all cuttings Andre Palfrey-martin collection
We have now reached the end of May in the History of the Happy Ballroom, and on Saturday 31st would have played host to DECCA recording artistes –Peter Jay and the Jaywalkers. The group was formed around 1960 by Peter Jay, the son of Jack Jay who owned and managed the Windmill Theatre together with several cinemas and nightclubs in Great Yarmouth. Peter formed the group while studying at Norwich College. He played drums; other band members were Pete “Buzz” Miller (lead guitar – previously a member of rival local group the Offbeats), Tony Webster (rhythm guitar), Mac McIntyre (tenor sax and flute), Lloyd Baker (piano and baritone sax), Geoff Moss (bass guitar) and Johnny Larke (bass guitar). From about 1962, the group were also noted for their use of coordinated Vox Phantom guitars on stage. Peter Jay and the Jaywalkers signed a recording deal with Decca Records in 1962. Their first record, a rocked-up version of the can-can music from Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld, produced by Joe Meek at Decca’s studios in Hampstead and entitled “Can Can 62”, rose to 31 after entering the UK chart in November 1962.
The group released several further singles on Decca in 1963 and 1964, but none became hits. Nevertheless, the group were a popular live act and were chosen as a support act to the Beatles on their UK tour in November and December 1963. They also appeared on national TV shows including Ready Steady Go! and Thank Your Lucky Stars. Completing the show by supporting Peter and the boys, were another of the regular support acts for the Happy Ballroom – from London Patrick Dane and the Quiet Five. So as Bob Knight would have undoubtedly said – “there you are boys and girls another great evening for you on Hastings Pier in the Happy Ballroom”. Until next week, when we reach June, and hopefully the sun will be shining even more by Andre Martin
Pauline Lindsay… Everything used to finish at 11.45pm, wasn’t allowed to go into a Sunday. Saw this group also at The Ritz in 1962.
Mick O’Dowd… I saw them at the ABC/Ritz as well Pauline. They were on the bill with the Tornadoes, Jimmy Justice and headlined by Billy Fury. Great band and a great show too!
Pauline Lindsay… Also Mick there was Joe Brown, Mark Winter, Carl Denver, The Tornadoes, Marty Wilde – got most of their autographs after waiting at the stage door for what seemed like hours.
David Edwards… Good to be reminded of Terry Reid, an absolutely wonderful singer who has lived in the States for years and is still touring and singing