A couple of years back the GMC spotlighted the Kalin Twins, an early rock and roll duo often compared to the Everly Brothers. The Kalins and the Everlys were both American duos who were also very popular in Great Britain, so we’re kind of completing the circle today by featuring the Brook Brothers, a British pair with a lot of similarities.
Geoff and Ricky Brook looked a lot alike and were often assumed to be twins (which they didn’t discourage) but Ricky was actually three years older. The brothers were born in Hampshire, England, and their last name was actually Brooks, but the ‘S’ got lost somewhere along the way. (So they wouldn’t be mistaken for the menswear company?)
The Brooks originally broke into professional music in the 1950s as practitioners of skiffle (more about that British favorite HERE) but after noticing the success of the Everlys and others, they made a few adjustments. It must have worked, because by the late 1950s the brothers were touring with stars like Cliff Richard and also selling a lot of records — although they were mostly covers like “Greenfields,” a song made into a hit by the Brother Four. However, their success allowed them to persevere and record some songs of their own, and they had several good ones, including what was probably their most-remembered, “Warpaint.”
They also did a little British TV and even managed a screen appearance in Richard Lester’s 1962 teen movie It’s Trad, Dad! (aka Ring-A-Ding Rhythm – video below), but things wound down pretty quickly after that. Within a few years the Brook Brothers’ musical career was pretty much just a memory.