Ray Woolf Profile

John Dix
19 Mar 2016

His appeal crosses generations with a musical CV that includes pop, rock, soul, cabaret and jazz, while his television career ranges from drama and soap opera to fronting Play School and his own talk show. Mums, dads and grandparents love him and even those with little interest in music will remember him as the guy with Howard Morrison on the Bic television ads.

Ray Woolf was born in Dagenham, Essex, on 13 November 1944 and the Woolf family came to New Zealand in 1962. Within a month, the ambitious and none-too-shy singer came to the attention of Eldred Stebbing and shortly after he toured NZ in support of UK singer Helen Shapiro. “It all happened very very fast,” says Woolf. “Within a matter of months I was part of the NZ music scene.”

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Ray Woolf in the 1970s
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Ray Woolf and The Avengers: Norris Nutsford, Tony Blomfield, Billy Belton and Ray Woolf
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Ray Woolf in the early 1960s
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Ray Woolf & The Avengers: Bill Belton, Danny Stradwick, Ray Woolf, Norris Nutsford and Tony Blomfield
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Ray Woolf, in an early 1960s publicity shot
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The 2012 collection of Ray Woolf's 60s rock 'n' roll and beat recordings, compiled by Grant Gillanders for his Frenzy Music label
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At the Galaxie in 1967
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The Ray Woolf Five in the early 1960s
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Ray Woolf c.1963
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Ray Woolf, Peter Posa and Eldred Stebbing in Wellington on the Helen Shapiro tour, 1962
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Ray Woolf in the mid-1970s
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Ray Woolf and The Avengers: Norris Nutsford, Tony Blomfield, Billy Belton, Ray Woolf and Danny Stradwick
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Ray Woolf in the 2000s
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C'mon cast shot taken during the 1968 finale, with Shane, The Chicks, Ray Columbus, Tommy Ferguson and Ray Woolf
Photo credit: John Dix Collection
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A bio for Ray Woolf on the 1967 Loxene Golden Disc tour
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Ray Woolf sings Penny Lane (1985)
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The Ray Woolf bio for the 1962 Helen Shapiro tour
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A Ray Woolf publicity shot circa 1970
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The Newsounds in 1966 Billy Belton, Ray Woolf, Ian Laird and Al Patchett
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Ray Woolf and The Avengers at No.9 in May 1967 on the Radio Hauraki chart
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Ray Woolf at The Downtown Club, Wellington, backed by Quincy Conserve in 1967
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Ray Woolf and Helen Shapiro on Helen's 1962 NZ tour
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Ray Woolf and The Avengers: Norris Nutsford, Tony Blomfield, Billy Belton and Ray Woolf
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