Hastings College Rag Appeal Dances Hastings Pier – Chris Farlowe & – 23/25th June 1966

chris farlow

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Andre Martin…..Mid Summers Day – for some of you 48 years ago, you were thinking about tonight’s offering in The Happy Ballroom.

Leigh Wieland-Boys….Chris Farlowe’s still got it! I’ve seen him live twice in the last year, his voice is amazing & his version (the original) of Handbags & Gladrags is phenomenal

Gilly Cheeb… What about Count Basie on the Sunday night?

Yvonne Cleland… Hastings College got Chris Farlowe? Wow!

Alan Esdaile… In 1966 Yvonne. Mind you he’s at Hailsham on the 18th January 2015.

Yvonne Cleland… Am I imagining it, or was Chris Farlowe the first bloke to sing with Queen after Freddy Mercury died?

Andre Martin… Chart from the pop press 1966 and this was the poster that I was looking for – came out from Immediate Records to us at the College to use for any promotion, as “Out of Time” had just been released the week before he appeared on Hastings Pier.

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Mick O’Dowd… Chris Farlowe also recorded a single on Sue label under the guise of Little Joe Cook entitled Stormy Monday Blues. Great blue-eyed soul singer. Always been one of my faves. These were great line-ups and something you would not see today, well at leas not for 5 bob or a quid!

John Storer… In small print under Chris Farlowe’s name is his backing band … “and The Thunderbirds” … two of the members of The Thunderbirdfs in June 1966 were Dave Greenslade and Albert Lee!

Andre Martin… Yes we always went for the best in my days at the old college.That has to be one of the best ever weekends watch out for Hastings Observer in a couple of weeks.

John Warner… Great line up there!

Dermot Bambridge… I was a student at Hastings Tech doing OND Engineering at the time and was very involved in this and other 1966 College Rag events – including walking from Croydon to Hastings with a boat on a trailer raising money for charity. Our college all-nighter was an amazing gig – Chris Farlowe’s ‘Out of Time’ still resonates in my memory and stops me in my tracks when I hear it today. On the pier at the time was a dome – the ‘triodome’ I think it was called – housing a copy of the Bayeux Tapestry of the Battle of Hastings. Some of those attending the event ran onto the dome causing damage. I remember my parents being very shocked when the police came round to our house to ‘question me’ about the incident. It wasn’t me but I knew who had done it but my lips were sealed. Happy days.

Mike Berry & The Innocents – Hastings Pier Sat 20th June 1964 by Andre Martin

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The next episode of the History of the Happy Ballroom – Hastings Pier, takes us almost midsummer in 1964 – its Saturday 20 June and Bob Knights and brought back one of the most popular acts that regularly appeared in Hastings – Mike Berry and the Innocents, backed with Chris Star and the Orbits.
Mike Berry started off as “Kenny Lord and The Statesmen” and then became “Mike Berry & The Outlaws” before “Mike Berry and The Innocents.”
“The Innocents” were originally a band called “‘Bobby Angelo & The Tuxedos” who had backed Mike once or twice. When ‘Don’t You Think It’s Time’ made it into the charts, Mike needed a band so offered them the job. The change in name came about when the guys were travelling in the group van one day to rehearsals. They were suddenly surrounded by police at traffic lights near their manager’s office thinking five young guys in a van looked suspicious. Whilst being questioned, their manager came along to explain who they were and that they were quite ‘innocent,’ and so the name was born!
The original Outlaws date back to 1961 when they, as members of the then recently disbanded ‘Billy Gray & The Stormers’, reformed without Billy, on the promise of better things to come in the shape of a recording contract from the legendary producer Joe Meek, initially to back his newly signed artist Mike Berry. As it transpired, when Joe realised what a talented bunch they were, he was very keen to get them to record in their own right, as well as back virtually every other solo artist under Joe’s control. Including Carter-Lewis, Gunilla Thorne, Michael Cox, Jess Conrad, Freddie Starr, Dave Kaye, Dave Adams (Burr Bailey,Silas Dooley Jr) and Houston Wells (Andy Smith) among others.
The Innocents became to the Joe Meek Organisation what Earl Van Dyke & the Soul Brother were to Motown.
They had several singles early in their career – including a cover of the Goffin & King classic – Will You Still Love Me tomorrow http://youtu.be/7wea1hYNP6A
the one that really put them on the map as Mike Berry & The Outlaws – A tribute to Buddy Holly http://youtu.be/5IQhJ-VVGyo
A month earlier The Outlaws had achieved, backing another Meek’s protégé, singer John Leyton on his number one hit ”Johnny Remember Me”.
A further hit came from the same producer Joe Meek in 1964 with http://youtu.be/kgNbN9mPiW4
This again was an example of how The Happy Ballroom was bringing down to Hastings some of the most popular and entertaining acts available in the country for its young people.
Again – The Chris Star Orbits, have proved a complete mystery, I wonder sometimes with these support bands, if they are simply a bunch of musicians that have been put together for the show, using an existing name .. Does sound a little like something promoters and producers would do when pushed.
Several people were interested to know about the new feature on these weekly posts – who appeared on ITVs READY STEADY GO the Friday Night before – in this case it would be 19th JUNE– I can confirm, we would have seen the Animals – The House of the Rising Sun, being promoted as it was due for release the following Thursday, and we all know what happened with that single ! – The Crickets, who were touring the UK at the time and promoting (They call her) LA BAMBA and Troy Dante & The Infernos who were currently supporting the Crickets on their UK tour. Andre Martin

