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This page is mainly centred on the Southampton area and gives an insight into the 60s/70s music scene plus some rare photos of my 'apprenticeship' Please feel free to let me know if you have any personal memories of anything below - I may publish it!
DAVID ST. JOHN-The beginnings
(This old page was the first effort back around 2007-so very basic-please excuse!) More in-depth information can be found in this book published in 2020
THE STORY BEGINS:
THE ROYAL PIER PAVILION
Please click on this picture below and it will take you to my new page (Call Up the Groups) all about the pop music scene from 50s onward! It contains memories of the Royal Pier and much more.....
Sadly, only this facade of the Royal Pier Pavilion still remains close to the famous Southampton Docks which were once packed with ships and liners from all over the world, giving the city its great position and profile. People walked through the main entrance and booking hall, before taking a leisurely stroll along the wooden decking or just sitting in the sun and watching the busy activities of the docks on both sides. Back on April 10th 1912, the whole Pier must have been packed as onlookers gasped at one of the most magnificent liners ever built slowly glide out of its berth, on its way to a tragic end - the Titanic. She sailed from Berth 43/44 about half a mile away, but would have been seen by those crammed onto the Royal Pier as she steamed down Southampton Water into the Solent and onto the watery grave that lay undiscovered until 1985.
I was weaned on Fifties Rock and Roll - in fact I was born on the very same day as one of my favourite musicians- Rick Parfitt of Status Quo! Growing up in Southampton meant that everybody was talking about the new breed of American stars that only had the option of sailing across the Atlantic on such famous ships as the Queen Elizabeth, Queen Mary and many more. I was aware that some new 'dance' band called Bill Haley and his Comets caused a mini riot when passing through the docks and onto the London bound train as they pioneered this new sound called Rock and Roll kicking off with an amazing hit back in December 1954 called 'Shake Rattle and Roll' I was hooked!
I eagerly awaited the next single which didn't exactly set the charts on fire at first - another terrific song called 'Rock Around The Clock' - what one calls a 'sleeper' hit. It was originally a B-side and used on the opening credits of an American film called The Blackboard Jungle. This groundbreaking film told the story of high school problems which is credited with kick starting the teenage rebellion along with the films of James Dean and other 'angry young men'. This saw the rise of Teddy Boys (and Girls) who pioneered teen fashion with their smart Edwardian ('Teddy) drape jackets, tight jeans and 'Blue Suede Shoes' etc. When the film was shown in cinemas around the UK, the kids went wild at the movie and rock and roll soundtrack which saw them jiving in the aisle! When the officials tried to move in and break this up, it sparked riots in which seats were slashed and punch-ups on a massive scale which caused a feeding frenzy with the establishment and media of the day!
At the far end of the pier stood the famous ballroom, as well as cafes and amusement centres long since gone as the structure fell into disrepair and later catching fire some years ago. Southampton was heaving with people, looking for a good night out and the ballroom was constantly in use as a dance hall plus staging the popular Wrestling nights during its early Sixties boom and TV profile. During the late Fifties, the ballroom hosted many dance nights featuring big bands, later followed by the rock and pop groups that were now emerging throughout this exciting period which saw a new word emerge - the 'teenager'. My mum used to love her dancing nights out, and also worked at the ballroom which was run by a well known local promoter and my first 'manager' by the name of Len Canham - a popular flamboyant character who also dealt with many top names in the entertainment business. She casually mentioned me to him, as I had been singing pop songs from an early age and he was intrigued at the idea of a ten year old Rock n Roll singer appearing on these new teen dances that were packing the Pier Ballroom. My parents were a great help to me as ours was a musical home, with a piano in the lounge and I soon discovered a natural ear for music, along with learning some guitar as well - the early skiffle years also providing a chance to make music with a few pals.
