Recording information: England.
The career of Gerry and the Pacemakers paralleled that of the Beatles up to a certain point. Like the Beatles, they came from Liverpool, England, and were signed to a subsidiary of EMI Records, in their case Columbia (no relation to American Columbia), their recordings overseen by George Martin. As with the Beatles, in the U.S., their records were licensed to a small independent label (Laurie, while the Beatles were on Vee-Jay), and, despite their British success, it was not until their fifth single that they achieved a stateside breakthrough. For the Beatles, that fifth single was "I Want to Hold Your Hand"; for Gerry and the Pacemakers, four months later in May 1964, it was the ballad "Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying." Laurie quickly assembled a corresponding LP out of existing recordings. Three of the group's previous singles ("How Do You Do It," "I'm the One," "You'll Never Walk Alone") joined two B-sides ("Away From You," "Show Me That You Care") and six tracks from the October 1963 U.K. LP How Do You Like It? ("Jambalaya," "Maybelline," "You're the Reason," "Don't You Ever," "Summertime," "Slow Down") plus the hit to make up the album's 12 tracks. The result was a good portrait of the band that displayed lead singer/guitarist Gerry Marsden's talent for penning both up-tempo ("I'm the One") and ballad ("Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying") material as well, as the Pacemakers' feel for American country and R&B music. A sentimental side was also revealed in the choices of the American show tunes "You'll Never Walk Alone" and "Summertime." If not quite in the league of the Beatles, Gerry and the Pacemakers seemed another enjoyable British group with a talent for beat music on their American debut LP. ~ William Ruhlmann