Albert Memorial Hastings – town centre memories

supplied by: Leigh Kennedy

Roger Simmonds… Happy memories!

John Gale… A great photo, not seen that one before

John Harper… I can remember all those vehicles!

Dennis Torrance… What a wonderful photo of the memorial takes me back .

Pete Houghton… Remember the memorial with grest memories

Petra Stevens… A tad before my time in Hastings i suspect. But used to meet up down there

James Towner… Fell of a motorbike going round it.

Stuart Moir… I migrated to Hastings around that time just before the local shits set fire to it. What for an arson attack ???

Lloyd Johnson… proper town centre!….

Tracy Birrell… I still ask for a return to the Memorial on the bus……

Dennis Torrance… Memorial was on most buses then . I moved up to Broomgrove 1967 at first the buses only went as far as the top of Parker road a long walk for me to get a 72

Alan Pepper… That’s a shilling please ! On the 133 from Hollington ! I’m guessing it was early fifties ?

Nigel Ford… No policeman on duty? There usually was. Is this early 60’s?


The Yes Album – 50 years old today (19th February 1971)

Mike Curtis… Feeling old. This fantastic album was released 50 years ago today!

Roger Carey… My favourite Yes album and the only one I know really well.. This is a record time response for me – it came up and I chipped in! Hello Geoff Peckham- I remember one of your favourite bands was “Gracious” but we here to applaud the marvellous “Yes Album”. “I’ve seen all good people” etc.! I still have the Futurama bass- will make a project of it one day , needs some work!

Geoff Peckham… Yes, I loved Gracious – how did you remember that?! But this was a big fave too. ‘….No Disgrace’ being my favourite. So pleased the ol’ Futurama’s still with us! It’d be great if it was ‘refreshed’. Hope to see you soon.

Dave Weeks… My first prog album. Still a classic.

Pete Prescott… I still play it. My favourite YES album. Every track ! I saw an interview where Bill Bruford said the intro was the theme from Bonanza but the other guys wouldn’t hear of it !

Alastair James Thompson… Love it … still gets played chez moi

Nick Webb… ep still got Yes and Genesis album’s both a bit scratched from over playing back then. Must have brought Yes with pocket money as not working till a year later.

Tony Court-holmes… watched 2 hours plus last night on Sky Arts of Yes would have liked more music and less talking

Robert Searle… Saw Yes at the Big Apple Brighton, great band when Steve Howe joined who used to play with the underrated group Tomorrow who I thought were really good. Still got that album.Love it.

Nick Bearkeeper Rowland… I first heard the Yes Album at school. I heard it coming from out of the 6th form common room. I liked it so much that I asked one of the prefects. I ended up buying the album. Going For The One is an excellent one too.

Graham Sherrington… one of my permanent CD’s in the car along with Frampton Comes alive from San Fransisco.

Lucy Pappas… The first album I ever bought. It was so wonderfully exciting and different. I still play it but on cd now! xx

Leigh Wieland-Boys… .I have this album, bought it from  Alan Esdaile shop on the pier mid-70s, if my memory serves me well

Pete Prescott… I used to have a vinyl/CD night at the DOLPHIN I the old town once a month. (I hope to do it again when this madness is over) One night I was playing “I’ve seen all good people” and then “Perpetual Change. I stopped it at the end of the first section and Roger Carey, Dave Blackman,Andy McDuffie and Graham Belchamber all jumped up and went “Noooooo!” It was like stopping half way through sex ! Unforgivable ! When I go back to the DOLPHIN I’ll play the whole thing. I Promise !

Mike Guy… This was the album that turned me into a life-long Yes fan, I discovered their two initial albums later. My late brother Martin was a few years younger than me but left school to work as soon as he could, so he had a few bob to splash out on albums, unlike me at that time. I started of by enjoying Clap [not THE Clap!] & then just left the album play & so got into the the other track bit by bit [PROGressively!]. Since then I’ve seen them play live in Cardiff, Reading Festival, Bristol, Birmingham, Frankfurt, Antwerp, Wembley Arena, The Albert Hall, & Brighton [3 times]. I thoroughly recommend the Steve Wilson Blu-ray remixes with 7.1 surround sound headphones.

