The Kirkbys — “It’s a Crime”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 23, 2022


648) The Kirkbys — “It’s a Crime”

This is where it all started for Jimmy Campbell, who was responsible for the 23rd Turnoff’s “Michael Angelo” (see #22), the most sublime psychedelic masterpiece of the 60’s, and so much more. I need to do a special edition focusing on this extraordinary and underappreciated artist who really is, as Get into This says, “[t]he greatest songwriter you’ve never heard of.” (

In any event, it’s a crime that “It’s a Crime” didn’t chart. It is a freakbeat masterpiece with a killer riff.

Jimmy joined a group called the Tuxedos in the late 1950s and in 1961 they changed their name to the Panthers. . . . The group decided to turn professional in 1964 [as the Kirkbys] and at one time were managed by Brian Epstein’s former secretary, Beryl Adams. The group had their first single, “It’s a Crime” . . . penned by Jimmy, issued in Finland in 1966, a country in which they had a large following.

But, where did the name the Kirkby’s come from? Vernon Joynson tells us that:

This Liverpool band was first known as The Panthers who revolved around Jimmy Campbell who then formed 23rd Turnoff (named after a motorway junction) before doing solo work. Bob Wooler of Cavern fame actually gave the band the name Kirbys during a live radio Luxembourg recording at the Cavern Club. He suggested that the band may gain support from all the people of Kirby if they used such a name. Actually at that time all the band members (except for Marooth) lived in Kirby, which is on the outskirts of Liverpool.

(The Tapestry of Delights Revisited)

Here’s the demo:

I have added a Facebook page for Brace for the Obscure 60s Rock! If you like what you read and hear and feel so inclined, please visit and “like” my Facebook page by clicking here.

Pay to Play! The Off the Charts Spotify Playlist! + Brace for the Obscure 60s Rock Merchandise

Please consider helping to support my website/blog by contributing $6 a month for access to the Off the Charts Spotify Playlist. Using a term familiar to denizens of Capitol Hill, you pay to play! (“relating to or denoting an unethical or illicit arrangement in which payment is made by those who want certain privileges or advantages in such arenas as business, politics, sports, and entertainment” —

The playlist includes all the “greatest songs of the 1960’s that no one has ever heard” that are available on Spotify. The playlist will expand each time I feature an available song.

All new subscribers will receive a Brace for the Obscure 60s Rock magnet. New subscribers who sign up for a year will also receive a Brace for the Obscure 60s Rock t-shirt or baseball cap. See pictures on the Pay to Play page.

When subscribing, please send me an e-mail ( or a comment on this site letting me know an e-mail address/phone number/Facebook address, etc. to which I can send instructions on accessing the playlist and a physical address to which I can sent a magnet/t-shirt/baseball cap. If choosing a t-shirt, please let me know the gender and size you prefer.

Just click on the first blue block for a month to month subscription or the second blue block for a yearly subscription.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: