November 17, 2015
Glyn Ellis took his professional name from Elvis’ drummer D.J. Fontana. He and his backing band, The Mindbenders, began releasing singles in the their native country, Great Britain, in 1963. They were basically cover songs such as Fats Domino “My Girl Josephine” Bo Diddley’s “Roadrunner,” the Coasters “Love Potion Number 9,” and the eternal rock classic “Little Darlin.'” None reached the charts.
Their breakthrough came in the fall of 1964 when their take on Major Lance’s “Um Um Um Um Um” reached number five. Their first release in the United States proved to be their most successful. “Game Of Love” reached the BILLBOARD Hot 100 on March 20, 1965. It became the number one song in America for one week on April 24, 1965.
The vocal has an odd and quirky cadence but was memorable and perfect for top 40 radio airplay of the day.
Fontana left the band but The Mindbenders carried on and just missed the brass ring as on April 16, 1966, when “A Groovy Kind Of Love”spent two weeks at number two.
September 13, 2012
Wayne Fontana & The Mindbenders hit number one during the spring of 1965 with their first chart hit in the United States with “Game Of Love.” A year later Fontana left the group. Rather than disband, the remaining members carried on and reached number two with “A Groovy Kind Of Love” during 1966.
They would only have one more chart hit. “Ashes To Ashes” reached number 55 on the BILLBOARD MAGAZINE Pop Singles Chart during the late summer of 1966. This was my favorite single by the band as it had a dense and textured feel that was missing from their big hits.
Original member Eric Stewart and later member Graham Gouldman would go on to form 10CC.
August 18, 2012
Wayne Fontana and The Mindbenders’ first chart hit in the United States grabbed the brass ring as “Game Of Love” reached number one on the BILLBOARD MAGAZINE Pop Singles Chart during the first half of 1965. Fontana left for a solo career about six months later but vocalist/guitarist Eric Stewart, bassist Bob Lang, and drummer Ric Rothwell decided to carry on.
They had one big hit as just The Mindbenders. “A Groovy Kind Of Love” reached number two during 1966. They would only have one more chart hit before disbanding.
Its been said before but a good song is always a good song. During 1988, Phil Collins would issue a pop version of “A Groovy Kind Of Love” and take it all the way to number one.