From the Portsmouth NEWS 2nd September 2016
Pop-picking Pete is preparing to play his last-ever request Pete Cross is retiring from DJing Pete Cross is retiring from DJing LEGENDARY DJ Pete Cross is hanging up his microphone after 49 years on the turntables. He’s decided to call it a day as he nears his 70th birthday, with around 7,000 shows under his belt in a career that saw him mix with scores of the most famous names in music.
DJ Pete Cross DJ Pete Cross After working as a teenager in WH Smith in Portsmouth, Pete began his DJ career in earnest in 1967 at the celebrated Tricorn Club in Portsmouth city centre . ‘They’d been running cabaret acts but weren’t getting the crowds,’ said Pete. ‘I started playing middle-of-the-road songs to 20 people in between acts. ‘Then they decided to start a disco, and the audiences shot up. ‘Pretty soon we were locking the doors at 7.30pm with 500 inside. We did all sorts of stupid things, showing our immaturity really, but people just loved it.’ They decided to start a disco - and the audiences shot up Pete Cross Pete made regular appearances at Nero’s and the Mecca ballroom, before moving back to the Tricorn in 1975 and working alongside some of the biggest names of the day who appeared there including Slade, Mud, Sweet, Status Quo, and T Rex. Pete’s DJ years have seen him appear at venues far and wide, from the famous Lakeside Club in Camberley to The Royal Yacht Britannia. ‘I used to play records alone on the deck while they dined below at whatever ball it was,’ said Pete. ‘People on passing ferries would take pictures and I’d wave – I’m sure many of them thought I was a royal!’ Pete Cross at the Tricorn Club Pete Cross at the Tricorn Club Pete has also enjoyed a long radio career.
He appeared for five years on BBC Radio Solent, presenting the Cabaretland feature each week plus Saturday’s Juke Box Jury shows and fronting his own live programmes from the Southsea Show. Nowadays Pete, who runs an entertainments agency from his Waterlooville home, can be heard on the Havant-based community station Angel Radio (101.1FM) at 8pm on Mondays and on his Sixties show at 9am on Saturdays. As he prepares for his last show, at a wedding reception in Fareham on Saturday, he says: ‘I’ve had a great time.’ Tony Blackburn who was guesting at the Tricorn Club along with Pete Cross. Tony Blackburn who was guesting at the Tricorn Club along with Pete Cross.
PETE’S ALL-TIME FAVOURITES
FAVOURITE DJ.... ‘It has to be Tony Blackburn, one of the many stars I was lucky enough to work with. I just loved his stupid jokes.’
FAVOURITE GROUP... ‘Without a doubt it was Mud. Lovely fellas. I remember them playing the Mecca and telling me to hang around so that we could all have a drink afterwards.'
FAVOURITE SHOW... ‘I was appearing alongside a comedy group called Hobson’s Choice but the lead singer was taken ill and I was asked to fill in - singing like Tommy Cooper and having absolutely hilarious time.’
FAVOURITE SONG... Young Hearts Run Free (Candi Staton)
Pete Cross at Angel Radio, was resident at the Tricorn Club from the mid 1960's until the late 1970's
Pete Cross with Noel Edmunds left, and Tony Blackburn right
Pete tried his hand at singing in the early 1980s! with him in the KM band, Jim Berry, Arnold Gutbucket, Humphrey Camelfoot, Dave Houghton, and in the chorus,
This record information kindly made available by Phil Tilbury.
Pete Mitchell, Steve Campion, Ian Foster, Dave Martin, Ricky Martin and Sharon Flannery, and engineered by Dave Hardcastle at Toucan Studios on Hayling Island.
Pete in action