New people most welcome to join us.
Eugene Hughes…Do they still make peashooters? 1d worth of split peas please mister
Jan Warren… and spud guns, mud pies, car inner-tubes for swimming and “tanks” made out of cotton reels, candle wax and elastic bands!! and those “Y” shaped bits of wood with a rubber band, what were they called?? my dad also used to make “stilts” and “sledges” out of wood!! – ohhhhhh what FUN we had!! – who needs feckin’ technology!! – its the ruination of childhood!!
Lloyd Johnson… Y= catapult…
Gerry Fortsch… Maybe some one should open a museum to show all these wonderful and cheap to make things that entertained us a few years ago.
Alan Esdaile… What did your mum say… You will shoot someones eye out with that
Dave Nattress… Bows and arrows – most I guess with rubber stickers on the ends, air-guns, sheaf knifes, not to mention young lads carrying around a plethora of fake guns of all sorts. You could get a Luger that looked pretty real!! Pea-shooters – great question Eugene. Chemistry sets!! Fireworks, bangers, rockets, all so easily available!! Blimey, when you think back!!
Alan Pepper… We enjoyed making bows and arrows over Church in the wood ! And tree camps of course. Then there were the games on the street stopping every now and then for the traffic . Ha ha !! Happy days eh….
Eugene Hughes… Hi Alan Pepper . Those were the days mate.
Mick O’Dowd… Fag cards & marbles( in the gutter!)sweet tobacco, Beech Nut chewing gum.
Chris Baker… Beech Nut chewing gum! Now there’s a blast from the past!
Eugene Hughes… What about the jars of Double Devon Cream And tea made from loose tea in a pot and the ciggy machines outside the shop and postage stamps and good ol Doctor Lee. Sitting on the edge of her desk, fag hanging out of her mouth. “how are you today love!”
Robin Fahie asks… A friend of mine dropped in conversation he was the lead singer in a local 60’s group that went under the name GALLEONS and SHADES OF BLUE. Does the group mean anything to you?
Richard Moore… Malcolm Wren played keyboard for a while, but not sure of the others.
A nice warm afternoon for our 39th meet and among the newbies this time was Sarah Ferguson. Sarah was chatting about memories of the Pam Dor and Black Cat coffee bars with Colin Bell. Mick O’Dowd arrived with some interesting albums Righteous Brothers Back to Back, Vogues Greatest Hits, Sgt Barry Sadler Ballard Of The Green Berets and Whistling Jack Smith I Was Kaiser Bills Batman which got people whistling the tune as soon as they picked up the sleeve! He also had two local cd’s from the Tar Babies and Jinks Night Fever from August 1999. I had sheet music books of The Rolling Stones 8 new songs, Shadows Golden Greats, Stranglers Collection 77-82, Who Best Of and Hazel O’Connor Breaking Glass. Pete Prescott arrived with a pile of LP’s including Return To Forever featuring Chick Corea Where Have I Known You Before, Atomic Rooster In Hearing Of, Wishbone Ash 1st album and Argus. Barry Taylor popped in with a couple of interesting photos from 1975. Iain Cobby came along with a bunch of photos of Wal Basses. They were very popular in the 80’s and are now being made again. Ann and Phil Gill were talking about the success of son Miles with the band Roam, who are setting the charts alight with their new cd Great Heights and Nosedives and currently on tour in America. Phil was talking to Iain and Lol Cooksey about the Stallion album has had over 3 million illegal downloads without getting any payments. Interesting to hear that Iain is having a group rehearsal with Factrio, watch this space. Jon McCallion was reminiscing about Effigy and when Chris Baker was in the band. Graham Belchamber was talking to Ray and Anita Medhurst about his Bruce Springsteen plaque on the end of Hastings Pier and has written to Bruce about it. Eric Harmer and Sarah Harvey were talking about their recent successful gig with James Westlake and Tony Davis was talking about his up and coming show on Conquest Hospital Radio. This is just a small bit of what I remember, anyone who wishes to add anything interesting you were talking about, then please feel free to do so.
Pete Prescott… I hate missing these meetings. It’s great hearing other peoples past adventures and seeing books/ albums and photos. Wonderful.
Tim Moose Bruce… I got a Tar Babies cd. Great band . One of their bassists being Lee Pomeroy who at present is in the Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman line up of Yes.
Mick O’Dowd… Great afternoon as usual. Thanx Alan!
Jim Breeds… When’s the next one? We may even be living locally by then!
Alan Esdaile… Looks like being 15th December but will confirm in due course.
supplied by Mick O’Dowd
Alan Esdaile… Anyone got any photos or more info?
Josie Lawson… Not sure if same group but when I lived in Burgess Hill I knew a group called PROHIBITION. They had some words of mine to link in as a song, but we lost contact when I came back to Hastings, but after appeals on radio shows for the banjo player who was Tony Cross, I had a message back, and this was 5 years of appealing, he had just died of a heart attack. I did have some 45 records of theirs but seems like many of my things they were skipped when I had some nasty falls.
Geoff Peckham… Laurie Cooksey was in the Prohibition – the local one, anyway. According to ‘LOL COOKSEY’S MUSICAL HISTORY’, a copy of which he gave me, The Prohibition were: Frank Isted, Roger Crerie (not Carey!), Laurie, and David Laffar. They gigged a fair bit in their 9 month life-span including several appearances at the Happening Club. There are many anecdotes in this ‘literary work’ and it would be of great interest to local music historians.
