• Durham OnAir

Elkie Brooks brings Greatest Hits tour to Stockton Globe


On 12th March at Stockton Globe, Elkie Brooks and her band will perform some of her

best-known songs that made Elkie into one of the UK’s most successful singers.

These include ‘Lilac Wine’, ‘Fool If You Think It’s Over’, ‘Sunshine After The Rain’, ‘No More

The Fool’ and her signature hit ‘Pearl’s A Singer’.


Elkie Brooks began singing professionally in 1960. Born Elaine Bookbinder to a Jewish

baker in Manchester, at 15 she won a talent contest at the Palace Theatre, Manchester

judged by the infamous Don Arden (manager of Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard and The

Small Faces, and father of Sharon Osbourne). The next few years were an education.


She sang in cabaret clubs up and down the country, and found herself supporting the Beatles at their 1964 Christmas shows at Hammersmith Odeon. Her first hit, in 1964, was a version of Etta James’ ‘Something’s Got A Hold On Me’, on which a pre-Led Zeppelin Jimmy Page played guitar; she toured with The Small Faces, The Animals. By the end of the 60s, she was singing jazz with Humphrey Lyttelton’s band and a few short years later had channelled her inner rock chick, and was now co-fronting the band Vinegar Joe alongside Robert Palmer.


At Vinegar Joe’s dissolution, she found herself joining southern American boogie band Wet

Willie. But this was a temporary diversion, because shortly after she was back on home turf,

a newly minted, grownup solo singer. Her solo debut album ‘Rich Man’s Woman’ was

banned in some quarters because of its raunchy sleeve but it was her 1977 album ‘Two

Days Away’ that saw the blue touch paper truly ignite on Elkie’s career. The album featured

her monster hit and signature song ‘Pearl’s A Singer’, which was co-written and produced by Elvis stalwarts Leiber & Stoller. The song lit up the charts and gave her, her first timeless classic. It wouldn’t be her last.


The hits kept coming: ‘Fool If You Think It’s Over’, ‘Lilac Wine’, ‘Sunshine After The Rain’,

‘Warm And Tender Love’, ‘Don’t Cry Out Loud’ and her highest charting hit ‘No More The

Fool’. Her 1981 album ‘Pearls’ was in the charts for 79 continuous weeks and went on to sell

over a million, making Elkie Brooks the biggest selling female album artist in the history of

the British pop charts at the time. And the work rate didn’t let up: over the course of the next

25 years, she has released some 20 albums. By 2012, she had more chart albums under

her belt than any other British female artist. Not only has she been prolific in the studio she

has also continued to tour, performing live in almost every major UK theatre with sell out

runs at such prestigious venues as the Palladium, the Royal Albert Hall, Wembley Arena,

Ronnie Scotts and she even shared the bill with the Beach Boys and Santana at Knebworth

in 1980.


In 2017 Brooks recorded the closing theme song Running to the Future for the British movie Finding Your Feet, starring Imelda Staunton, Timothy Spall, Celia Imrie and Joanna Lumley.


The track was released as a download only single and was included in the

soundtrack CD album. Her self-penned song "Just An Excuse" has been the subject of various remixes, most notably appearing on the Bonobo album Migration (2017) which was a UK No 5 hit. Brooks has performed live continuously every year since 1977 with current concert dates set throughout 2022 & 2023.