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David St John presents:
CALL UP THE GROUPS 9
*Loads of pics - let it load*
I never dreamed that my little old website would grow to such a collection of nostalgic images and personal memories of those Swinging Sixties but here we go again! With the advent of broadband and more 'silver surfers' finding this website by a search engine or by someone telling them all about it, I have been deluged with messages from all over the world! It has been a labour of love and I get tremendous 'feelgood' when hearing from new and old acquaintances as well as receiving the photos and recollections that have been hiding away in many a loft or a memory for decades. Not forgetting the way in which I have been able to put so many people in touch with old pals, bandmates and even family members after several years- my own 'Friends ReUnited' so to speak!
It also helped to kickstart the very successful 'Back to the Sixties' shows at Southampton's Concorde Club in 2008/2009 and you can read all about this via the Site Map and linked pages plus loads of music-related pages as well. Having recently finished off with 'Call Up The Groups 8' I have now been in touch with more musicians and fans of the Southern 60s music scene so this is the latest offering and please enjoy! I repeat myself, but I am always interested in hearing from anybody who has their own memories or rare photos that can be shared with the world through my webpages as well as putting people in touch or answering queries if possible. As I often receive new unseen photos of those already mentioned across my website, I either insert them into the relevant section or just keep adding new bits and pieces as each new 'Call Up The Groups' page evolves. The whole site has expanded so much and so quickly which means I sometimes have to double check and catalogue each page plus content!
I am often contacted by 60s music fans from all over the world, including people who are involved in writing books, setting up their own websites and much more. This provides us all with a chance to swap info and the images, most of which have been sent by others of course, and the question of copyright is a grey area due to the age of most old photos etc. Also, not forgetting that this is not a commercial site as such, so more of a file-sharing setup although it's only fair that people should share credits and maybe set up reciprocal links on each others websites.
I had a great mail from Rolf Hannet over in Hamburg Germany, who is involved with Bear Family Records as well as producing a CD ROM called 'Another Taste Of Forbidden Fruit' This amazing CD is a virtual encyclopaedia of British plus Irish rock and pop music from the Sixties and focussed on general pop, psychedelia, R&B and Folk Rock. Rolf sent me a copy but it got filed away but just recovered plus a CD containing these superb images below.
Rick Brown and the HiLites were one of the top British bands that went over to Germany in the early 60s, and made several records including this CBS L.P. below. I guess that the Beatles' success pushed every record company into advertising every group as 'from Liverpool' - quite fashionable back then!
Rolf also included these rare press clippings:
Rob Chance and the Chances R (see other webpages)
Hampshire Heritage Daily Echo Southampton 8 July 2009
Once again, the local Daily Echo printed a superb article on the Royal Pier as part of its very popular 'Hampshire Heritage' section compiled by their own Keith Hamilton. I gave permission for some of my text and images to be used and the resulting article was published as above with a generous mention to my website as it is getting more coverage across the area and across the world! The photos show the old Pavilion Ballroom entrance, prior to its makeover under the Mecca banner and where Johnny Dymond first made his own mark on the local dance circuits, rapidly becoming the top DJ for miles around (see other piece down the page) To the left is a photo of the Strangers pop group with Tony Collier, Brian 'Fergy' Ferguson and Brian Oram. Fergy was with Len Canham's Three Stars along with guitarist (turned drummer) Johnny Watson and these guys were my first backing group as I made my debut there in 1958 at the grand old age of ten. This is all documented elsewhere on these pages so please enjoy a stroll down memory lane with my very own Hampshire Heritage!
The lower photo shows the current Pier jetty which has been derelict for many years although the front entrance hall has been gloriously restored as Kutis Royal Pier Thai Restaurant and one of the finest eating establishments in the South. There is talk of massive redevelopment around this waterside area and perhaps a new dance hall might rise phoenix-like out of the burnt out shell that still stands defiantly over the water below. Top right photo shows Nick Troy and the Trojans with John Field, Ken Scudden, Geoff South, Alan House and singer Graham Gay kneeling at the front.
