The Sheiks are a Portuguese musical group formed in 1963 by Carlos Mendes, Fernando Chaby, Jorge Barreto and Paulo de Carvalho. Nicknamed the Portuguese Beatles, they played the typical rock’n’roll of the time and of which they were the main precursors in Portugal.
The Sheiks, whose first name was Windsors and Black Riders, started by playing at parties and shows organized by schools and universities. In 1965 they edited their debut EP which included a version of the well-known George Gershwin’s Summertime. Still that year, in September, Barreto leaves to make way for Edmundo Silva (bass guitar), formerly of Mistério.
On October 9, 1965, they participated in the 7th round of the Ié-Ié Competition at the Teatro Monumental (Lisbon) and came in first place (43 points), beating Tubarões, from Viseu, Galãs, from Porto, Czares, from Aveiro , and the Jovens do Ritmo, from Amora-Seixal.
In early 1966 they released their second EP with themes like Missing You and “Tell Me Bird”, the best known of the group. On January 8, 1966, they won the first semi-final of the Ié-Ié Contest with 49 points, ahead of Chinchillas, Carcavelos, Demônios Negros, Funchal, Diamantes Negros, Sintra, Tartaros, Porto , the Bárbaros, by Arcos de Valdevez, and the Sombras da Parede, by Parede.
The Sheiks would miss the final on April 30, 1966 (the Claves won) because they had a show on that day at Queima das Fitas in Coimbra. That year they performed with some international artists such as Searchers, Nino Ferrer, among others. In 1966, they released three more EPs: the first highlights the ballad “Lonely Lost And Sad”; in the second version of “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’” (Nancy Sinatra) and “Michèlle” (Beatles); the third includes the themes “I’ve Got To Give Up”, “Try To Understand”, “Tears Are Coming” and “I’m Feeling Down”.
Missing You is published in Spain, England and France. In France it even reached the 8th place in sales in the top of Paris and even made a season at Le Bilboquet in Paris, between December 8 and 11, 1966. In that city they recorded the EP Sheiks em Paris. Due to the lack of authorization from the family of one of the elements, they had to refuse an invitation from a manager who at the time represented the Rolling Stones in France.
On his return to Lisbon, Carlos Mendes leaves the band to continue his studies and is replaced by Fernando Tordo. It is with this line-up that they launch a new album in June 1967 that includes the track “That’s All”. .
In the summer of 1967 they made their last residency at seven and a half. In November Fernando Chaby and Paulo de Carvalho leave and end up finishing. There will still be a group, which included Edmundo Silva, who will later use (improperly) the name “Sheiks” but did not have any of the founders. In 1973 the label released two singles in stereo format: “Missing You/Tell Me Bird” and “Lord, Let It Rain/Bad Girl”.
In 1979, they returned, on the initiative of Fernando Chaby, with their main formation (Paulo de Carvalho, Carlos Mendes, Edmundo Silva and Chaby). They release the LP “Pintados de Fresco”, recorded in Madrid, where they recover themes from the group (“Tell Me Bird”, “Got To Keep On Dancing”, “Baby Don’t Cry”, “Lonely, Lost And Sad”, ” Missin’ You”, “Loving Life As It Comes (Tears Are Coming)”, “My Mother’s Advice”, “Lord Let It Rain”) with new arrangements. EMI edits the compilation “The 20 Most of the Sheiks”.
The following year, the album Com Cobertura (“Sheiks Com Cobertura”, “Rockinho Mandado”, “Pedreiro”, “Põe-te A Pau”, “O Que Há A Fazer”, “Reggae do Jardim”, “Com Pedras Na Mão”, “Porto de Abrigo”, “Vida Danada” and “Uma Canção…”). They present on television a series of 13 programs called “Sheiks Com Cobertura”.
In 1993, the compilation “Os Grandes Éxitos dos Sheiks” was edited with themes from the group between 1965 and 1967, transposed for the first time to the CD format. In 1996 a collection was also launched in the economic series “Caravela”. Movieplay also edited two compilations, in the “Best of the Best” and “Clássicos da Renascença” series, with themes recorded for Nova.
The group has been getting together in recent years for sporadic shows, namely in 2005 at IberRock (Viseu). In 2007 they returned to perform in several places, with the debut of the tour in Santarém.