I can still recall the thrill of my first night, as I went backstage for a musical chat with one of the bands who were to back me - the Three Stars. I recall that the guitarist was Johnny Watson who later emigrated to Australia, plus drummer 'Big' Brian Ferguson (Fergy) double bass was Alan Fraser. Thanks to Peter Broyd who recently contacted me with more information on this. He also mentioned that Johnny also played drums and during a tour of Hamburg with one of his successful groups, he was approached by another British band who were starting to make some progress during the early 60s. Johnny turned this offer down as he was quite happy with his own established outfit - can you guess who the 'other' group of scruffy Scousers were??
Royal Pier Pavilion Southampton 1958
The band picked up my musical keys from a few classic songs such as 'Jailhouse Rock - Tutti Frutti- Rock Around The Clock' etc and I then entered the spotlight to massive cheers from the teen audience and proceeded to knock out some good old rock and roll which went down really well. On other occasions, I appeared alongside the Brook Brothers - Geoff and Ricky, a local duo in the style of the Everly Brothers who had a few hits in the early Sixties (Warpaint - Ain't Gonna Wash For a Week etc) I did a few of these dance nights as well as a couple of other venues around Southampton but word soon got round to the ears of the school authorities. They quickly jumped on me and my parents, for appearing in public under the age of 12 so I then had to take an early forced 'retirement' for a few years, until the next stage of my life in the spotlight. If you check out the Site Map page, you will see that I organised the first of several 60s shows at the refurbished gatehouse- now Kutis Thai Pier Restaurant. This was some thirty odd years since the old pier ballroom and jetty were destroyed by fires, so quite a nostalgic return to this 'Mecca' for many bands, singers and teen dance fans who used to attend many shows at this landmark location. Many locals also met their future partners as they danced under the mirror ball lights that spun around the ballroom- maybe YOU were one of them?
Offstage at the Royal Pier - jiving with a couple of teenage fans!
('Teddy Girl' Sisters - Janet and Barbara Appleton - where are they now?)
If you are interested in a historical view then click on this link below-it has another linked webpage
ROYAL PIER MEMORIES
THE SWINGING SIXTIES
When the pop group explosion of the Sixties reared its head I then launched into the next stage, and spent several years as lead singer & frontman with many top Hampshire based semi-pro bands, along with being a well respected blues harmonica player, influenced by the early R&B styles.
My first successful group were known as the Abdo-Men (!) followed by The Unforgiven, Earth Angels, and the Cellars of Sound, until staying with my last group - The Script, who finally became The End. We had a very successful residency at the old Railway Inn - later named The Woolston, before this eventually changed to the Bridge Inn, and now is known as the New Bridge Inn. This popular venue witnessed some amazing shows, as our band provided audiences with terrific music along with crazy onstage antics and comedy (see below) and this was a springboard for the next stage of my career as I decided to go solo in 1972. I also appeared at the well known Juniper Berry pub close to the Southampton Docks, a notorious and infamous local hotspot, but giving me a chance to try out my new ‘adult’ comedy routines which were a springboard for the next stage of my showbusiness career. This venue is now a more sedate pub known as the Bosun's Locker - the walls could tell some stories.......
The infamous Juniper Berry
THE GROUP YEARS
Formed in late1963, comprising myself on lead vocals with newly discovered blues harmonica skills. We played all over the Hampshire area, and the band line-up also included Dave Sothcott and Mick ‘Cockney-Boy’ Young on lead/rhythm guitars, Geoff Baker on bass, plus Glenn Lee on drums. Mick was replaced by a great character, still well known on the Southampton music scene to this day - ‘Beau’, and we all had a great time playing at various clubs and dancehalls, including the legendary Casbah on the London Road, down in the hot noisy sweaty cellar - Southampton’s answer to the Cavern Club! Our music was a good mix of pop cover songs, plus some earthy R&B in the style of the Beatles, Stones, Yardbirds, Pretty Things etc, and this band lasted for a couple of years, before splitting up, which then led a couple of us into the next group. Unfortunately, I have very few photos of the early bands but I have dug up this rare shot of Jeff Baker on 'pot'. Sex drugs and rock n roll eh? Sadly we lost Glenn Lee who passed away in 2021 but the remaining Abdos are still around- especially Beau whose group 'Toast' are one of the most popular outfits for miles around. After all these years he can still hit the high falsetto notes plus great bass playing as he switched from rhythm guitar back in the 60s.
