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The Honeycombs

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Associated acts
Lead singer
Dennis D'Ell

Pop group

The Honeycombs


Beat music, Pop music

The Honeycombs The JOE MEEK Page CD Discography The Honeycombs The

Years active
1963–1967 / 2004–present

Pye (UK)Interphon, Warner (US)

Past members
Denis D'Ell (deceased)Alan WardJohn LantreeHoney LantreePeter PyeColin BoydRod ButlerEddie Spence

London, United Kingdom (1963)

Honey Lantree, Dennis D'Ell, John Lantree

Have I the Right - The Very Best Of, All Systems – Go!

Joe Meek, Alan Blaikley, Billy J Kramer, The Dakotas, The Tornados

The honeycombs this too shall pass away

The Honeycombs were an English beat/pop group, founded in 1963 in North London, best known for their chart-topping 1964 hit, the million selling "Have I the Right?" The band was also notable for having Honey Lantree on drums, one of the few female drummers in bands at that time.


The Honeycombs THROWBACK the Honeycombs Tom Tom Magazine

The honeycombs totem pole


The Honeycombs wwwthehoneycombsinfoimageshoneycombsMKI1jpg

The original group members were:

The Honeycombs The Honeycombs Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

  • Denis D'Ell (born Denis James Dalziel, 10 October 1943, Whitechapel, East London; died of cancer 6 July 2005) – lead singer and harmonica player
  • Martin Murray (born 7 October 1941, the East End of London) – rhythm guitar. He was replaced by Peter Pye (born 12 July 1946, Walthamstow, London) in November 1964
  • Alan Ward (born 12 December 1945, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire) – lead guitar
  • John Lantree (born John David Lantree, 20 August 1940, Newbury, Berkshire) – bass guitar
  • Honey Lantree (born Ann Margot Lantree, 28 August 1943, Hayes, Middlesex) – drums and singer
  • Career

    The Honeycombs Honeycombs Have I The Right Best Quality YouTube

    The group started in November 1963 as an amateur band founded by Martin Murray. Its members were Murray, a hairdresser, his salon assistant Honey Lantree, her brother John and two friends. Originally they called themselves the Sheratons.

    The group played dates in the West End of London, and at the Mildmay Tavern, a North London pub. Among those attending an appearance of the band in February 1964 were aspiring songwriters Ken Howard and Alan Blaikley. Howard and Blaikley would become a prolific British songwriting team, writing songs recorded by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich, the Herd, Lulu and even Elvis Presley, but in 1964 they had just started their career. They got into conversation with the group, which appeared interested in a few songs the duo had just written. The group had already arranged an audition with indie record producer Joe Meek. The audition resulted in a recording of Howard and Blaikley's "Have I the Right?". Meek himself provided the B-side, "Please Don't Pretend Again".

    Meek used his apartment at 304 Holloway Road, Islington, as a recording studio. Three UK No. 1 hits were produced there: "Johnny Remember Me" by John Leyton, "Telstar" by The Tornados and "Have I the Right?".

    Conspicuous in "Have I the Right?" is the prominence of the drums, whose effect was enhanced by members of the group stamping their feet on the wooden stairs to the studio. Meek recorded the effect with five microphones he had fixed to the banisters with bicycle clips. For the finishing touch someone beat a tambourine directly onto a microphone. The recording was also somewhat speeded up.

    "Have I the Right?" was released in June 1964 on the Pye record label. Louis Benjamin (1922–1994), Pye’s later chairman, rechristened the group as "The Honeycombs", a pun on the drummer’s name and her job as a hairdresser's assistant. The sales started slowly, but by the end of July the record started to climb in the UK Singles Chart. Honey Lantree's status as a female drummer in a top band was as unusual then as it is now, and some questioned whether she was just a visual novelty, despite her genuine drumming ability. At the end of August the record reached No. 1. "Have I the Right?" was also a big success outside the UK, hitting No. 1 in Australia and Canada, No. 3 in Ireland, No. 5 in the US and No. 2 in the Netherlands. Overall sales of the record reached a million. The Honeycombs also recorded a German version of the song: "Hab ich das Recht?" Both the English and the German versions reached No 21 in the German charts: the English one in October, the German one in November 1964.

    From then on Howard and Blaikley acted as the group's managers and also wrote their next singles, "Is It Because" and "Eyes". These records did not sell well. This also applied to their fourth single, "Something Better Beginning", written by Ray Davies from the Kinks.

    Soon after their first record had become a hit, the Honeycombs went on tour to the Far East and Australia, and were not able to promote their new records at home. The tour gained them a long-lasting popularity in Japan, however. Especially for the Japanese market the group produced a live album and a single, "Love in Tokyo". The group also made a lasting impression in Sweden, where they scored two No. 1 singles.

    In July 1965, British music magazine NME reported that it had been agreed in the London High Court that "Have I The Right?" was the work of Howard and Blaikley. Composer Geoff Goddard agreed to drop allegations that he, not they, had written the song.

