FREDDIE GARRITY – A DREAMER!
Born in Crumpsall, Manchester, on 14 November 1936, Frederick “Freddie” Garrity was the frontman and comical element in the 1960s pop band Freddie and the Dreamers.
Freddie worked as a milkman while playing in local skiffle groups: the Red Sox, the John Norman Four and, finally, the Kingfishers, who became Freddie and the Dreamers in 1959. In the early years of the band, Garrity’s official birth-date was given as 14 November 1940 to make him appear younger and, therefore, more appealing to the youth market who bought the majority of records sold in the UK!
Garrity’s trademark was his habit of leaping up and down during performances. This, combined with his almost skeletal appearance and horn-rimmed glasses, made him an eccentric figure in the UK pop scene of the early 1960s.
Freddie and the Dreamers disbanded in the late 1960s and he later made a solo appearance on the first episode of the Granada Television production ‘The Wheeltappers and Shunters Social Club’ singing “Try a Little Kindness” and “Good Morning Starshine”, broadcast on 13 April 1974.
He formed a new version of Freddie and the Dreamers and toured regularly for the next two decades, but no further records or chart success came their way. He continued to perform until 2001, when he was diagnosed with emphysema after collapsing during a flight, thus forcing him into retirement.
With his health in decline, he settled in Newcastle-under-Lyme in Moreton Avenue, in a bungalow aptly, and sadly, called “Dreamers End.” Freddie died at Bangor in North Wales, at the age of 69, after being taken ill while on holiday.