Small Faces

The Small Faces were an English mod-psych band that placed ten singles on the UK Top 20 between 1965 and 1968, including “All or Nothing,” “Tin Soldier,” “Lazy Sunday,” and the transatlantic pop-psych evergreen “Itchycoo Park.” Despite their relative late arrival on the beat-boom timeline, their quick maturity culminated in the 1968 concept album Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake, recognized in the company of similar pioneering works by The Who, The Kinks, and The Pretty Things.

When co-frontman Steve Marriott left for Humble Pie, the remaining Small Faces hired guitarist Ron Wood and singer Rod Stewart, prompting a name-change to Faces.

Members: Steve Marriott (guitar, vocals), Kenney Jones (drums), Ronnie Lane (bass, vocals, 1965-69), Jimmy Winston [James Langwith] (keyboards, 1965), Ian McLagan (keyboards, vocals, 1966-69, 1977-78)


The Small Faces formed in early 1965 when musician Ronnie Lane (1946–1997) entered J60 Music Bar in Manor Park, London, to buy a bass. There, he struck up a conversation with the sales clerk, singer/guitarist Steve Marriot (1947–1991), who he’d seen perform the prior year. After work, Marriot invited Lane to his house, where they listened to soul records and decided to form a band.

Marriot, a former tween actor, cut the 1963 Decca single “Imaginary Love” and gigged during the intervening time in a succession of beat combos (The Frantiks, The Moments, The Checkpoints). It was at a multi-act show with The Moments in late 1964 where he first spotted Lane and drummer Kenney Jones (b. 1948), who were playing in a group called The Outcasts.

The original lineup of their new band was Lane, Jones, Marriot, and his acquaintance Jimmy Winston (1945–2020), who switched from guitar to organ for the spot. They named their band the Small Faces: “small” due to their collective small stature (they were all between 5’5″ and 5’6″); “faces” because a “face” was known as a sharp-dressed person of stature in the mod scene. They rehearsed at the Ruskin Arms pub in Manor Park, owned by Winston’s parents.

After a show at the Cavern Club on Leicester Square, they were taken under the wing of music manager Don Arden, who secured them a deal with Decca. They entered Pye Studios to cut their first single with producer Ian Samwell, the onetime guitarist of Cliff Richard‘s original backing band The Drifters.

“Whatcha Gonna Do About It”

On August 6, 1965, Small Faces released their debut single “Whatcha Gonna Do About It,” which Samwell co-wrote with Brian Potter. The b-side, “What’s a Matter Baby,” is a 1962 song by Clyde Otis and Joy Byers and first recorded by American singer Timi Yuro.

With its bobbing two-chord structure and Marriott’s exuberant vocals, “Whatcha Gonna Do About It” reached No. 14 on the UK Singles Chart. Small Faces mimed it on the September 16 broadcast of the BBC music program Top of the Pops, which aired “Whatcha Gonna Do About It” amid current hits by Donovan (“Universal Soldier”), The Hollies (“Look Through Any Window”), The Rolling Stones (“(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”), and The Walker Brothers (“Make It Easy On Yourself”).

In November 1965, French Decca issued its first of four Small Faces EPs with “Whatcha Gonna Do About It,” “What’s a Matter Baby,” and two new group originals (“Don’t Stop What You’re Doing,” “Come On Children”) that later appeared on their first album.

“I’ve Got Mine”

On November 5, 1965, Small Faces released “I’ve Got Mine” backed with “It’s Too Late,” both group-written numbers produced by C.R.C.

Small Faces perform “I’ve Got Mine” in Dateline Diamonds, a British music/crime film that also has appearances by Kiki Dee and UK girl trio The Chantelles.

By the time “I’ve Got Mine” hit shelves, Winston cleared for keyboardist Ian McLagen (1945–2014), a onetime member of Cyril Davies’ All Starz who recently played in Boz People, the band singer–guitarist (and future King Crimson and Bad Company bassist) Boz Burrell. McLagan made his live debut with Small Faces on November 2, 1965, at London’s Lyceum Theatre.

Winston reverted to guitar and teamed with (ex-Federals) keyboardist Tony Selvidge in Jimmy Winston & His Reflections, which cut the 1966 Decca single “Sorry She’s Mine,” a Lynch number that Small Faces would soon record. The b-side, “It’s Not What You Do (But the Way That You Do It),” is a Winston original (not the same as “‘Tain’t What You Do (It’s the Way That You Do It)”, a 1939 Ella Fitzgerald number later covered by Fun Boy Three with Bananarama).

