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The Memories

From: Dublin

Active: 1965-1990

Style: Pop/Rock



Pop/rock group noted for their vocal arrangements. They recorded for Rex Records from 1968-74 and then appeared on various small/indie labels. They released two albums and many singles over a 20+ year period. While these are bound to be of minor interest only to readers, The Memories certainly had their moments.

The Memories began in the Dublin club scene. Early bios also mention periods of theatre work and involvment in musicals and stage shows. Their live show initially relied on vocal harmonies, acoustic guitars and folky pop material. In 1972 they went electric, enlisted a proper drummer in Chris Heenan, and became a working band, entering the showband/ballroom circuit where they built a considerable live reputation during the mid-1970s (a barren cultural wasteland in Ireland in terms of local rock music). They kept the balance between originals and covers in their live set at around 50/50. The main song-writing partnership in the band was Mike Swan and Daire Doyle. They wrote several good songs over the years, and the inclusion of original material in their set made them stand out from most of their contemporaries on the ballroom circuit, but ultimately the band's watered down pop-rock recordings fail to really impress. They appeared on Ken Stewart's Ken's Klub show om RTE Radio around this time (circa 1972).

Ex Creatures, Real McCoy and Gentry guitarist Liam McKenna played bass in 1974 when Daire Doyle was involved in a road accident which prevented him from playing. McKenna joined full time as lead guitarist when Colm Harper left the same year. Ray Crowe was next to leave, in 1978, and his replacement was ex Sands lead guitarist Dominic Green, who toughened up their sound somewhat.

Memories adverts October & December 1978

In 1980 Swan, Doyle and Green left to form The Message. The rest of the band continued as The Memories adding Pat Coldrick (guitar), Tony Kelly (guitar), and ex Miami Peter Eades (keyboards/guitar) who took over Mike Swan's role as musical director. Jim Barry began writing with Peter. Liam McKenna switched back to bass for this lineup.

In 1983 The Message split and Swan and Doyle reunited with Jim Barry in a reformed Memories with Pat Coldrick (guitar) and Liam Bradley (drums). Liam McKenna and Tony Kelly had moved on; Peter Eades continued with his own projects, eventually forming Jump The Gun; Chris Heenan retired. Stephen McGowan became guitarist at some point. The Memories continued to perform into the 1990s and 'a' Memories is probably still doing the rounds to this day, but they ceased to exist as a recording unit many years ago. Their swansong was a surprise Irish number one hit in 1990. Guitarist Dominic Greene now plays with the latest incarnation of Eamon Gibney's Allies; Stephen McGowan later joined Who's Eddie and The Persuaders.

The Memories appeared on Irish TV many times over the years. The sleeve notes for the 1972 album mention an hour long show on RTE. They recorded another hour long show called "Best of the Bands" for RTE in 1981. These may still exist on video somewhere.

The Memores in Scene Magazine, 1976


• A Summer Song / Words I Remember
7" - Rex Records - R.11028 - IRL 1967
A-side by Metcalfe/Noble/Stuart; B-side by Derry Lindsay.
Produced by Tommy Ellis.

• Oh No! / Wearing of the Green
7" - Rex Records - R.11035 - IRL - June 1968
Reached #10 in the Irish charts.

• Indian Lake / Be My Girl
7" - Rex Records - R.11039 - IRL - 1968

• Where's The Playground Suzie / I'm Losing You
7" - Rex Records - R.11049 - IRL - 1969

• Exodus / A Summer Song
7" - Rex Records - R.11053 - IRL - 1970
A-side by Gold/Boone, arranged and produced by M.Geoghegan
B-side is from 1967, originally released as the A-side of Rex R.11028.

• She / Wish and Want and Wonder
7" - Rex Records - R.11069 - IRL - 1971

• The Time Is Now
LP - Rex Records - RPS 106 - IRL - 1972

Produced by Dick Rowe.
Uncredited sleeve notes as follows:

Cutting from the Dublin Post 1970, mentioning the band's US tour of the period

• Say Good Morning / Sing A Happy Song
7" - Rex Records - R.11075 - IRL - 1972
Both sides by Swan/Doyle.

• Baby Don't Get Hooked On Me / Baby Let Me Take You In My Arms
7" - Rex Records - R.11079 - IRL - 1972
A-side by Mac Davis which was a CBS single at the same time.
A-side included on the LP 'The Time Is Now'.

