Lead a British Invasion of Short Hills, New Jersey
A Feature Article by Rich and Laura Lynch

The musical British invasion of the 1960's introduced America to a number of English rock bands including The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Herman's Hermits. The music from that unique period of time still resonates with fans from multiple generations.

Peter Noone & Herman's Hermits Lead a British Invasion of Short Hills, New Jersey
Herman's Hermits take the stage at the Brotherhood of Temple B'nai Jeshurun.

Actor, singer and TV host Peter Noone is best known for his work in the pop sensation Herman's Hermits. Peter with the group had great success in the 1960's with a string of hits such as "I'm Into Something Good", "Mrs. Brown, You've Got A Lovely Daughter", "I'm Henry VIII, I Am", "Silhouettes", "Can't You Hear My Heartbeat", "Just A Little Bit Better", "Wonderful World", "There's A Kind of Hush", "A Must To Avoid", "Listen People", "The End of the World" and "Dandy". Herman's Hermits have sold over sixty million records. In all, fourteen singles and seven albums went gold for this popular British invasion band.

Today, Peter Noone still performs these timeless classics. On October 26, 2013 Noone headlined a special show for the Brotherhood of Temple B'nai Jeshurun (TBJ) in Short Hills, New Jersey. The event was a fund raiser for community based charities. Although the sanctuary is not a regular concert venue they do periodically host musical events. In addition to the concert there was a meet & greet along with an auction. England's flag colors were splashed about the place reminding us that the British were coming and adding to the festive feel of the night.

Peter Noone & Herman's Hermits Lead a British Invasion of Short Hills, New Jersey
Peter Noone got up close and personal with the New Jersey fans.

The show at TBJ was in a sort of circular room with steps and platforms in the center of the sanctuary that served as an elevated stage. Peter Noone was backed by a capable four piece band who wore matching suits. Peter was also dressed smartly in black and gray. Noone received a warm welcome from the crowd. He immediately encouraged folks to clap and sing to a spirited "I'm Into Something Good" and "Wonderful World".

"Good evening," greeted Peter. He chatted a bit and joked that back in Manchester he dreamed of playing TBJ, jesting that the crowd might not get his Catholic jokes. He had fans laughing to the fact that they had gotten lost in New Jersey looking for Short Hills and the venue. Humor was mixed in with the music throughout the evening enhancing the entertaining elements of the show.

In addition to playing his hits, Peter also performed other popular songs including a lively version of "Love Potion No. 9" with the keyboardist adding bells to the blend. Noone also paid tribute to Johnny Cash with a condensed version of "Ring of Fire". Here the keys contributed the sound of horns and Peter did a respectable imitation of the man in black. Peter and his band's cover of The Monkey's "Daydream Believer" was delightful.

Peter Noone & Herman's Hermits Lead a British Invasion of Short Hills, New Jersey
Peter Noone remains a charismatic and commanding stage performer.

Noone also presented plenty of Herman's Hermits tunes including a melodic "No Milk Today", "Dandy" and "Mrs. Brown". Fans of all ages had fun shouting along to "I'm Henry VIII, I Am" and the closer "There's A Kind of Hush All Over The World". The latter is still a sweet love song that had people singing and swaying their arms.

The music of Herman's Hermits may echo of more innocent times but Peter shared that one of their singles was banned in the United States. Apparently "She's A Must To Avoid" was heard as she is a muscular boy which in the mid 1960's was too odd for radio. As Noone sang the up-tempo tune we too thought that it sounded more like the misunderstood lyrics.

Since the theme of the show was the British invasion, Peter mixed in some blues influenced bands as they rocked out on "For Your Love" by the Yardbirds with a fast and furious drum solo along with a jumping "Jumpin Jack Flash" from The Stones. Peter Noone and his band performed a feisty and fun concert at TBJ. Peter looked and sounded great and he certainly knew how to entertain a multi-generation crowd. The British invaded Short Hills and left the conquered smiling.

Peter Noone & Herman's Hermits Lead a British Invasion of Short Hills, New Jersey
Herman's Hermits circa 2013 in Short Hills.

Related Links: For more information on PETER NOONE and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - Peter Noone | Brotherhood Concerts

(Originally Published on October 28, 2013)




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