2007   MAY 3   #123

Sindy Meets The Dollybeats

Sindy Meets The Dollybeats (3:40)
Sindy (2:30)

'Who's the doll that knocks us out?
Makes us yell and shake about.
It's Sindy - the doll we love the best!'

Meet Sindy. She was created by British company Pedigree in 1963 to rival the success of Barbie from the US. In a few years all manner of spin-off products were created including Sindy's very own record sung by ficticious group The Dollybeats that hit the stores in 1966.

Sindy's boyfriend (introduced in 1964) was called Paul, thought to be based on Paul McCartney. So naturally The Dollybeats are based on the Fab Four being a four piece beat group from Liverpool and one of them is called Paul. We know this because the fake biogs of the group members on the back of the sleeve tell us so. It also reveals that singer Cliff Warwick's ambition was to be a film director, bassist Paul May is a good cook and 'wants to own a restaurant one day', while most perversely we learn that lead guitarist Terry Coombes 'designs and supervises' all the group's outfits which sounds unlikely and just a tad camp. Black leather suits perhaps, cut very tight across the waist?

The sleeve text also reveals how The Dollybeats got together. Group leader Cliff was an art student who formed the band in order to play at their Student Ball when the College couldn't afford to book any of the other big groups. This led to a gig at a coffee bar where a talent scout heard them and 'signed them up there and then' to do a tour with 'a big group' and they haven't looked back since.

But before we hear the Dollybeats sing their ode to Sindy we have to endure a special story that reveals how Sindy's own song came to be made. On the plus side this story is peppered with some small bursts of groovy beat music, on the negative side it's narrated by an irritating over-zealous narrator who sounds like he spent his life as an announcer on the BBC's Light Programme and is terrible at doing a scouse accent ('Wack'). But if you can bear to listen you'll see that switched-on Sindy was one of the DB's biggest fans but missed out on the chance to get tickets to see them: "Oh my - I'll just die if I don't see the Dollybeats" she gasps! But good girl Sindy got lucky. Having helped a bearded old gentleman across the road, she was amazed to discover that, after removing his false whiskers, it was the one and only Cliff Warwick, lead singer of her fave band, in disguise to avoid the hordes of fanatic female followers! Dolly wow! As a reward the dizzy doll was invited to a rehearsal and was even made the subject of the Dollybeat's next single which they somehow wrote in their dressing room in five minutes. Dolly wow! Do you think Macca wrote all of his hits that way?

Of course in reality she would have helped The Dollybeats in 'other ways' in order to gain such back stage priviliges. Ways involving more movable parts than poor Sindy was blessed with. Ways involving her having more plums in her mouth than the nausiating narrator has!

The 'Sindy' song is a splendid slice of sixties beat featuring some ferocious Farfisa organ and ubiquitous super-squeaky go-go backing vocals. The lyrics are a bit lame but there's a nice reference to her being better than 'Jane or Mary Anne' which sounds like a sheilded reference to pot. Sadly no real writers or musicians are credited so it's not known who the real geniuses behind this disc were. To cover themselves legally Pedigree end the sleeve text with the mundane message: 'The name of the group and the names of the members are fictitious and if any person considers he has been defamed by the use of his name then the supposed defamation is entirely unintentional.'.

- Contributed by: David Noades

Image: Cover

Label: Pedigree Dolls Ltd
Catalogue: SD3/4
Year: 1966