This site was created in June, 2004. Updated August 7, 2014 - Visit often!
NEWS! - ARROWS LEAD SINGER ALAN MERRILL TOURED THE UK OCT-NOV. 2013. <--Click on this link ->> http://www.amp75.com
The group consisted of three musicians. Alan Merrill, Jake Hooker, and Paul Varley. Alan Merrill sang lead and played bass guitar, Jake Hooker played guitar and sang harmonies, and Paul Varley was the drummer. Other singles released by the band were "Toughen up", "My last night with you", the original version of the rock classic "I Love rock n roll", "Hard hearted", and "Once upon a time". They released one album (containing none of the above singles except for "Once upon a time") titled "First hit". Most of all of these recordings can be found on various compilations, released as reissues in the millenium.
The Arrows had a full length book written about them by Bill Harry, titled 'Arrows : The Official Story', and it was published in 1975 on Everest books. They even had their own weekly cartoon strip in Music Star magazine, and were, at least for the years they existed as a band, featured prominently in all the teen magazines in England and Europe. A fun loving and energetic band, The Arrows had many friends in the music industry, but their own record label seemed to pay little attention to them. In fact their record label almost seemed to treat them with a biased contempt. It wasn't because they weren't coming up with the goods. They had delivered hits, some solid popular chart hit recordings. However, the fact is the band had relatively few record releases compared to their label-mates, like the hit bands Smokie and Mud, who seemed to be releasing three singles each to every one by The Arrows. Still, the band Arrows remained popular in the mainstream pop culture of the mid 70s UK, and the lack of recorded product on the market didn't seem to diminish their popularity in the media.
The Arrows also had their own weekly television series on Granada-ITV and ran for two full seasons in 1976-1977. It is important to note that the band had no records released during the two weekly tv series. This was due to problems between the record label and the band's management. This is the only time in the history of the music business that a band has had it's own tv series and no records released during the full run of the shows! The general public assumed that the band were releasing flops during the series, but in fact they had no records out at all! In fact, Arrows had more TV shows than they had released tracks in the fours year they were together as a band. They released only 21 recorded tracks, and had 28 TV shows! The Arrows pop group had hit records before the tv series, but no records released during the tv series. It sounds mad, but it's true.
But in spite of lack of label cooperation, the Arrows got the last laugh. They left their mark and legacy in a song. The Arrows are now known in rock history as the band that wrote, recorded, and released the first version of "I love rock n roll", a song that has lasted 30 years now in cover versions by the likes of Joan Jett, Britney Spears and other significant high profile recording artists.
The band could have been so much more, given a few more record releases, and as I've said, they only issued 6 singles in 4 years. Naturally the band imploded, given the pressure cooker situation they were in, and broke up in frustration in the autumn of 1977. There are rarities that are surfacing by the band in various permutations, but few recordings were made with the original three piece lineup of Alan Merrill, Jake Hooker, and Paul Varley. In 1976, The Arrows added member Terry Taylor on guitar, and the sound then changed. Terry added a musical sophistication to the band, in evidence on the second Arrows weekly television series. The later period four piece Arrows lineup never released any recordings, although they did tracks for the show that were aired. There are also demos the band made during their later period when their label was putting no product out at all. These demos and television tracks have surfaced on bootlegs, and have been well received by critics, even though they're raw and unfinished. All in all The Arrows left behind a legacy of recorded music they can be proud of, both official and unoffical releases, and they made an impact that has lasted for a band with a relatively short career.
This site is dedicated to a great band with a very odd story, The Arrows.
We welcome your Arrows related queries! ~ email Jennifer ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
Special thanks to Ms. Ali Crossman who's provided hundreds of these wonderful unique Arrows photos, like the one below from The Arrows Show.