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Alan Garrity is a singer, guitarist and pianist who was born on 14 October 1947 in Manchester, England.

Musical Career

The son of a British army officer, Alan moved to Rhodesia with his parents shortly before his fourteenth birthday. As a child he performed in various school musical activities but harboured no pretensions of being anything more than ordinary. He learnt to play guitar at fifteen and, after completing his schooling at Milton High in Bulawayo, trained and worked as a radiographer. As a hobby he sang in local pubs and hotels. It was during this period that Alan realised that he had a three-octave range in his voice. He formed a band in Bulawayo (see TABBRON TRIO) and penned his first seven single, a song called "Coloured Rain". He scored an immediate success with this tune as it raced up the Rhodesian record charts, peaking at Number 2.

With gathering confidence in his musical prospects, Alan gave up his occupation as a radiographer and landed a job as the resident vocalist at the Swaziland Holiday Inn in 1972. The well known Peter Lotis of Gallo records heard Alan perform at this venue and offered him a recording contract. At Peter's suggestion, Alan recorded "Put Your Hand In The Hand" and the song achieved instant success, quickly dominating the local charts. It also made Alan a household name. The song topped the Springbok Top 20 for four weeks and the Rhodesian charts for five. This run at No 1 started on 5 June, 1971.

In 1971 he was presented the Springbok Award as South Africa's 'Most Promising Male Vocalist'. In September, 1971, his first album predictably entitled "Put Your Hand In The Hand" was released.

His next chart success, "I Need Someone", held the record for over ten years as the song with the longest chart run on Springbok Radio's Top 20 hit parade. It spent 33 weeks on the charts between June 1972 and January 1973. This song - which peaked at No 2 on Springbok's Top 20 - earned him two Gold Discs, as well as the 1972 SARI Award as 'Best Song Of The Year'. In 1973, he won that year's award for 'Best LP Of The Year', as well as the SARI Award for 'Best Male Vocalist'.

"Home Isn't Home Anymore" was Alan's next chart entry, spending 16 weeks on Springbok's Top 20, peaking at No 5 in 1973. In December, 1973, he released his third album, "Goodbye Mama", which peaked at No 15 in January, 1974, spending 7 weeks on the Top 20. The single, "Give Me Back My Woman", from this album reached No 9 in the Top 20 in April, 1974, and was present on the charts for 10 weeks. In November, 1974, he released the album "Words and Music" having composed all the songs and lyrics himself.

In 1975 he won his second SARI Award as 'Best Male Vocalist' and succeeded in getting yet another song onto the charts - "She's My Woman". This release reached No 15.

In 1976, Alan's acting skills came to the fore when he took the lead role of Joseph in PACT's "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat", performing alongside well known artists such as Richard Loring, Jody Wayne and Wayne and Alvin Collison. This production toured extensively throughout South Africa and Rhodesia.

Hit singles continued to accumulate with "Santa Maria" reaching No 4 on the Springbok Top 20 in 1981, spending 11 weeks on the charts. Once again, in 1981, he garnered the SARI Awards for 'Best Male Vocalist', as well as 'Best Top Twenty Artist'. In April, 1982, he swan-songed the charts with "You Stood By Me" which reached No 18.

Since then Alan and his family have spent much of their time touring the world from their home in Manchester, England, although he maintained a home in Kleinmond as well. He continues to sing and is involved in cruise director's duties aboard luxury ocean liners.

Singles

Put Your Hand In The Hand (1971)
The Dream Waltz (1971)
Somehow, Somewhere (1971)
I Need Someone (1971)
Till The Rivers All Run Dry (1972)
Home Isn't Home Anymore (1972)
I'll Have To Dream (1973)
Goodbye Mama (1973)
Give Me Back My Woman (1974)
Look What You've Done (1974)
She's My Woman (1975)
Sunshine In My World (1976)
You're Losing Me (1980)
Santa Maria (1981)
You Stood By Me (1982)
Oh Louisa (1982)

Albums

Put Your Hand In The Hand (1971)
I Need Someone (1972)
Goodbye Mama (1973)
Alan Garrity & Pat Matthews (1973)
Words & Music (1974)
Feelings (1976)
Santa Maria (1981)
A Song For You (1982)
Christmas With Alan Garrity (1985)
Licensed To Sing (1989)
A Portrait Of Alan Garrity (1997)

Alan has had his music published and recorded overseas and his records have been released in Holland, Germany, Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil and Argentina.

SARIE Awards

1972 - Song Of The Year (I Need Someone)
1973 - Album Of The Year (I Need Someone)
1973 & 1975 - Best Male Vocalist
1981 - Top 20 Artist Of The Year (Santa Maria)

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