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  1. ITV Report

When Merthyr Tydfil learned to rock: Celebrating a rich musical history

An exhibition in Merthyr Tydfil's Red House has launched to celebrate the bands who played in the town during the 50s and 60s.

The area was home to more than a dozen bands in the Sixties, and hosted gigs from some of the biggest artists of the day.

Watch my report from Wales at Six below:

The project, led by Prof Paul Carr from the University of South Wales, encouraged people who were part of the music scene or attended gigs to share their memories.

Frank Janes (centre) with the members of Chapter Five

Frank Janes and his wife Irene contributed photos and their stories from the time to the project.

Frank played guitar in Chapter Five, who gigged in the town and surrounding area regularly.

Irene and Frank Janes

You had heroes you wanted to emulate.

And in those days, a lot of acts that were in the Top Ten would appear in Merthyr

They would come down, perhaps for one night.

You would go and see them. You would watch them, and you would learn from them.

– Frank Janes

The project was organised by Prof Paul Carr from the University of South Wales.

Though the town hosted gigs by Pink Floyd, Herman's Hermits and the Small Faces, he particularly wanted to celebrate the homegrown bands from the area.

The exhibition and research project drew on photos and recollections from many people

The local musicians emulated their heroes, and were influenced by the likes of the Small Faces and Beatles. I really think these sort of narratives are misrepresented and not celebrated enough. And hopefully this exhibition is doing that.

– Prof Paul Carr