Our first group van - times were tough....
This was an Eastleigh - based band, managed by another real ‘character’ Tony Cook a well respected drummer and who sadly passed away in November 2005. Tony was totally devoted to this group and drove us all over the South Coast, beaming with pride as we stormed audiences everywhere. We usually travelled in Tony's Ford Consul 375 with a small trailer on the back although I sometimes went on my motorbike to local gigs. This was still the time of Mods and Rockers and I confused people by wearing Mod clothes but riding a bike - I was a Mocker! I recall that a few of us spent Christmas day 1965 at Tony and Jean Cook's house and most of the day was spent by a marathon of joke-telling which went on for hours - Tony mentioned that I should consider being a real comedian when I eventually 'grew up'! This stuck in my mind and I never forgot his encouragement, although it took another few years before I realised that I needed to make a solo break away from what was then becoming a stagnant music scene in 1972. We had so much fun on the road and had several near misses as Tony was laughing so much and not concentrating on the road ahead! I still laugh at some of the memories when we were playing at the Stonehenge Inn on Salisbury Plain - a regular group venue and often ended up with drunken squaddies having punch-ups between themselves or with the local lads who had a go! We just kept on playing as bottles, chairs, tables and soldiers came flying through the air in front of us - luckily they never bothered with the band and they encouraged us to keep going in case the noise attracted anyone outside of the building!
Another memory was as we finished playing and packed the gear up along with chatting up the local girls, although watching out for jealous boyfriends hanging around the door. We sometimes needed the bouncers to escort us out of the pub car park on several occasions as well as keeping an eye out on return shows. Tony backed the car and trailer up to the front door in readiness for the equipment to be carried out but he was often left there waiting as we were still on the pull inside. I can still see him on a cold stormy winter night with the rain lashing down on him as he stood there soaking wet and swearing at us lazy b******s inside! Priceless.
The Unforgiven were formerly known as The Planets, fronted by a very talented lead guitarist/vocalist Eddie Harnett, along with Steve Newman and then Graham Medley on bass, plus Dave Bunney the drummer, later replaced by the extrovert Ronnie Allen. In fact, Beau from the previous group was asked to join this new lineup but would only do so, if I was part of the deal! They didn't really need another singer in the group as Eddie was a terrific vocalist/guitarist but my harmonica playing brought a new dimension to the sound. So it was onto another couple of terrific years in one of the best bands around and we played all over the South Coast, as well as a residency at the well known Junction Hotel Eastliegh, adjacent to the railway station but long since gone. The Unforgiven name came from an old John Wayne movie but I'm not sure who came up with that name.
2009: Finally made contact with Dave Bunney - original drummer who has sent loads of great photos see 'Call Up The Groups 5" via the Site Map. This is a rare photograph of the old Junction Hotel where we practised and played as resident band in amongst travelling all over the South.
JUNCTION HOTEL EASTLEIGH- mid 60s
No idea who the wedding party are but it shows the left side of the main building that led to the pub carpark. The Eastleigh railway platforms were behind the Junction and we had to put up with noisy trains and vibrations whilst playing! Not that good on slow quiet songs but provided laughs. The pub was demolished a few years later to provide a larger car park for the station and I am hoping that more old photos might surface some day?
September 2007: I received this rare 1964 clipping by Steve Newman who played bass with the old Planets and sat in with our new Unforgiven line-up on a few nights.
Steve Newman dug up some more rare stuff and has mailed the following business cards- he played bass with the Planets before they restructured into the Unforgiven. Here are two old handouts that were dished out at every booking or dropped off at venues, agents etc.
