The DADDY COOL story is one of the pivotal chapters in Australian rock history. Their debut single and LP were the biggest selling Australian records ever released up to that time, and ushered in a new phase of Australian rock, which began to seek new audiences beyond our own shores.
Originally a side-project for Ross Wilson (rhythm guitar, vox) and Ross Hannaford (guitar), DADDY COOL exploded onto the Australian scene in late 1970. With Gary Young on drums and Wayne Duncan on bass, their fifties style rock ’n ’roll music played with a seventies attitude caught the attention of producer/label owner Robie Porter, who took the band into the studio to record their first single, the one and only Eagle Rock, which rewrote the books for Australian pop music. It stayed at Number 1 nationally for 8 weeks and Number 1 in Melbourne for a record-breaking 17 weeks. Charting for 25 weeks in all, it was the best selling Australian single of 1971. July 1971 saw their debut album Daddy Who? Daddy Cool released and featuring another mega-hit, Come Back Again, it immediately soared to Number 1 and smashed all previous sales records. It went Gold within a month and went on to become the very first Australian album to sell 100,000 copies. Daddy Who? Daddy Cool was also released in the US and the band toured in support of the release. A second album, provocatively titled Sex, Dope, Rock ‘n ‘Roll – Teenage Heaven was released in mid-January 1972 and again reached the Top Ten in Australia.
After less than 3 years DADDY COOL called it a day in August 1972. Since then, DADDY COOL has made memorable festival reformations for Sunbury in 1974 and 1975, but never performed again until 2005 for a Tsunami benefit concert in Melbourne. Eagle Rock was named the second Greatest Ever Australian Song by APRA in May 2001 and was voted one of the Top Ten Australian Songs of All Time at the ARIA Awards in 2001. Such were the ripples created by this song around the globe that Elton John and Bernie Taupin quoted Eagle Rock as the prime inspiration for the massive hit Crocodile Rock. DADDY COOL is an undeniable part of Australian rock ’n ’roll folklore; purveyors of pure pop genius, they lifted the bar to define new possibilities for Australian music on an international level.