- Owen Money
Mittell was bassist of Merthyr Tydfil based band The Crescendos, who amalgamated with another Merthyr band The Rebels to form The Bystanders in 1962. Mittell changed his name to Gerry Braden, and became lead singer in a line-up with:
- Micky Jones – guitar and vocals
- Clive John - guitar, keyboards and vocals
- Ray Williams - bass
- Jeff Jones - drums
The band signed to Welsh label Pylot records in 1963, with initial release "That's The End", with "This Time" as the 'B' side. They were then signed to Pye Records, where they released the double-sided cover single "98.6" (backed with Marvin Gaye's "Stubborn Kind Of Fellow"), which went to number 45 in the national Top 50 chart on 9 February 1967
Owen Money reformed the Bystanders in 1998 for a one-off performance at Maesteg Town Hall for his TV programme
Mittell formed comedy entertainment Tomfoolery in 1974, which rapidly became a successful comedy show band, topping the bill at South Pier, Blackpool. The band toured extensively in the UK and Europe, winning many comedy awards on the way. In 1980 Owen Money left Tomfoolery for the comedy circuit, starting a tradition for the band where members come and go, including ex-lead singer Brian Conley.
1980 and onwards
In 1987, Money joined BBC Radio Wales with weekly programme "Money for Nothing", which increased in popularity through 1997 to win two gold Sony Radio Academy Awards: one for "Regional Broadcaster of the Year", and the other for "Best Music Sequence Programme of Year". "Money for Nothing" is presently broadcast every Saturday morning and Sunday afternoon. Money also presents "The Afternoon Show" on Monday and Friday, plus he co-presents "Extra Time" when his schedule allows, a sports phone-in show on Saturday evenings with Jason Mohammad
Money regularly appears with his band the Soul Sharks, and takes the "Owen Money Laughter Show" to venues around Wales and the South West England.
Money used to be the landlord of a pub called The LA in Swansea. It was originally named the Hafod Inn; Money used to say that LA stood for "Lower 'Afod". The pub is now the Hafod Inn once again.
In 2000, after appearing himself in pantomime, he set up his own pantomime company, The Owen Money Theatre Company, with the aim of taking family friendly pantomimes around the theatres of Wales from November to February. The first production was Aladdin, followed by Cinderella (2001/02), Jack And The Beanstalk (2002/03), Dick Whittington (2003/04), Aladdin (2004/05), Robinson Crusoe (2005/06), Peter Pan (2006/07), Cinderella (2007/08), Jack And The Beanstalk (2007) and Adult pantomime Buttons Undone - The Cinderella Story continues... (2008).
Married, Money lives in Porthcawl, and has a daughter Katie and a son Mathew.
Under his given name of Lynn Mittell, Owen Money was awarded an MBE in the Queen's New Year Honours List 2007. The citation reads: "Radio Presenter and Comedy Music Performer. For services to entertainment in Wales".
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