This rare photograph was sent to me by Beau and shows the Unforgiven playing at the Carousel Club Southampton (in the heart of the red light district!) We must have been a 'pro' band by then! This was Xmas Eve 1965 and this very image was the first one that really kick started this website off, leading to the explosion that follows on as you will note by the Site Map page.
L-R David Beau Graham Eddie Ronnie
Just a few months into this new line-up, we made the front page of the Daily Echo by winning the Big Beat Contest at the Town Hall as part of the 1965 carnival celebrations. This is a rare photo of the winning group below:
Eddie Beau Graham David Dave
Dave Bunney-original drummer at the Junction
Eddie Harnett 2006!
December 2010- Eddie was rushed into hospital in Las Vegas and sadly passed away in January 2011
Read this for more info: www.davidstjohn.co.uk/blog2010.html
Back in 1965, three of the Unforgiven joined Tony and family for a great holiday break in North Cornwall and this old photo has finally surfaced! Taken on a beach and shows me pointing at the camera with Jean Cook and children (Clive/Lesley) in front. Then drummer Dave Bunney next to Eddie Harnett with Tony looking away to his right (I think there was a nudist beach next door) We stayed in a caravan and adjoining tent and had so many laughs including Eddie being chased along the beach by some girls - they thought he was Dave Crosby of the Byrds!
Tony Cook also played drums with several dance bands/duos etc and I have been sent a couple of recent photos of the man in action - see below.
Tony Cook - Eastleigh's answer to Brian Epstein! Taken a few years before he sadly passed away in late 2005. Thanks for the memories Cookie!
Received yet another e-mail from Tom Fosberry, who played bass with the newly formed 'Unforgiven' and has added this to the information:
My first ‘day-jobs’ after leaving grammar school were quite a varied mix, and my first employment was as a trainee service engineer at the Top Rank tenpin bowling alley next to the old Ice Rink and Speedway Stadium in Banister Road, not far from the Hampshire Cricket ground. This followed on from my love of this American sport which took off in the early Sixties, and I was part of the Southampton Junior Bowling team, competing at various centres around the South, before my next job as a service mechanic on amusement machines. I enjoyed this interesting work, mostly self-taught, like my first job, and passed my driving test, then being able to travel around the area, fixing pintables, fruit machines and jukeboxes, many of which would now be worth thousands as classic collectors items!
Other jobs followed, including delivery driver, in which I also enjoyed the freedom of travelling around the South Coast area, as well as a very unusual, but short-lived employment of being a trainee steeplejack! My dad had always been a great influence on me, and he took many snaps throughout my childhood, which later turned into a hobby of mine, which then resulted in a couple of years as a professional photographer, although this small business eventually folded, leading me onto one last job as a delivery driver. Back to the groups........
Due to various reasons, I left the Unforgiven in 1966 and spent a short while with a great Mod band called the Earth Angels (named after a rare record by the Penguins). June 2008 - just received an e-mail from former bandmate Ernie Fagg who sent the following photo of the Earth Angels before I joined them, replacing Melvyn Day as lead vocals + harmonica.
THE EARTH ANGELS
SOUTHERN ROOTS INFO:
MELVYN DAY (previous voc)
ERNIE FAGG (bass)
BARRY MORROW (gtr)
DEREK EDMONDS (drums)
ROY COOPER (gtr) replaced by
MELV McRAE (gtr)
This photo supplied by Bob Pearce-looks like same photo-shoot
SOUTHERN ROOTS INFO:
''Young R&B band from mid Sixties who played obscure soul numbers picked up from import 45s, a few blues plus some Who songs. They built up a fair following on the youth club circuit before disbanding. Day joined John Drevar's Expression and later worked the Northern clubs. Edmonds and McRae also joined Expression and Fagg went onto the Midnight Movers and Bob Pearce Blues Band" Melvyn Day now lives in Sheffield and still fronting R&B bands!
