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The Finnavons AKA Gerry & The Finnavons AKA The Finnavons Showband

From: Monaghan

Active: 196?-1970

Style: C&W, later Pop

Lineup 1969: Lineup ca 1970:


The Finnavons began life as a Country & Western showband from the Mecca of that sort of thing, the town of Castleblaney in County Monaghan. With lead singer Gerry Black getting top billing on their debut single, they scored a minor hit with it's A-side "An Exile's Dream", a mawkish C&W ballad, released on Target in Ireland and Pye in the UK. A second single "Wabash Cannonball" appeared the following year. With even more of a country/Nashville sheen than the debut thanks to prominent country fiddle and a twangy vocal, it failed to build on their earlier success (the flipside "Judy" was chosen as A-side for the Pye release in Britain). Tom Allen replaced Gerry Black as lead singer later the same year and the band moved in a pop direction for what would prove to be their last single, a cover of the Soulful Dynamic's "Mademoiselle Ninette", an Irish only release which is now sought after thanks to some groovy organ over a steady Equals style beat. An 1970 clip from the RTE archives shows the band performng this track onstage at a dance hall but Tom Allen, while onstage, does not provide the lead vocal. This was their final release.

Tom Allen later fronted the Sailors Showband before taking on the dizzying heights of the lead singer position with the Mainliners Showband in 1978, replacing John Glenn who had earlier replaced the legendary Big Tom McBride. By 1980 he was solo, scoring a huge novelty hit in Ireland with "Who Shot J.R. Ewing?". Tom is the brother of Tony Allen of Foster & Allen fame.


Gerry & Finnavons - An Exiles Dream / And You're Home
7" - Target Records - 7N 17780 - IRL - 1969
7" - Pye Records - 7N 17780 - UK - 1969

The Finnavons - Wabash Cannonball / Judy
7" - Target Records - 7N 17897 - IRL - 1970
Gerry & The Finnavons - Judy / Wabash Cannonball
7" - Pye Records - 7N 17897 - UK - 24 Feb 1970
Both tracks trad.arr

The Finnavons - Mademoiselle Ninette / The Stranger's Me
7" - Target Records - 7N 17993 - IRL - 1970

Compilation Appearances:

• v/a - The Fabulous Irish Showbands
4xCD - Castle Pulse - PBXCD 476 - UK - 2004
track: Gerry Black & The Finnavons - An Exile's Dream

• v/a - People! Let's Freak Out! (The Irish Rock Rebellion 1963-1970)
5xCD - Particles - PART5CDBOX8 - UK - 2019
track: The Finnavons - Mademoiselle Ninette

See also:

Help!: We need your help to complete this entry. If you can tell us more about this band then please do! We welcome any corrections, missing details, connections to other bands, where are they now, etc. We also need photos, scans, copies of releases or live or demo recordings, and any other memorabilia gathering dust in the attic. If you can help, then please get in touch.

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