Graham Belchamber… Looking forward to you doing an all of Topographic Oceans vinyl night

Keith Rodway… Still sounds great

Dave Nattress… Wonderful album, saw them do Yours Is No Disgrace on TV – I’d like to say Whistle Test but I’m unsure, but went straight out and bought the vinyl – well what else back then, and then all the Yes stuff, have most on CD also. Starship Trooper also – wonderful. Only saw them once at Crystal Palace bowl or Party in the Park – the stage across the lake. Still have the vinyl and still play the CD. Gracious – Jaffa. They played the pier once at least? I think they were on a bill with about 4/5 bands I saw there with The Pink Fairies? Strife? and maybe two/three others. Not sure if it was a college all-nighter? Very sketchy on this one. Did Factory play the same bill? I had the poster for years, long lost.


Slade In Flame Film – The Curzon Cinema St Leonards 23rd February 1975

Pete Fairless… What a great film!

Derek Clemans… Bloody hell. … I went to see that at the Curzon.

Carol Ann Bolton…  I’ve not heard of this before. Must try and see it?

Graham Burfield… Just watched it on DVD still a great film

Mick Knights… The Curzon was a delight at the matinee interval when tea and biscuits were available, which reflected the age of their usual cinema goer!!!

The Cobweb – opening night 23rd February 1968 Freddie Fingers Lee and The Mojos



ad supplied by Sarah Harvey    cutting supplied by Andre Palfrey-martin collection


Sarah Harvey… Being a bit too young to visit The Cobweb at that time…. was this the actual opening night? February 23rd, 1968.

Wendy Weaver… I think Don Smith owned the Cobweb or even the Witchdoctor in the early days. He also had Aquarius I think and certainly owned Rennies (later Dennies) plus the Penguin Snooker Club until it was purchased for the Town Centre Development. He hoped to make the space that was the Cobweb a Casino but could not get permission.

Andre Martin… The Witch Doctor and Cobweb, were owned by another Mr Smith from Manchester who owned amongst other clubs in the North Mr Smiths in Manchester, the Catford Witch Doctor and several others. Don Smith was another Smith, who had interests in and around Hastings in the club business. You also had Eric Rennie, who I understood had the head lease for the Dolphin, which included Witch Doctor, Grenadier Club and Restaurant in Marine Court.

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Teenbeats & Piranhas – The Carlisle 23rd February 1979


supplied by Teenbeats facebook page.

Bobby Walker….Great gig!  Huggy Leaver was a local character in Hastings around this time. This was the last time I spoke to him … next saw him in Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels

Philip Meston…..Then there was Guns, Gangsters and Zombies!

Mick O’Dowd… Another classic 558 Entertainments promotion and don’t forget the British Heart Foundation ad with Vinnie Jones where Huggy played “The body” to “Staying Alive”. Two great bands. This was the first time I booked the Piranhas after being pestered by their management. The agreement was that I would give them 2 support act slots and if they were popular(which as it turned out, they were) i’d put them on top billing. As it happened they were so popular that they headlined after only one show.

Colin Jefferys… Was this not the gig where a few lads jumped on to the stage ( albeit a very low level small one) and tried to smack Bob Grover? I’m sure they were rubbish

Peter Fairless… Top band, the Piranhas were great Bob and Johnny wrote some magic but, hey, the Teenbeats were ours!

