Samisen – College Dance Hall 7th November 1975

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supplied by Mick Mepham

Sarah Harvey……A gig at the college in Archery Road, November 7th 1975. Line-up… Graham Barrett (Vocals) Bernard Jeffery (Drums) Dave Shirley (Lead Guitar) Ralph Lee (Rythm Guitar) Len Howard (Bass Guitar)

Bernard Jeffery….I remember the gig we used some homemade pyrotechnics and filled the place with smoke, you couldn’t see a thing

Perri Ann Haste….I remember this gig – I was sweet 16 at the time & I do recall the smoke Bernard!

Samisen – Hastings News write up 6th November 1975

supplied by Sarah Harvey

Sarah Harvey….Amazing what you find clearing out your loft. A cutting from The Hastings News (A free delivered paper in the 70s) November 6th, 1975. One of the Samisen Line-ups… this time with two members of the band from Bromley. From left to right, Ralph Lee, Bernard Jeffery, Big Len (now Conan) Howard, Graham Barrett and Dave Shirley. Fresh from a gig supporting Felix at The Carlisle.

Bernard Jeffery….yeah I remember the gig as well

Pete Fisher… nice to see Pueblo get a mention!

Yvonne Cleland… Felix!

Ritz with Hat Trick and Samisen – Ore Centre 8th July 1978

supplied by Roger Carey

 Sarah Harvey… My artwork….. on my birthday. I organised all of the Ore Festivals in the 1970s and created the posters during my lunch-hours at work. I was a design draughtsperson in Battle. Also played in Samisen on the night.

Alan Wood… Wow !!

Mike Mitchell… I went to that one. I was obviously very keen. 75p entry and I was only earning 50p an hour at Dickies Discount at the time.

Farmers Lung – around 1975/1976

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supplied by Sarah Harvey

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Support at the caves in 1976.

Sarah Harvey…..Farmers Lung – Probably from around 1975/76 – Farmers Lung played some gigs locally such as at The Palace Bars although probably little known in Hastings. Photo is the handsome David Kent and left to right Steve Turner (Bass), Richard Walsh (Guitar and latterly drums), Graham Barrett (Vocals and Guitar – RIP) and (hiding) Dave Kent (Keyboards and Guitar. There was also Richard’s brother Roddy Walsh – (Not pictured – Guitar – Roddy). Steve, Graham and Dave went on to join forces and form the 2nd or 3rd line-up of Samisen. Particularly liked their rendition of ‘Pearls A Singer’ …. a good band but little known.

Alan Esdaile…..How did you come up with the name ‘Farmers Lung’?

David Kent….It was my idea. I’d seen a documentary about this particular occupational disease and thought it would be a good band name. Astonishingly, the rest of the band agreed to it. I’ve made a bit of a speciality of being in stupidly-named bands that no-one remembers. Anyone remember The Twice Amorous Maniac Douglas Baders? Thought not. When that picture of the band was taken, we were called Westland Bone Circus and had previously been Johnny Sprogg & The French Letters. Just to prove that I still have no talent for picking good band names, I am thinking of releasing some songs using the nom de plume “One Magnificent Eye Wobbles”. No wonder I still have a day job. Incidently, If you’d heard Steve and me taking lead vocals after Graham left, you’d have thought we may have been suffering from Farmers Lung. I’d forgotten to mention The Sprouting Love Bumps.

Sarah Harvey… Great find with the Caves ad.

Mick O’Dowd…. Is this the same Dave Kent who worked for John Humphries at one time?

Karen Sweatman was Blackman… That’s him Mick, although I never knew him with hair! 🙂

Mick O’Dowd… No Karen he was nearly as sparse as I am now.

Dicky Walsh… Wow! This brings back memories!  I did play some guitar, but mostly drums. Dave came up with some great names, didn’t he?! I am also now follically challenged! Dicky Walsh

Sarah Harvey… I remember you playing some guitar Dicky. Also remember your dad who was my manager for 13 years at Senlac Metal Casements in Battle

Roy Penfold… What about ‘Cunning Stunts’? I remember sitting in with them for a gig or two and seeing them in the Crypt in the early 80s.

Wendy Weaver… Flat Battery and the Jump Leads. Early 80s local lads.

Richard Walsh… Hi Sarah, I am trying to track down pictures of Roddy playing with the Dave Holt Swingtet. They played a lot locally, especially the Black Horse Telham. Can you point me towards anyone? Grateful thanks. Dicky

Mick O’Dowd… Model Crundelweed & The Knock-Kneed Windmills was toted for Deep Purple (Hastings) but iy wouldn;t fit on Ian McGilvray bass drum.

Ore Group Festival – Ore Centre 25th & 26th June 1976

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Poster supplied by Roger Carey.  Cutting supplied by Sarah Harvey.

Felix playlist supplied by Roger Carey

Jo Turner… I was there both nights.

Sarah Harvey… I organised all of the Ore Festivals in the 1970s. I wonder if they would be as popular today??

