Often hailed as 'Britain's own Elvis Presley', Billy Fury was one of the nation's first rock and roll stars and a true pop idol.
He had his first Top 20 hit in 1959 and went on to have more hit singles than the Beatles in the '60s, so what was it about Billy that gave him the X factor back then and continues to do so to this day, more than 30 years after his death?
Billy's career in the music industry began with his ambition to be a songwriter. In 1958, he walked into a theatre near his home in Liverpool with the intention of bringing his songs to the attention of Marty Wilde who was playing there.
Marty was already a well-known singer, appearing on TV shows such as Oh Boy! and Billy thought the songs he'd written would suit his 'teen idol' style. Marty's manager, Larry Parnes, was so impressed by the songs Billy performed for Marty that he suggested Billy should get out onto the stage and sing them himself that very evening.
Billy's talent as a songwriter set him on the road to stardom as Britain's No.1 rock and roller, and set him apart from most other performers at that time.
However, his resistance to the idea of performing on stage is now a legendary tale that has been told many times in interviews.
Billy's ambition had been to write songs, not perform them, so stepping out onto the stage was not part of the plan when he walked into the Essoldo Theatre that evening.
He described himself as a shy guy, something he often said held him back in life, and he was literally pushed out onto the stage by Larry Parnes. He said;
I was standing behind the curtains, unable to go on, when Larry literally pushed me through onto the stage. I was so nervous, my legs were shaking, and people thought it was my act.
Are you still a fan of Billy Fury? Were you ever lucky enough to see him perform live?
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