Here is the text reproduced from this article by kind permission of the Daily Echo and offers another glimpse at a piece of modern history.
Some who knew me from way back are familiar with my days at Itchen Grammar School, having passed the 11 Plus Exam in 1960 and securing a place at this great seat of learning. I did fairly well in a range of subjects with English and French to the fore although was often in trouble for what was perceived as 'insolence' - I called it a natural right to freedom of speech when questioning some of the (old fashioned) teaching methods! I often had a taste of the headmaster's cane for my troubles and gradual apathy soon had an effect on my studies plus my new found musical influences thanks to the Beatles, Stones and others who inspired many a teenage lad at that time. My hair was also getting long and shaggy so that all helped to seal my fate and resulted in my being asked not to stay on for sixth form in 1964, so then made my way into the wide world of day jobs and singing with the first of my real pop groups and what lay beyond. Great choice.
There was another Issonian (official title for Itchen Grammar pupils) by the name of Duncan Campbell who was a couple of years ahead of me and he was also a fledgling musician with the longest hair imaginable! The Rolling Stones set the first wave of long hair in 1963, then followed by the Pretty Things fronted by Phil May who sported a massive 'barnet' down his back , which really upset many of the older generation at that time! Duncan sang and played guitar/bass with his first band The Countdowns, so were able to play at the school hall which really boosted the 'pulling power' of any band member as far as the girls were concerned. Being a younger sprog at the school, I never really had any contact with him and recalled his later success with the Mojos, fronted by lead singer Stu James from Liverpool who reformed his recording group who had a superb hit with 'Everything's Alright' in 1964 which reached no. 9 in the UK charts followed by a classic 'Seven Golden Daffodils' in the same year but then it all faded away. Stu moved down to Southampton and launched the new Mojos who were one of the finest groups in the area, along with Duncan and my good pal Eddie Harnett who was with me in the Unforgiven - it's all documented on my other group pages
Late September 2009 and up pops this surprise e-mail sent from Duncan Campbell via a local friends' computer on the beautiful island of Tenerife and here it is although slightly edited in the realm of good taste!
I called Duncan at his Tenerife home and we had a terrific chat about so much music plus our Grammar School days and much more. His great memories above will certainly be enjoyed by many of the musos, pals and fans who remember his great input with loads more stories to come at some stage. He is not really into computers apart from his own writing but I'm hoping that he will be online at some stage in the future so will be able to keep up with what's going on back here in the UK and on this website. He kindly sent these photos and will try and dig up some more from whichever part of the world he has stored them. I have also included Duncan's own amusing descriptions of each image. Oh by the way- yes he still has long hair (but greying nicely!)
"The Countdowns playing Itchen Grammar School in 1963. Me on the left (playing lead guitar (?) and singing, and with my recently acquired Paul McCartney hairstyle) John Bickle on bass, with lips to rival Mick Jagger's Roger Pope on drums and Chris "Watch out Bruce Welch, your days are numbered!" Chris Tappin on rhythm guitar and on the right at the back, an electric piano player whose name I don't recall...
Itchen College 2006 (former Grammar School) DSJ collection
"The frilly shirted Mojos - me wearing an especially poovey scarf. I "borrowed" it from my mum. She almost killed me when she found out. She never had a rock'n'roll soul. Stu James on the left. Moi in the middle, and Eddie Harnett on the right. If I remember rightly, this was a gig at the village hall in Horsham."
"The third photo is of myself, Eddie Harnett again, and Glen Conway, having just arrived in Tenerife airport in. I estimate, 1972. The guy between Glen and Eddie was a reporter."
November 28th 2009 E-mail from an early Countdown!
