The band was originally called Billy Saunders and the Tuxedo’s led by tall Smethwick
In February 1958, the band entered a competition held at Birmingham Town Hall with
the winner to be decided upon by crowd reaction to their sets. Their rivals the
Tiger Sharks decided that this called for foul play, enlisting all their friends
from Acocks Green bus depot to attend to skew the results. The Tuxedos however emerged
victorious to much commotion from the Tiger Sharks’ entourage.
On 9th December 1961 they appeared at Streetly Youth Club’s Rock Night. Briefly
changing to The Tuxedos, they played regular sets at the Birmingham Racecourse Social
Club, Bromford Bridge.
By the end of the month however, to avoid confusion with another band by that name,
they settled on the name The Rocking Tuxedos.
A number of changes were made to the line-up and, following Mike’s departure, the
Rocking Tuxedo’s now comprising (John) Norman Bradley (bass), Carl Fenn (vocals),
Ted Tunnicliffe (lead guitar), Rob Nicholls (rthythm), Ian Hines (piano), Ricky Barnes
(tenor sax) and Don Hawkins (drums).
The group played some dates in Paris where they were spotted by French singer Dick
Rivers and were transformed into the new Krew Kats.