The Big T Sound & Town Council – Hastings Pier 21st September 1968

all cuttings supplied by Sarah Harvey

Chris Baker….Brian (Bear) Williams (Drums), Bob Shipway, (Bass), Pete Robertson (Vocals) and (Batty) Bill Willshire whose real name was Pete! Fun times! Bill joined after Steve Hersee left and we got Bob the bass player.

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Here’s Chris at his 18th birthday with the group Town Council. Harry the manager and Bob Shipway in the photo.

Chris Baker… I am not sure I’d quite developed the Rock God image at that point in my career!

Phil Gill… But the Hofner was too cool for school – do you still have it?

Chris Baker… I do indeed Phil. I had a Humbucker fitted and split to two leads for “stereo” many years ago. It can make more different tones than most! I also have a Strat which I love to bits

Mick O’Dowd… Went to school with “Bill” Wilshire and we used to get together at his place in OLd London Road that he called “Fat’s Pad”. We tried to form a band with me on vocals(ouch) , Trev Partridge on bass, Neil (can’t remember surname) on drums, “Bill” was going to be on keyboards when he could manage to buy one, Tim Purcell on guitar and I think Pete Shaw might have got involved near the end. Working name was The Thoroughbreds. First and last time I tried to be in a band so decded to become a DJ instead!

 

Curved Air – Hastings Pier 20th Sept 1975 & from 1972 Marie Antoinette

Ad supplied by Sarah Harvey, poster supplied by Mick Mepham

Phil Gill …  Well, I guess I must’ve been there. If anyone has any photos of Stallion at this gig or any other Stallion photos, we’d love to see them on our band page – especially if anyone has any photos of us supporting Marc Bolan on the Pier in 1975

Phil Thornton… Likewise ! – I do remember watching Curved Air – excellent !

Mark Sims… Good track by a very underrated band.

John Wilde… I was there. Onstage. Brilliant night!

Nick Webb… I was there yet again 🙂

Chris Giles… “Really like most of Curved Air music… Especially enjoyed gig on the pier many years ago..”

Jim Breeds… Marie Antoinette ‘ wonderful’

Terry Pack… I was there, too, I think. Remember none of it, of course!

Michael Watson… I remember going to that,Sonja the lead singer, every young chaps dream.

Carol Bolton… My other half does a great version of Back Street Luv.

Tess Foy… I was there…

Tammy St John & The Trends – Sat 12th Sept 1964 – Hastings Pier by Andre Martin

supplied by  Andre Palfrey-martin collection

Andre Martin… The nights are closing in, and the Happy Ballroom on Hastings Pier is in for a great surprise this weekend, Saturday 12th September 1964. Top of the bill tonight is north London vocalist – Tammy St John and her backing group The Trends. Plus support from Gene Bennett & The Initials.
Tammy St John was born Judith Coster and hailed from Hornchurch in Essex, east of London. She earned a recording contract with Pye Records at the age of just 14 and released four singles over a two-year period. Each showed a very different side of the young singer as her record company tried to find a winning sound.
Her first 45, Boys, was a decent debut, and featured Hey-hey-hey-hey, a cover of a song originally recorded by Little Richard, on the flip. Issued in August 1964, it was a raucous affair, with a distinctly American flavour, loud guitars and strong backing vocals. It also gained a release in the US, on the small Four Corner of the World label.
Although she had little record success in the UK charts at the time, in later years, she would build up a big following on the Northern Circuit and several of these 1960s releases being worth £100s on the vinyl market.
Gene Bennett & The Initials are another of the many groups that acted in support on the Pier, of whom no knowledge is available; all the usual research has come up with little that can link them with Hastings Pier.
Along the Promenade – The Witch Doctor, is consolidating his position, and is offerings a really good weeks entertainment . Saturday Night – From London Steve Marriott’s Moments, supported by Brighton’s own The Alexenders, Sunday was the R&B night with Victor Brox Blues Train. Wednesday London’s own Christians Crusaders featuring Neil Christian and Friday Parlophone recording group The Contrasts.
The Weekend would have started off for us with the Friday Nights RSG and this week would have featured – Scheduled guests: Bill Haley and his Comets -Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers – “One Way Love” -Adam Faith and the Roulettes -Tony Jackson and the Vibrations – “Bye Bye Baby” -Rita Bartok -Doug Sheldon.
So there you have another week of History of not just the Happy Ballroom, but other attractions in the town for the young at heart, I hope this has brought back some memories for you all………….

Genesis & Fruupp – Hastings Pier 12th Sept 1972

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poster supplied by Iain Cobby              cutting supplied by Sarah Harvey

Nick Webb….I  was there yet again

Tony Court-holmes….i was there

Denesis… How some saw a concert that never hapened?

Alan Esdaile… I have emailed back and asked for more information but can anyone else confirm or otherwise that this took place on the 12th September 1972?

Gary Kinch… Genesis gig list here. Bottom of page. Although looking at the list it says Genesis played Hastings pier 3 times in 72 and that isn’t right surely.

http://www.genesis-movement.org/php/listtour.php?tourid=3

Alan Esdaile… Excellent, thanks Gary. The 3rd August was booked for Genesis but was cancelled for some reason(see below ticket) and replaced with Hawkwind. So I imagine then they rebooked to play September.

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supplied by Sarah Harvey

Phil Thornton… 1st time I saw them – aged 16 !!!

Pete Fisher… I  was there too – 17!

