The Fourmost are a four piece band and were originally called ‘The FourJays’. Formed in September 1959 the original drummer was Brian Redman with Joey Bower on guitar.
They rehearsed at the Florence Institute in the Dingle area of Liverpool.
Dave Lovelady joined in 1962 and Millward joined ‘The Four Jays’ in late 1961. They changed their name to ‘The Fourmost’ and signed a management deal with Brian Epstein in June 1963.
The band signed to EMI/Parlophone soon after to be produced by George Martin.
Being part of the Epstein stable they were given access to Lennon & McCartney material but they were also good friends of The Beatles playing the same clubs. They also played at Paul McCartney’s 21st birthday party.
The bands vocalist and bass player Billy Hatton had been a close friend of George Harrison in their school days and they practiced guitar together in each other’s house after school.
Billy Hatton has become a good friend to me since our meeting in 1997 and I know he was very sad at the passing of his friend George when he died of cancer.
Hello Little Girl
Their first hit “Hello Little Girl” was written by John Lennon in the back of the van. When it was released it reached number 9 in the UK charts (August 1993).
The bands second single ‘I’m In Love’ only managed to reach number 17 in the UK charts. Their best selling single ‘A Little Loving’ reached number 6 in mid 1964.
The band played live gigs touring throughout the UK and abroad. They did one of the longest stints at The London Palladium performing nightly for over 6 months, plus a Saturday matinee performance.
Baby I Need Your Loving
None of their later singles reached the top 20 but the release date of their version of ‘Baby I Need Your Loving’ was supposedly delayed to allow ‘The Fourtops’ version to enter the charts.
This was obviously not good for the band as their excellent version could have easily charted without that delay.
The bands continued on the circuit for some time and now have a few bands out there today using their name. I saw Billy and Dave performing as The Fourmost at the Liverpool Arena last Year and the Empire theatre in 2008. Both gigs were great but they may have been the last performances. Billy Hatton says “that’s it now”, but somehow I don’t think so and I certainly hope they play again.
Billy Hatton – born 9 / 06 /1941 – bass/vocals
Dave Lovelady – born 16 /10 /1942 – drums/vocals
Mike Millward – born 9 /05 /1942 – guitar vocals from June 1962. Died in 1966 of Leukemia.
Brian O’Hara – born 12 /03 /1941 – lead guitar/vocals died 27 /06 /1999