    In August 1965 the group released, "That's the Way", with Honey Lantree sharing vocals with D'Ell (when on tour, Viv Prince of The Pretty Things took over the drumming). This record became their fourth British hit and reached No. 12. Its successor, "This Year Next Year", again with Lantree and D'Ell sharing vocals, did not reach the UK chart.

    D'Ell sang on all but the last single the group recorded. "Who Is Sylvia?" was an adaptation of Franz Schubert's song “An Sylvia”. "It's So Hard" was also recorded by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich as "Hard to Love You".

    In April 1966 Denis D'Ell, Alan Ward and Peter Pye left the group. The last single "That Loving Feeling" (September 1966) was written and sung by the new singer Colin Boyd.

    The Honeycombs made many appearances on music television shows such as Top of the Pops, Ready Steady Go! (UK), Shindig! (US), and Beat-Club (Germany). The group also appeared in the 1965 film Pop Gear, miming "Have I the Right?" and "Eyes".

    The (new) Honeycombs and afterwards

    The group went on, with new lead singer, guitarist and keyboardist (This line-up released the last single "That Loving Feeling"):

  • Colin Boyd (born Colin Nicholas Nicol, 4 June 1946, Combe, near Bath, Somerset) – Guitar and vocals. Later he formed Honeybus and changed his name to Colin Hare.
  • Rod Butler (born Rodney Butler, 27 May 1944, Mill Hill, London) – Lead guitar and vocals. Later he played with the Lemmings and subsequently the College Boys, formed by ex-Honeycomb Martin Murray. Butler later joined forces with D'Ell and formed Zarabanda and later still played in Violinski, with Mik Kaminski of the ELO
  • Eddy Spence – Keyboards and vocals
  • John Lantree – Bass guitar
  • Honey Lantree – Drums and vocals
  • In 1967, the Honeycombs broke up.

    In the 1990s founding member Martin Murray toured the cabaret circuit with a group called 'Martin Murray's Honeycombs'. Another line-up including Honey Lantree, Peter Pye and Denis D'Ell also successfully toured from 1991 onwards. John Lantree later rejoined this line-up. In 1999 record producer Russell C. Brennan asked D'Ell, Honey and John Lantree and Pye to record "Live and Let Die", on the Future Legend Records compilation, Cult Themes from the '70s Vol. 2. This compilation also featured Glenda Collins, another Joe Meek artist.


  • "Have I the Right?" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "Please Don't Pretend Again" (Meek/Lawrence) (19 June 1964) – UK No. 1
  • "Is It Because" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "I'll Cry Tomorrow" (Meek) (9 October 1964) – UK No. 38
  • "Eyes" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "If You've Got To Pick a Baby" (20 November 1964)
  • "Something Better Beginning" (Ray Davies) b/w "I'll See You Tomorrow" (April 1965) – UK No. 39
  • "That's the Way" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "Can't Get Through to You" (August 1965) – UK No. 12
  • "This Year Next Year" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "Not Sleeping Too Well Lately" (November 1965)
  • "Who Is Sylvia" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "How Will I Know" (February 1966)
  • "It's So Hard" (Howard/Blaikley) b/w "I Fell in Love" (July 1966)
  • "That Loving Feeling" (Colin Boyd) b/w "Should a Man Cry" (September 1966)
  • US

  • "Have I the Right?" b/w "Please Don't Pretend Again" – Interphon 7707 1964 – US No. 5
  • "I Can't Stop" b/w "I'll Cry Tomorrow" – Interphon 7713 1964 – US No. 48
  • "That's the Way" b/w "Color Slide" – Interphon 7716 1965
  • "Something Better Beginning" b/w "I'll See You Tomorrow" – Warner Bros. 5634 1965
  • "I Can't Get Through to You" b/w "That's the Way" – Warner Bros. 5655 1965
  • "Who Is Sylvia" b/w "How Will I Know" – Warner Bros. 5803 1966
  • Albums

  • The Honeycombs (Released in the US as Here Are the Honeycombs) (UK Pye NPL 18097 / US Interphon IN-88001, 25 September 1964) – US No. 147
  • "Colour Slide" / "Once You Know" / "Without You It Is Night" / "That's the Way" / "I Want to Be Free" / "How the Mighty Have Fallen" / "Have I the Right?" / "Just a Face in the Crowd" / "Nice While It Lasted" / "Me from You" / "Leslie Anne" / "She's Too Way Out" / "It Ain't Necessarily So" / "This Too Shall Pass Away"
  • All Systems – Go! (Pye NPL 18132, 17 December 1965)
  • "I Can't Stop" / "Don't Love Her No More" / "All Systems Go" / "Totem Pole" / "Emptiness" / "Ooee Train" / "She Ain't Coming Back" / "Something I Gotta Tell You" / "Our Day Will Come" / "Nobody But Me" / "There's Always Me" / "Love in Tokyo" / "If You Should" / "My Prayer"
  • In Tokyo (Nippon Columbia PS-1277, 1966) (Live album, Japan only)
  • "Colour Slide" / "I'll Go Crazy" / "She's About a Mover" / "There's Always Me" / "Wipe Out" / "Lucille" / "If You Should" / "Have I the Right?" / "Goldfinger" / "Kansas City" / "My Prayer" / "What'd I Say"
  • In Germany all three Honeycombs albums have been reissued on compact disc, two with bonus tracks:

