Official Showaddywaddy Web Site

Dave Bartram Retires

"After much soul searching, the day has finally come for me to call time on what can only be described as an incredible career. The words of the Frank Sinatra song My Way seem appropriate at this moment, "And now the end is near and so I face the final curtain" , and indeed it will be strange no longer being on the road with Rod, Romeo & the guys in the future. However, I've felt the need to move on for a while now, and my well being has been hampered by asthmatic problems for some time, which has taken away the pleasure I used to feel when performing. I've had many second thoughts about taking the decision to quit, but recently at a caravan park gig in Rhyl, I realised I really didn't want to do live performances any longer, and that the magic was gone for me.

Many people think I'm retiring, this is far from the case. I will be continuing in my managerial capacity, handling the affairs of the re-modelled band, who take to the road in January totally with my blessing. I also will be having my first book published in the near future, and will obviously keep everyone informed as to developments on that front. A second book is also in the pipeline, along with my involvement with an English speaking newspaper in Portugal. I have plans underway to form a promotions company, which will take me out on the road from time to time, which will stop me getting fidgety, so I will be busy as I ever was.

Showaddywaddy has been an absolute blast. 38 years in one of Europe's top rock & roll band's has been just wonderful, and it's been a privilege to front the band for all that time. What has never ceased to amaze me has been the loyalty of our followers and fans, many whom I now know personally. I want to thank every single one of them for your support over so many amazing years. I've thus far received approaching 100 emails and messages from well wishers, some of which have touched me greatly, and I will treasure those words which mean the world to me. I hope each and every one of you will continue to give the new formation every chance to keep the name of Showaddywaddy alive and kicking. I know it will seem different with a few new faces on board, but rest assured these guys are hugely talented.

Finally I just want to say how much I will miss you all, and thankyou again for making my time with the band so exciting and such a pleasure. It has been my life, and not a bad one at that."

Dave Bartram - Tuesday 18th October 2011

Leicester Mercury 18th October 2011

Showaddywaddy frontman Dave Bartram has quit as the band's singer – saying he had lost "the fire in his belly." Dave, 59, who formed the Leicester crepe crusaders in 1973, says it was not an easy decision to make. But after a disastrous gig in a Welsh caravan park earlier this year, the musician said he knew he had played his last encore.

Dave, who lives in Gaulby, near Scraptoft, said: "It was utterly dreadful, the facilities were terrible, there wasn't enough power to the stage, it was complete sweat box and it was full of totally drunk people.

"I stood on stage and thought 'I can't do this any more. Over the years, we got the odd bad gig, but this was different. Something snapped inside me and I knew that was it." The rock 'n' roll performer said he would still manage the band's business affairs and that relations with the other member of the group were as strong as ever. He said: "The rest of the guys know they have my complete blessing to carry on, and there's no animosity between us at all. I've had a fantastic career, but I've been thinking about stepping down for a while now. To continue without that fire in my belly wouldn't be fair on the fans, so I thought it was time to bow out gracefully."

Dave said he is now concentrating on promoting his book – a humorous account of the band's 2005 tour of 33 caravan parks across Britain. He also works as a music writer on the English language paper The Brit, which is sold in Portugal and Germany. He added: "I've got plenty of things to keep me busy. The first book isn't even in the shops yet and we're talking about a second."

Showaddywaddy was formed after amalgamating two bands – Choise and The Golden Hammers – both of which played regular gigs at the Fosse Way pub, in Leicester. Their first single, Hey Rock and Roll, written by the band, was released in April 1974, reaching number two in the chart. The band then went on to have a 22 UK hits.

Of all the band's glory days, Dave recalls one special night at De Montfort Hall as being the pinnacle of his career. "We were playing in Leicester in 1978, and the venue was packed to the rafters – it was not long before Christmas – and the news came through to the stage that we'd got the Christmas number one album. We ordered loads of Champagne to be delivered to the venue and we opened it all on stage, then after the gig we carried on celebrating at the Holiday Inn – we got quite drunk. It was amazing. It was the highlight of my career and the fact that we were in Leicester and we were number one made it all the sweeter."

Fan Paul Fixter, 33, who runs the website, said he has been hooked on the band since he was five years old. He said: "It was a shock when I found out. I always thought when Dave left that would be the end of the band but luckily they're staying together with a new line-up. "I first got into the band when I was really young and I've followed them ever since. I go to the gigs and, although this is a sad day, it's not going to stop me from being a fan."

Right: Rod Deas, Romeo Challenger and Dave Bartram, with Leicester City’s Alan Birchenall, at the King Power Stadium, November 2011. The guys were filming a short segment for Dave to bid farewell, as he was to leave fronting the band the following month. Incidentally, the band, particularly Dave and Romeo, are big Leicester City fans and were thrilled at the club winning the Premiership Title this season, with Dave going to many games home and away.