I enjoyed my year with the Earth Angels as we featured unusual numbers mixed with Who style numbers and had a good sound during the Mod era although I was riding motorbikes at the time instead of the obligatory scooter! This did confuse people as I wore Mod clothes but rode a 250cc Francis Barnett with 'Harley' handlebars so everybody asked me "Are you a Mod or a Rocker?" I replied "I'm a Mocker!" Here I am posing with my 'chopper' Francis Barnett 250 Twin- would be worth a small fortune these days.
5th October 2009 Another e-mail from an Earth Angel!
Once again- I have been able to put old pals in touch on my MUSOS REUNITED pages! (©MUSOS REUNITED=copyrighted)
I have also copied this mail, info and pics onto my 'Call Up The Groups 2' webpage so take a look! After this band, I went onto a Salisbury based group called:
THE CELLARS OF SOUND
(get the pun?)
Me and Reg Maggs at the back - Front- 'Pip' Doris, Richie Bull, Mick Harvey
This photo was taken on Weymouth beach as we did a two day run in the area, including the Pavilion. You can see our luxury hotel in the background - yes a battered old Commer van with the band's name painted on the side (phone Durrington Walls 485) The group was based around the Amesbury and local area which is right in the middle of Salisbury Plain just by Stonehenge so this gave us opportunities to perform at the many Army bases nearby. The Cellars of Sound were a nice bunch of lads and managed by another great character- Ted Vaughan who also worked as a bouncer at the aforementioned Stonehenge Inn. Ted had spotted me on previous gigs with the Unforgiven and was always asking me to join this new band but a major stumbling block was the 35 miles away from my home in Southampton and took a good hour in those days along ordinary A and B roads. I eventually agreed and many of our shows were all over Wiltshire and the West with Ted driving all the way down to pick me up in the afternoon - back to Amesbury then onto the gig. Arrived back to drop off the other lads before driving me back home in the early hours of the morning. Ted then drove home for a couple of hours sleep as he had to get up early for his day job at the local Army bases! He was a gentle giant and a very funny guy too - we had loads of laughs throughout the time spent with this group, not forgetting that nobody dared to mess about with us lads when they saw the size of him! He also boasted of his younger bachelor days in the area and known as the 'Durrington Stallion'! We never argued with him......
Brilliant drummer Dave Maggs eventually went on to join the Troggs for many years. This was a great experience, as we played through the golden hippy days of the ‘summer of love’ but finally folded, and then leading me to my best and favourite time of all, with my last group of the Sixties/early Seventies:
THE SCRIPT/THE END
This band was originally fronted by Tex Roberg, another legendary figure on the Southampton group scene, and they had a residency at my local pub then called The Railway in Portsmouth Road Woolston. It was later renamed the Woolston followed by The Bridge Inn and finally The New Bridge Inn named after the bridge built across the River Itchen in 1977. This saw the end of the old floating bridges that used to ferry people and cars over to the Southampton side, and you may find some interesting information on these much loved forms of transport by searching on the net. The pub has now reverted to its original 19th C name of the Cricketers, recalling that the first Hampshire Cricket Club ground was on that spot.
I often used to jam with this band, and was a natural replacement when Tex hit the trail, leading into my favourite time of all, with a superb bunch of musicians and mates. It featured bassman Graham Medley, of the Unforgiven days, with Tony Burnette on drums, along with Roy Perry on lead guitar, who sadly died a few years ago. These photos taken at Tony's wedding so a rare sight of us in suits!
