LCB Agency and Norco Records

Records and radio broadcasts were a way for kids of the 1960's to experience new sounds in music.

Norco Records Limited [1963-72] was the first independent Scottish label featuring musicians from around Scotland. It was organized by Albert Bonici and developed along with fellow promoter Gordon Hardie [Aberdeen] who bought stock in the company. When the company was formed [branch of LCB Agency], friend Harry Robinson of Elgin https://scotbeat.wordpress.com/2015/10/13/hoots-mon-harry-robinson/ had already gained a reputation as a band leader and recording artist though there were many Scots who would not have been heard outside their rural surroundings had it not been for small labels like Norco and Grampian records. Norco recordings [to be updated]:

https://soundcloud.com/search?q=norco%20records

https://scotbeat.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/two-red-shoes-album-2/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4z3ab276F5iB9JUJdePOCw

collage illustrations [copyright DJ Dills] at  https://djdills.wordpress.com/

 

Norco Records [Albert Bonici] under LCB Agency

Norco Records [Albert Bonici] under LCB Agency were often produced in Aberdeen though not always. Some were recorded in Albert Bonici’s flat and Windy Miller’s album was recorded in the hallway of the Two Red Shoes Ballroom…

Norco Two Red Shoes Album [1964]

Norco Two Red Shoes Album [1964]

Bonici who began promoting musicians in 1952,  introduced many Scottish musicians through LCB Agency  and Norco Records [1964-72]. Norco Records Limited was offically established in Elgin Moray, 13 January, 1964, though had already recorded under the Norco label in 1963. norco 1964

In early 1964, Mr. Bonici paid for studio time for “Johnny and The Copycats to record  a “45” in London which consisted of  I’m a Hog for You / I Can Never See You . However the first full recording was the TWO RED SHOES Album which included the Alex. Sutherland Band  [houseband plus Alyson Armstrong and two Aberdeen musicians [24 Oct 64]. https://scotbeat.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/two-red-shoes-album-2/

Norco Records last recording was ON THE RISE with the Windy Miller Band [Kenny MacDonald composer].  “Album was recorded on a 4 track tape machine in the foyer of the Red Shoes. Reason for this was we discovered there was to  much echo in the hall. The Norco label was already stopped when we recorded and Albert decided to resurrect the label just to release the album.” Kenny MacDonald

Johnny and the Copycats/ My Dear Watson:  “As such they made their recording debut in 1963 [with an effervescent version of the Coasters’ ‘I’m A Hog For You’. Under the guidance of local impresario Albert Bonici, the Beatles’ agent in Scotland, the Copy Cats – as they were later known – became a leading attraction along the Moray Firth coast. .” [http://www.allmusic.com/artist/my-dear-watson-mn0001010115/biography]  Note: Date of recording unsubstantiated though the song was first recorded by the Drifters in ’59 http://www.leiberstoller.com/Discography.html

Brother-n-law Ugo Ruggeri talked with Albert over coffee at the Park Café on a daily basis. They worked together on various projects and owned a large corner of Elgin’s downtown looking out from the top of the High Street [TWO RED SHOES] and Cooper Park and Cathedral [Park Café side]. There is a little Cross in front of their former offices.  “LCB stood for Little Cross Building which is where our offices were and is now Hanson & Robertson. Afraid I don’t know when he stopped recording on the Norco Label and as far as the agency again can’t give you an exact time but the last recording was with the Windy Miller band in ’72.” Another band Bonici managed and promoted, Johnny and The Copycats, recorded on a couple other labels after their first release with Norco. scottish beat 1

Scottish Beat/Brian Hogg looks at the collectable Scottish Beat Singles from mid-sixties

“Scottish Beat/Brian Hogg looks at the collectable Scottish Beat Singles from mid-sixties”                                                                                                                               Start Thinking About Me was published by Cornet Records when The CopyCats were calling themselves “My Dear Watson” though still managed by AA Bonici of Norco Records  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FTSIFfAZp_g

 

ImageImageImageImagewatson1

The Copycats [aka My Dear Watson] were one of Albert Bonici’s premiere groups. He worked with them as teenagers to get their career on track though their album with Elton John was never released. A notation next to The Copycats recording of “I’m A Hog For You” states (25 Units) and value of £23,525. I am not certain if this was the amount of Norco holdings or that he had an enormous back stock of one record. As with many of the materials used for SCOTBEAT, the following stock list is from the Bonici Archives and represents earliest master recordings.