His Reflections morphed into Winston’s Fumbs, which cut the 1967 RCA psych single “Real Crazy Apartment” b/w “Snow White” — both Winston originals later included on numerous psych comps.

Winston took up acting and appeared in the 1968 London adaption of the counter-cultural musical Hair and appeared in the 1972 Doctor Who serial Day of the Daleks. Selvidge, under the stagename Tony Kaye, co-founded Yes and played on their first three albums, followed by stints in Badger, Detective, Badfinger, and later incarnations of Yes.



On January 28, 1966, Small Faces released “Sha-La-La-La-Lee,” an upbeat pop song co-written by industry figure Kenny Lynch and American tunesmith Mort Shuman. The b-side, backed with “Grow Your Own,” is a group original with McLagen’s first co-writing credit. Lynch — a charting singer in his own right (“Up on the Roof,” “You Can Never Stop Me Loving You”) — produced both sides amid singles by Mitcham mods The Game.

“Sha-La-La-La-Lee” reached No. 3 on the UK Singles Chart and No. 15 in Germany. Small Faces mimed it on the February 17 broadcast of TotP, which aired the song amid current hits by The Animals (“Inside Looking Out”), Dusty Springfield (“Little By Little”), The Mindbenders (“A Groovy Kind of Love”), and Petula Clark (“My Love”).

Both sides of this and the prior single appear on French Decca’s second Small Faces EP, released in March 1966.

“Hey Girl”

On May 6, 1966, Small Faces released “Hey Girl,” a Marriott–Lane number backed with “Almost Grown,” a group composition. Don Arden produced both sides of this and the next single.

“Hey Girl” reached No. 10 on the UK Singles Chart. Small Faces mimed it on the May 26 broadcast of TotP, which aired “Hey Girl” amid hits by The Animals (“Don’t Bring Me Down”), The Merseys (“Sorrow”), The Rolling Stones (“Paint It Black”), and The Troggs (“Wild Thing”).

From this point on, all Small Faces singles were Marriott–Lane originals with occasional input from McLagen and Jones.

Small Faces

Small Faces released their self-titled debut album on May 11, 1966, on Decca Records.

“Shake” — Cooke
“Come On Children” — Marriot, Jones, Winston, Lane
“You Better Believe It” — Lynch, Ragavoy
“It’s Too Late” — Marriot, Jones, Winston, Lane
“One Night Stand” — Marriot, Lane
“What’cha Gonna Do About It” — Samwell, Potter
“Sorry She’s Mine” — Lynch
“Own Up” — Marriot, Lane
“You Need Loving” — Marriot, Lane
“Don’t Stop What You Are Doing” — Marriot, Jones, Winston, Lane
“E to D” — Marriot, Lane
“Sha La La La Lee” — Lynch, Shuman

Small Faces reached No. 3 on the UK Albums Chart and No. 8 in Finland.

“All or Nothing”

On August 5, 1966, Small Faces released “All or Nothing,” backed with “Understanding.”

On the week of September 21, 1966, “All or Nothing” reached No. 1 on the UK Singles Chart. The song peaked at No. 2 in the Netherlands, No. 10 in Norway, and reached the Top 20 in Germany and Sweden. Small Faces mimed “All Or Nothing” on the August 11 broadcast of TotP, which aired it six weeks straight amid hits by The Beatles (“Yellow Submarine”), The Beach Boys (“God Only Knows”), Manfred Mann (“Just Like a Woman”), and The Who (“I’m a Boy”).

Both sides of this and the prior Small Faces single appear on the third French Decca EP.

“My Mind’s Eye”

On November 11, 1966, Small Faces released “My Mind’s Eye,” backed with “I Can’t Dance With You.”

“My Mind’s Eye” reached No. 4 on the UK Singles Chart and went Top 20 in the Netherlands and Sweden. This single appears with two Small Faces tracks (“Shake,” “One Night Stand”) on their fourth French Decca EP, released in December 1966.

On the eve of its release, Small Faces mimed “My Mind’s Eye” on the November 10 broadcast of TotP, which re-aired it a fortnight later amid hits by The Easybeats (“Friday On My Mind”) and the Spencer Davis Group (“Gimme Some Lovin”).


“I Can’t Make It”

On March 3, 1967, Small Faces released “I Can’t Make It,” backed with “Just Passing.”

The BBC initially banned “I Can’t Make It” for its perceived sexual nature. Small Faces refused to promote the single, which Decca licensed to Immediate amid legal wrangling with Arden. Its production credits go to Marriott and ‘Plonk’ Lane. Both sides appear along with two Small Faces tracks (“You Better Believe It,” “You Need Loving”) on their fifth and final French Decca EP, released in April 1967.