David Roy Graham Tony
We played this venue for some four years, and rapidly built up a cult following, especially amongst the local bikers, and many a rock and roll night was preceded by me riding a motorbike through the pub, and onto the stage via a ramp -exhaust smoke choking the front row of a packed house! The audiences were also treated to some crazy nights, including a tribute to Screaming Lord Sutch, as I was borne through the crowd, in a coffin carried by a few Hells Angels, before launching into a mad show, full of blood, guts and all kinds of horror! Other nights saw fireworks being let off and nearly setting the place alight plus all manner of wacky stunts that drew the crowds from all over the area. We organised talent nights and even booked a stripper on another show - this packed the place out, but got us into trouble with the local authorities when they found out!
Other gimmicks included me singing 'Jailer Bring Me Water' which resulted in my getting drenched with a soda syphon! Another much-repeated request was for 'The Ballad of Bonnie & Clyde' - the finale seeing me get 'shot' all over the stage and writhing across the floor, and many more daft ideas that used to guarantee a packed room. Another memorable feature was a tribute to The Crazy World of Arthur Brown - another eccentric who had a massive number one hit in '68 with 'Fire'. This saw me stripped to the waist, with black cloak and appropriate facepaint, as I proceeded to knock out this great classic song. The room was blacked out and lit by a couple of burning cauldrons by the front of the stage, and I then chucked handfuls of gunpowder into the flames, which nearly blew the low polystyrene ceiling tiles off as well as nearly catching the whole building alight! Many people thought I was on drugs with these crazy stunts but all part of the fun and our need to really entertain the crowd on top of the music.
I had always been telling gags from an early age and was well known for crazy stage antics, so felt that I needed to branch out on my own to develop the comedy side. We changed our name to its final and prophetic label of....... THE END, and I was now looking to spread my wings after many great years on the group scene. I left in 1972 to pursue a solo comedy career and the group carried on for a short while, before going their own separate ways, but I still keep in touch with them and other local musos from those Swinging Sixties!
Golden days - Golden memories. Here are a few rare onstage photos taken by me:
Graham Roy Tony Tony & Roy
Around this time I was also well into photography and these pictures of Graham are a couple of favourites:
My best pal from an early age was Peter Phillips - also known as Peter Hampton and he was always into music as he saw how much fun I was getting out of it all. He achieved some notoriety during the Sixties beat boom with his very long hair which grew some half way down his back - similar to Phil May of the Pretty Things who 'shocked' the older generation more than the Rolling Stones (albeit hyped up thanks to canny manager Andrew Loog Oldham) Peter used to work in the signal box at the old Terminus Railway Station that served the nearby docks and was always getting flak from all around him, which spurred him into growing it all even more. He even made the local papers and the Echo ran a feature on him wearing a pinstripe suit with bowler hat perched on his thick flowing locks and carrying a briefcase (containing his sandwiches of course)
Peter later joined the Merchant Navy and sailed on many ships out of Southampton and mostly the Cape Run around South Africa and the Transatlantic crossings to New York but had to cut most of his hair to comply with the regulations. During these trips, he taught himself to play a mean guitar with finger picking 'folk' style as well as developing some good comedy lines and gags etc. Here are a couple of photos I took at the Woolston pub, where he often got up for a short set and really went down well - resembled Paul McCartney at that time!
I lost touch with Peter when leaving Southampton back in 1972 but saw him from time on the odd occasion although he sadly had quite a few problems over the years and could often be seen busking around Southampton city centre, along with another well known guy called 'Maryland' who was also very talented but down on his luck. The last I heard of Peter Phillips was when he moved down to Somerset and used to busk in Weston Super Mare and other seaside places, so I often wonder what happened to him.......
I was also seeing myself as a real pop star by now and here posing with my Jaguar 420G limo
November 2012- E-mail from an old Woolston 'regular'
"SCREAMING LORD CRUTCH!"
Our most successful theme evening was a 'Jack the Ripper' tribute to Screaming Lord Sutch - one of the most flamboyant eccentric entertainers in early 60s Rock n Roll. He is also attributed as the longest serving political party leader, having formed the Raving Monster Loony Party back in the Swinging Sixties, and hoping to kick Harold Wilson out of Number Ten Downing Street! Our 'Horror Night' used to pack the pub to the rafters and this is a description of a fun-filled evening.