  • The Honeycombs (Repertoire Records RR 4098-WZ, 1990)
  • Bonus tracks: "Please Don't Pretend Again" / "I'll Cry Tomorrow" / "If You've Got to Pick a Baby" / "I'll See You Tomorrow" / "I Can't Stop" / "Hab ich das Recht" / "Du sollst nicht traurig sein"
  • All Systems – Go! (Repertoire Records, RR 4121-WZ, 1990)
  • Bonus tracks: "Not Sleeping Too Well Lately" / "How Will I Know?" / "I Fell in Love" / "Something Better Beginning" / "Should a Man Cry?" / "Can't Get Through to You"
  • In Tokyo (Repertoire Records, REP 4180-WZ, 1991)
  • Compilation albums

  • The Best of the Honeycombs (PRT Records PYC 4009, 1989):
  • "Have I the Right?" / "Is It Because?" / "Eyes" / "I Don’t Love Her No More" / "Something Better Beginning" / "That’s the Way" / "This Year Next Year" / "Who Is Sylvia?" / "It’s So Hard" / "That Loving Feeling" / "How the Mighty Have Fallen" / "I Want to Be Free" / "I Can’t Stop" / "Love in Tokyo"
  • Honeycombs (All Systems Go and It's the Honeycombs) (Sequel Records NEX CD 125, 1990):
  • "Colour Slide" / "Once You Know" / "Without You It is Night" / "That's the Way" / "I Want to Be Free" / "How the Mighty Have Fallen" / "Have I the Right?" / "Just a Face in the Crowd" / "Nice While it Lasted" / "Me from You" / "Leslie Anne" / "She's Too Way Out" / "It Ain't Necessarily So" / "This Too Shall Pass Away" / "I Can't Stop" / "Don't Love Her No More" / "All Systems Go" / "Totem Pole" / "Emptiness" / "Ooee Train" / "She Ain't Coming Back" / "Something I Gotta Tell You" / "Our Day Will Come" / "Nobody But Me" / "There's Always Me" / "Love in Tokyo" / "If You Should" / "My Prayer"
  • The Best of the Honeycombs (Marble Arch CMA CD 146, 1991):
  • "Have I the Right?" / "Leslie Anne" / "Once You Know" / "That's the Way" / "Colour Slide" / "Without You it is Night" / "Something Better Beginning" / "I Want to Be Free" / "Just a Face in the Crowd" / "How the Mighty Have Fallen" / "Nice While it Lasted" / "She's Too Way Out"
  • The Best of the Honeycombs, produced by Joe Meek (EMI EMI CDEMS 1475, 1993)
  • "Have I the Right?" / "Can’t Get Through to You" / "I Want to Be Free" / "Leslie Anne" / "Colour Slide" / "This Year Next Year" / "That Lovin’ Feeling" / "That’s the Way" / "It Ain't Necessarily So" / "How the Mighty Have Fallen" / "I’ll Cry Tomorrow" / "I’ll See You Tomorrow" / "Is it Because" / "She’s Too Way Out" / "Something Better Beginning" / "Eyes" / "Just a Face in the Crowd" / "Nice While it Lasted" / "It’s So Hard" / "I Can’t Stop" / "I Don’t Love Her No More" / "All Systems Go" / "Totem Pole" / "Emptiness" / "Ooee Train" / "She Ain't Coming Back" / "Something I Gotta Tell You" / "Nobody But Me" / "There’s Always Me" / "Love in Tokyo"
  • Have I the Right?: The Very Best of the Honeycombs (EMI 7243 5 38312 2 6, 2002):
  • "Have I The Right?" / "That’s the Way" / "Is it Because" / "Something Better Beginning" / "Colour Slide" / "Once You Know" / "Without You it is Night" / "I Want to Be Free" / "It Ain't Necessarily So" / "Our Day Will Come" / "I’ll See You Tomorrow" / "Eyes" / "Can’t Get Through to You" / "It’s So Hard" / "She’s Too Way Out" / "I Can’t Stop" / "Ooee Train" / "Love in Tokyo" / "Totem Pole" / "My Prayer"
  • 304 Holloway Road Revisited (2016):
  • Musicians: Martin Murray, Mik West, Zak Skjerdal, Ant Atkins, Allan Gifford, Linda Hall
  • CD track listing
    1. Leslie Anne
    2. Mary Jo
    3. Bring Your Heart With You
    4. Please Don’t Pretend Again
    5. It’s Crazy But I Can’t Stop
    6. That’s The Way
    7. Love In Tokyo
    8. Have I The Right?
    9. Colour Slide
    10. Without You It’s Night
    11. It’s So hard To Love You
    12. Something I Got To Tell You
    13. Totem Pole 9 (theme from Howards Way)
    14. Too Way Out


    The Honeycombs Wikipedia

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