photos by Sarah Harvey
Our 40th meet and among the newbies this time were Mandie B (Amanda Brooks), Len Benton and Alan King. Mandie was talking to Len about her new blues band ‘Undercover Agents’ and the history of Soul X Press. Barry French found an early Christmas Soul Party poster, in memory of Andy Ashmore, at the Yelton Hotel in 1996 . He was showing Cliff Wootton his early sheet music of Rock Around The Clock by Bill Haley, Hot Love T Rex, Cumberland Gap Lonnie Donegan and Winchester Cathedral by The New Vaudeville Band. Len had with him the very first Soul X Press photos with Russell Field on saxophone. Photos to be posted in the next few days. Mick O’Dowd arrived with the TV series of The Grimleys on DVD which featured Alvin Stardust and Noddy Holder. Pete Prescott had books of Soul Sacrifice The Santana Story, Home Before Daylight My Life on the Road with Grateful Dead and Bermondsey Boy Tommy Steele. Alan King was talking about the success of The Prisonaires gigs and John Petri and Phil Gill were discussing how they started in bands and how annoyed they are by getting rid of their early guitars. Tim McDonald was talking about his mint copies of The Beatles LP’s, Sarah Harvey was talking about the excellent show of Steeleye Span in Hastings and review coming shortly. Wendy & Graham Weaver arrived with their lovely dog, who was happy to be pampered during the whole meeting. Pete Millington was reminiscing with Len, Laurie Cooksey was catching up with Clive Richardson, Nigel Ford was remembering the dances at Battle and Andre Martin and Sarah Ferguson were remembering gigs and how things have changed. While Carole and Ann were talking about Christmas shopping! Sorry for anyone I missed. This is just a small bit of what I remember, anyone who wishes to add anything interesting you were talking about, then please feel free to do so.
Pete Prescott… I saw Len there but didn’t see Mandy. Specsavers here I come!
Pete Millington… I didn’t get the chance to say Hi as you were deep in conversation from the moment you arrived to the time I left. Ah, I know! you were checking out the song words to increase your chances of getting chocks!
Jan Warren… I can see a photo of Fusion Orchestra on SMART mag, issue 40. December 2017!! – is this a magazine? and where can I get this Issue from?? – I’ve always been a true fan of Fusion Orchestra and the amazing Jill Saward, who I was lucky to meet and chat with in September of this year at a Shakatak gig in Eastbourne, I took along all my Fusion Orchestra souvenirs, of which she was absolutely thrilled to see!! so could you please tell me if I could get the issue of this magazine? thank you!! – also, I would have loved to have seen Mandie B. again, we were quite good friends years ago, but have lost touch, she was great fun!! ………… yeah, yeah, yeah, I know I really need to get to your meetings and I’m sorry I haven’t made it yet, I know I would love it and yes, I have some interesting stuff to share, its just that I’ve been very reclusive for many years and find it difficult to leave my “comfort zone”, but please bear with me, I will get to you one day, I must!! – Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all at this wonderful SMART group, and Thank You!!
Mick O’Dowd… No Jan. It’s a thing that’s given out at each Meet and contains info on what went on at the previous Meet and other snippets. Nothing in depth. I’m sure if you contact Alan via SMART he could send you one. You’ll always welcome to attend and then you’d get one straight of the press! A great Meet Alan. One of the best. Interestings chats with Len, Clive Richardson & Pete Millington & Sarah Harvey.
Jim Breeds… Sorry we didn’t make it. We were up to our necks in removal boxes that needed unpacking and rooms sorted ready for my daughter’s arrival for the weekend. Hope to be there next time.
Andy Qunta… Great photos!
Steve Cooke… The Grimleys. Was great seeing Noddy acting. Bring back Miss Titley. (before she was famous!)
Amanda Brooks… Great meeting on Fri. Thank you ! Xx