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Russ Conway

Russ Conway, DSM (born Trevor Herbert Stanford, 2 September 1925 – 16 November 2000) was an English popular music pianist.  Conway had 20 piano instrumentals in the UK Singles Chart between 1957 and 1963, including two number one hits.

Conway was born in Bristol, England.    He won a scholarship to Bristol Cathedral Choir School and was largely self-taught on piano.

Conscripted into the Royal Navy during the Second World War in 1942, he served in the Merchant Navy from 1942 to 1948, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal as signalman in a minesweeping flotilla. 

During his navy service, he lost the tip of the third finger of his right hand while using a bread slicer.   He was discharged on health grounds because of a stomach ulcer.

Conway was talent-spotted while playing in a London club, signed to EMI's Columbia label and spent the mid-1950s providing backing for artists on their roster, including Gracie Fields and Joan Regan.   He recorded his first solo single "Party Pops" in 1957, a "medley of standard songs"  which included "Roll the Carpet Up" and "The Westminster Waltz”.

Between 1957 and 1963, Conway had 20 UK chart hits, and in 1959 alone he achieved a cumulative total of 83 weeks on the UK Singles Chart.  This included two self-penned number one instrumentals, "Side Saddle" and "Roulette", the latter deposing Elvis Presley's "A Fool Such As I". He appeared frequently on light entertainment TV shows and radio for many years afterwards, performing at the London Palladium on a number of occasions and becoming a regular on the Billy Cotton Band Show for several seasons.

He was the subject of This Is Your Life in 1959, when he was surprised by Eamonn Andrews during a recording session at the BBC's Studio 1 at 201 Piccadilly, London.

He passed away on 2nd September 2000 at the age of 75

………. Wikipedia

 

 

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