Chris now lives near Oxford and still plays some guitar but with 'stiff little fingers' (musical quote)
I am in constant touch with many old pals including Steve Newman who played bass guitar with Eastleigh's Planets around 1964. They later became The Unforgiven as I joined this top rated band along with Beau as we left the Abdo-Men in 1965, but Steve was replaced by Graham Medley along with Eddie Harnett (lead gtr/vocals) and Dave Bunney (drms) who was then replaced by Ronnie Allen. Groups were often reforming and juggling for a variety of reasons and Steve went on to play with many other bands and now lives in leafy Surrey working in I.T. but still gigging away with his own current band and odd sit-ins with others.
He joins a long line of musicians who have raided their lofts to dig up old photos, cuttings, posters and much more memorabilia that has been added to my webpages. Maybe not worth considering for a Sothebys auction but worth their weight in gold by so many 60s fans who can get a taste of what it was like back in those glorious carefree days. Steve came across this yellowing press cutting from the Eastleigh Weekly News dated Thursday 20th August 1964 and a write-up for the very popular 'Big Beat' contest staged as part of the local Carnival Week. Local bands competed in this competition and I have managed to scan the cutting and used OCR (Optical Character Recognition) to copy the original text from a hard copy printout of the .pdf file as sent by Steve- this will answer any technical queries out there! Here is the original image and followed by a text version that offers a poignant glimpse into how local press reporters conveyed the atmosphere albeit with slightly old-fashioned phrases coined by older journalists!
courtesy Steve Newman (+family photos!)
You may recognise some of the names of musicians and groups above and they can be found on other webpages within this site.
JOHNNY DYMOND- 21st Century PR!
Johnny Dymond - the South's top 60s DJ is all over this website (like a rash!) and I am eternally grateful to him as he has supplied so much info and rare photos from the glory days when he ruled the roost at the Royal Pier Pavilion (Mecca) and Top Rank Suite amongst other legendary Southampton music venues. We have become good mates over the last few years although he is now based in Spain and enjoying the usual sun, sea, sand and................
He recently popped back to the UK and was interviewed by reporter Duncan Eaton and was featured in the Echo Weekend Supplement of the 12th September 2009 so here are the images and write-up. John was rather miffed at not being the main front page headliner instead of Michael Ball (great name- how singular!) and has instructed his solicitors to take the necessary action along with his publicist Max Clifford. Images courtesy of the Echo
JD 'Singing legend'? The published feature
As you can imagine, I'm getting constant drip-feeds of e-mails with more info and photos, some of them being add-ons to existing webpages going back to the first 'Call Up The Groups' page. As many of these pages are fairly packed with so much detail, I think it best to put new input on the newer pages although making references to previously published pages. If you are a 'regular' reader then please take the time to read through the same Group pages as there may be little nuggets of information and/or new images that link to the subject. Here are some more recent additions and I thank everybody who shares their wonderful memories with me and the world.
Back on Groups 2, I have written about one of Southampton's legendary guitarists Tommy Bannister, who I have had the pleasure of meeting when he came to the first two Concorde 'Back To The Sixties' You can read all about these great reunion nights via the Site Map and Tom has sent more stuff and you can read more on the other early page.
THE INTRUDERS Cape Town South Africa1961
Photo by local newspaper reporter
L-R: Harry Bob Tommy Paul Matt Mike
Harry Pincent (gtr) Coxford
Bob Holcombe (drms) Harefield
Tommy Bannister (gtr) Coxford
Paul Walker (voc) Millbrook
Matt McDonald (manager) Hebrides
Mike Rossiter (bass) Harefield
The Intruders were one of the first ever bands to work the ocean going liners (Pendennis Castle etc) and travelling all over the world, including South Africa,Tahiti, New Zealand as they kept the passengers jiving away as well as exporting British rock n roll to foreign shores! They were one of the first British bands to play Australia, well before the Beatles toured Down Under and caused mini-riots wherever they performed. This photo above was taken when they played a storming gig at the Cape Town Palladium as an 'international act'
Mainly an instrumental based outfit playing Shadows, Ventures and other styles before lead singer Paul joined the group and lifting them to a higher degree. Just look at those beautiful Fenders and they played through classic Vox amplifiers which really was the business in those early years and Tommy often wonders where the lads are now? Maybe reading this right now, so get in touch!
