Elvis Costello – Hastings Pier 4th March 1980

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poster supplied by Andrew Clifton                 ticket supplied by Robert Wren


ad supplied by Sarah Harvey

Alan Esdaile… .Packed gig and as wildly reported here, he left the stage half through a song which I think was ‘Alison’.

Andrew Clifton…. found this on Wikipedia. Elvis Costello when asked Can you remember any shows of yours that were spectacularly good or bad? It’s not for me to say which were the good shows, However, I do remember a concert a few years ago which would have been a nearly perfect combination of songs if I’d played “Suit Of Lights” at the end — but then I’d have had to stop performing. This is why a show is preferable to records: any night may yield the best version of a song — that is, up until the next night. Needless to say, there were a number of occasions, back in the day, where one or other member of the band was either too tired or emotional to complete the show. I could name names but at the risk of reading like one of those tired old rehashes that are the stock-in-trade of a “rival publication,” I will only mention this one evening when I was at fault. You did ask. Following a lunchtime stop in Folkestone at which half a case of wine was demolished, plus an afternoon “nap” and early evening “livener” of several pints of strong cider into which were dropped shot glasses of navy rum — for those of you who want to order one, it’s called a “Depth Charge” — and God knows what else, I completely forgot the words of “Alison” and had to be led from a stage at the end of Hastings Pier, in 1980. I still refuse to play over water to this day.

Mick O’Dowd….This was a classic concert with a force 6/7 blowing outside. The joint was shakin’, literally. Must have been a near sell-out. Tickets are cheaper for this gig than the £45 asking for De La Warr concert next year(2014)!

Bobby Walker… And my friend thought he left the stage because she was stood right up the front and was talking during “Alison”. Was this before or after Langer was in Deaf School? He and Winstanley became one of the great production teams of the late 70s / early 80s.

Michael Wilson….I’ve still got mine the the Costello gig. A great night on the pier and waiting for a train back to Bexhill afterwards

Mick Mepham….Doh! Didn’t get to see that one dammit!

Mick O’Dowd….Hard luck Mick. It was a classic and probably a sell-out as well!Anybody remember who the support was?

Michael Wilson….Clive Langer and the Boxes support I think he also produce the album ‘Get Happy’

Jim Hobbs…. Clive Langer and the Boxes. They were great, but I think Elvis cut his set short during ‘Alison’, he looked a bit ‘ill’.

Andrew Clifton….He went off stage and left the band playing then returned to the stage to play but not for very long. I do remember him saying something like “if you don’t stop dancing we will go through the floor into the sea.”

Read moreElvis Costello – Hastings Pier 4th March 1980

Masons Music Record Shops



Hastings Pier


187 Queens Road


190 Queens Road

Tony Court-holmes… i remember where has all the time gone

Glenn Piper… Tick tock

Julie Findlay-jones… One of the best bosses I’ve ever had

John James Shea… Most of my punk records came from mason music .I’ve still got there price tags on them a great shop and a fantastic photo thanks

Louis Comfort-Wiggett… I did some work experience there when I was first out of school. Bagging up orders or badges and Sam Fox postcards!

Andy Ives… Was the best record shop in Hastings at the time imo. Could always get the rarer stuff I was looking for a little more expensive but worth every penny. Great friendly staff too


Georgie Fame and John Mayall’s Blues Breakers – Hastings Pier Allnighter 14th October 1966

Advert supplied by Andre Martin

photo: Georgie Fame and Rick Brown (bass) (Amsterdam, October 1966)


Gerry Fortsch… I wish I had been there

Joe Knight… George!!! Oh Yeah

Alan Esdaile… Anyone know who played with John Mayall on this gig? Eric Clapton would have been with Cream by this time but could have been Peter Green or Mick Taylor?

David Finn… Peter Green!

Pete Fisher… can’t believe I missed Peter Green in my hometown, but I was only 11, just started Grammar School…discovered Peter Green and John Mayall two years later…

Cheryland Jim Ramshaw… Remember that night well the place was buzzing

Pete Fisher… According to wiki, Eric Clapton left the Bluesbreakers in July 1966, and was replaced by Peter Green, so this would have been with Greenie…



The Stranglers – Hastings Pier 26th March 1977

supplied by Neil William Michael McGuigan

Jacquie Ballard… I was there great night. I got a badge.

