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

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all cuttings  Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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.

Donation to Conquest Hospital Radio from Kevin Burchett Scalliwags – 11th May 2018

photos by Sid Saunders

Today 11th May 2018, Kevin Burchett on behalf of the members of Scalliwags made a donation of £300 to the Conquest Hospital Radio.Three of the radio presenters accepted the donation with thanks at the White Rock Hotel. In the photo left to right is Tony Davis, Kevin Burchett, Alan Esdaile and Andre Palfrey-Martin. Donations to help with the running of the radio station are always welcome.

Alan Esdaile… very much appreciated Kevin

Andre Martin… Excellent and a BIG thank you from all at CHR. It will be much appreciated.

Mick O’Dowd… Good stuff Kev!

Tony Davis… Thank you Kevin.

Andy Qunta… Excellent!

Alison Cackett… Brilliant x

Wendy Belton… A huge thank you to Kevin Burchett for his generous donation to Conquest Hospital Radio and to Sid Saunders for the lovely photos.

Kevin Burchett…. you have to thank the scalliwags members that come to my charity event every year without them it wouldnt happen

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

Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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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Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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

 

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.

Steve ‘Muscles’ Maxted and Chris Gentry 1976

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Andre Palfrey-Martin Collection

A great disc jockey and showman and much loved in the Hastings area. Here’s an interesting link to his record collection:

www.djwildonevinyl.co.uk

A rare picture of Steve from 1976  with Chris Gentry at the Pye Records ‘Black Umbrella’ launch party.

Tony Davies….Steve Maxted used to have a weekly show at the Aquarius nightclub in George St ( later to become Saturdays) he’d dance around the stage balancing a chair on his chin and competitions to see who could eat the most boiled eggs or pickled onions in a certain amount of time, winner getting a bottle of wine. He’d shout out ” first girl on stage with red knickers “and there would be a stampede of girls rushing up on stage, again ,winner getting a bottle of wine. Needless to say, the place was always packed. !!! 🙂

Joe Knight….steve maxted he was at catfords witch doctor a friend for many years . I USE TO GET ON THE STAGE SOMETIMES AN HELP HIM ALWAYS A FRANKENSTEIN FILM GOING ON AS WELL WAT EVER BECAME OF HIM ????

Tony Court-holmes…  i used to work for mr gentry when he had the roadshow god i could tell some stories

David Wilkinson… god I could write a book but if you see him ask about the vinegar substitute in Helson Cornwall. I knew him when he worked at Lewes. I now live in Dorset, so communicate only by email. My alter ego is motown=mickey

Andre Martin… Fancy you remembering that, I used Orange Fizzy Drink for my chips, when the F&C shop had no vinegar – did not really improve the situation – but Hey Ho that would have been 1976 ? when we were working the Naval Bases in that South West

Steve Maxted… Yes, I remember all those dj’s well. Great times. Thanks

Joe Knight… Where’s the fur waist coat? My grans coat cut off the sleeves 1968 to look like you. What I remember; frankinstien movies raw egg eating balancing table on your chin Desmond Dekker and great nights

Steve Maxted… haha, glad I started a trend. That’s good, all I ever wanted was for people to go away happy and entertained, with good music buzzing in there ears. nice to know everyone has those good memories, thanks

Janice Price… Hi Steve Maxted. Where are you now??? I used to dance on the stage at Victoria Hall Southborough near Tunbridge Wells in 1969. Great times i remember dancing behind a screen as a silhouette! Jan

Steve Maxted… Hi Janice, happy memories for sure. So glad you remember them so well x

 

 

 

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

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supplied by Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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 Yardbirds – Hastings Pier 10th July 1966

Andre Palfrey-Martin Collection

Andre Martin….Somebody asked about The Yardbirds/Zoot Money on the Pier – well as area as chickens teeth here is an advertisement from Hastings Observer July 1966 – which might give some information

Here they are in the film ‘Blow Up’

Jim Breeds…..Marvellous stuff! Though with the exception of one couple the audience has less movement in it than the terracotta army! At least until the guitar neck got thrown. I assume that Pete Townsend must have watched this, lol.

Andre Martin… Also they play  on October 6, 1965  at The Witch Doctor, Hastings. This date does not appear in any listings of WD acts, but I can recall such.

Yvonne Cleland… The YARDBIRDS?!!!

Alan Esdaile… Would have loved to have seen The Yardbirds. Who remembers seeing the film Blow Up?

Yvonne Cleland… I remember seeing it, but a lot later than when it first came out!

Colin Norton… I remember seeing the Yardbirds with Eric on board in November, 1964. They were supporting Jerry Lee Lewis in Brighton. Great show!

Ricky Long… Thanks Alan & Andre,I played on some of the Tony Strudwick Band gigs but can’t
remember which ones.

Colin Norton… I remember seeing the Yardbirds with Eric on board in November, 1964. They were supporting Jerry Lee Lewis in Brighton. Great show!

Will Cornell… Blow Up had Jane Birkin too, but I forget which one of the girls the photographer romps with she was. That was a unneeded, gratuitous, stupid scene they could have cut out…but the Yardbirds gig and his study of the body in the photo, way cool.

Mick O’Dowd… I definately can confirm that they played the Witchdoctor as I won 2 tickets from our old friend Steve Maxted so he can confirm it as well

Jan Colley… Managed to get their autographs

Patrick Dane & The Quiet Five – Sept 19th 1964 by Andre Martin

              Andre Palfrey-martin collection

Andre Martin… Back to Saturday 19th September 1964, we have one of our regular attractions in the Happy Ballroom tonight – making their final appearance during 1964 – Patrick Dane and The Quite Five, supported by The Beat Syndicate, all this for 5/- . It’s the start of the Winter Programme on the Pier, and the prices have been reduced to try and compete with the growing competition.Patrick Dane and the Quite Five and a group that hail from Croydon and the South London Circuit and have a following in the town, having appeared many times in the Happy Ballroom. The support band the Beat Syndicate, a five piece, was a Leytonstone based band that played a lot around North Kent. On the SMART website these if a little more information about the boys.Our Friday Night warm up would have been to RSG and on the show from London on that night would have been a classic line up including – –The Animals – “I’m Crying.” –Elkie Brooks –The Chants –The Hollies – “We’re Through.” –Dionne Warwick – “Reach Out for Me.” The Witch Doctor, was continuing with it 7 nights entertainment, including this week – Sat & Sun from Sheffield – The Knives & Forks, Wednesday – Peters Faces and Friday Dave Dee & The Bostons. Also being advertised – Wednesday 7th October Little Richard !                                     Andre Martin

Nicky Read… discovered this by accident while looking up about Patrick Dane & the Quiet Five. Used to see them play in a pub  called The Perseverance in South London

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

supplied by  Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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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 Andre Palfrey-martin collection

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