Around the same time of Tom's mail (May 2009) I had a few e-mails regarding long lost guitars- mostly early Fenders that cost a small fortune back in those days when money was tight. Many a young lad saved up his pocket money plus help from supportive parents and often bought a cherised instrument on H.P. (hire purchase/credit) Sadly, after a short while the novelty wore off or bands just split as well as the teenagers growing into men and faced with the prospect of getting a 'proper' job. This then usually followed by 'settling down' into married life and being forced to sell off beloved guitars that might have helped a new career as a pop star with wealth, fame and adulation. I have lost count of the number of times I have heard this story from a 60s musician who regrets losing sight of a classic vintage guitar that would now be worth thousands of pounds. Some even relate it to like 'losing a limb' and one can only commiserate with them- however, a story often springs out of reading my website or seeing an old photo with the timeline clicking in to identify a much missed instrment. You can read this on other pages but here is another flurry of e-mails that popped up a few months ago and another 'detective' story as we learn a bit more about the long lost guitars and where they ended up? I'm sure that many musicians will enjoy this 'GuitarSpeak'
Malc Dimmer (early Ricky and the Hilites) wrote on another webpage:
Roy Roberts (Skylanes/MeddyEvils) replied:
Another surprise mail from Southampton based Dave Ward whose short career has now been revived on this page! I joined a 'mod' band called the Earth Angels (see other pages) in 1966 and Dave had been replaced by bass player Ernie Fagg. Here is Dave's first mail:
Within days, these two musos hooked up! Dave has just sent these terrific photos plus some more background on his short but enjoyable time in the 60s. He would love to meet up with Tony Curtain, Ivor Elliot or anybody else who knew him back then so please get in touch with me to pass any messages on as always on my website.
Dave Ward striking a 60s pose! With Burns VistaSonic on Ernie's wall
Note the Hank B. Marvin specs in Chapel Southampton. Westlakes Sack Factory backdrop
Dave at parents' house Ernie Fagg and Burns bass
1964 Rickenbacker- even the cat is impressed! Photo taken '65(?)
Note the tremelo arm and 'f' sound hole as opposed to the more common slash hole
Where is this beauty now???? Dave wants it back! (Can remortgage his house)
Sad note. Back in June 2009, I received an e-mail from guitarist Keith Goulding who was part of a late 60s band Nelsons Column, following a few years with other Southampton bands. This is a photo of the group plus a recent one as the original guys had reformed the group, after some 40 years!
NELSONS COLUMN 1960s
NELSONS COLUMN 2000s!
I had this mail through from Keith's brother Chris, following his sudden passing and it tells some of the story:
OK pop-pickers- that's it for now and trust you have enjoyed this latest page of nostalgia. Please come back again as it's a never ending stream of 60s memories and you can read through the same pages and maybe find new additional background on this exciting era.
October 1st - I went to see Cliff Richard and the Shadows Reunion Tour in Birmingham and it was a stunning show as they went back to basics and knocked out the early hits and B-sides from the late Fifties to mid Sixties. All in their late Sixties but looking and sounding as fresh as ever - the red Strats with Vox amps all pumped through a massive sound system plus the fancy footwork etc. Just proving that us old 'uns can still show the kids a thing or two and I doubt if many will be going to see the Amy Winehouse tour in 2058?? Also I recently enjoyed seeing Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, the Manfreds, Status Quo and other 'survivors' plus off to enjoy ZZ Top on their short UK tour in October -isn't this a wonderful business?
I get e-mails from all over the place and often get requests for help. I recently had this message pop up from a worried musician and am reprinting it here in case anybody can offer some advice. Naturally, I have not included his details as a matter of privacy and maybe someone out there can help with the guy's problem? Here it is:
'Call up the Groups 10' will no doubt be online in the near future so come on back y'all.........
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