Ted Crouch and his Band

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all cuttings Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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photo supplied by Janine Anne Hemsley

Janine Anne Hemsley…..Ted started working with Dance Bands from the late 50s onwards. He ran several of his own bands every night of the week at different venues. I started working with him in 1973 and we did tea dances ,private functions and the spectacular Easter Bonnet parade,for many years on Hastings Pier. Wonderful memories indeed.

SMART 9 report

Another great afternoon and good to see workmen on the pier. Among the new people this time were Conan Howard who used to play in Samisen, Allen Watts who was roadie for Tich, Wesley and loads of others bands,  Chris Stovold who had some brilliant old magazine to show, including the first issue of Zig Zag magazine with Sandy Denny on the cover. Philip John had some amazing tales to tell about life on the road with Mott The Hoople and others and his books is definately a must called  ‘You Rocked, We Rolled’. With talk about the Folk Festival taking place in May, Mick Mepham unearthed the programme from the original Hastings Folk Festival with Tom Paxton headliing. Anyone remember that?  Andre Martin was talking about the success of the  BBC tv programme  The End Of The Pier Show which everyone enjoyed. Andy Gunton arrived with the new music magazine The Stinger which everyone was positive about. Phil Gill confirmed Stallion are playing The Carlisle on April 11th.  Pete Prescott with his amazing scrapbooks and leaflets for The Beatles Day 2014 which looks set to be the biggest and best. Other talk was about The Teenbeats playing The Carlisle, Peter Millington was talking about memories of Ore Youth Club. Other people in attendance were Mick O’Dowd, Geoff Peckham, Tony Qunta, Ray & Anita Medhurst, Chris Sambrook, Sarah Harvey, Ann Gill, Jon McCallion & Yvonne Cleland. Apolgise to anyone I missed as they were still arriving when I left! Barry Taylor was unable to attend but wanted me to mention he is organising a Blues Festival later in the year and anyone interested please contact him.

Sarah Harvey…..Fantastic afternoon at the SMART get-together on Friday and thank you Alan for organising it. The diversity of musical memories that I heard was fascinating. Wonderful people with such interesting backgrounds.

Tony Qunta….Sounds like fun! Sorry I couldn’t be there. Hope to make it to one of these meetings one of these days!

Mick O’Dowd….I can only echo previous comments. Full marks to Alan’s organising abilities. Nice to see yet more new faces and if it carries on like this we might be hiring the New Pier Ballroom for our meets! Fantastic atmosphere and a chance to put faces to the names seen on the web page and Facebook. Roll on the next!

What happens at a SMART meet by Mick O’Dowd

Constantly getting asked what happens at the SMART meet with odd questions like.. will I have to stand up and talk, I only talk about the 60’s so will I fit in, I’m not from Hastings so am I allowed to come, I got thrown out of a band they were in 40 years ago so not sure they will still talk to me etc, etc. IF YOU LOVE MUSIC YOUR WELCOME.

Here’s Mick O’Dowd report on SMART 9 to explain more….

With the broadcasting by the BBC of “The End Of The Pier Show” about  Hastings Pier there appears to be a resurgent interest in all things musical in Hastings. This is highlighted by a surge of interest in our group and website and was very evident in the new faces turning up at the  “meet” at The White Rock Hotel on Friday. For those not in the know this is a  monthly meeting of anybody interested in music and musical memories broadly associated with the local area from the 1960’s to the present time. Completely informal and no forward topics to be discussed, we meet over a coffee/beer and talk to each and anyone we like at about anything Some people bring posters/handbills/tickets of past gigs that they have been to and some just  bring themselves to share memories of past happenings and report on new enterprises as did Andy Gunton with his new magazine called “The Stinger” which appears to have hit the right blend of gigs and interviews. It’s also FREE which makes it all the more appealing! Look out for it. Anyone new to the group is always welcomed by Alan Esdaile and introduced to all present and then it’s find the chat that takes your fancy No one is left sitting in the corner!  One of the strange items that did the rounds this week was a weird sheet  apparently circulated some years back by a band called Alberto Y Los Trios Paranoias. Very strange! Tony Qunta turned up with 2 guitars over his shoulder this month on his way to a gig.  This is also time to put faces to names and here, among others, was Mick Mepham, Sarah Harvey, Pete Prescott, Phil & Ann Gill,Andre Palfrey-Martin, Conan Howard, Allen Watts, Chris Stovold, Geoff Peckham, Ray & Anita Medhurst, Chris Sambrook, Philip John, Peter Millington, Jon McCallion & Yvonne Cleland.  All very amiable and interesting people to chat to. There was a nice relaxed feel to the afternoon and pleasantly accompanied by the delicious coffee served up by The White Rock Hotel in the Terrace Bar. We look forward to seeing any new faces next time but for a taster check out the website or facebook page(SMART). by Mick O’Dowd