James ‘Jim’ Armstrong (born 24 July 1944, in Belfast, Co Antrim) is a guitarist from Northern Ireland.
Armstrong’s musical career started while he was still a schoolboy, when he played in Belfast’s top showband, The Melotones, who were resident in the city’s Romano’s Ballroom. Armstrong played and recorded in the mid-’60s with Van Morrison and Them, touring both Europe and America (where he lived – playing and recording – for 4 years). Of the 51 tracks recorded by Morrison and Them (1964–66), Armstrong played on over half, and while living in America met and played with Jim Morrison & The Doors, Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa. During this time he was voted 3rd best guitarist in the world (after Jimi Hendrix & Frank Zappa).
Them were a Northern Irish band formed in Belfast in April 1964, most prominently known for the garage rock standard “Gloria” and launching singer Van Morrison’s musical career. The original five member band consisted of Morrison, Alan Henderson, Ronnie Millings, Billy Harrison and Eric Wrixon.The group was marketed in the United States as part of the British Invasion.
Them scored two UK hits in 1965 with “Baby, Please Don’t Go” (UK No.10) and “Here Comes the Night” (UK No.2; Republic of IrelandNo.2). The latter song and “Mystic Eyes”” were Top 40 hits in the US.
Them w/ Gloria:
Here is a youtube playlist with Jim Armstrong:
- “Begin the Beguine” is a song written by Cole Porter (1891–1964). Porter composed the song between Kalabahi, Indonesia, and Fiji during a 1935 Pacific cruise aboard Cunard’s “Franconia”. In October 1935, it was introduced by June Knight in the Broadway musical Jubilee produced at the Imperial Theatre in New York City.
A-side Indian Love Call B-side Begin the Beguine Recorded July 24, 1938, New York, New York Genre Jazz Length 3:11 Label Bluebird Writer(s) Cole Porter; (Arranged by Artie Shaw and Jerry Gray)