20 August 2006
I've discovered a goldmine in the form of the Radio Weekly microfilm archive at the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library. Fellow Singaporeans keen on learning more about our musical past might want to spend several hours (or days!) going through the archived issues housed there on microfilm.
The following content was extracted from articles published in Radio Weekly over 1963-64.
The Crescendos were the first Singaporean group to be signed on by an international recording label, Philips. Comprising three guitarists, John Chee, Leslie Chia, Raymond Ho and 15-year-old powerhouse singer Susan Lim, the band first performed in Radio Singapore's 1961 Talentime Contest. Their first few releases were hits in Singapore, Malaysia and Holland, and the band later included a bass guitarist (Israel Lim) and drummer (Peter Soh) to their line up.
Their third single, "The Boy Next Door", shot to the number 2 spot in the Philips International Top Ten in July 1963, beating artists like The Four Seasons, The Merseybeats, and Dusty Springfield. By September 1964, it sold over 15,000 copies in Malaya alone. Philips even included the single in a year-end compilation record alongside other top international Philips artists.
The Crescendos - The Boy Next Door