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Jet Harris

British musician Terence Harris – nicknamed “Jet” because he was one of the fastest runners in his school – played bass guitar in The Shadows (originally Cliff Richard‘s backing band).

Harris was introduced to Richard in 1958 and was credited with coming up with the name The Shadows.

With The Shadows, Harris enjoyed a string of hits in the late 1950s and early 1960s including High Class Baby, the chart-topping Apache and Guitar Tango.


His last recording with the band was Wonderful Land in 1962, which also made it to #1 in the British charts.

After leaving the group, Harris teamed up with former Shadows band-mate Tony Meehan and again reached number one with Diamonds in 1963.

After a serious car crash nearly ended his career he faded from the limelight, although he did tour in Europe and release several albums.

As his success as a musician faded, Harris became a professional photographer and was awarded an MBE for his services to music.

Harris died, aged 71, in March 2011 after a two-year battle with cancer.

“Jet was exactly what The Shadows and I needed – a backbone holding our sound together,”  Cliff Richard said in a statement. “Jet, the bass player, will always be an integral part of British rock ‘n’ roll history. Losing him is sad – but the great memories will stay with me. Rock on, Jet.”