The Ballroom All Stars DJ’s – Hastings Pier 21st May 2016

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photo by Allyson Breeds

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                  photos by Kevin Burchett                            quotes photo Jim Breeds

Chris Gentry, Johnny Mason, Colin Bell and Mick O’Dowd.

Allyson Breeds… I don’t know why Mick looks like he is wearing a yellow wig?

Leigh Wieland Boys… DJs were excellent!

Chris Giles… Brilliant photo Allyson

Andre Martin… It was always Johnny M who had the Goldern Wig!! Great time with the “old hands” almost 200 years experience between us over the years!

Kevin Burchett… The Golden Oldies at Hastings Pier second session.

Archie Lauchlan… Poptastic

Sarah Harvey… I just think they all look so cute 🙂 xx

Jim Breeds… Old Skool Still Rules

Andre Martin… Brill – that sums up the Ballroom All Stars !!

Andy Qunta… Ha ha – love it! Those are some rock-star, legendary DJs!

Andy Gunton… I’m still wondering who that rogue hand, under the desk, belongs to?

Caz Simpson… The rogue hand definitely belongs to a female.

Andy Gunton… Where’s her other hand?!!!!

Chris Giles… I didn’t notice until Andy pointed it out..Ha ha

Alan Esdaile…Thanks Jim. I see what you mean about the hand Andy, it looks like its far too low to be Andre’s and It looks like its on my knee!

Jim Breeds… Done with the greatest of respect and affection 🙂

Mick O’Dowd… That’s awesome  Jim. Actually the yellow on my head was not a result of me rubbing on Colin’s T-shirt but is in fact my halo slipping after I mentioned a certain gentleman that appeared on the Pier in silver suits who I was not allowed to mention!  Nice to see you there on Saturday. Great to see you back.

Jim Breeds… One year ago today.

Chris Giles… What a fantastic time we all had x

Mick O’Dowd… A year ago! How time flies! Had a great time.

Alan Esdaile… They let us out on day release, as long as we had our name tags on.

Jeanette Jones… Nice photo, guys 🙂 We’ve all come a long way !

Ez Allen with Colin Bell DJ’s – Vacuum Generators 14th May 1971

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Ez Allen with Colin Bell at the back. Vacuum Generators 14th May 1971 supporting Alamo.

Samuel Freeman…. It was a good night

Colin Bell… Bloody hell! Haven’t seen this before! Where did the years go….

Andy Knight… I just love that pic, where are they now?

SMART SOUNDS By Colin Bell reviewing Black Flower by Nirvana (UK) CD

BLACK FLOWER     Nirvana (UK) CD

Having brought you reviews of Nirvana’s other albums, its with great personal pleasure I bring you this review of their third ‘lost’ album. Their debut album ‘The Story of Simopath’ is now considered the first ‘rock opera’ and the follow up (and most commercially successful album) ‘All of Us’ contained the sublime single hit ‘Rainbow Chaser’, another first with its use of ‘phasing’. The third album release should have been Black Flower. On completion Chris Blackwell boss of their label Island Records rejected it as not right for his label. In a, however, generous gesture gave them the master tapes and released the duo from their contract and bade them good luck to find a home for it.

Eventually a deal was done with Metromedia in the U.S. and Pye International in the U.K. Unfortunately Metromedia was caught up in a huge payola scandal and folded having just pressed up 500 promo copies (now worth £1000!) if you could find one. So Black Flower vanished into obscurity, it didn’t help that the title was also printed wrongly on the copies that were pressed, it became ‘Dedicated to Markos 111’ which was in fact exactly what it read a cover note dedication to a family member who had helped out the duo with financial assistance for re-mixing the masters. Now 50 years on Esoteric Records have got all the elements right and issued the album remastered with bonus tracks. one might say ‘Black Flower’ has finally bloomed. Patrick and Alex’s style of Baroque pop/psyche, odd time signatures and ethereal melodies and lyrics is most likely a ‘marmite’ one, you either get it and love it or not. Their songs are whimsical, sometimes dark but always interesting. Black Flower is a departure in some ways from the aforementioned 1st and 2nd albums, its more orchestral, more diverse, more cinematic. The opening track ‘The World Is Cold Without You’ could have easily been a Bee Gee’s number, with a twist, and I think a beautiful arrangement. The 2nd track ‘Excerpt from the Blind and the Beautiful’ is pure Nirvana at its best psyche/baroque style. Track 3 ‘I Talk To My Room’ is probably one of the best expressed ‘break up’ songs ever committed to vinyl/cd. ‘Christopher Lucifer’ moves more upbeat and poppy. Title track ‘ Black Flower’ is a tour-de-force with a snarling guitar part (Spooky Tooth members I believe). Female vocals were courtesy of Lesley Duncan, arrangements by Mike Vickers (Manfred Mann) and production by Mike Hurst (Cat Stevens, PP Arnold) and Tony Visconti ( T.Rex, Bowie etc). An awful lot of premier talent was involved. As I write this with the rain lashing against the windows Nirvana are able to transport you to sunny days and able to take you to a better place and live up to the definition of nirvana being ‘ A place or state characterized by freedom from or oblivion to pain, worry and the external world’. Can’t better that. Enjoy……….

