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Encyclopedia entry for 'Ross D. Wyllie' LETTER:

StylePop
 Album: Smile: The Festival Files Volume Ten (Festival, 1988).

History
Brisbane-born entertainer Ross D. Wyllie (b. 1948) joined his first band, The Kodiaks, in 1964 at the age of 16. In 1967, Wyllie signed to Ivan Dayman's Sunshine label and recorded the single `Short Skirts'/`Paper Bunnies' backed by The Escorts (who had their own singles on Sunshine, `The House on Soul Hill'/`The Sound of Your Voice' and `On a Day Like Today'/`Sitting by a Tree').

Entrepreneur David Joseph offered Wyllie the opportunity to compere a new Melbourne television pop show, Uptight. Wyllie accepted and moved to Melbourne for the pilot episode, which screened on 28 October 1967. Wyllie signed a new deal with Festival Records, although his debut single `Smile'/`Faces' (April 1968) was not successful. 1969 proved to be Wyllie's most successful year when the singles Ray Stevens' `Funny Man'/`Last Day in Town' (June) and Johnny Young's `The Star'/`Do the Uptight' (September) took the singer into the Top 20 for the first time. `Funny Man' peaked at #17 during May, and `The Star' did even better by going all the way to #1 in October. In March 1970 Uptight was replaced by Happening '70 which Wyllie also compered. One month later, Wyllie issued his fifth single, `Free Born Man'/`My Little Girl', which was only a moderate hit. Wyllie left Happening '70 and Melbourne in late 1970 to return to Brisbane.

In the new year he signed to Ron Tudor's Fable label, which resulted in the singles `He Gives Us All His Love'/`Life' (April 1971), `It Takes Time'/ `Child's Dream' (August) and `Sweet White Dove'/ `Going Home' (May 1972). By that stage, Wyllie was concentrating on projecting a more mature image, and he began working on the club circuit. He also went into business by setting up the production and public relations companies Paladin Productions (with Ronnie Burns and Jeff Joseph) and Paladin Public Relations (with Tony Healy). During the late 1970s, Wyllie returned to Melbourne television as presenter of the late-night movies for the 0-10 Network.



Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop / Ian McFarlane 1999
under licence from Allen & Unwin Pty Ltd

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