William E./Quentin E. Klopjaeger & the Gonks– “Lazy Life”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 21, 2022


646) William E./Quentin E. Klopjaeger & the Gonks — “Lazy Life”

This lovely and lilting ‘67 A-side is one of the great ‘60’s paeans to chilling, along with such songs as the Beatles’ “I’m Only Sleeping” and Spanky and Our Gang’s “Lazy Day”. “Lazy Life” was justly a hit in South Africa and Australia, but went unfairly unnoticed in the U.S. and the UK. It was written by Gordon Haskell, guitarist for the great UK psych band Les Fleur De Lys (see #32, 122). Just call it E.-asy listening.

The liner notes to the Piccadilly Sunshine comp tell us that:

South African-born . . . Bill Kimber (real name William Charles Boardman) fronted a London band by the name of The Couriers in 1965. Upon meeting with Johannesburg-born producer Frank Fenter, the group relocated to South Africa appearing in a film that was to mirror the Beatles’ A Hard Day’s Night. . . . Come 1967, Kimber departed from the Couriers to seek his fortune with a solo career. This new lease on life resulted in a handful of singles for Parlophone as William E. Kimber including two minor hits . . . . Lazy Life [not a minor hit] . . . was issued by Polydor . . . .

(liner notes to Piccadilly Sunshine: A Compendium of Rare Pop Curios from the British Psychedelic Era; Volumes 1-10)

From there it gets a bit complicated. BobbyM explains that:

As best as I can trace the history of “Lazy Life” — written by Gordon Haskell of the UK band Fleur de Lys but apparently not recorded.
— Billy Forrest hears the song while on a trip to London. Forrest was a friend of South African singer, Sharon Tandy, who was residing in England at the time & she was often backed by Fleur De Lys.
— Billy Forrest produces the recording of the song by the South African band, The Gonks. However, after the backing track is recorded, the band decided it didn’t fit their image & abandons the song.
— Forrest records vocals & releases the song as by “Quenin E. Klopjaeger & the Gonks”. Later South African releases will only credit “Quenin E. Klopjaeger”. I don’t know the release date, but it didn’t peak in South Africa until June 1968 when it reached #1.
— “Lazy Life” is released in the UK as by William E; I can’t confirm if it’s the same recording as above or not.


After the song was a hit in South Africa, it was recorded by the Australian band Heart & Soul and was a hit down under in ‘69.

Here is William E.:

Here is Quentin E. Klopjaeger & the Gonks. I think it is the same recording:

Here is Heart & Soul:

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One thought on “William E./Quentin E. Klopjaeger & the Gonks– “Lazy Life”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 21, 2022

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