Small Faces mimed “I Can’t Make It” for the May 20 broadcast of the German music program Beat-Club, which aired them amid numbers by Cream (“Strange Brew”) and The Equals (“Baby Come Back”).


On May 26, 1967, issued “Patterns,” an unauthorized single backed with “E Too D.”

“Here Come the Nice”

On June 2, 1967, Small Faces released “Here Come the Nice,” a psychedelic pop song backed with “Talk to You.”

“Here Come the Nice” peaked at No. 12 in the UK, where it bypassed BBC censors despite the drug references.

On the eve of its release, Small Faces mimed “Here Come the Nice” on the June 1 broadcast of TotP, which aired it amid hits by The Hollies (“Carrie-Anne”) and The Kinks (“Waterloo Sunset”). In July, the program twice re-aired “Here Come the Nice” amid new singles by Pink Floyd (“See Emily Play”) and Procol Harum (“A Whiter Shade of Pale”).

Small Faces also mimed “Here Come the Nice” for the June 24 broadcast of Beat-Club, which aired them along with numbers by Immediate labelmates Twice As Much (“Crystal Ball,” “True Story”) and London-based American soul singer PP Arnold, whose big summer hit “The First Cut Is the Deepest” was written by folk-psych newcomer Cat Stevens, who also appeared on the episode with his strident hit “I’m Gonna Get Me a Gun.”

Marriott and Lane self-produced this and subsequent Small Faces recordings.

From the Beginning

In June 1967, Decca released From the Beginning, a collection of Small Faces singles, b-sides, and unreleased tracks from their time on the label.

“Runaway” — Shannon, Crook
“My Mind’s Eye” — Marriott, Lane
“Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” — Marriott, Lane
“That Man” — Marriott, Lane
“My Way of Giving” — Marriott, Lane
“Hey Girl” — Marriott, Lane
“Tell Me Have You Ever Seen Me” — Marriott
“Come Back and Take This Hurt Off Me” — Miller
“All or Nothing” — Marriott, Lane
“Baby Don’t Do It” — Holland, Dozier, Holland
“Plum Nellie” — Marriott, Lane
“Sha-La-La-La-Lee” — Lynch, Shuman
“You Really Got a Hold on Me” — Robinson
“What’cha Gonna Do About It” — Potter, Samwell

From the Beginning reached No. 17 on the UK Albums Chart.

Small Faces

Small Faces released their second self-titled album on June 23, 1967, on Immediate Records.

“(Tell Me) Have You Ever Seen Me” — Marriott, Lane
“Something I Want to Tell You” — Marriott, Lane
“Feeling Lonely” — Marriott, Lane
“Happy Boys Happy” — Marriott, Lane
“Things Are Going to Get Better” — Marriott, Lane
“My Way of Giving” — Marriott, Lane
“Green Circles” — Marriott, Lane, O’Sullivan
“Become Like You” — Marriott, Lane
“Get Yourself Together” — Marriott, Lane
“All Our Yesterdays” — Marriott, Lane
“Talk to You” — Marriott, Lane
“Show Me The Way” — Marriott, Lane
“Up the Wooden Hills to Bedfordshire” — McLagan
“Eddie’s Dreaming” — Marriott, Lane, McLagan

Small Faces reached No. 12 on the UK Albums Chart. Two songs (“Become Like You,” “Get Yourself Together”) appear with both sides of their “Here Come the Nice” on the first of two Small Faces EPs on French Columbia (ESRF 1876).

Twice as Much cover “Green Circles” on their 1968 second album That’s All.

“Itchycoo Park”

On August 4, 1967, Small Faces released “Itchycoo Park,” a psychedelic pop song backed with “I’m Only Dreaming.”

“Itchycoo Park” reached No. 3 on the UK Singles Chart and matched that placement on the Dutch Top 100. It peaked at No. 4 in Norway and went Top 20 in Belgium and West Germany. The single broke them in the Commonwealth, where “Itchycoo Park” reached No. 2 in Australia and No. 1 in Canada and New Zealand. Small Faces mimed it on the August  24 broadcast of TotP, which twice re-aired it amid hits by Jimi Hendrix (“The Burning of the Midnight Lamp”), The Move (“Flowers In the Rain”), Traffic (“Hole In My Shoe”), and Tomorrow singer Keith West (“Excerpt From a Teenage Opera”).