Catherine Ireland… I remember making a commercial with Mike Berry. For Cadburys drinking chocolate with Elaine Delmar not sure which year.

Kings Country Club – The Drifters, Martha Reeves, Johnnie Ray -1970’s memories from Andre Martin(Chris Gentry)

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advert 26th January 1978

Mike Wright…..Drifters with the great lead voice of Johnny Moore

Philip Meston……The only performance I saw at Kings was The Three Degrees and that was because I free tickets!

Andre Martin…..Philip for you –

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Robert Searle….Saw Three Degrees there, the place was packed out .A really good night with Clodagh Rodgers in support.

Colin Fox….. also saw them at Kings and they did a great harmony version of MacArthur Park

Gary Kinch…..All together now, one, two, three……………………….Under the Boardwalk, down by the sea.

Jacqueline Patton… I used to go with my parents it was a grand night out as a child

Colin Fox… The Drifters had 60 different singers over the years, and the last original Drifter died in 2007. I remember reading years ago that their were 42 different groups called The Drifters touring the world in one year.

Tony Court-holmes… i believe i was with mr gentry that night and gig

The Drifters at Kings in 1976...

 

 

 

Barron Knights – Hastings Pier 13th June 1964 by Andre Martin

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The month of June 1964 continues to be fairly warm if not a little wet, and here we are again on Hastings Pier eager to make our trip to the Happy Ballroom, for tonight on the bill be have the ever popular Barron Knights and support comes from a Eastbourne group who we have seen many times before The Sabres.
Hailing from Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire when they started in 1959, they were a straight pop group, and spent a couple of years touring and playing in UK dance halls, before the obligatory trip and time in Hamburg, West Germany. In 1963, at the invitation of Brian Epstein, they were one of the support acts on The Beatles’ Christmas shows at the Finsbury Park Astoria in London, and later became one of the few acts to tour with both the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. They first came to fame in 1964 with the number “Call Up the Groups” (Parts 1 and 2). It overcame copyright restrictions and parodied a number of the leading pop groups of the time including the Searchers, Freddie and the Dreamers, the Dave Clark Five, the Bachelors, the Rolling Stones, and the Beatles. The song imagined the various artists singing about being conscripted, or “called up” into the British Army, although actual conscription had ended in 1960. The single released in the summer of 1963 entered the charts in July that year climbed to number 3 and remained in the charts for 13 weeks. As an example, the song “Bits and Pieces” by The Dave Clark Five was parodied as “Boots and Blisters”. It is quite on the cards that this number could have been introduced to the audience in The Happy Ballroom on this appearance, and as such we could have been some of the first to see the new format of Comedy from the Boys.
Back in the last 1970s, I worked many times with the group when they appeared in Cabaret in various clubs and service bases in this country, and their act by then included a lot of sketches and one liners that had been part of their Television Shows in the UK.
As with so many groups at this time, there were alway changes, and sometimes tracking down their histories is difficult, because, people at the time never kept details, photographs, datesheets etc. The Sabres, who for several years had entertained us in the south-east were about to reinvent themselves and become The Shelley and it was from mid 1964 that these changes would take place, and we would see this happen ……. But more about later in the year.

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The Backroom Boys – Martin Casson Agency 1973

supplied by Tony Pettifer

Andy Qunta… The Boys!

Jan Warren… Very interesting ……… and what are they up to now? 🙂

Alan Esdaile… Sadly Paul Casson is no longer with us but Andre and Colin are still going strong and keeping the posts in SMART interesting.

