Kelly Family


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In 1974, the older children formed The Kelly Kids (with Caroline on accordion, Kathy on violin, Paul on saxophone, John on drums and a cousin called Maribel on guitar), at first busking, then performing at parties and local events. John was the main vocalist there. For a city festival in neighboring Santa Anastasia the planned dance band falls out. A friend of the family establishes contact with the organizers of the city festival and so the "Kellys Kids" are engaged. For the upcoming gig they expand their previous repertoire by about 20 more songs, which they have to learn within two to three weeks. The performance in July 1975 is a complete success: It was planned to play dance music, but the audience looked with enthusiasm only on the stage to the band. They became well-known enough that they appeared on Spanish television in 1975. In the Spanish channel TVE, the Kellys Kids have their first TV appearance in the children's program "La Guagua". The program was broadcast in the middle of December. In Saragosa, the Kellys take about 20 minutes for the station TVE under the title "Kelly Kids y sus temas navideños". A few days later, this will be broadcast on TV. In Christmas 1975 they played at the Casino España de Ejea. They were also joined by Dan and Barbara, with Dan playing the bombo and asking the money with a hat, and Barbara dancing as she was a dancer. The band was joined by the younger members of the family as they matured and learned to play musical instruments, starting from Patricia with the guitar in 1975. The band's popularity increased in Spain, with several performances on television and in circuses. At a concert in the Caballo Blanco de Pamplona, Kelly Kids, now well known in Spain, will be offered a place to stay in Belascoáin. The Kellys leave Ejea de los Caballeros and move to Belascoáin, Calle Mayor № 17. When the Kellys leave Ejea de los Caballeros, Maribel goes back to Gamonal. Linda also leaves the family and goes to Portugal in a monastery. Later, she dies of a cancer. Her name later appears on the tombstone of Barbara-Ann. In 1976, they went on tour as The Kelly Family, in Italy, Germany and The Netherlands. Their money was stolen during the tour and, penniless, they had to busk on the streets to earn enough for the return trip home.