Based in Maidstone, Kent, England, Chicory Tip are best remembered for their catchy pop song ‘Son Of My Father’, which topped the UK Charts for three weeks in 1972.
Founder members Barry Mayger and Rick Foster went through school together from infants up until 1961 when, at the age of 15, they left to take up apprenticeships. It was when they joined a Youth Club and saw their first live band that they decided what they wanted to do. Within three months they had formed a group calling themselves ‘The Sonics’, and gave their first live performance during an interval spot at the Youth Club.
Over the next few years various members came and went, then in 1967 the line up of Barry Mayger , Rick Foster, Peter Hewson, and Mick Russell felt it was time for a change of name, and Barry came up with ‘Chicory Tip’. Within three years they landed a recording contract with CBS. During this time Mick, the drummer, got married and moved to Wales and was replaced by Brian Shearer.
Although their first two singles were played on BBC Radio 1, it was their third release that made it into the top 100 singles chart, and Chicory Tip performed for the first time on ‘Top Of The Pops’.
By now the name Chicory Tip was becoming quite familiar with radio and live performances. Then one day in December 1971, their Recording Manager, Roger Easterby, discovered a new song written by Giorgio Moroder which featured a Moog Synthesiser as the lead instrument. Chicory Tip recorded the song in two days, it was mixed on Christmas Eve, and when ‘Son Of My Father’ was released at the beginning of 1972, it took just three weeks to reach No.1 on 29th January. The record spent thirteen weeks in the UK charts, and was a hit across Europe.
The follow up single ‘What’s Your Name’ charted at No.13, then a year later ‘Good Grief Christina’ charted at No.17. The next release, ‘Cigarettes, Women, & Wine’, would possibly have been their fourth hit, had it not been banned by the BBC for fear of corrupting teenagers!
Rick left the band at the end of 1972 to spend the next 25 years with ‘Edison Lighthouse’, and was replaced by guitarist Rod Cloutt.
Brian left in 1974 and was replaced by John Longley.
Barry moved on in 1975, leaving Peter as the only original member to complete a final two week tour of Scandinavia.
Chicory Tip reformed in 1996 for Ricks 50th birthday, with the exception of Peter, who declined due to work commitments and a throat problem. They played a few songs and realised the old magic was still there.
By January 1997 began working again, playing mainly functions, golf clubs, Masonic ladies nights, parties, weddings etc.
They are one of the few bands from 60’s & 70’s still working today with all original members.