Andy Knight… Boringly I still every contract with the MC Agency for Shaft, and all the accounts. Thanks MCA, we didn’t make a fortune but we had so much fun.

Reg Wood… Remember their gigs on the pier.

Eugene Hughes…  I used to buy ice creams from Paul him when he had his business in Caves Road.

Tony Court-holmes… would you buy a used car off these men

Mick O’Dowd…  No!

Julie Munday… My late Uncle Paul RIP

A Band Of Angels – Hastings Collage 30th October 1964 by Andre Martin

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Andre Martin… As its Halloween at the moment, if we think back – this is about the college, here is something that I know will be of interest to many, On Friday evening 30th October 1964, in the old Gymnasium at the College in Archery Road, we held our Halloween Dance – Top of the Bill, A Band of Angels, featuring Mike d’Abo and the supporting band whose name slips my memory for the moment, bass guitar one Noel d’Abo [ student and well known member of the college]. We do not have any press adverts for this, but I have found the following press cutting from the local Observer, about a visit made by the group to AJs show in Queens Road. I am sorry the photo is very dark, but Mike can just be seen in the back row.

The Worrying Kind & The Confederates – Sat 17th Oct 1964 by Andre Martin

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Andre Martin… Something is going to happen – I just know it will, but until then, we find ourselves in the Happy Ballroom on Hastings Pier, on Saturday17 October 1964, and what a month this has been, do you realise that we have just had a General Election? Thursday last, when Harold Wilson and the Labour Party won, buy a whisker – if I recall only a 3 seat majority. But enough of that, the first thing I want to address is about last week, several people have asked me, did I have the correct listing, based on the Pier advertisement in the Observer, I would have said yes, but on further research, I do feel they were wrong and it should have been Guy Darrell & The Midnighters as top of the Bill. But that will remain one of life’s little mysteries.
This week should be clearer – Top of the bill – from the North-East – The Worrying Kind, supported by our own The Confederates, 7.45pm – 11.45pm and all for 5/- – what value.
The Worrying Kind had made several visits to the Happy Ballroom in the past, the last was in July of this year, and they had been well received with their mix of Soul, R&B and what we would today call chart covers. The group had been known at one time a Brian Howard & The Silhouettes but changed to Worrying Kind a couple of years ago, they had had a couple of releases and it was rumoured that a Jimmy Page had played on these sessions, although there is little mentioned, he glosses over many of the bands he played sessions with in his autobiography so we can neither confirm or deny. The Confederates, a likely bunch of local lads, under the watchful eye of “ Spike “ Millington – that Pete’s dad, if you did not know, giving their best for the patrons of the Happy Ballroom. So this was another good night, OK not any name attractions, but good all-round entertainment and giving the patrons just what they wanted. Rumour was that Spike and Bob Knights – The General Manager of the Pier, would spend most of the evening putting the world to rights in the Long Bar !
So let’s have a look at what else is keeping the young people of the town entertained during this week, we would have had Friday nights – Ready Steady Go which this week included an interview with – Mick Jagger by Ellen Grehan. Scheduled guest:–Dionne Warwick – “Reach Out For Me. Obviously Mick Jagger was being given plenty of air time on that Night.
At The Witch Doctor – on Saturday Night it was 4+1 backed by Second Thoughts, Sunday Club that week would have been a cracker featuring Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames. And to end the week – Friday nights offering – Shane & The Shane Gang.
I thought that I would also have a quick look at what was on BBC – Saturday Club [BBC Light Programme] Matt Monro, The Pretty Things, Inez and Charlie Foxx, The Rockin Berries and Spencer Davis Group – all introduced by Brian Matthews. Sunday Swing [2.00pm] features Lulu & The Luvvers, Clinton Form, Julie Grant and The Fortunes.
BBC TV that Saturday night on Juke Box Jury Des O’Connor, Mary Wells and Jimmy Young plus one other panel member, and in the chair David Jacobs.
Later that evening – The Billy Cotton Band Show – featured Matt Monro and Gerry and The Pacemakers.
And not to be left out – Radio Caroline was flying the Pirate Radio Flag out there off the Frinton Coast, with at least one household name having survived the weather, after 3 months Tony Blackburn was still broadcasting – it was believed that he had taken a break at some point to gather breath !!
So you can see it had been a interesting week. One thing that I have forgotten to mention, is that the Pier is starting to run generic advertisements for the Ballroom being available for Hire…………so what have they up their sleeves…..time will tell.              Andre Martin

