December 1, 2004

SJP


Artist: Esquires, The (Ottawa)




Bob Harrington (lead vocals; 1962-1963)
Don Norman (lead vocals; replaced Harrington 1963-1965)
Gary Comeau (lead guitar; 1961-1965)
Paul Huot (rhythm guitar, vocals; 1962-1965)
Clint Hierlihy (bass; 1961-1965)
Richard Patterson (drums; 1963-1967)
Gayle Thomson (vocals; 1962)
Bert Hurd (drums; 1962-1963)
Brian "Lewis" Lewicki (vocals, guitar, bass; replaced Norman 1965-1967)
Ted Gerow (keyboards; 1966)
John Cassidy (guitar: 1966)
Douglas Orr (bass; 1967)
Bruce Cockburn (guitar, vocals; 1967)
Robert Coulthart (drums; replaced Patterson 1967)

The Esquires were co-founded in the Ottawa Valley region in 1962 by Clint Hierlihy and Gary Comeau having become neighbours again following years together in an Ottawa high school band called The Fairmonts (1959-1961). They played their first show at the Rockcliffe Air Base Teen Club. After several personnel changes through 1962, they joined the Musicians' Union in 1963, and were contracted weekend regulars at the Pineland Dance Pavilion in Ottawa. It was here that they backed up Montreal singer Marty Hill. They also landed a performance backing up Andy Kim on Dick Clark's Caravan Of Stars at Faucher Stadium in Montreal also featuring Gene Pitney, The Dovells, Paul And Paula, and The Tymes.

Several months later, they were introduced to Ottawa Journal columnist Sandy Gardner who contaced Paul White, A & R man for Capitol Records Canada, and recommended he listen to a demo tape of the band.

White was anxious to have a Shadows-styled act on the label and The Esquires were signed by Capitol Records Canada in 1963 -- the first rock act sign to a major label in Canada. Their first single was "Atlantis" in 1963, followed by "The Man From Adano", and their biggest hit "So Many Other Boys" in late 1964 which won them The RPM Award - predecessor of the Juno - for Best Vocal And Instrumental Group in 1964. Over a two year period the band released five singles and an album for Capitol called "Introducing The Esquires" in August 1964 before moving to Columbia Records in 1965.

Sandy Gardiner had kept them busy during this time and landed them prestigious dates with some of the 1960's biggest rock and roll stars such as The Rolling Stones, The Beach Boys, Dave Clark Five and Roy Orbison.

In 1965 Clint Hierlihy left the band to focus on producing The Esquires and other Ottawa-area bands and to complete his education. Richard Patterson brought in old pal Brian Lewicki (the two were in a band originally called the Vibra Tones) to replace Hierlihy on bass. Upon leaving Hierlihy signed the band's name over to vocalist Don Norman. An internal dispute caused Norman to quit and take the name with him. Soon, Lewicki switched to guitar and took Norman's place as vocalist. Eventually, the band took Norman to court and won the rights back to the name. Don Norman was left calling his new act Don Norman & The Other Four.

Gary Comeau and Paul Huot left The Esquires shortly after to join other bands, leaving Richard Patterson to carry on with Ted Gerow, and John Cassidy.

By 1967 even Patterson had left the fold leaving Lewicki, Robert Coulthart (drums), Doug Orr (bass) and Bruce Cockburn (guitar) to carry on to its ultimate demise that year.

A 25th Anniversary reunion occurred in 1987 with Norman, Huot, Hierlihy, Comeau, Patterson, and Lewicki performing at a fund raising event in Ottawa. In 1993 two music clips featuring the band were uncovered - "The Man From Adano" and "Gee Whiz It's You" (featuring original vocalist Bob Harrington). The former is considered the first Canadian music video ever made. The clips were aired on television for the first time on CBC-TV and frequently pop up on MuchMusic. The original footage was donated to the National Archives in Ottawa.

Patterson went on to join Three's A Crowd with Bruce Cockburn, David Wiffen and Colleen Peterson following the Esquires; Coulthart and Orr were stolen away by Peter Jermyn of Luke & The Apostles to form The Modern Rock Quartet; Gerow went on to join The Staccatos which later evolved into Five Man Electrical Band; Only Comeau and Patterson are still active in the music industry.

EMI released The Esquires' only LP on CD in 2000. On August 25, 2005 Norman, Comeaum Huot, Patterson and Hierlihy reunited to celebrate Hierlihy's 60th birthday.

Bob Harrington died in 2005; Richard Patterson died April 3, 2011 after a long illness. with notes from Cliff Hierlihy, Don Norman, Gary Comeau and Richard Patterson.




Singles
as BOB HARRINGTON & THE ESQUIRES
1963 Atlantis/I've Lost My Girl (Capitol) 72126
1964 The Man From Adano/Gee Whiz It's You (Capitol) 72137


as THE ESQUIRES
1964 So Many Other Boys/The Oldest Story (Capitol) 72193
1965 Cry Is All I Do/We've Got A Future (Capitol) 72219
1965 Love's Made A Fool Of You/Summertime (Capitol) 72277
1966 It's A Dirty Shame/The Sea Rushes To The Shore (Columbia)
1966 Love Hides A Multitude Of Sins/Why Should I Care? (Columbia)

Albums
1964 Introducing The Esquires (Capitol) T-6075
2000 Introducing The Esquires [CD] (EMI Canada)

Video


Compilation Tracks




John Rowland's Esquires Page
COMING IN OCTOBER 2011: The book version of the Encyclopedia.

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