the sapphires

Participating members:

Earl Wilson: lead singer, leader

Tommy Merg: lead guitar and vocal

Nils Erik Bjørnes:  guitar and vocal

Svein “Maco” Hansen: el. bass

Arild Wikstrøm: organ, vibraphone and vocal

Tom Karlsen: drums, vocal

Carl Magnus “Calle”  Neuman: alto sax

Alf Kjellman: tenor sax

Knut Riisnæs: tenor sax

Hans Knudsen: baritone sax

Jarl Johansen: trumpet

Paticipating guest artists:

Christian Reim: organ B3

Arild Boman: organ B3

Ole Jacob Hansen: Drums

The Sapphires

In the Sixties the R'n'B scene in Oslo was growing fast; R'n'B bands were formed,

R'n'B singles from the States were re-recorded by popular Norwegian artists.

The Sapphires started in 1965 and released 4 singles on Polydor, all produced by Svein Erik Børja. The band was a household name at Club 7, and was the first R´n´B band to tour Norway and Germany, where their singles were also released.

They where used as studio-musicians for several other recording artists, and participated in TV shows in Norway and Germany.

The Sapphires did mostly do cover tunes, but the single from ´66 including: “I can`t believe it” is written and sung by Earl Wilson) and “Night Tripper’s Jerk” is written and sung by their now deceased drummer and active songwriter, Tom Karlsen.

Svein Hansen, Tommy Merg, Tom Karlsen og Nils Erik Bjørness in Rias Saloon, Dortmund, Germany, 1967

From NRK TV Popcorn

Sentralteatret 1965

Fashion  Show in

Flensburg, Germany


Center Page from PopExpressen. Photo from a backyard in Teatergata, Oslo 1966.

Tom Karlsen, Carl Magnus Neuman, Tommy Merg, Earl Wilson, Knut Riisnæs, Hans Knudsen, Svein Hansen og Nils Erik Bjørnes.

Svein "Maco" Hansen in Roger Arnhof studio

©  Ola Narr Studio

Love a' Gogo — Wencke Myhre & The Sapphires

Recorded in Roger Arnhof Studio, Oslo, 1967. Arranged by Knut Riisnæs

Night Tripper's Jerk

- The Sapphires

Recorded in Roger Arnhof Studio, Oslo.

Don't Play That Song

- The Sapphires

Recorded in Roger Arnhof Studio, Oslo.

Papa's Got a Brand New Bag -The Sapphires

Recorded in Roger Arnhof Studio, Oslo.


Ever since I Met You

-Three Hits & The Sapphires

Recorded in Roger Arnhof Studio, Oslo.


The Sapphires, Club7 in Edderkoppen Teater 1965.

Tom Karlsen: drums, Arild Wikstrøm: vocal and organ, Earl Wilson: vokal,

Tommy Merg: guitar and vocal, Nils E. Bjørnes: vocal and guitar,

Svein Hansen: Bass.

Konsertplakat fra 1966 i Nordstrandshallen

(The Sapphires er galt stavet på plakaten).

Anonse fra Pop revyen 26. Oktober 1966.