For more information go to https://www.cherryred.co.uk

Til next time (with some excellent reggae)………Colin

Ruperts People with Santos Morados – Hastings Pier 14th April 1968

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ruperts autographs

poster Andre Palfrey-Martin Collection.  autographs supplied by Colin Bell

Mick O’Dowd….Best known for “Whiter Shade of Pale”-like tune Reflections of Charles Brown. Have their CD which is pretty good to.

Wendy Wells… I remember this gig as an almost 16 year old. Had a crush on Steve from Santos Morados. If I remember rightly we exchanged addresses and wrote a couple of times, but never saw each other again. I’m sure I have the bands autographs somewhere and those of Rupert’s People. Happy Days.

Alan Esdaile… Can’t find much about Santos Morados but they did have a single on Island Records.

 

Roger Daltrey The Who I Can’t Explain …I Can Explain! Hastings Rock Radio 1995.

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supplied by Colin Bell

Colin Bell… I was working on a piece for the SMART website on The Who, then on Friday at the last get together the subject of The Who, Roger Daltrey and Hastings Rock came uu, So ive combined several threads together, to answer some questions, provide some info, have a few laughs and appeal for some help from the wonderful SMART community.

‘I Can’t Explain’ a pivitol record by anyones standards introducing The Who to the world. Recorded at Pye Studios in November ’64,
the session didn’t go smoothly….Shel Talmy the American producer drafted in some session players..As Roger was later to say to me ‘ producers paranoia, he didn’t think we were any bloody good to play’…! Hence the presence of Jimmy Page and Clem Cattini(legendary drummer with the Tornados, and a man who has played on more Hit records than you can shake a (drum) stick at. The upshot was Jimmy Page did play on the record, underneath Pete. Moony’s reaction…’get that F*****g bloke out the studio before I F*****g kill him!….Ah God bless Moony!
I first saw The Who live on Hastings Pier in 1967 (im sure lots of SMARTIES did). From that day on I was a die hard fan of the greatest live rock band in the world. I never imagined then that some years later I would be privileged to work at Track Records in Old Compton Street in Soho, home label to The Who, Hendrix, Arthur Brown, Marc Bolan, Marsha Hunt etc etc. Great days and many fond memories. Fast forwarding now to 1995 and Hastings Rock FM. 1995 was a crucial year for the station that its founder Nick Thomas had and has worked so hard to bring to air, great guy. This was the last RSL broadcast before the Radio Authority granted a local licence, I suggested to Nick that it might help to get some more publicity for the station in the pursuit of a permanent licence if I got a few ‘names’ to come on my show and do some interviews. Roger being local was top of my hit list. The studio at that time in December 1995 was in the Old Dairy in Silverhill (since demolished).
It was bloody freezing that year with thick snow. With no real conviction he’d agree to come on I rang him at home
and explained the situation and very generously he said ‘Ok mate for old times sake i’ll come in and do it’. We arranged to meet in The Clarence for a pint first…whilst in there a punter said,,nervously..’your Roger Daltrey!’…the reply deadpan from Roger ‘nah im a fish farmer’….So we crossed over the road to the studio and went live with the interview, he was great and gave over an hour and a half of chat to the people of Hastings an extroadinary amount of his time. It was great fun and he insisted on having the monitors in the studio at full blast..no change there! Very sadly as we all know the licence didn’t go Hastings Rock way, but Hastings Rock has of course lived on to great effect by Nick and his team, and long may it continue!
Now to the appeal for help bit…the only recordings made of this interview and others (i’ll list later} were on a vhs tape machine running off the desk.
I think ive located a copy in my archives and Sarah Harvey has kindly offered to get this transferred to CD.
Copies can then be made available to any one who would like them (free of charge). If you happened to make any recordings and still have them please get in touch via SMART. And we can preserve a bit of Hastings musical history. Thank You.
For Info the other guests who gave of their time and have played/or had connections to Hastings and appeared on my shows were:

