The Magic Lanterns
|Origin||Warrington, Cheshire, England|
|Labels||CBS, Atlantic, Big Tree, Charisma|
|Jimmy Bilsbury/Pilsbury |
Mike "Oz" Osborne
Harry Paul Ward
The Magic Lanterns were an English pop rock group formed in Warrington, Lancashire. They formed in 1962 as The Sabres, playing locally in Manchester and changing their name a few years later. They signed to CBS Records after releasing the single, "Excuse Me Baby", which charted at #44 in the UK in 1966, and a few singles later they put out an album, Lit Up. In 1968 they switched to Atlantic Records and released their first US hit, "Shame, Shame", which hit #29 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and peaked on #3 on Canada's RPM Charts. "Shame Shame" was also released in the UK, on the short lived 'Camp' record label, as was "Melt All Your Troubles Away" the following year, but neither enjoyed any chart success. The single "Give Me Love" followed, as did a Stateside album. Changing record labels again in 1970 to Big Tree Records, a second album followed, but it would be their last.
They had two more minor hits in the US, "One Night Stand" (#74, 1971) and "Country Woman" (#88, 1972), but in early 1970, lead singer-songwriter Jimmy Bilsbury quit the group to co-found the Les Humphries Singers with bandleader/songwriter Les Humphries. Most of the other members left soon after Bilsbury's departure for careers in other fields. Songwriter Albert Hammond, however, went on to further renown, and bassist Mike "Oz" Osborne would spend several decades fighting the mistaken impression that Ozzy Osbourne had actually played in his early career with the Lanterns.
In 1972, the band released further singles on Polydor label in the UK, neither of which met with chart success.