These excerpts from New Musical Express, kindly selected for 'Beyond the Pale' by Yan Friis, provide an evocative summary of the pop-music climate into which Procol Harum emerged. This little review and advert must be among the earliest printed references to A Whiter Shade of Pale.
Front page: a full page advertisement for John's Children's new 45: Desdemona (picture of the young Marc Bolan and all).
No 1 on the NME Top 30: Puppet On A String, Sandie Shaw
New discs on chart this week, among others:
No 17, Waterloo Sunset, The Kinks
No 20, Then I Kissed Her, The Beach Boys
No 22, The First Cut Is the Deepest, PP Arnold
No 24, The Wind Cries Mary, Jimi Hendrix Experience
Tipped for the charts by Derek Johnson:
The Supremes, The Happening
Nancy Sinatra, Love Eyes
Walker Brothers, Walking In The Rain
Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich, Okay!
In the tiny column Potted Pops on the same page we find the following:
Procol Harum: A Whiter Shade Of Pale (Deram). A gripping blues-tingled ballad, warbled in heartfelt style by the soloist. Outstanding backing highlights some delicious organ work. Hummable, thoroughly impressive.
There was also an advert: not big, but still. It was placed in the middle of the centre spread news pages.
Read more from the first year of Procol press