In 1965 a 13-year-old girl dropped a couple of shillings in a slot and recorded her voice in a DIY singing booth in Woolworth’s on Oxford Street singing a punchy a capella version of Brian Hyland’s Sealed With A Kiss. She then marched over to PYE Records in Marble Arch with the disc and asked if they’d give it a listen. Two months later she was offered a two-year recording contract.

That gusty pre-teen chanteuse was St Albans resident Lorraine Silver, who is hosting a homegrown gig at The Alban Arena this month as part of The Mod All Star Band. She recalls what it was like to have such early success.

“It was such an exciting and adventurous thing for me to do at the age of 13,“ she says. “I loved every minute of it. My parents didn’t know I’d made the demo disc, the first they knew was when the letter from PYE Records landed on the doormat offering me an audition.“

Lorraine was originally due to record I’ll Keep Holding On, which had been released by The Marvelettes in the US but at the last minute she was asked to cover a slow ballad by American songstress Shelley Fabares called Lost Summer Love. Lorraine’s second single was The Happy Faces an original song written by Johnny Harris who produced both her singles. The B side featured a version of The Supremes track When the Love Light Starts Shining Thru His Eyes, which featured backing vocals by The Ladybirds and hand clapping by Lorraine’s father, who had to accompany her to all recording sessions because of her age.

“My dad was and still is the proudest of fathers. At the time he accompanied me everywhere. I can still remember the first time that I heard Lost Summer Love being played on my little transistor radio and it caused immense excitement in my home. Fame was a rarity when I started and I was the heroine at my senior school, all my friends were very excited for me.“

Sadly, her second single flopped and disillusioned, Lorraine settled back into school life at Kingsbury County Grammar.

“I was just unlucky that my management at the time had a band called the Overlanders who had a number one hit with a cover of the Beatles song Michelle, so all their attention went to that,“ she explains. “The record company chose the management for me.

"Obviously, at such a young age I had no control over that side of things. Nobody helped me at all, I didn’t have pushy parents and had no voice training, I just lived to sing and perform. I was a typical teenager of the ’60s, I was a massive Beatles fan and I loved all the Tamla Motown and soul music.“

Lucky for Lorraine, it was soul enthusiasts who pulled her back into the spotlight – 23 years after the original recording, Lost Summer Love, emerged on a list of popular Northern Soul tracks.

Her first album The Northern Soul Sessions was released in September 2004 on Raise The Roof Records featuring re-recorded versions of her singles and anthems such as Landslide and I’ll Keep Holding On.

For the St Albans gig she will also sing alongside Steve Ellis lead singer from The Love Affair (Everlasting Love), Chris Farlowe (Out Of Time and Handbags and Gladrags) and Cliff Bennett (Got To Get You Into My Life).

“I never dreamt that as a young teenager singing along to their hits in my bedroom that all these years later I would be singing alongside them live on stage,“ concludes Lorraine. “I’d say it’s a childhood dream come true.“

The Mod All Star Band comes to The Alban Arena on Friday, May 18 at 8pm. Details: 01727 844488,