Tony Court-holmes… SO WAS I

Peter Thomson… That must have been the ‘Foxtrot’ tour then – in which case I was there, a few days away from being 16. Still got the ticket somewhere in the loft, so when I find it I’ll put it up on this site. I’m sure it was 75p on the door! I was at both of these gigs – especially for those who can’t believe I saw Genesis for 60p – and with Peter Gabriel up front.

Dave Nattress… Back in the day when I was in Damaris and we were all mad keen Genesis fans, I recall our first gig at the pier and shortly before we went on as we were all in the back-stage/dressing room toilets for the 15th time, a touch nervous and all that, Paul Durrant our keyboard player, looked at me and said, you know what Dave we’ve just had a p*** in the same toilet as Peter Gabriel. Never forgotten that comment – it put it all in a context really.

Peter Millington… Only 450 for Genesis in the audience – Joe Brown had over 1000

Tony Court-holmes… happy the poster proves i did see Genesis i thought i was going potty for a moment

Alan Esdaile… I’m surprised only 450 but didn’t notice when you were in the throng of people and loving the band.

Jennie Tocock… Wow, yes, I don’t remember there only being 450 people there either! As you say, when you are engrossed in the music, you don’t notice the number of people around you. It was a great gig too! 🙂

Mike Curtis… I  was there.

Terry Pack… Those were the days! A Tuesday and Wednesday in September 1972. Four great bands for just over a pound, midweek.

Keith Foster… Saw all of these except Stackridge back in the day. Would love to have seen Stackridge too; a band that deserved to have made a bigger name for themseves.

Doug Prentice… Oh The String Driven Thing brings back when my mate and I roadied for Glasgow bands. It was the first time I’d ever seen a solid body electric guitar used as a defence weapon against aggressive punters – well it was the Hotel Splendide in Hamilton! Guitarist John Mannion was one of a kind.

Pat Dargan… Worst band I ever saw on the pier. Pete Gabriel was awful. All the fans sat down and waved lighters in the air. I went to the bar.

Peter Fairless… I remember String Drive Thing the single, ‘It’s A Game’, anyone know when that was out?

Alan Esdaile… Still got the single by String Driven Thing ‘Its A Game’. Probably early seventies, went on to be a hit by The Bay City Rollers a few years later.

Peter Fairless… Yes, the Rollers dire version was later – 1977, I think. I can’t remember any other tracks but that single still sticks with me. Must have heard it on 208.

 

Who was the best group you saw on Hastings Pier?

Alan Esdaile… I was recently interviewed on the Chris Gentry Show on Carnival FM, who was the best group I saw on the pier. I was stumped to come up with an answer and mentioned well possibly The Who or maybe The Equals but then again I loved Wally and Gracious and not forgetting Curved Air, The Kinks, Leo Sayer, Genesis, Budgie and loads more. Anyway I said I would think on it and decided that the best group and best night has to be Osibisa.  What was yours?

Kev Towner… Hawkwind

Peter Fairless… The Jam – Saturday, 23rd April 1977

Steve Foster… The Clash twice !! …The Jam were playing the Marquee in London on the 23 April 1977 ??..did they ever play the pier ?

John Wilde… Osibisa. Hawkwind. Curved Air. Magma.

Peter Fairless… Pick one!

John Wilde… Oh ok. Osibisa.

Phil Thornton… music and show I would say Genesis. most memorable event might be Hawkwind, Golden Earring or possibly Magma !

Sarah Harvey… Be Bop Deluxe

Richard Lavender… Golden Earing. After we dug their lorry out of the deck.

Allyson Breeds… Madness, but to be fair, I have ONLY seen Madness on the pier

Chris Giles… Golden Earring

Tony Ham… Conflict, Poison Girls, U.K. Subs, Sham 69, Dragster. Crass, Poison Girls, Conflict and Annie Anxiety were all on the same night, June 13th 1981, £1 a ticket!

Chris Baker… The Who, Jimi Hendrix, Ten Years After ( I think that was on the Pier ).  Just realised I forgot to mention Pink Floyd and Hawkwind! Brilliant gigs!

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Shaft promo photo Rock A Nore Road and Hastings Pier Ballroom

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This is a promotion photo for Martin Casson Agency, taken at Rock A Nore Road. I think the car belonged to the photographer?

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Shaft on the stage at Hastings Pier – Early 70’s photos supplied by Andy Knight 

Andre Martin (commenting on the last photo) That is a really excellent shot of the Happy Ballroom – and of Andy when he had plenty of hair -Hah Hah

Andy Knight… Shaft (son of Freeway) on the Pier

Nick Shute… wow!! a sound city pa and the hofner bass….looks like a lot of my old gear up there!!!

Len Smith… Colin Pierce, Jim Beadle, Andy Knight, Bob Shipway, Dave Shaw

Ross Holter… Great band

Mark Gilham… Is that a Marcos?

Ralph Town… Yes Mark.

Robin Hughes… (To Mark Gilham) – that certainly is a Marcos and that presumably means that the photographer in question was John Sweet who was based at the top of London Road in Silverhill

Mark Gilham… Great British car, as was the TVR.

Robert Searle… Dave Shaw on the right

Robin Hughes… A photo very similar to this, taken at same time but different expressions and head positions, appeared in the Hastings and St.Leonards Observer in the Spring of 1972 above an article about the Carnival Queen’s contest. The subject line of the photo said ” Shaft, the up-and-coming pop group who will be at Bonita’s on Monday when the Carnival Queen contest will be decided”.