Dave Nattress… Well Geoff I’d love to see Laurie’s musical history, especially I would guess because there’ll be a big helping of Bexhill 60’s and 70’s band history in there.
supplied by Len Smith – Eastbourne Bands from 1960 on
Len Smith… Here’s one from early 60’s any idea of names, only one I recognise is Billy Contreras! Looking for photos of bands like Mandragora, Virus, Morticians, MTA, Tall, Dark & Gruesome, etc. for my Eastbourne Bands site.
Colin Pierce… Billy & The Urchins
Tony Ball… Myself Tony Ball on Framus bass, Billy on vocals, Pete Richards guitar and I think the drummer may have been Mike Osullivan?
Chris Brown… Hello Len, hope all is well with you. I have a single titled I Made Her That Way by The Urchins released in 1967. Do you know if this was the group & had Billy Contreras & Roger Salmon in it? They had been The Beaux. I think there were 2 other members, but I have no idea who they are. If you can confirm this & advise any more like who the other 2 were I would be much obliged.
Len Smith… Chris by 1967 Billy and Roger were performing as Kaine & Abel following a spell as Beaux. I do not believe they added any other members until 1970. So unlikely that your 45 is by our Urchins.
supplied by Len Smith
Gary Sykes… I was in an 80s rock band called Taor. Used to jam with simon williams from mandrahora, and coke from virus. Remember playing “rock at the redoubt” and various gigs at the archery tavern.
Dave Nattress… On Eastbourne bands or maybe more accurately, bands that played Eastbourne area pubs. Back in about 1977/78 I saw a band called Ptarmigan (as in the Scottish bird) in a pub in South Street, Eastbourne. Corner pub opposite the Police Station I think? Great sound, recall the singer has very long wavy hair. they did an incredible “Tears of a Clown” – Smokey Robinson. Anyone else recall them? Also at the Gun in Chiddingly, similar time, about 1977/78, a band call Nightrider. Saw them there a few times. Maybe they came from the Newhaven area?
Tim Moose Bruce… I remember a couple of Eastbourne based bands who play at the Star Inn at Norman’s Bay in the late 70s. Band called Boris, who did Eagles and Wishbone Ash songs with good twin lead guitar work. The other band Tuxedo Junction had great vocal harmonies which were used to good effect on songs by Supertramp and 10cc.
Tom Flynn… I played drums with Billy Contreras and Colin Pierce in Blinker after we disbanded Middlemarch, the folk-rock band with Joe Flynn (electric violin), Tim Morfitt (guitar and vocal), Chris Tunwell (bass), Nigel Barker (guitars and vocals) that played all the Eastbourne and Sussex area pubs in the mid-1970s including the Cavalier near the seafront, The Beach pub opposite the Fishermens Club, The Six Bells at Chiddingly and elsewhere. The other big band at that time was Denis Rayment’s Bandit with Eddie Tutt on bass and Mick ‘The Sticks’ McKiernan on drums. It would be nice to hook up with anyone still around as I moved back to Eastbourne recently. Join me on FB.
Jeni Townsend… Hi Tom, my friend Julia and I came to most of your gigs. I seem to remember she dated one of you guys – but can’t remember who but I do remember sitting for hours in Tim’s parent’s basement listening to you rehearse!
Lynn Graham… Anyone remember Johnny and Bruce who played in The Lord Nelson in the 60s?
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………….
Sarah Harvey… Looking back on your childhood years in the 60s, 70s (perhaps 80s), what would you have banned to Room 101? No Politics, No Religion, doesn’t have to necessarily be music related!
Barry Dyke… those school buses in Rheindahlen.
Nigel Sherwood… Henshall and one or two others excuse of teachers at HGS 😁
Kevin Sherwood… He always spoke highly of you
Phil Gill… Kevin, how could you tell? They only ever used our surnames in order to depersonalise us, it might have been you he spoke highly of.
Pete Fisher… I’d add haircuts to this list, and Henshall hauled me into his office regularly on this pretext…on one of these occasions, when I was 15, he told me he was very concerned, as he’d heard rumours that I was playing in a “beat group”, and told me I should be concentrating on school and homework, and steering clear of such decadence…didn’t have any effect!
Nigel Sherwood… Got me in about my hair , ranted about it being my responsibility . Pointed out my mother had turned me out well dressed ! Was wearing two tone tonic trousers and a striped Ben Sherman shirt , couldn’t make it up 😁
Phil Gill… That idiot Sporty Bourne once told me I wouldn’t be allowed to do games until I had my hair cut, said it was in my eyes and obscured my vision which made it too hazardous for me during sport. Frankly, I saw that as a win-win because I didn’t want to cut my hair or do sport. Also The school cross country.
Tony Davis… Milk of magnesia. My mum used to give me a weekly dose on the basis that prevention was better than cure.
Wendy Weaver… My mum used to call it “keeping you open”. 😫😫😝
John Wilde… The cane and slipper.
David Miller… Being made to sit on the dinner hall stage and not be allowed to leave until I’d eaten all of the dried-out gag-and-retch-inducing liver and the awful slabs of nauseating beetroot. Yum.
Chris Leek… Russel Brand…make the world a better place
Pete Fairless… Half the Radio 1 DJs, for starters..
Clifford Rose… music albums that lasted under 35 minutes.