Dicky Walsh asks…
Does anybody have any photos of the Dave Holt Quintet? I’m particularly interested in pics of my late brother Roddy playing with them, in order to identify the make of his guitar. He would have been with the quintet during the late 70’s and early 80’s I think.
Stephen Moran…. Hi Dicky, I’m currently doing research into the popular music histories of Hastings and I have been accessing original copies of The Hastings Observer from 1960-1985 at The British Library. The Dave Holt Swingtet performed regularly in and around Hastings in the 70’s and probably the early 80’s. They also used the name Dave Holt Quartet. I found the article and photo attached from the 26 January 1974 copy of the Observer. Dave Holt on guitar says he is looking for a rhythm guitarist and vocalist to complete the line-up, so it’s possible your brother Roddy may have joined later when they became the Dave Holt Quintet. I’ll do a bit more research and if I find out more I’ll be in touch.
Alan Esdaile… Stephen, I got a clearer one somewhere, I will repost.
Ian Williams… I think the guitar in the photograph is a Harmony H75?
Tony Bird… it is a Harmony H77 , built between 1960 and 1970when production ceased
Ian Williams… I thought the H 77 was cherry red, whereas the one in the picture is sunburst?
Dicky Walsh… Ian Williams thanks for you replies. The guitarist in the picture is Dave Holt, but I was interested in the guitar my brother used when he played with the Swingtet, probably a little later than the photo shown.
Stephen Moran… Hi Dicky I searched through my Hastings Observer archives this morning and I wasn’t able to find out much more. The only new photograph I could find was of Dave Holt who was also a jazz promoter talking about a forthcoming gig in Amsterdam. You probably know this but there was quite a thriving jazz scene in and around Hastings during the 60s and 70s. The Dave Holt Swingtet played regularly at The Black Horse jazz sessions, The Yelton, The Fairlight Cove Hotel, Prinnys as well as Falaise Hall. There were also jazz nights in the Yorkshire Grey, Mr Cherries, The Caves and Capels. The first gig I can find was on Saturday 8 July 1967 when they played with the Jazz Caverners at the Regent Hotel. It’s likely that your brother played at many of these sessions. Because the Jazz Caverners were also contemporaries of The Dave Holt Swingtet and they sometimes played together there may be a former member of the Jazz Caverners who may be able to answer your question. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more help but if I come across anything new I will be in touch.
Dicky Walsh… thanks for this Stephen. We knew the caverners well, and spent many an evening in the caves in the summer months during the early 70’s. Roddy played with Dave Holt later on, at the Black Horse, Telham amongst other venues.