SMART Coffee Meet no. 61. Friday 22nd July 2022.

You are most welcome to join us.

Mick O’Dowd… Now time once again to call on all you SMARTIES to answer the call to meet other SMARTIES at the above. Remember you can only become a real SMARTIE if you come to a Meet! It is painless and completely free to join! Just come along. No more excuses! Be there or miss it!

John Miles R.I.P.

more information

Martin Stringer… Sad news.

Ian Luck… Very sad RIP

Barry Upton… Great singer so sad


Matt Thomas… Music’ is my funeral song

Pete Prescott… Very sad.x

Stewart Grimes… So sad, such a great all round musician, seen him live several times!

Robert Searle… RIP Great musician

Alan Esdaile… Very sad news. Great musician and was in Tina Turner’s band for awhile. What a brilliant song ‘Music’ is

Gerry Fortsch… So sad.

Alan Pepper… Another sad loss. Classic track from 1976 one of my favorites and was singing along to it earlier today on Gold FM while driving home from Christmas shopping !

Monica Bane… Very sad another good singer. Gone!

Dennis Torrance… Rest in peace John miles thanks for the music my condolences to his family and friends.

Peter Houghton… So sorry to hear this RIP John Loved your early work and saw you when you was with Tina Turner

Jan Warren… “Music” was a great song, R.I.P. John Miles xx

David Broome… Alan Parsons produced the song (Music) and John went on to sing on a couple of Alan Parsons project tracks including the fantastic song ‘La Sagrada Familia’

Jacquie Hinves… No, no, no . I can’t believe this . He can’t be gone . I lived and loved his music . Kevin would have been so sad

Chris Howard… Sorry to hear this very sad news, Last time I saw John perform was with Tina Turner at Wembley. R.I.P. John a great musician.

Colin Norton… RIP John.

Clare Bennett… I really like him

Colin Fox… Saw him twice in Eastbourne. great guitarist and keyboard player.

Mike Raxworthy… Sad news – knew him well during my time working with Orange…. Cliff Cooper was his manager. Really talented bloke and nice with it. RIP John.

Malcolm Sharpe… In this time of trouble the music gets me through R I P

Peter Brazier… R.I.P. John

John Harper… Yet another icon sadly passed away. Saw him live several times. R.I.P.

Iain Cobby… Oh no…… Saw him and his band in Eastbourne all those many years ago , great show , great band. Music was, and still is , my first love. Thank you for the music John , classic.

Paul Morfey… I saw him at Reading festival ’77


SMART Coffee Meet 56 – We’re Back!

Very pleased to say We’re Back! Hope you are all doing OK and keeping well. Our last meeting was back in February 2020 and looking forward to catching up with old friends and new on Friday 3rd Sept at The White Rock Hotel. A big thank you to everyone for keeping the website and facebook page going during these difficult times. Best Regards  Alan

Keeping the memories alive…

Pete Houghton… Great to back

Andy Qunta… Excellent news!

Mick O’Dowd… It was the 3rd of September. A date i’ll always remember…….

Pete Prescott… Looking forward to it!

Wendy Weaver… At last. Normality

Colin Norton… I hope that you guys have a great time and I really wish that I could join you!

Andy Qunta… Colin, what you said! Me too!

Kev Towner… Can you do it on Zoom? LOL

Stephen Moran… Thanks Alan I look forward to seeing you this afternoon.


Looking for more photos and cuttings.

Stuck at home, time to dig out those old photo albums, cuttings in the loft etc. that would be of interest to our members. Especially music related items from the Hastings area. One photo can cheer up hundreds of people and help to bring back those happy memories. Please email over, with as much detail as possible. Thank you.

John Miles – Congress Theatre Eastbourne – 21st March 1978

Jan Warren… Love the song Music! Found the single in a charity shop last week for 20p

Pete Fisher… saw him supporting Robin Trower that year – he did a grand job – great show!

Paul Morfey… Saw him at Reading fest. ’77 Great!! Thin lizzy were dancing in the moon light!!

Virginia Davis… Saw him at the Congress Eastbourne

Robert Searle… Still got Rebel album on vinyl

Alan Esdaile… So have I.

Iain Cobby… I was there at Eastbourne, was I with you Mr Davis or am I dreaming. I seem to recall overtaking Rod Hull in his RR on the marsh road in my little red mini,coming back to Hastings ……….. or was this a cruel dream?

Tony Davis… Cruel dream mate. I’ve never seen John Miles or your little red mini

Iain Cobby… That’s odd, wonder who it was then?, could have been Steve D. still you missed a really good gig. I remember the stage sets were excellent, and the band spot on. Music was my first love……………………

Tim Moose Bruce…. Was at the congress in 83 and 84 too

Mark Hudson… Listeniing to John Miles on R2 it reminded me I went to that concert at the Congress. I worked at the Burlington Hotel in Eastbourne and this was my first concert I ever went to. Interested to see The Stylistics and Candi Staton were playing at the Congress back in the day. How times have changed as I cannot imagine Eastbourne would get acts like that these days.

Alan King… he sang with Jimmy Page for a while, I did some stuff back in London at the same time with a Venezuelan bass player Durban Laverde (sp ?) who was on the same album/tour, Miller Anderson also worked with him in Germany for a while, nobody had a bad word to say about him

Paul Dallaway… He came to the Congress twice and i saw him live on both occasions. Superb under rated man.

