The Chants R&B

The Chants R&B are maybe the greatest of all the New Zealand groups – and that’s saying something considering the competition (Bluestars, La De Das, Pleazers and more).

They came out of Christchurch and put out two 45s in 1966. Band members were Mike Rudd guitar and vocals, Jim Tomlin guitar, Martin Forrer bass and Trevor Courtney drums.

After the first 45, the insane “I Want Her”, Jim Tomlin left the band and was replaced by Max Kelly. Tomlin came back, however, to produce their next and last 45, the solid “I’m Your Witchdoctor” / “Neighbor Neighbor”, both sides of which feature non-stop fills and razor sharp soloing behind the vocals. An amazing record.

Their live shows were legendary with episodes like Mike Rudd nailing his guitar to the floor while still plugged in, generating wailing feedback! A glimpse of their live sound is available on The Stage Door Tapes.

0 thoughts on “The Chants R&B”

  1. Hey you,
    Love this site being a garage fan. Been in NZ nearly 2 years and it’s great checking out the NZ music history. Especially when I uncover a gem like this one, ‘I want her” what a tune, where can I get a copy. Would love to play it on my show!

  2. OMYG I was a fan in the 60’s to this group… I even have a few black and white pictures from the stage door days… anyone that read this and was a hang out there, please let me know…. Gosh ummm Paul Fisher John… Toddy, so many of u… I live in the USA but I come home every year… COME on GANG let’s chat.

  3. Gosh yes I was there as well … I have many black and white pictures of the Band and people. I remember a guy called “Toddy” have a picture of him… Have a few with Mike Rudd. I also live now in the USA but go home every year and have now contacted and caught up with a few people from the Stage Door… Where are you in the USA…. Some of my pictures where used in the new album that came out last year.

  4. And a great couple of nights they were too. Great to catch up and chat with you again Trev even if we did run out of subjects LOL. Good to see Mike, Marty and Tim again too. I was amazed at how many young people were there and were really getting into the music. Seems that somethings are timeless. Talked to a couple of younger friends later and they remarked that they wished they were a bit older so that they could have been there at the Stagedoor. They really thought you guys were just so good, and I have to agree. Cheers mate.

  5. I used to hang out at the King Bee / Stage Door.

    I have a history there, but don’t live in kiwi-land anymore.

    Write me.


  6. Woooow so many people have a great memmory of this band and and the antics we all got up to it was a special time for all of us and an amazing band that made us grow our hair and changed our lives.Thanks Mike and the gang and i still listen to the albums mike made Ariel and Spectrum And the great album called The Indelible Murtceps i hope i can see or anyone know where i can get a copy of the film Rumble and Bang

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