Jim Breeds… Always fascinating 🙂

Peter Millington… Remember it well

The Herd – Hastings Pier Sat 26th Sept 1964 by Andre Martin

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Andre Martin…. Gosh another month has almost gone, and we are now Saturday 26th September 1964, and the Happy Ballroom, is moving into week TWO of this winter programme – all you can dance to for 5/- !
Looking at the Billing I see that headlining is The Herd and in support Brighton based Shelley. My immediate thoughts were, was this the same Herd that had Peter Frampton in the line up, but research tells me that he in fact did not join the group until 1966. This was the original group that he would join a little later. There is not much to tell, other than the group came from south London and had three record releases for Parlophone, that did not make much impact on the charts. However – supporting act Shelley – formerly known as The Sabres, were well known in the south and had made many visits to The Happy Ballroom over the years. Our Friday Night fix of music would be well covered by Ready Steady Go on Redifusion TV from Kingway, and this week would have included – -The Band of Angels, The Four, Gerry and the Pacemakers – “It’s Gonna Be Alright” Wayne Fontana and the Mindbenders – “Um Um Um Um Um Um” , Little Eva , Little Walter. Interesting line up there with Mike d’Abo and the Band of Angels, who we booked several times for college dances, because of the family link with Hastings.
The Witch Doctor was buzzing with its 7 nights of entertainment, and on offer this week would have included: Saturday – The Shamrocks & The Profiles, Sunday – Soul Agents, Wednesday – Lee Castle & The Barons [scheduled to appear on Thank Your Lucky Stars the following night ] and to end the week on Friday The Beat Merchants.
Over the next few weeks, the Pier management will be reviewing the offer to the people of Hastings and we will see changes….but more about that later, it is still offering “ Longest Bar in Town “ and that bracing walk to and from the Happy Ballroom.                        Andre Martin

Joe Knight…love the record  ‘From The Underworld’ mum use to tell me to turn it off she said it sounded like some one had died!!! lol ;-

Mick O’Dowd… Great band & they spawned Peter Frampton.

Tammy St John & The Trends – Sat 12th Sept 1964 – Hastings Pier by Andre Martin

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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………….

The Applejacks – Hastings Pier 5th Sept 1964 by Andre Martin

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The History of groups that have appeared on Hastings Pier continues. What a coup that the Pier pulled off last week, with The HoneyCombs appearing in the Happy Ballroom, and that coincided with their no 1 position on the charts with “Have I the Right” So its Saturday 5th September 1964 and the groups booked for this week are The Applejacks and in support The Sugarbeats.Tonight’s headliners were The Applejacks who came from the Midlands -They were the first “Brumbeat” group (that is, from the West Midlands conurbation-Birmingham area) to reach the Top 10 of the UK Singles Chart, and were unusual for having a female bass guitarist, Megan Davies. The Applejacks began playing together in a skiffle group named the Crestas in 1961, occasionally performing at a local youth club. Lacking a vocalist, they were strictly an instrumental band until the addition of singer Al Jackson in 1963; they began playing rock and roll songs and secured a residency at Solihull Civic Hall. During that time, they changed their name to the Jaguars before finally becoming the Applejacks in July 1962.

http://youtu.be/q5dFBoyjzok

Signed to Decca Records late in 1963, their success was largely due to the strength of their first single, “Tell Me When” Written by Les Reed and Geoff Stephens, “Tell Me When” was released in February 1964 and shot to No. 7 in the UK. After the group met the Beatles during rehearsals for a television appearance, John Lennon and Paul McCartney provided the Applejacks with a song which was to be their second single: “Like Dreamers Do”.[1] However, the record only reached number 20 in the UK chart, whilst their final hit, “Three Little Words (I Love You)” (also in 1964), made it to No. 23.
The supporting band – The Sugarbeats, unfortunately there is no records. Like so many bands of the day they came and went without anybody recording their existence. Sometimes a small detail can be found if one member ever made the big time.
The Friday Night 4th September, would have followed the usual format for the fans in Hastings, able to tune into Ready Steady Go from London, this week’s show would have • Bern Elliott and The Klan – “Good Times.” :Herman’s Hermits – “I’m Into Something Good.” Peter and Gordon : The Rustiks :
The Searchers – “When You Walk In The Room.”
Down in St Leonards – The Witch Doctor, would have continued with its 7 nights a week operation with the main attractions being – Saturday [5] Joey James and the Bandits, supported by The Talismen – Sunday [6] Zoot Money Wednesday [9] Steve Marriotts Moments and Friday [11] Plus 4 with Erky Grant. – some names that we recognise – but more about them another lesson.                                                Andre Martin

Tiffany Barton… a very nice band with female bass guitarit Megan Davies