The other three band members kicked off with a few songs, before setting the scene and playing the slow funeral-like 'Death March' as a group of Hells Angels carried me in a black coffin from the back of the crowded room- this took quite a while as they pushed and fought their way through the heaving masses! The bikers placed me onstage, and slid the microphone into the coffin ready for me to start singing 'I put a Spell on You' from within. The lid slowly moved open and I rose into view, all dressed in black plus top hat and cloak, then carrying on singing this old classic Screaming Jay Hawkins song - he was one of the old time American blues singers, whose own theatrical stage act contained elements of Black Magic and Voodoo.
I then 'drank' a magic potion, causing a Jekyll and Hyde transformation as I slipped on a gruesome horror mask and long bony monster hands, before starting to roam around the audience. On a couple of occasions, a few of the onlookers actually ran out of the room as they found it all quite frightening, which gave the others a good laugh. The next part of the show had me 'selecting' a girl from the audience (Roy's wife Julie!) whom I 'hypnotised' and led to the stage, then laying her down in the coffin ready for the REALLY horrifying climax. The music switched to'Jack the Ripper' followed by 'The Hall of the Mountain King' as its gradual slow opening saw me pick up a long knife which I then plunged into the body in the coffin, whilst secretly applying some tomato ketchup which I duly licked off in between thrusts of the dagger. I had paid a trip to the local butcher and obtained some raw offal, kidneys, liver sausages etc, and these props were then used as I proceeded to 'butcher' the poor victim lying in the coffin and lift 'body parts' into the air, before chucking them into the crowd - Boy did they scatter!
Again, a few people ran out of the room as this blood-curdling performance reached its peak, with sheeps eyes being held aloft and thrown out into the shocked front tables. It all then wrapped up as we then launched into some of our usual great rock and roll numbers, in between clearing the debris from the stage and cleaning up the blood and gore from before! I guess Alice Cooper must have called by on one of these nights and given him a few ideas of his own, in the next year or so......... Here are a couple of photos, although I cannot really publish some of the more controversial images that formed part of this special night I can only mention that it was to do with one of the large sausages....ahem....
The coffin lid slowly rises - raw meat ready! The monster hypnotises his victim
THE END- business card.
Dont try ringing these old phone numbers!!
1990 The Re-Union gig! Parts 1-2-3
L-R Graham David Ronnie Roy
In 1990 we managed to reform the group for a one-off Sunday afternoon show at the Obelisk pub in Woolston. This was a beautiful hot summer day, hence the shorts! Many friends, family and fans came along as we belted out loads of old and new songs, just busking away with no prior rehearsals - that's half the fun in music! Note the bucket on the ground - not a spitoon - just a collection box for our beer money! I was also playing electric 12 string guitar, having had to learn to play better when leaving the group some eighteen years before. Some eighteen years on, I then kick-started a series of annual 'Back To The Sixties' Reunion shows at Southampton's Concorde Club. Just check out the Site Map to read all about these amazing mini-festivals that see original 60s musicians reform and perform hours of classic hits of that era. Still going strong to this day
THE SOLO YEARS
In 1972 I decided to go it alone, and moved to London followed by summer seasons in the UK and overseas. Since then I have been working solidly in all kinds of venues, alongside many of the top names in show-business. I switch my act from night to night, adapting the material to suit the occasion, as well as being able to customise part of the comedy for the audience and surroundings. The act is a good all round mix of stand-up comedy, impressions plus occasional vocals, guitar and harmonica. I have worked all kinds of venues all over the UK and abroad as well as some cruising work, in the Caribbean and Mediterranean but still remember the early days with much affection and hope that you have enjoyed this insight into one of many thousands of entertainers that you may bump into one day! As mentioned- why not check out my book that tells much more about these early years with more publications in the near future.
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