Dave Berry

Dave Berry (born David Holgate Grundy, 6 February 1941) is an English rock singer and former teen idol during the 1960s. His best-remembered hits are “Memphis, Tennessee“, “The Crying Game” (1964) and his 1965 hit Little Things“, a cover version of Bobby Goldsboro‘s Stateside top 40 success.

Dave Berry, real name David Holgate Grundy, was born in the Woodhouse ward of SheffieldSouth Yorkshire on 6 February 1941.  His father, a bricklayer, was also a professional jazz drummer, and taught Dave how to play the instrument. Berry attended Woodhouse County Council School and left school at age sixteen and worked as a welder

Berry’s first band that he led was called The Cruisers. A big fan of American rock and roll musician Chuck Berry, Dave Grundy changed his surname to “Berry”, and when he signed onto Decca Records with the Cruisers in 1963, after being spotted at a ballroom in Doncaster, his debut single was a cover of the Berry’s song “Memphis, Tennessee“. The song went to number nineteen in the United Kingdom in September 1963.  The following year, his song “Little Things“, originally recorded by Bobby Goldsboro, went to number five in the UK and number one in the Netherlands.  “This Strange Effect” (1965), written by Ray Davies, became a number one hit for him in the Netherlands and Belgium, countries where he still enjoys celebrity status, having received an award from Radio Veronica, Netherlands, for their best selling pop single of all time. B. J. Thomas‘s sentimental “Mama” (1966) and “Don’t Gimme No Lip Child”, the latter is the flip to Berry’s No. 5 hit single, “The Crying Game”, in 1964, and covered by the Sex Pistolswere other notable recordings.

Berry released five singles during the 1970s: “Change Our Minds” (1970), “Chaplin House” (1970), “Moving On (Turning Around)” (1972), “I Can Make You Cry” (1973), and “Night of the Fly” (1977), and released his final two in the 1980s: “Anyone Else but You for Me” / “Pebble to Pearls” (1980), and a cover of The Rolling Stones song “Out of Time” (1982). In 1987, he released his first studio album in nineteen years titled “Hostage to the Beat”.

The Geoff Stephens-penned song “The Crying Game” brought Berry’s voice to his biggest international audience in 1992, when it was used as the theme song for the film The Crying Game. In the final quarter of 2010, “Little Things” was used in an advertisement campaign on British television by Andrex toilet paper.[1] Berry also regained some recognition when he was the surprise hit of the annual Alexis Korner Tribute in 1995. In 1998 “This Strange Effect” was covered by the Belgian band, Hooverphonic, on their album, Blue Wonder Power Milk.

In 2004, Berry released his sixth and currently latest studio album called “Memphis…In The Meantime”, under Blues Matters records.

In May 2009, Berry toured the UK and appeared in a cameo role in a theatrical production, The Mod Crop. In August that year, RPM Records issued a double CD anthology of Berry’s earliest recordings for Decca, entitled This Strange Effect (The Decca Sessions 1963–1966).  The package added two previously unissued tracks made in 1963 (before Berry signed with Decca) with producer Mickie Most: “Easy To Cry” and “Tongue Twisting”. Berry’s illustrated autobiography, Dave Berry – All There Is To Know, was published in 2010 by Heron Publications Ltd. It included contributions from Joe Cocker, Ray Davies, Tony IommiPeter Stringfellow and Bill Wyman.

double compilationPicture Me Gone – The Decca Sessions 1966–1974, was released in January 2011. Berry is still touring as of 2023, and is a recurring act in the Sixties Gold tour. Currently in his backing band, the Cruisers, are Daniel Martin (lead guitar since 2010), Adrian Fountain (rhythm guitar since late 2011), Dan Wright (drums, from January 2013) and Brian Wood (bass guitar, joined 24 years ago, the longest serving member of the band).

He had an unusual ambition for a pop performer trying to make a name for himself – to appear on television completely hidden by a prop.  In his own words, to “not appear, to stay behind something and not come out”. He often hid behind the upturned collar of his leather jacket, or wrapped himself around, and effectively behind, the microphone lead. His stage act, which drew on the work of Elvis Presley and Gene Vincent, provided an inspiration for Alvin Stardust.

He currently lives in DronfieldDerbyshire, with  his wife Marthy, who comes from AmsterdamNetherlands, who have been married for over 50 years. 

In addition to music, Berry also runs an antique business, where he mainly sells small furniture and rock memorabilia.  He has opened two antique shops, one in his hometown of Sheffield, and another near his current residence in Derbyshire

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