Live in Studio:
Denny Laine (Moody Blues/Wings
Peter Sarstedt {who performed Where Do You Go To My Lovely..and dropped Hastings into the lyrics)
Annie Haslam (Renaissance)
Steve Hyams (British Lions/Mott)
The Dharmas (later to become Steadman)

LIVE ON PHONE:
Chris Farlowe
Kenney Jones (Small Faces)
Pat (PP) Arnold
Linda Lewis
Andy Scott {Sweet}
Dave Hill (Slade)
Steve Hogarth (Marillion)
Mick Abrahams (Jethro Tull/Blodwyn Pig
Suzi Quatro
John Steel (The Animals)
Thunder.

Bruce Dickinson (recorded, but not broadcast.

Look forward to seeing everyone at next meeting and as ever kudos to Alan for all his hard work!

Alan Wood… Great article ,thanks

Andy Qunta… Excellent! I love The Who, especially Roger, who was very good to Factory! I went to the record shop after I first heard Can’t Explain, not knowing what it was called or “who” it was by. I sang the chorus to the guy behind the counter, & he somehow recognized it! Who fan ever since! Thanks, Colin, & SMART for posting this!

Factory & Effigy – Clive Vale Annexe. Fri 7th May 1971 & YMCA review 13th August 1971

Supplied by Jon McCallion

Andy Qunta… Ah! Good times!

Phil Gill… I was there, probably with young Carey, Meachen and Shirley, as they labelled us at school. Sarah Harvey might have enjoyed the evening too.

Sarah Harvey…. I did indeed Phil and I had. completely forgotten about Effigy and to be honest cannot remember seeing them at all other than a vague memory that I didn’t think much of them. Factory as ever were THE band of Hastings at the time.

Chris Baker… Hah! Flight of the Rat was one of my “Flashy” solos! Those were the days! We only did a few gigs.

Phil Gill… As I recall Chris, you showed me how to play the pedal note riff from Flight of the Rat, one night at an Effigy rehearsal that Roger Carey and I attended. Was it School Road in Ore? Roger was buying Iain Cobby’s speaker cabinet and we came along to look at it.

Brigitte Lee… Where was Clive Vale Annex?

Chris Baker… Ha! Phil! My arthritic old fingers can’t play it so fast these days! Fun to so though. Still got that analog Park Fuzzbox too and the old Hofner!

Geoff Peckham… I remember we (Factory) were really impressed with Effigy. Didn’t they do a couple of other Deep Purple covers? Speed King, and Child in Time? According to Andy’s diary we played with them twice in 1971. May 7th at Priory Road School. Andy said that school gigs have been “…really great. This was no exception. Bit of trouble from old ladies and police about the noise but never mind. Effigy supported (or did we support them?) – not bad for their first gig.” The second was at the YMCA on August 13th. Andy mentions the awful acoustics and that “Effigy (with Tom) supported.” Could that have been the legendary Tom Jones? (The one from Stoke, not S. Wales!)

Phil Gill… And Steve’s drumming was *never* too loud. End of.

John Wilde…. Tom Jones, any info on his history or where he is now?

Geoff Peckham…. I got to know Tom in ’69 when his dad had an electrical shop in Western Rd, Bexhill. He told me stories about being in a pre-Black Sabbath band called Horny Moon (!) and other tales. He was a great character and raconteur. Like you, he had great stage presence – a great blues singer and harpist. He moved back to Stoke, and around 73-74 turned up at a Factory gig in NE Staffs University. I think he put us up for the night. Haven’t seen him since. Anyone else know anything? Be good to see you again sometime.

