilde, Heinz Burt, Norman Hale etc.
Dave Watts - keyboards
Shaun Corrigan - guitar / vocals
Jamie Thurston - vocals / bass guitar
Tristan Long - drums
Dave Watts, second from left