Bay City Rollers

38 – Bay City Rollers release first single

September 18, 1971

A DECADE after Beatlemania, Scotland produced its own tartan-clad version in the form of Rollermania.

If you were a schoolgirl back in the early ’70s the pop group of the moment was The Bay City Rollers.

A generation of teenage boys in search of love found themselves facing impossible competition in the form of the band’s best-known line up of Alan Longmuir, Derek Longmuir, Stuart Woody Wood, Eric Faulkner and Les McKeown.

Four years after their first hit, Keep on Dancing, which reached number nine in the charts in 1971, Rollermania hit top gear with Bye Bye Baby, which spent six weeks at number one.

The band had a string of hits, reaching number one in the United States and Japan as well as the UK. In Australia, thousands of youngsters desperate to get a glimpse of their idols had their faces pressed against the glass frontage of a TV studio, completely missing the total eclipse of the sun that was taking place behind them!

Originally known as The Saxons, the band were formed in 1966 by bassist Alan and his younger brother and drummer Derek, and their school pal Gordon Clark.

Soon after, they changed their name, coming up with the one under which they became famous by throwing a dart at a map of the United States. It landed near Bay City, Michigan.
Who knows if fortune would have smiled quite so kindly on them if it had landed on the nearby towns of Tittabawassee Township, Midland or Essexville…