Thursday, October 29, 2015

Zoot - 1968-1971

Zoot were a pop-rock band formed in Adeelaide, South Australia in 1965 as Down the Line. They performed covers of English Mod bands like The Hollies, The Move, The Who, and The Small Faces. Zoot released a few singles for EMI records, and finished second in the Battle Of The Sounds to the Master's Apprentice. They joined other Aussie bands on the national "Operation Starlift" tour, which was a publicity success, but a finantioal disaster.For Zoot it brought public ridicule, peer envy, and scorn from detractors. Much of the criticism was homophobic, "pretty pink pansies", and made the papers when they were assaulted by street thugs resulting in injury. Being labeled as a "Teeny Bopper" band the adopted a more rock style.   They changed their name to Zoot, and relocated to Melboune. They had a top five hit on The Go-Set national singles chart with a hard-rock version of The Beatles' "Elanore Rigby" in 1970, but disbanded in 1971.
Mainstay bassist Beeb Birtles went on to form The Little River Band in 1975, and their guitarist and songwriter Rick Springfield (yes, the "Jessie's Girl" Rick Springfield) mover to the US in 1972 and achieved international success as a solo artist and actor.
Zoot reunited for the "Rick Sprigfield and Friends" cruise in 2011.

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