Mark Syrett… Top night as I remember

SMART SOUNDS by Colin Bell. Reviewing Oh! You Pretty Things: Glam Queens And Street Urchins 1970-76: 3CD Various Artists

Oh! You Pretty Things: Glam Queens & Street Urchins 1970-76 (3CD set)   Various Artists

So here is the latest in Grapefruit Records ever excellent series of themed 3CD box sets. It is very rare that i quote from a Press Release, but on this occasion….’We focus on the twin central strands of Glam Rock: the cerebral and the visceral’ Ok we’ll see about that and also the other claim of examining the link between the ‘seedy’ played out London scene of the early 70’s and it’s comparison with the underbelly of New York of the same period.  CD 1 gets off on a ‘cerebral’ foot with Roxy Music & their follow up to debut hit ‘Virginia Plain’ in the shape of ‘Pyjamarama’ whose delights i must confess to having forgotten but it’s a pleasant reminder of 1973 for this reviewer. Next up is ELO and here i must question what they are doing here?, i really don’t see them as any part of ‘Glam’ and the choice of Ma-Ma-Ma-Belle is jarring being without doubt the ‘heaviest’ rock track the band ever recorded. It is however certainly ‘visceral’.  Anyway a small niggle. Much more suited to the albums theme are the likes of Be Bop Deluxe, Sparks, Heavy Metal Kids, Blackfoot Sue & Mick Ronson who as well as featuring in his own right with the track ‘White Light, White Heat’ Mick is to be found alongside Mott The Hoople’s ex frontman Ian Hunter with ‘Once Bitten Twice Shy’ taken from one of my all time favourite albums 1975’s ‘You’re Never Alone With A Schizophrenic’ (Best album title ever). Dana Gillespie’s ‘Andy Warhol’ & The Hollywood Brats ‘Tumble With Me’ are suitably camp & sleazy respectively. On to CD2 which opens with another well loved track of mine with everybody’s favourite Glam rockers Slade and the anthemic ‘Take Me Bak’Ome’, although Mr Holder has never cared for the ‘Glam’ label. Other big names, albeit with lesser known tracks featured are Curved Air, Bryan Ferry, Iggy & The Stooges’ & Lou Reed with ‘Satellite Of Love’. There are some rare delights to be had with Tim Curry’s ‘ Sweet Transvestite’ & Wayne County’s ‘Queenage Baby’, an artist i have always enjoyed as Wayne or Jayne. Another band i have a lot of time for Third World War also weigh in with ‘Rat Crawl’ and the rather clever inclusion of an unexpected Trogg’s track ‘Strange Movies’ is welcome. The CD closes with Sweet at their best bridging the gap between the pop of Chinnichap & their move to self written material with one of their greatest singles ‘The Sixteens’. CD3 plunges us straight into the New York scene with the primary, and yes again ‘visceral’ New York Dolls and ‘Personality Crisis’. This of all the 3 discs contains the mostly undiscovered gems from some rarely heard bands such as The Winkies, Bullfrog, Hard Stuff & a band i confess i’ve never heard of by the name of Fumble with their very individual take on ‘Not Fade Away’ which is somewhat glorious in a surreal sort of way! Of the bigger and well known names to be found are The Strawbs, Leo Sayer, Mott The Hoople & another crowd pleaser The Sensational Alex Harvey Band with the 7 minute wonder that is ‘The Last Of The Teenage Idols’ which i’ve always thought was a real tour-de-force of a song. At 66 tracks there is plenty to explore in this compilation and if you were around the first time to witness the likes of Bowie and all the androgynous acts that followed in his & The New York Dolls footsteps you will enjoy this latest collection enormously. As ever the 3CD’s come housed in a sturdy clamshell box with an accompanying well written 40 page booklet. Grapefruit Records remain the current masters of the themed compilation market. Enjoy.

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Til next time…..stay safe………Colin

Essence at The Carlisle & final gig



supplied by Mick Mepham

photo 1. upstairs at The Carlisle. with Mick Mepham, Farid Seddiqi, Martin and Garnet (moo).

photo 2. Last Essence just before Small Talk then Hung,Drawn and Withered. — with Keith ‘Dusty’ Miller, Mick Booker, Keith Hackett (The Bass Monk), Chris ‘Bleh’ Loder & Mick Mepham.