Here is a nugget I found while surfing. Decided I might as well post it here, before I go comment somewhere else...*GRUNT*
Pete Ham was born on April 27th 1947 and grew up in Gwent Gardens, Townhill, Swansea. Given his first guitar as a Christmas present when he was 12, Pete was hardly parted from the instrument. Often found during his youth hanging round in a gang along Gwylfa Road, Townhill, he would practice his guitar there to a very unappreciative audience of residents. Despite this, Pete continued with his ambition to form a rock group and, along with two other friends, formed Panthers, practising at the Townhill Youth Club.
The leader of this youth club was Brian Coffey and he was so impressed with the talent displayed by the band of young musicians, that he purchased an amplifier and floor tom-tom for the group. Later arranging their very first gigs, Coffey also transported the band and their instruments from venue to venue.
Their very first gig, however, was an unremitting disaster. At that point in the bands evolution, the group still needed a vocalist and their repertoire consisted mainly of instrumental Shadows covers. Paid at the interval, the group were asked to leave before one of them was physically hurt by their unhappy audience!
Over the following years, the group continued with very little success. Various members left and joined the group which was now titled The Iveys and at last featured a vocalist. Their big break came when Paul McCartney listened to a demo tape of the group and signed them up to the new Apple label.
Performing at Liverpool's 'Cavern' and being described as 'The New Beatles' did surprisingly little to rocket the group to stardom and so, after a major rethink, and another shuffle of band members, the group re-emerged as Badfinger.
Bandfinger's first real success came when they contributed to the soundtrack of 'Magic Christian Music' - scored for the film 'The Magic Christian' which starred Peter Sellers and Ringo Star. This album featured the track 'Come and Get it' - a song which rocketed the band to the Top 5 in both the US and UK markets. Their second single, 'No Matter What' (written by Pete) had similar success - as did their album 'No Dice'. 'No Dice' was critically acclaimed and, amongst its track listing, featured the song 'Without You'. A flurry of successful work followed for Badfinger, including an appearance at George Harrison's Bangladesh benefit concert.
1972 saw Harry Nilson release a phenomenally successful rendition of the groups song 'Without You' (co-written by Pete Ham). Badfinger failed to capitalise on this, however, and Pete, suffering from depression, took a back seat in songwriting for the group. Fame faded fast for the band and, in 1975, at the tender age of 27, Pete Ham lost his fight against depression and hanged himself in his garage studio. Cremated, his ashes were scattered to the winds in Morriston Cemetery, Swansea.
Although Badfinger originally split after Pete's unfortunate death, the groups reformed four years later with new members leaving/joining their number over several occasions. Tragedy struck the band again though when, in November 1983, Tom Evans (who had penned 'Without You' with Pete Ham) also committed suicide. This double suicide gave added pathos to the lyrics of their top love classic, which was later recorded successfully by Mariah Carey:
"I can't live, if living is without you
I can't live, I can't give anymore
I can't live, if living is without you
I can't live, I can't give anymore"
- Badfinger (1969)