Gordon Hardie worked with Albert Bonici’s Norco Records LTD beginning in 1963 and owned shares in the company, an arm of LCB Agency.

Gordon Hardie owned 50 shares in Norco Records Ltd

Gordon Hardie owned 50 shares in Norco Records Ltd and worked with Albert to have vinyl records produced from reel to reel tapes

Norco Records Ltd was set up in Aberdeen where vinyl discs were distributed from through share owner Gordon Hardie who worked for Albert Bonici of LCB Agency, Elgin, Scotland.

 

There were several dozen excellent Scottish musicians and vocalists recorded by Norco Records Limited between 1963-66 on ’45’s [single tune on each side]. They were promoted in Scotland through offices in Aberdeen though parent company LCB Agency was operated in Moray’s capital city of Elgin.

Norco Records inventory [Bonici Archives Copyright]

Norco Records inventory  ABonici Archives

Gae Gordons were among several Scottish folk style musicians who were recorded under Albert Bonici’s Norco label. They were amongst many traditional groups who regularly performed in Scotland in the 1960s.

norco records inventory

Part of the norco recordings

The Smiling Voice album featuring Dave McIntosh with The Jack Sinclair Scottish Dance Band [Norco]

The Smiling Voice album featuring Dave McIntosh with The Jack Sinclair Scottish Dance Band [Norco]

Dave McIntosh [Norco]

Dave McIntosh [Norco]

Here’s a Norco Records order sheet from 1965. The Copycats, Facells, and Windy Miller band, were pop groups recorded by Norco Records Ltd though most 45s [7 inch vinyls] featured jazz and Scottish folk music.

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About

In the early 1950s, Albert Bonici began promoting dances though it had been an ambition since his teenage years. When he and Henry Robertson co-organized a string of jazz dances in the north Scotland, they could not have predicted the enormous success of the venture. Albert Bonici became one of the most respected promoters in the UK having arranged a high volumn of music venues throughout the north of Scotland which delighted music lovers during the height of the jazz and beat music era. Whilst known for booking the Beatles at the beginning of their 1963 tours, Albert Bonici brought most of the top British acts to north-east Scotland besides working with Scottish musicians to boost their careers. SCOTBEAT was created to share a bit of history about the BEAT years in Scotland and also a tribute to a man with a vision who, with the help of his family and staff, created a happening that is still fondly remembered by those who attended dances and concerts. Albert A Bonici hosted many up and coming bands who went on to gain international acclaim for their contributions. Besides other local resources and interviews, SCOTBEAT presents exclusive photos, adverts, and documents from the A Bonici Archives [circa 1960s]. Unless otherwise agreed, materials are not to be used for financial gain and ask that you respect the terms below. Materials presented are not to be used for financial gain without consent. © 2014-2019 SCOTBEAT.wordpress.com. All rights reserved. No part of this web site may be copied, redistributed, broadcast or published in any form without crediting this blog and/or copyright websites mentioned. All correspondence, flyers, programs, and photos from the Bonici Archives are not to appear in print other than through the propietor of SCOTBEAT. Use of the site signifies your agreement to all of these terms without condition. Please reference https://scotbeat.wordpress.com when sharing materials found here as the site is continuously updated to present the subject matter accurately and as a historical resource. Thank you.

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Posted in 1960's pop music

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