Mark Little… I saw him, great player!!!

Colin Fox… I went to see that show. Can’t believe it was 1978. Time flies as they say.

Andy Qunta…Supported by John Cougar Mellencamp? Wow!

Who remembers buying piano music in Attwells 22 Grand Parade St Leonards?

Josie Lawson… I remember the address now too. It was my first transistor radio I bought there. I used to listen to radio Luxembourg on it at night, and I believe the pirate stations, I think I was 16 years then so was in the 60s. Thanks Alan for finding it…

Barry French… My mum played Piano & would pop in there for sheet music , & I’m sure I bought guitar strings from there. (These were made by Cathedral & were always breaking)

Fiona Evans… I do & clarinet reeds !

Mark Hardwick… Black Cat Pub and Grill.

Part exchange your piano for a radiogram or television in 1965.

Was this still called Attwells in 1909?

Roy Penfold… in 1911 the shop was Hermitages, listed as a pianoforte dealer with branches here, Robertson Street, Eastbourne and Tunbridge Wells. (source 1911 Kellys)

supplied by Roy Penfold

Josie Lawson… I bought a transistor radio sponsored by my dad…It was called His Masters Voice

Matt Thomas… HMV


Who remembers Juke Box Jury?

photo © BBC

Geoff Peckham… Does anyone remember this? At the end, after David Jacobs had signed off, the camera would pan across the ‘jurors’ and their names would glide past the screen as each one was shown. Cleverly, regular Pete Murray would ‘notice’ his name in front of him and quizzically follow it as it went across the screen.

Roger Simmonds… Yep!

Nigel Goodman… Hit or miss !

Mike Quinn… I was on it.

Wendy Weaver… Never missed it.

Ernest Ballard… Wow cheers, I’d forgotten about this. Fab show

Steve Scholey… I was on it.

Angela Frances Gardner… Hit or Miss!

Jennie Tocock… Great show!! This one was my favourite, of course!

Mick O’Dowd… Yes I remember this well. They had a Beatles & I think, a Rolling Stones special at some point. TVS tried to copy the format with “Dad, You’re A Square”. One episode was recorded at White Rock Pavilion.

Flanko Fin Barr… yeah when i was a kid we did . me and my brother used to have a tape recorder and make out we are the panel playing it. .

Janet Brophy… WOW that takes me back

Dave Nattress… Absolutely!! We were all so starved of “pop music” back in those days it was an essential show. Was it early Saturday evening – about 5.30 – 6.00? David Jacobs was a really smooth presenter, I say this as an observation not a criticism. I suppose back then, BBC presenters and DJ’s tended to be this.

Lyn Humphrey… Always watched ‘Juke Box Jury’, with my parents, and sometimes even grandparents too.

SMART 51 Coffee Meet

New people welcome to join us

Mick O’Dowd… Remember. Post, copy, share and print-off and put down the sweetie shop! Also make a paper plane and spread the word. Let’s try & beat the 50th Meet turnout. (Unfortunately Alan’s not bribing us with canapes this time!)

Alan Esdaile… Ian Mantel has supplied us with a pile of rare promotional and white label cd’s, on behalf of and raising funds for St Michael’s Hospice. These will be available on the day and offers welcome. Here’s a sneak preview…

SMART 47 coffee meet report

Great start to the new year and one of our busiest meets so far. Among the newbies this time were Tony Court-Holmes and Cedric Paine. Tony had lots of memories of working at The Anchor and also chatting about when he worked in Prinny’s George Street and remembers it when it was The Sombrero Cafe. Cedric was chatting about Blind Faith and the Isle Of Wight Festival and had some interesting stories of when he was working with Eric Clapton and George Harrison. Paul Morfey had with him his vinyl collection of Claire Hamill LP’s and was talking about the Claire’s track You Take My Breath Away which was on The Voice last week. Mick O’Dowd arrived with some interesting Mod & Northern Soul cd’s. Barry French had with him the rare LP version of Grand Funk Shine On with the original cover in bi-visual 3-D and fun was had looking through the blue and red lensed glasses to view it. He also had his Status Quo ticket from when they appeared in Alexandra Park. John Busbridge had with him his photo album of cuttings and tickets and John Parnell had an old photo of his dad’s furniture shop in Norman Road. Sarah Harvey was talking about Hastings Rock meeting has just taken place and information will be available soon and Barry Taylor has confirmed he is putting together another Barefaced Music charity event later in the year for St Michaels Hospice. As expected lots of chat about the future of the pier and also the funny Mark Steel Radio 4 show on Hastings. Positive response to the changes at The White Rock Theatre with regard to the seating, what future now if any for HMV and lots of interest in the mods outside Dimarco’s photo from 1964. Sorry if I didn’t get a chance to chat to you but this is just a very small bit of what I remember, anyone who wishes to add anything interesting you were talking about, then please feel free to do so.

Andre Martin… Great way to start the New Year aand to see so many old faces.

Mick O’Dowd… Nearly standing room only. Great Meet. Well done Alan. Where do you keep finding theses interesting people?

Caz Simpson… Thank you Alan for your warm welcome to the SMART meeting, we really enjoyed ourselves xx