Wee Liz and Nat Kipper

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A OBSCURE DOWN UNDER ARTIST

OssieByrneWeeLiz9Recordings: Tiny Little Pebble (Nat Kipner) / Lonesome 409(Nat Kipner)

UK-1403 July 1966

Personnel: Wee Liz – vocal. Others unknown.

Vicious Sloth Records described the single as: AUSSIE 60's Cutesy 60's girl vocal pop b/w more of the same.

Both songs were written and produced by Nat Kipner.

Wee Liz is the most obscure of all the Down Under artists. At the time of this record’s release there were several other diminutive Australian pop stars, such as Little Pattie, Little Stevie (Wright from The Easybeats) and Little Sammy (Gaha from The In People). Their ranks weren’t so crowded that there wasn’t room for a Wee Liz to squeeze in.

Wee Liz appeared as a support act for Paul Wayne at the Illawarra Youth Club Hall at Shellharbour 7 October 1965. The young Bee Gees had played the same venue with The Chevrons 2 years before. Wee Liz’s backing band for the night was local Wollongong group "The Fyrebyrds". Over the following year, Wee Liz amassed a loyal following at teenage dances in the Illawarra region, and appeared with other local bands such as "Four Sale" and "The Sons of Adam".

The Sydney Sun’s pop writer, David Frith, wrote, "Wee Liz is a Sydney girl who sings in a rather child-like voice. Her first release "Tiny little pebble" on the equally new Down Under label shows promise but not enough bounce. More experience and better material may help in future." (Sun 7/7/1966, p. 32.)

Music Maker’s article in August 1966 about the Down Under label describes her as "a brilliant new girl singer".

Mike Mitchell, now living in Canberra but in 1967 a Wollongong resident and member of the band "Four Sale", recalls -

"…we were playing at the Police Citizens Boys Club building at North Wollongong [18 February 1967 at a Lions Club Dance] at the time. Wee Liz wasn't our singer but my memory is that her mother pestered us to let her do a few numbers with us and we (of course) being polite young lads said why not. I have an idea that the (then) Sydney DJ John Maloney was also there that night. Maybe he was there as a compere, maybe he was somehow tied up with Wee Liz and her career at that time - unfortunately I can't recall."

Her real name was Elizabeth (Betty) Reed, and it is believed that she had come to Australia with her parents from Scotland in 1965. She lived at Barrack Heights in the Wollongong area. She was 13 years old at the time she recorded the single. Nat Kipner had seen her perform on the TV show Saturday Date, and had signed her to a two year recording contract on the strength of that performance.

The South Coast Times described her as a tomboy, and said her hobby was horse riding.

This Down Under single is her only known release.

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Copyright 2003. Bill Casey