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Clodagh Rodgers ( ; born 5 March 1947, Ballymenamarker) is a singer and actress from Northern Irelandmarker, best known for her hit single, "Jack in the Box".

Career

Rodgers made her professional debut at age 13 opening for Michael Holliday. Championed by her father, a dancehall tour promoter, Rodgers signed for Decca in 1961, at the age of 14. She made four singles before moving to Columbia in 1965, where she was known as 'Cloda Rogers', the name under which she made the 1966 single "Stormy Weather"/"Lonely Room". Although none of the singles she released for Decca or Columbia made the UK Singles Chart, Rodgers did succeed in becoming a regular face on Britishmarker television and appeared in the musical films Just for Fun and It's All Over Town. She also appeared in various song festivals, finishing third in the European Song Cup competition in Greecemarker, singing "Powder Your Face With Sunshine". Rodgers appeared, along with Honeybus, on BBC Two's music programme, Colour Me Pop on 12 October 1968.

Her career changed dramatically when she married John Morris, who became her manager. She signed a three-single deal with RCA in 1968, but the first two singles failed to chart. Producer and songwriter Kenny Young heard one of these and under his creative wing, and together with Morris' management, she shot to fame in 1969 with two Top 5 hits — "Come Back and Shake Me" and "Goodnight Midnight", which resulted in her being the best selling female singles artist of that year. She also won the award for 'The Best Legs' in British showbusiness and insured her voice for one million pounds. The further single releases "Biljo", "Everybody Go Home, The Party's Over" and "Lady Love Bug", continued her chart success in the next few years. Many of her songs around this time were written and produced by the Americanmarker Kenny Young. In 1970 Rodgers recorded a single called "Give Me Just a Little More Time" with Young which enjoyed moderate success. The duo called themselves Moonshine for this release. In May 1970 Rodgers appeared on the bill at the NME poll-winner's concert, hosted by Tony Blackburn and Jimmy Savile.

Eurovision

By this time, Rodgers became a household name and TV star. In 1970 she was asked to represent the UK in the 1971 Eurovision Song Contest in Dublinmarker. According to John Kennedy O'Connor's The Eurovision Song Contest – The Official History, part of the reasoning behind the BBC's invitation was their concern over what reaction the UK entrant would get on the stage from the Irish public. She received death threats from the IRA as a result of her appearing for the UK.

Heralded by two separate front cover features on the BBC listing's magazine, the Radio Times, Rodgers appeared as the resident guest on It's Cliff Richard, a prime-time variety show hosted by Cliff Richard on BBC One from January 1971, performing one shortlisted song a week for six weeks, followed by a performance of all six on week seven and a repeat of the six songs immediately after. Viewers would normally have been asked to send in postcard votes for their favourites, but owing to a postal strike, regional juries decided the winner, with "Jack in the Box", written by John Worsley and David Myers, being named the winner the following week. The song that placed fourth in the UK selection, "Another Time, Another Place", later became a hit for Engelbert Humperdinck.

For the first time in the Eurovision Song Contest, broadcasters were required to prepare a 'preview' video of the song for broadcast in all the participating Eurovision countries, helping promote the songs before the big night. For the performance in Dublin, Rodgers wore a pink frilly top and spangled hot pants. She finished in fourth place, behind Monacomarker, Spainmarker and Germanymarker. It was the first time since 1966 that the UK had not placed first or second. After Eurovision, the single reached number 4 on the UK Singles Chart, her third and last UK Top 10 success. It remains her most famous hit.

At Eurovision, Rodgers' sister Lavinia was one of her four backing vocalists. In 1982, Lavinia and brother Lewis Rodgers attempted to represent the UK in the contest as part of the group, 'Good Looks'. They failed to come through the UK heat.

Post-Eurovision career

Despite only one more chart single, "Lady Love Bug," in the autumn of 1971, Rodgers continued to be a major TV star in the UK, guesting on many shows, appearing in cabaret and becoming the face of 'Bisto' in a series of television advertisements. On Irishmarker TV, The Clodagh Rodgers Show won an award at the Golden Rose TV festival in Montreuxmarker, and Rodgers starred in many other shows, including Seaside Special for the BBC Television (she hosted the first ever show from Great Yarmouthmarker), The Morecambe and Wise Show and The Two Ronnies.

Rodgers also made a mark with her impressions of fellow artists such as Cilla Black, and often worked with Mike Yarwood, Des O'Connor, Tommy Cooper, Bob Monkhouse and Dickie Henderson in variety.

She was a regular performer in UK resort's summer seasons, sharing the bill with Mike and Bernie Winters, among others. This success was mirrored on stage, where she has starred in Londonmarker's West Endmarker in her own show at the Talk of the Townmarker (breaking Sammy Davis Jr.'s box office record); in Cinderella at the London Palladiummarker (1971); and in two musicals. These were Pump Boys and Dinettes at the Piccadilly and Albery Theatres, and Blood Brothers at the Phoenix Theatre. She also appeared in the UKmarker tour of Blood Brothers between 1995 and 1998.

Her stage career might have been more successful had she not been fired from a show, Meet Me in London, starring Tommy Steele, in April 1971. The sacking damaged her theatrical reputation. Steele dismissed her from the show during rehearsals, accusing her of trying to build up her part; subsequently other stage work dried up. Despite this setback, Rodgers continued with TV work through to the late 1970s, and signed to Polydor Records in 1976. Despite radio airplay and television appearances, her 1977 single "Save Me" failed to chart. The track was covered in the U.S.marker by Louise Mandrell in 1983, who took it to number six on the U.S. country chart. "Save Me" was also covered by the South African all-girl band Clout in 1977.

