Early days

A week or so ago I went for an early drink at “Ain’t nothing but…” in Kingly Street and ended up staying the whole evening. I met a Geordie there, Gordon Lees, and we talked about other Geordie acquaintances such as Paul Lamb, Gordon Smith and Johnny Whitehill.  He put me in touch with Johnny, who is now singing as well as playing guitar and is keeping busy. There was pretty good band playing there and a couple of them started the evening off early with a harp and guitar duo, which is why I stayed initially. I had a brief word with the harp player. Phil Hughes. The band is known as “11 foot sack” I believe and is well worth a listen.

I had a drink at Bernie Pallo’s place when I visited him the other day. He is awaiting the outcome of his latest cancer treatment but he is doing reasonably well and is getting out each day. I also had a drink with Chris Youlden a couple of days ago in Victoria. Among other things we talked about were the early days of Savoy Brown and Harry and Kim Simmonds. Kim is also still going strong.Another muso I recently had a drink with was Dino Coccia, who is playing at the Bull’s Head in Barnes tonight. I will probably be there too.

Mel Wright emailed me about his obituary piece on Ron Skinner which was published in the Guardian. John Wilson, and old friend and one time roadie phoned me about the obit too, saying that he hadn’t realised just how successful Ron’s academic career had been. I too was completely unaware of this until the funeral. Mel also informs me that whilst clearing out Ron’s flat he came across a 7inch acetate of the band with Ron and Rod Price in it. Perhaps we’ll be able to include it on another Cd in future.  It’s a recording of the  Big City Blues Band in 1967. The two tracks are

“Death Valley Blues” and “That’s The Truth.”

I’ve got a picture, somewhere, of John Wilson, Rod Price, Kim Simmonds and myself at the old Nag’s Head in Battersea where both  bands played. I’ll try and get it up on the site. I also have a copy of a Marquee poster for 2nd December 1967 where we were supporting Savoy Brown. I’m going to have to improve my computer knowledge to get it all together. I think the brain will hold out.

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