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Nero & The Gladiators

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This short-lived UK instrumental pop group was formed by guitarist Mike O’Neill who, having been informed that he resembled a Roman emperor, dubbed himself Nero and took to wearing a toga. His group, which also included Colin Green (guitar), Tommy Brown (drums) and Rod ‘Boots’ Slade (bass), completed three rousing singles, including ‘Entry Of The Gladiators’ and Prokofiev’s ‘In The Hall Of The Mountain King’, the latter of which incurred a BBC radio ban when ‘Boots’ spoken introduction was deemed disrespectful to a classical piece of music. The unit was disbanded in 1963 when Slade and Green opted to join Georgie Fame And The Blue Flames. Slade later surfaced in the Alan Price Set. Mick Jones, later to find fame with Foreigner, was also a member of the Gladiators shortly before their demise.

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