Alan Esdaile… Was it Tom Robinson supporting Neil? as I think it was originally advertised as Eater?

Neil William Michael McGuigan… trouble is I honestly can’t remember

Peter Fairless… The support was Eater, not TRB

Paul Gray… I didn’t realise they played the Pier twice. I saw them supported by The Dictators.

Neil William Michael McGuigan… Get your old posters out. From Pier 1977, so I put this on ebay- and it sold for £1830 today.

Pete Fairless… …and Neil is kindly going to pledge some of his profit to the FOHP bid to save the pier – what a nice guy!

Sandy Max… Damn I wish I’d kept them!

 Virginia Davis… I was thinking the same

Alan Batty… Rattan Norvegicus was originally going to be called dead on arrival….any link?

Jan Warren… Hhmm, not sure, “Rattus Norvegicus” simply means “Brown Rat” but “Dead on Arrival” would be a suitable title for a Stranglers album, I LOVE The Stranglers!! and how brilliant to get such a price for a poster?!! – no wonder I keep so much “junk” ……. always hoping it might be worth something??!!

Head On and Hat Trick – Hastings Pier 16th February 1979

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flyer supplied by Mick Mepham, poster supplied by Roger Carey, ad supplied by Sarah Harvey, photos by Chris Meachen, Hat Trick playlist Roger Carey.

Head On featured – Tony Qunta, Mark Thirsk, Steve Kinch and Andy Qunta and Hat Trick featured Barry French, Dave Shirley, Roger Carey and Dennis Wootton.

Andy Qunta….those pics do look like they could be from that gig! Can’t believe my moustache! That was a great night, as I recall! I especially like the travel arrangements at the bottom of The Hat Trick playlist.

Geoff Peckham… Thought that was the encore!

Steve Kinch….I can’t believe my hair!

Pete Prescott….you could pick up radio 4 on those haircuts.you didnt look like that when i was in the band.do you remember falling off the front of the stage at a gig andy ? when you told me the story i nealy wet myself ! over to you. . .

Sarah Harvey… One of those moments when I suddenly remembered playing in a gig! This time with Hat Trick supporting Head On! Doh! This is the set list for ‘Hat Trick’ when supporting ‘Head On’ at the Pier…. ‘The Rooter’ was a progressive rock song about derelict railway steam engines (Roger described it is an epic) …. would have appealed to Mr. Cooksie. Opening number ‘Maybe Now’.


Die Laughing, Head On, Plastix – Hastings Pier 16th February 1978

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ad – Sarah Harvey     ticket – Mick Mepham     Head On Andy Qunta, photo David Mmirb.

Phil Thornton….I remember this one ! the plastix had to play on the floor due to the stage being full of gear. They were excellent ! I had forgotten that DL were headlining !!! ( I think it may have been my last gig with them ?) Head On were great of course !!!

Alan Esdaile…..Bizarre to see Soul Fever 78 tour, as that was the tour I put together when I managed Delroy Williams. I can’t remember putting this on at the pier but think we change venue to Emmas(below Queens Hotel) as not enough tickets were sold.

Phil Thornton…..no no no ! not my last gig with Die Laughing ! but it was Mick Mephams first Hastings gig with them ! I must have been there to cheer him on !!!

Mick Mepham…..I think it might have been Phil as I think I joined in late ’77. That billing is a bit dicey though!! Head On were excellent and the Plastix weren’t too shaky either ….

Janine Anne Hemsley… ”Remember this night lol”

John Wilde…  I was there. It was a great night. Plastix won the night.

Phil Thornton… its official …. the Plastix stole the show !!

Peter Fairless… Plastix, a St Valentine’s attraction?

Mike Mitchell… That well known Welshman….Die Laughing

Phil Thornton… …. and no it was not the sex pistols in disguise !

Kev Carlyon… 80p to get in!