Alan Esdaile…yes it was School Road Ore where the rehearsals took place, in the old church hall which was full of antiques and clobber and the band squeezed somehow in the middle. I think their was a giant stuff bear but maybe wrong? Geoff Peckham date is correct as Friday 7th May 1971. Clive Vale Annex was part of Priory Road School and the gig took place at Clive Vale. Jon McCallion sung with Effigy at this gig and glad you remembered Tom Jones. I got a review somewhere which I will post on the YMCA gig shortly.

Read moreFactory & Effigy – Clive Vale Annexe. Fri 7th May 1971 & YMCA review 13th August 1971

SMART SOUNDS by Colin Bell reviewing Something Here In My Heart (The Complete Recordings 1968-1970) The Paper Dolls cd

SOMETHING HERE IN MY HEART (THE COMPLETE RECORDINGS 1968-1970) The Paper Dolls

Firstly, Happy New Year to all friends and fellow Smarties I hope its a good one for you.

Okay for the first review of 2018 lets hit the time travel button and return to 1968. Thirty years before the advent of the Spice Girls and their (marketing ploy) nicknames Scary, Baby, Posh etc, there were three girls who also had nicknames namely Susie Mathis (Tiger), Pauline Bennett (Spyder) and Sue Marshall (Copper) and they could really sing! Unlike the aforementioned manufactured ‘group’ The Paper Dolls were a working band hailing from the Midlands doing the clubs, ballrooms etc etc. After being spotted they were invited to Pye Records in London to meet Tony Macauley hot producer and songwriter for The Foundations and Long John Baldry amongst many others. Driven to London by one Peter Stringfellow (yes that one) they were so poor he even had to stop to buy them new tights to wear! All then went well at the audition and with a name change from the Dolly Set to the Paper Dolls by May 1st they were at number 11 in the charts with the insanely catchy ‘Something Here In My Heart’. Many TV appearances followed, the girls were the epitome of what was then dubbed ‘ Dolly Birds’ by the contemporary press of the day. An album was hastily put together (contained in its entirety on this release) and it must have been very quick as the tracks were mainly cover versions of songs that were in the charts at the same time as SHIMH! thus there are good takes of ‘Captain Of Your Ship, ‘Darlin’, ‘Simon Says’ ‘Aint Nothing but A Houseparty’ and ‘Any Old Time You’re Lonely or Sad’ a hit for The Foundations, written as previously mentioned by Tony Macauley. After the success of their debut hit the second single release would be all important. It is at this point that history dealt the girls a cruel blow. The follow up was to have been ‘Build Me Up Buttercup’ however due to a mix up the girls didn’t turn up for the recording session (not their error) and of course it was recorded instead by The Foundations and became a monster worldwide hit. Sadly therefore The Dolls were doomed to that ‘one hit wonder’ niche in the history of pop. They carried on busily working live up to 1970 before disbanding. This new 29 track compilation as the title suggests contains all their recordings and later solo singles by lead singer Susie ‘Tiger’ Mathis. The original album Paper Dolls House has in the meantime become a rare and expensive rarerity so its great to have it here at a price that all can enjoy. I must also mention that there is a really punchy take here on the much covered Angels ‘My Boyfriends Back’, indeed probably the best version ive heard (Chris Gentry take note!). Its a shame The Paper Dolls didn’t have the longtime chart career I feel they deserved, however they did leave a perfect pop footprint with SHIMH its impossible to not feel a smile coming on for a more innocent era, so on that note i’ll leave you with a glorious video from 50 years ago! Enjoy…….

For more information go to https://www.cherryred.co.uk

Til next time……………………………….

Samantha’s Club – New Burlington Street. What clubs and venues do you remember in London? Tiffanys Club and Gullivers People chat.

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All images supplied by Colin Bell

Colin Bell… I was looking for something in my archives (I must organise them one day!) and came across this. I was struck by the artwork and how creative it was then. Samantha’s was in a basement off Regent Street and I was introduced to it on a night out with Clem (from the Foundations) and Jimmy James, from memory  it was around late 1969 early 1970. A great place with soul bands appearing and the D.J. ‘booth’ was the body of an E Type Jag (very swinging sixties). Drinks 2/6d! You could get well pissed for a coupla quid! I was lucky enough at that time to have the use of a mate’s flat in Berwick Street Soho, ideally placed to go to all the great clubs. Many hours spent at the Marquee, Whisky-a-go-go, the Flamingo, Middle Earth and Hatchetts in Piccadilly, a great club over 3 floors with a chill out bar level, a restaurant with a glass wall overlooking the ‘disco’ floor. I’d be interested to hear any memories of this period from other Smart members? Great times and great memories…………..