Both sides appear along with two tracks from the Immediate Small Faces (“Green Circles,” “Eddie’s Dreaming”) on their second French Columbia EP (ESRF 1882). Small Faces mimed “Itchycoo Park” and “Green Circles” for the September 2 broadcast of Beat-Club.

“Tin Soldier”

On December 2, 1967, Small Faces released “Tin Soldier,” a Marriott–Lane rocker backed with “I Feel Much Better,” a three-way write with McLagen.

“Tin Soldier” peaked at No. 9 in the UK but charted higher in parts of Europe, where it reached No. 4 in the Netherlands in No. 7 in Sweden. In Germany, it became their first of two Top 10 hits (at No. 7). “Tin Soldier” reached its highest peaks in Oceania, where it reached No. 3 in Australia and New Zealand. Small Faces mimed it for the Dec. 30 broadcast of Beat-Club, which aired “Tin Soldier” amid numbers by the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band (“Equestrian Statue,” “Little Sir Echo”), Billy Nicholls (“Marion”), and Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mick & Tich (“Zabadak!”).

PP Arnold sings backing vocals on the chorus of “Tin Soldier,” which she performed with Small Faces on the French music program Bouton Rouge. The two parties mimed the song on the January 4, 1968, broadcast of TotP, which twice re-aired it that month amid hits by Amen Corner (“Bend Me, Shape Me”), The Beatles (“Hello Goodbye”), Bee Gees (“World”), and The Herd (“Paradise Lost”).


There Are But Four Small Faces

In February 1968, US Immediate issued There Are But Four Small Faces, an album with seven tracks from their second self-titled album and recent singles sides.

“Itchycoo Park” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“Talk to You” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“Up The Wooden Hills” — I. McLagan
“My Way of Giving” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“I’m Only Dreaming” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“I Feel Much Better” — S. Marriott, R. Lane, I. McLagan
“Tin Soldier” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“Get Yourself Together” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“Show Me the Way” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“Here Come the Nice” — S. Marriott, R. Lane
“Green Circles” — S. Marriott, R. Lane, O’Sullivan
“Tell Me (Have You Ever Seen Me)” — S. Marriott, R. Lane

The album’s release coincided with the stateside success of “Itchycoo Park,” which became their only Top 20 hit on the Billboard Hot 100, where it peaked at No. 16 for three weeks between late January and mid-February.

“Lazy Sunday”

On April 5, 1968, Small Faces released “Lazy Sunday,” a music hall number backed with “Rollin’ Over (Part II of Happiness Stan),” both Marriott–Lane numbers from their upcoming album.

“Lazy Sunday” peaked at No. 2 in the UK and Germany and reached No. 1 in the Netherlands. The song also reached No. 5 in Australia and No. 7 in Norway. Small Faces mimed it on the April 11 episode of TotP. “Lazy Sunday” also aired on the April 27 and June 22 broadcasts of Beat-Club amid hits by Reparata & the Delrons “Captain of Your Ship”) and Julie Driscoll and Brian Auger & Trinity (“This Wheel’s On Fire”).

Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake

Small Faces released their third studio album, Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake, on May 24, 1968, on Immediate.

“Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake” — Marriott, Lane, McLagan, Jones
“Afterglow” — Marriott, Lane
“Long Agos and Worlds Apart” — McLagan
“Rene” — Marriott, Lane
“Song of a Baker” — Marriott, Lane
“Lazy Sunday” — Marriott, Lane
“Happiness Stan” — Marriott, Lane
“Rollin’ Over” — Marriott, Lane
“The Hungry Intruder” — Marriott, Lane, McLagan
“The Journey” — Marriott, Lane, McLagan, Jones
“Mad John” — Marriott, Lane
“Happydaystoytown” — Marriott, Lane, McLagan, Jones

Ogdens’ Nut Gone Flake reached No. 1 on the UK Albums Chart and went Top 10 in Finland and West Germany.

“The Universal”

On June 28, 1968, Small Faces released “The Universal,” a Marriott–Lane number backed with “Donkey Rides, a Penny a Glass,” a three-way write with McLagen.

“The Universal” reached No. 12 in the Netherlands and No. 16 in the UK. Small Faces mimed it on the July 11 episode of TotP.


“Afterglow of Your Love”

On March 7, 1969, Small Faces released their final single, “Afterglow of Your Love,” and alternate version of the Ogdens’ track; backed with the Marriott–Lane exclusive “Wham Bam Thank You Man.”

“Afterglow of Your Love” peaked inside the Dutch Top 20.

The Autumn Stone (1969)

Small Faces



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