Thursday, January 26, 2012

Paul & Barry Ryan - Two of a Kind (1966)




Paul Ryan

English singer/songwriter and record producer Paul Ryan and his identical twin brother Barry were born in Leeds, West Yorkshire on October 24, 1948. The sons of '50s pop singer Marion Ryan, the duo was groomed for the spotlight, releasing their first single ("Don't Bring Me Your Heartaches") in 1965 for Decca Records. While Barry thrived in the limelight, Paul became more and more disenchanted with the constant touring and television appearances, resulting in the duo's dissolution in 1968. Barry eventually signed with MGM Records and Paul continued to write, providing his brother with a number of songs, including the track that would become his signature piece, the grandiose "Eloise" (British art-punkers the Damned scored a hit cover of the song in 1986). Paul Ryan died of cancer in 1992.

Barry Ryan 

The son of pop singer Marion Ryan, Ryan and his twin brother Paul began to perform at the age of 16. In 1965 they signed a recording contract with Decca and, under the name of "Paul & Barry Ryan", brought out singles such as "Don't Bring Me Your Heartaches" (1965), "Have Pity on the Boy" (1966) and "Missy Missy" (1966)
When it turned out that Barry's brother, allegedly on the verge of a nervous breakdown, was unable to cope any longer with all the stress connected with show business, the two brothers decided on a new division of labour: Paul would write the songs which Barry would then interpret as a solo artist. Their greatest success as a composer-singer duo, now for MGM Records, was "Eloise" (1968), melodramatic and heavily orchestrated. Later singles included "Love Is Love" (also 1968), "The Hunt" (1969), "Magical Spiel" (1970), and "Kitsch" (1970).

"Love Is Love", written by Barry himself, and released in the United Kingdom during February 1969 was not a great success in his own country. However combining sales from Germany, Austria and the Netherlands, "Love is Love" sold a million copies by August 1969, the second million-seller for Ryan.
Ryan was also very popular in Germany. Promoted by BRAVO, the German youth magazine, Ryan also recorded a number of songs in German, for example "Die Zeit macht nur vor dem Teufel halt" ("Time Only Stops at The Devil").
Ryan stopped performing in the early 1970s. There were rumours that Ryan had had an accident in the recording studio. Supposedly he suffered serious burn wounds in the face and could no longer appear in public. However, he made a comeback in the late 1990s when a two CD set with his, and his brother's, old songs was published. Ryan was also part of the 'Solid Silver 60s Tour' of the UK in 2003, singing "Eloise" backed by The Dakotas.







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