Crispian St. Peters
Crispian St. Peters died on 8th June 2010 aged seventy-one after a protracted illness. He was survived by his wife, Collette, a daughter, Samantha, and a son, Lee.
In January 1995, at the age of fifty-five, Crispian suffered a stroke and his musical career was badly set back by this followed by his announcement in 2001 of his retirement from the music industry. After 2003 Crispian was hospitalised several times with pneumonia.
Crispian St. Peters was born in Swanley, Kent and attended Swanley Secondary Modern School. He learned guitar and left school in 1954 to become an assistant cinema projectionist. As a young man, he performed in several lesser known bands in England, U.K. Through the late 1950s and early 1960s, he was a member of 'The Country Gentlemen', 'Beat Formula Three', and 'Peter & The Wolves'.
While a member of Beat Formula Three in 1963, he was heard by David Nicholson, an EMI publicist who became his manager. Nicholson suggested he use the stage name : Crispian St. Peters. In 1964, as a member of Peter & The Wolves, Crispian St. Peters made his first commercial recording. He was persuaded to turn solo by Nicholson, and was signed to Decca Records in 1965. His first two singles on this record label, "No No No" and "At This Moment", proved unsuccessful on the charts. He made two television UK appearances in February of that year, featuring in the shows Scene at 6.30 and Ready Steady Go!
In 1966, Crispian St. Peters' career finally yielded a Top 10 hit in the UK Singles Chart, with "You Were on My Mind," a song written and first recorded in 1964 by the Canadian folk duo, Ian & Sylvia, and a hit in the United States for .We Five. in 1965. Crispian St. Peters' single eventually hit number 2 in the UK and was then released in the US on the Philadelphia-based Jamie Records label. "The Pied Piper," became known as Crispian's signature song and was a Top 10 hit in the United States and the UK.
Although his next single, a version of Phil Ochs' song "Changes," also reached the charts in both the UK and US, it was much less successful. In 1967, Crispian St. Peters released his first LP, Follow Me..., which included several of his own songs, as well as the single "Free Spirit". One of them, "I'll Give You Love," was recorded by Marty Kristian in a version produced by Crispian St. Peters, and became a big hit in Australia. Crispian St. Peters' album was followed by his first EP, Almost Persuaded, yet by 1970, he was dropped by Decca. "You Were on My Mind" was featured in the 1996 German film Jenseits Der Stille.
Later in 1970, Crispian was signed to Square Records. Under this new record deal, Crispian St. Peters released a second LP, 'Simply', that year, predominantly of country and western songs. Later still they released his first cassette, The Gospel Tape, in 1986, and a second cassette, New Tracks on Old Lines in 1990. His third cassette, Night Sessions, Vol. 1 was released in 1993.
Several CDs also came from this record deal, including Follow Me in 1991, The Anthology in 1996, Night Sessions, Vol. 1 in 1998, The Gospel Tape in 1999, and, finally, Songs From The Attic in 2000. He also performed on various Sixties nostalgia tours, and continued to write and arrange for others whilst he was able.