Johnny Kidd was born Frederick Heath in London on Dec. 23, 1939, and has become something of a legend. At the end of the Fifties he and his band, the Pirates, featuring guitar-ist Mick Green, developed a form of R&B which stood in direct contrast to the careful cover jobs and polite rock of so many British artists, and predated the R&B revival by two or three years.
This reputation exceeds Kidd's actual chart successes —four British Top Twenty entries and no impression whatso-ever in America. But his first hit, `Shakin' All Over' (re-leased on HMV and co-written by Kidd and his manager, Gus Robinson) is now a rock standard; he followed it in the same year, 1960, with 'Restless' and in 1963 scored with `I'll Never Get Over You' and 'Hungry For Love'.
'Please Don't Touch' is another Kidd classic; his stage style, corn plete with gimmick eye-patch, is indicated by these titles. Tragically, Kidd couldn't climb back to the top when R&B arrived in force, in spite of his 1963 success. His later recordings were heavily Beatle-influenced, and by the time of his death in a Lancashire car crash on Oct. 7, 1966, the Pirates had been reduced to low-priced support gigs.