Alan Esdaile… Happy days in Wardour Street at The Marquee. Also the Speakeasy. Also remember auditioning bands at Tiffanys nightclub in Shaftesbury Avenue and a club in Piccadilly with the disco on the top floor, mirrored lift and the club had records stuck to the wall. 100 club, Roxy, Ronnie Scotts etc.

Peter Fairless… Went to some dodgy, some good clubs in London. Some were very dodgy but very good! Can’t remember all the names but most of those listed above.

Steve Gage… My mate Ray was a bouncer at Samanthas where are you now mate??? 🙂

Mick O’Dowd… Went to The Q Club in Paddington after seeing James Brown at The Rainbow in the 70’s I think. JB turned up after we got there and jammed with the band. Awesome!

Read moreSamantha’s Club – New Burlington Street. What clubs and venues do you remember in London? Tiffanys Club and Gullivers People chat.

SMART SOUNDS by Colin Bell reviewing Am I Dreaming? 80 Brit Girl Sounds Of The 60s. 3CD Set

AM I DREAMING?  80 BRIT GIRL SOUNDS OF THE 60’s    Various Artists 3CD Set

I’ve been looking forward to this release, definitely an early Christmas pressie for me. Solo and girl groups of the 60’s is one of my favourite genres. I guess most people’s minds would leap automatically to the sounds from over the pond from the Brill Building, Carole King, Shangri-La’s etc and Spectors Wall of Sound productions for The Ronettes, Crystals etc all timeless classics of course. But here in the UK we had an equally thriving ‘scene’ with many going on to be big names and some sadly disappearing without trace. This beautifully presented 3CD set from RPM is a finale to their very successful ‘Dream Babes’ series of compilations that ran from 1994 to 2007. If you already own any of these CD’s fear not none of the tracks are duplicated in this set which contains many rarities and some previously unissued material. The accompanying booklet by Ian Chapman and Bob Stanley tells the story in fine form along with some great photos. Just some of the ‘big’ names starting out on their careers are here in the shape of Petula Clark, Dusty Springfield (The Springfields), Kathy Kirby (a huge favourite of my dear old dad), Cilla Black, Jackie Trent, Elkie Brooks, Kiki Dee and Cloda (without the gh) Rodgers to name but a few. Fascinating to hear their evolution from their early recordings contained here. Away from these well known artists are the lesser remembered but in some cases equally great singers who had some success but didn’t make the leap to the big league but nevertheless left us some great singles, my personal choice being Billie Davis, Samantha Jones and Beryl Marsden who could belt out a great tune and should have had greater success but such is the fickleness of the record buying public then and now. A lot of the girls (and groups) were viewed as a bit of novelty fare at the time, and to be fair some were. However listening to the Vernon Girls of We Love The Beatles fame/infamy sing ‘Only You Can Do It’ on Disc One you realise they weren’t a million miles away from those aforementioned Brill Building girls when they had decent material. At 80 tracks there is so much to unearth and enjoy, it may not all be in the premier league but for anyone like me who loves this genre and time period its hard to fault. The breadth and scope on display is actually summed up wonderfully by the accompanying press release and for once I can’t better it in my own words ‘ beat girls, folk girls, hippy girls, mod girls,……………….Not forgetting Schoolgirls, secretaries, convent girls, actresses, daughters of diplomats and god daughters of royalty’!! Wonderful. You can have the fun of working out who is who!

I’ll leave it there with a YouTube clip of our late beloved Cilla getting Motown, and the back of the two heads watching the performance in the first 10 seconds belong to a coupla geezers called Paul and John….wonder what happened to them……….

For more information go to https://www.cherryred.co.uk

This being the last SMART Sounds of this year, may I wish an early happy Christmas to all fellow Smarties and friends, see you in the New Year,

Til then………………….

Colin