The Symbols were one of the very best of the Essex-based UK 60s harmony outfits who benefited from the regular exposure of American West Coast material on the nearby North Sea pirate radio stations.
After early releases of material like the lush See You In September and the Newbeats-inspired Canadian Sunset that failed to click, they eventually scored minor hits with remakes of The Four Seasons‘ Bye Bye Baby (which peaked in the charts at #44) and The Ronettes‘ (The Best Part Of) Breaking Up (which reached #25), but somehow never managed to capitalise on this success.
Drawing from girl group and New York harmony material, they were a fine and popular live attraction, able to re-create the vocals of artists like The Four Seasons and The Beach Boys.
At one stage, The Symbols recorded a superlative version of Silence Is Golden but leaked it through personnel interchange (bassist Mick Clarke) to fellow Essex pals The Tremeloes. Had they hung on to the track, things may have taken a very different turn for both bands.
In 1972 Shaun Corrigan was replaced on guitar by Trevor Mee and Clive Graham was replaced by Phil Chesterton, although by the beginning of 1973, Mee had left the band and was replaced by Brian Gill.
At the end of 1973, Mick Clarke left to join The Rubettes and was replaced by Dave Guscott on bass. Vocalist John Milton left at the beginning of 1974 and – as a suitable replacement singer could not be found – The Symbols disbanded.