In 1978, Rodgers teamed with Terry Wogan on the ITV game show 3-2-1 in the programme's first Christmas Special Celebrity edition, and the pair became the first ever contestants (celebrity or otherwise) to end up with the infamous 'Dustbin' as their prize, losing the chance to attain a prize for their nominated charity. She split up from her manager and husband not long after the birth of their son, and opted for motherhood over performing, although she did release two singles on the Precision label in 1980. One of these tracks was "My Simple Heart," which was placed on a B-side. Shortly after its release, The Three Degrees released their version of the song and took it into the UK Top 10. Similarly, Rodgers had released "Stand by Your Man" as the B-side of her 1971 single "Lady Love Bug." This was later a number one hit single for Tammy Wynette in 1975.

Later years

Her second husband, the guitarist Ian Sorbie, died in 1995, not long after their Tauntonmarker based restaurant business collapsed, leaving them bankrupt.

In 1996, the first of two CD retrospectives were issued, bringing Rodgers back into the limelight. In 1998, she made a now rare TV appearance with other former Eurovision artists, performing on comedian John Shuttleworth's Eurovision parody Europigeon on BBC Two, just before the 1998 contest was staged in Birminghammarker. In 1999, Mint Royale issued the track "Shake Me," which sampled Rodgers' original recording of "Come Back And Shake Me." The track was featured in the UK TV production Queer As Folk. In 2001, Rodgers played a recurring character in the ITV drama series The Bill.

Discography

Singles

  • 1962 "Believe Me I'm No Fool" / "End Of The Line" (Decca F11534)
  • 1963 "Sometime Kind Of Love" / "I See More Of Him" (Decca F11607)
  • 1963 "To Give My Love To You" / "I Only Live To Love You" (Decca F11667)
  • 1964 "Mister Heartache" / "Time" (Decca F11812)
  • 1965 "Wanting You" / "Johnny Come Home" (Columbia DB7468)
  • 1966 "Every Day Is Just The Same" / "You'll Come A Running" (Columbia DB7926)
  • 1966 "Stormy Weather" / "Lonely Room" (Columbia DB8038)
  • 1968 "Room Full Of Roses" / "Play The Drama to The End" (RCA 1684)
  • 1968 "Rhythm Of Love" / "River Of Tears" (RCA 1748)
  • 1969 "Come Back And Shake Me" / "I Am A Fantasy" (RCA 1792) - UK Number 3
  • 1969 "Goodnight Midnight" / "Together" (RCA 1852) UK Number 4
  • 1969 "Biljo" / "Spider" (RCA 1891) UK Number 22
  • 1970 "Everybody Go Home The Party's Over" / "Joseph I'm Calling You" (RCA 1930) UK Number 47
  • 1970 "Tangerines Tangerines" / "Wolf" (RCA 1966)
  • 1971 "Jack in the Box" / "Someone To Love Me" (RCA 16066) UK Number 4
(Also released as a 33 1/3 RPM maxi single with three tracks: "Jack In The Box" / "Someone To Love Me" / "The Wind of Change")
  • 1971 "Lady Love Bug" / "Stand by Your Man" (RCA 2117) UK Number 28
  • 1972 "It's Different Now" / "Take Me Home" (RCA 2192)
  • 1972 "You Are My Music" / "One Day" (RCA 2298)
  • 1973 "Carolina Days" / "Loving You" (RCA 2355)
  • 1973 "That’s The Way I've Always Heard It Should Be" (RCA 5248)
  • 1974 "Get It Together" / "Take Me Home" (RCA 5008)
  • 1974 "Saturday Sunday" / "Love Is" (PYE 7N 45387)
  • 1977 "Save Me" / "Sleepyhead" (Polydor 2058804)
  • 1977 "Put It Back Together" / "Lay Me Down" (Polydor 2058887)
  • 1977 "Incident At The Roxy" (Polydor 2058864)
  • 1977 "Loving Cup" / "Morning Comes Quickly" (Polydor 2058934)
  • 1978 "Love Is Deep Inside Of Me" / "Candlelight" (Polydor 2058997)
  • 1980 "I Can't Afford That Feeling Anymore" / "My Simple Heart" (Precision 109)
  • 1980 "Person To Person" / "My Simple Heart" (Precision 119)
  • 1999 "Shake Me" (Mint Royale ft. Clodagh Rodgers) (FHCD010)


Albums

  • 1969 Clodagh Rodgers - (RCA SF8033) - UK Number 27
  • 1969 Midnight Clodagh' - (RCA SF8071)
  • 1971 Rodgers And Heart - (RCA Victor SF8180)
  • 1971 Clodagh Rodgers (Compilation) - (RCA Camden CDS1094)
  • 1972 It's Different Now - (RCA SF8271)
  • 1973 You Are My Music - (RCA SF8394)
  • 1973 Come Back And Shake Me (Compilation) - (RCA International 1434)
  • 1977 Save Me - (Polydor Super 2383473)
  • 1996 You Are My Music - The Best Of Clodagh Rodgers (Compilation CD) - (BMG Camden BM830)
  • 1997 The Masters (Compilation CD) - (Eagle EACD076)


See also



References

  1. Sleeve notes, Backcomb 'n' Beat: Dream Babes Volume Three (RPM CD, 2001)
  2. The Eurovision Song Contest - The Official History. O'Connor, John Kennedy. Carlton Books UK ISBN 978-1-84442-944-3
  3. Lastfm.com - Rodgers' appearance
  4. Chartstats.com - UK Chart details
  5. 45-rpm.org | Clodagh Rodgers feature
  6. Highbeam.com - accessed April 2009
  7. ThisisBristol.co.uk - accessed April 2009
  8. IMDb.com - accessed April 2009


External links




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