Geoff Goddard

About Geoff Goddard

b. 1937, Reading, Berkshire, England, d. 15 May 2000, England. After studying piano at London’s Royal Academy of Music, Goddard encountered record producer Joe Meek who promoted him as a pianist in the mould of exotic cabaret-style performers. This was in the early 60s and as a songwriter Goddard was often in collaboration with Meek, and he sometimes performed on the resulting recordings for Meek’s RGM Records. Goddard can be heard on pieces such as ‘Sky Men’ and the hugely successful ‘Telstar’. Among other Goddard/Meek collaborations were ‘Tribute To Buddy Holly’, recorded by Mike Berry, and ‘Johnny Remember Me’, a hit for John Leyton, who also recorded ‘Lone Ranger’, ‘Wild Wind’ and ‘Son, This Is She’. Claims were made that Goddard and Meek’s marketing decisions were dictated by the spirit of Buddy Holly, conjured up during séances at Meek’s Holloway Road flat where much of the recording was done (and where Meek would in 1967 murder his landlady before killing himself). The Goddard/Meek association was fraught with conflict over who wrote what and these matters remain forever clouded. Goddard also wrote a tribute to Eddie Cochran, ‘Just Like Eddie’, a 1963 hit for Meek’s protégé Heinz. Goddard and Meek parted company in a flurry of litigation over Meek’s song, ‘Have I The Right’, recorded by the Honeycombs, which Goddard believed was a direct lift from his own ‘Give Me The Chance’.
Although Goddard wrote ‘My Head Goes Round’ for Cliff Richard, he drifted into obscurity. According to Alan Clayson, a friend who wrote Goddard’s obituary in The Guardian, this was a matter of choice. In the mid-80s ‘Johnny Remember Me’ appeared on an album by Bronski Beat and Marc Almond, bringing Goddard welcome income to supplement his wages as an assistant in the kitchen at Reading University. He died from a heart attack in 2000.

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