Jo Turner… I loved it Sarah. Thank you for the memories you helped create

Samisen – Treble Eight Four by Sarah Harvey

Sarah Harvey… Another trip down memory lane to my very first band. This time a song that started off as an instrumental and ended up (somehow) with vocals. It was recorded live in 1976 and is dedicated to the late great Graham Barratt who somehow managed to create a lyric and vocal melody to this.

Alan Wood… Good track ,good comments

Robert Searle…  I liked that Sarah

Pete Fisher… excellent track Sarah! Love the drumming (of course), and some great guitars and bass happening. The echoey vocals are really spooky – reminded me a bit of those late 80s Brit bands like Inspiral Carpets…

Sarah Harvey… Thank you Pete. It is another of those reel-to-reel tape conversions. I still have no idea how Graham managed to create lyrics around a Ministry Of Defence Company ID number. It does show however that nearly every song has a story attached to it.

 

More from Samisen 1976

Sarah Harvey… I have received some lovely comments about the recording I made with my first band Samisen, which is really nice….so here is another one from my musical past and another from the 1970s….I am often quite shy about posting these things up because I ain’t one for making a song and dance about things…. but here goes anyway! I definitely wrote the main riff for this one!! Its another prog rock offering, this time an instrumental and a prog thrashy one called ‘Commercial Cash-In’. Another one that I may re-work one day and perhaps perform…. if I can find anyone who wants a go at it. Its SAMISEN again. I think this one was recorded at Ore Centre in 1976!! ‘I have no idea why I called it ‘Commercial Cash-In’. Its prog rock….. what do you expect…. anything goes
– Sarah Harvey (Lead Guitar – Happy Maureens)
– Ralphy (Rhythm Guitar and backing vocals)
– Bernie Smirnoff (Drums – Kingbathmat)
– Conan Howard (Bass Guitar)
Just remember, its 1976…. reel-to-reel tape…. I am still proud of it and love the people I have been in down the years, and proud of the band I currently play with, The Happy Maureens.

Pete Fisher… sounds great Sarah! The wonders of reel to reel tape! Sounds similar to the recordings I did on reel to reel back in ’72-’74 – that wonderful rehearsal room reverb, and of course the same noisy drummer…some great guitar happening here too though…a real feast of good riffs!

Sarah Harvey… Thanks Pete. Coincidentally I thought about you and Pueblo playing in the 70s. My current band this weekend have been asked to play at Bexhill Community centre at a function in October and my thoughts went back to you Roger Carey and Bernie playing there at their Youth Club. Really happy memories and some great tunes you played along with some great musicianship, not always appreciated by the youthful attendees that night…… but I loved it

Pete Fisher… You’re welcome Sarah! Nice that you have such good memories of us back then…we were a very raw outfit, probably under-rehearsed and still lacking confidence in front of audiences – lot of strong competition around back then…I actually still have a “little red book” full of lyrics and chord charts, but also a kind of gig diary for Mae West and Pueblo. When I get a few spare minutes I’ll scan it and post it here!

Conan Howard… Conan here, I seem to remember this tune went on for at least 20 minutes , with slow bits and fast bits.. what a journey that number was at the time. probably a good idea to wind it up short of the ejaculation point

Samisen Return to Rock A Nore – The lost recordings 1976

Sarah Harvey… Recorded at THE BOX in Silverhill. Samisen ‘Rock-A-Nore’ in 1976!! The background to this song was actually based on Conan Howard’s (Bass Guitar) story about where he lost his virginity rather than any sentimental connection with the iconic Hastings area. I am a prog rocker at heart and I write songs and have done since the 1970s…..and here is the proof!! In the 1970s I wrote many prog rock songs, and most of them were in the epic prog-rock style. In those days that’s what you did as a band. One day I will rework them and perhaps perform them…. who knows. This video depicts the various line-ups of my very first band SAMISEN. The song was recorded at THE BOX in Silverhill in 1976!! ‘Rock-A-Nore’ is a prog rock piece written by Sarah Harvey and Conan Howard based on Conan’s story about where he lost his virginity rather than any sentimental connection with the iconic Hastings location.
– Graham Barrett (Vocals – RIP)
– Sarah Harvey (Lead Guitar – Happy Maureens)
– Ralphy (Rhythm Guitar and backing vocals)
– Bernie Smirnoff (Drums – Kingbathmat)
– Conan Howard (Bass Guitar)
I am proud of the songs I have written down the years

Jan Warren… Me too Sarah, I am Prog and Psychedelic Rock too, I remember meeting you at the SMART meet in Hastings, hope to meet you again soon!

Conan Howard… sorry SARAH, you only helped to write this, as it was my original idea.. CONAN HOWARD , as proved by all the bass work.. now go to the back of the class and sit on the naughty step you bad girl … love Conan x

Sarah Harvey… Conan has become such a grumpy old wotsit in his old age 😂 I did say we co-wrote it and ok, if you want the rights to the original idea I won’t get my lawyer on to you this time. 😜 xxx

Peter Thomson… Always enjoyed hearing (and watching) you lot knock this one out.

Conan Howard… must admit though Graham Barrett did come up with all the words,, good old Graham ,bless you where ever you are now. WHAT a Hoot  SARAH ,good stuff indeed . all meant in good fun.. I have the right to be grumpy at 70 years old , what else is there? love Conan xx