• Don't Pretend Anymore / The House Fell Down
7" - Rex Records - R.11089 - IRL - November 1973
Both sides by Swan/Doyle.
B-side included on the LP 'The Time Is Now'.

• Lay It On Me / D'Ja Gerra
• Did Ya Get It? / Lay It On Me
7" - Rex Records - R.11091 - IRL - May 1974
Both sides by Swan/Doyle.
"D'Ja Gerra" is Dublinese for "Did you get it?" Was it really retitled for UK release?

• The Likes of Heffo's Army / Never Goodbye
7" - Rex Records - R.11093 - IRL - August 1974
A-side by Swan/Doyle; B-side by Kennedy.

Notes: GAA-related single released in anticipation of Dublin's 1974 All Ireland victory. Like all sports related singles, this is best forgotten.

• Part Of The Road (Doyle/Swan) / Sing-Along Song (Nutter)
7" - Rex Records - R.11099 - IRL - November 1974
Produced by Tommy Ellis

• What'ya Gonna Tell Your Mama / He Was A Young Boy
7" - Stop! Records - OP 0001 - IRL - 1975
7" - BASF/Colonia Records - AC 192 797 - Germany - 1976 - PS
Both sides by Swan/Doyle. German B-side variation "He Was A Young Man".
Produced by Donal Lunny.
Both sides included on the LP 'Time To Go On'.

• A Child's Time / Pushin' Me Around
7" - label? - ??? - IRL - December 1975
Probably released on Stop! or Hawk or Records. Released before Christmas '75.
Produced by Donal Lunny.
Both sides included on the LP 'Time To Go On'.

• Skyin' / All I've Got
7" - Hawk Records - HASP 390 - IRL - 1976
Both sides by Swan/Doyle.
Produced by Jerry Hughes.
Both sides included on the LP 'Time To Go On'.

• Time To Go On
LP - Hawk Records - HALP 163 - IRL - 1976 - also released on cassette and 8-track

Side one consists of Swan/Doyle originals,originally released on 3 singles during 1975-76.
Side two is all covers.
Produced by Jerry Hughes (A1,A2,B1-B5) and Donal Lunny (A3-A6).
The credits read:
Mike Swann - organ, piano, tambourine & back-up vocals
Daire Doyle - bass, backup vocals
Jim Barry - lead vocals, backup vocals
Ray Crowe - lead guitar, acoustic guitar, dobro, backup vocals
Liam McKenna - lead and acoustic guitars
Chris Heenan - drums and percussion

• All The Kings Horses / Skyin'
7" - NEMS Records - NES105 - UK - June 1977
B-side included on the LP 'Time To Go On'.

• The Main Attraction / We're Comin Back Again
7" - Stop Records - OP1012 - IRL - 1979 - PS

• Broken Hearted People / Thru The Night
12" - Spex Records - SSP 001 - IRL - 1982 - PS
May also exist on 7"

• Stairway To Heaven / Stairway To Heaven (extended)
7" - Ritz Records - RITZ 073 - UK - 1984 - no PS

• Easy Come, Easy Go / Marianne
7" - Ritz Records - RITZ 091 - UK - 1985 - no PS
Reached #22 in the Irish Charts

• Never My Love / Easy Come, Easy Go
7" - Spex Records - SP 014 - IRL - 1986?

• The Game (B.Joel) / Black Betty (Ledbetter)
7" - Spex Records - SP 015 - IRL - 1987 - double A-side
K7 - Spex Records - SP 015 - IRL - 1987
#1 in the Irish Charts.

Notes: "The Ultimate World Cup Hit for all soccer Fans". The A-side is a cover of Billy Joel's 'We Didn't Start The Fire' with new lyrics relating to the Irish soccer squad. Produced by Peter Eades.

• Watching The President / Dead On Arrival
7" - Spex Records - SSP 041 - IRL - 1986
A-side by Swan/Doyle/Barry
Produced by Liam Hurley

• That's Why I'm Crying / If I Don't Have You
7" - Dino Entertainment - DINO ? - IRL - ca 1991 - no PS?
Issued long after Swan and Doyle had called it quits.

Compilation Appearances:

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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