G to L
1980-81, Bass with Savage Amusement.
1988 not a lot really.
1987/89 Double Bass, Ten To Mental, Psychobilly group, which then got a new singer and eventually turned into
1989ish to 1995-6. The Elevators.
1993 to 1995 Spectre and Highway Five along with a band I can't recall the name of with Bob Watson and a lovely guy called Richard ????.
1997/98 to present, Lifestyle (mainly based from Gosport area)The Marauders
2008/9 to 2013 The Five Beats with Steve Gould
2013 to present, Blue Jean Bop.
2013- present, The Symbolics. Now still looking for that certain "thing" though. And many I can't recall the names of, varuious Jazz & Rockabilly bands.
2014, Mr Messy.
The "Blackout" personnel and instruments and vocals were:
Dave Gilson (G/T/V)
Kev Gilson (V/G/S/K)
Tony Gilson (BG/V)
John McLeod (K/V)
John Jenkins (D/V)
Bill Carlton (G/P)
The "Gold Dust" personnel for the first line-up was:
Tony Gilson (BG),
John McLeod (K), replaced by Spike Edney (K)
Dave Houghton (D).
Spike Edney replaced John McLeod
John stayed on as Stage Manager (Effects, Lighting, Sound Desk etc).
"Smiling Hard" photo
Top Row: Left to right - Dave Houghton/Kev Gilson/Spike Edney; and
Bottom Row: Left to right - Phil Jones/Tony Gilson.
Dave Houghton (D) replace by Phil Briggs (D), replaced by Larry Tolfrey (D)
Kev Gilson (V/G/S),
Spike Edney (G/K)
Phil Jones replaced by Andy Hamilton (V/S),
Tony Gilson (BG) replaced by Nick Hug (BG)
I know the careers of Spike Edney, Andy Hamilton, Dave Houghton, Kev Gilson and Larry Tolfrey all progressed to successful bands, including Queen, Joe Jackson, Boomtown Rats, DuranDuran, ABC, Joan Armatrading, George Benson, Brian May Band, David Essex and more. I've been in touch with Spike and he has plenty of Smiling Hard stuff, including photos, but he is in California until May, but when he gets back to London he will dig out some stuff. I'll go up to see him and try to confirm some of the later career facts. He has a good memory so I may be able to get some chronology as well.
I've attached a MS Word document with photos and personnel of the Black Cats, Blackout progression. As you know, I am expecting more information about the Blackout - Gold Dust - Smiling Hard progression. As regards the career progressions, until I get agreement from the various people, I wouldn't mention anything other than the following:
Spike Edney later was Queen’s musical director and keyboardist for over two decades. He also played with George Benson, Boomtown Rats and the SAS Band (http://www. sasband. com). The SAS Band draws from the following artists: Chris Thomson, Fish, Leo Sayer, Paul Young, Tony Hadley, Jamie Moses, Madeline Bell, Graham Gouldman, Tom Robinson and many others.
Andy Hamilton later with Duran Duran, George Michael and others.
Kev Gilson later with Dexys Midnight Runners and others.
The tale of Gilbey Twiss. Mick Legg and Dave Allen from Rosemary had joined Whiskey River's blues players Bernie Fox and Denny Barnes plus saxophonist Mick Tuck from Wanted. We were managed by Mick Dillon and Alan Roblin and after flirting with the name the Teen Queens became Gilbey Twiss (why? no idea).
Our first gig was a Press Charity event at the Locarno in Arundel Street on Tuesday 6 October 1970 with other Pompey bands Aubrey Small and Egypt plus Dozy Beaky Mick & Tich. After our spot we packed up and drove to the Pier, for a student gig following Jellybread, Bram Stoker and the Edgar Broughton Band as last act of the night. For the two gigs combined we earned £15!
We used to rehearse upstairs at the notorious Appletree pub on the Hard and played a couple of gigs there in exchange. Other gigs came at the Teachers' College (Milton), the Oasis, the Pomme D'Or and after the Tricorn gigs (below) we played Oaklands Convent with (In Grandma's) Absence on Friday 12 February. Shortly after, Denny Barnes left to join Sam Apple Pie, a London recording blues band and after 11 gigs in four months GT was no more. I think Denny is now in New Zealand, Mick Legg is on IOW and Bernie still gigs locally with all kinds of people including Steve Roux. Mick Tuck died some years ago. Briefly we also had a 'girl' singer - Sue Humphries.
We earned an average of £11 per gig which was crazy - I was also working as a council labourer on Southsea seafront and I turned my back on music (briefly) to train as a teacher. I was soon back playing (mainly acoustic blues) but never again nursed any ambitions of a professional career and because of the style I was playing, spent more time around the folk scene - hence my general ignorance of 70s rock/disco etc. I didn't play with bass guitarists/drummers (etc) for another ten years (in Steel Mill) but I did play with violinists, accordionists, banjos, dobros, washboards etc.
From Dave Allen
In answer to those who ask, when did you start playing etc? I've tried to give some answers below. These were exciting times musically, and very special to those of us who had the good fortune to take part. My first group a trio, had Mike Orton washboard, Dave Barber box Bass, myself on Guitar we were booked to play at the Southampton Guildhall supporting Mitchell Torak who had a top 20 hit "When Mexico Gave up the rhumba to do the Rock n Roll" followed by "Down in the Carribean ".
I had hired a PA amp and speaker to play my guitar through. I fitted the pickup to the guitar neck while travelling in the car to Southampton. The lead was only 5 ft long so I couldn't stray far. Toraks is now a leading light in the LA music scene and he's still gigging.
Terry Wiseman, Mike (Flash) Orton and myself met at Copnor Road Secondary modern school where we were all in the school orchestra.
My first real group consisted of Barry Baron who I met in Bennetts music shop in New Road, when I returned the PA amp, and myself on guitars, Dave Barber box bass and Mike Orton on washboard. We played for an ox roast at Southsea Castle, Flash played so hard his fingers bled. We sang through the Tannoy mic using army metal speakers. it was the only PA they had. Over 200 were crammed into the WW2 army hut.
Terry agreed to join us and Flash bought a Double bass on HP. As he had played violin for four years, the bass came naturally to him. He was also a great showman and did all the tricks he'd seen Bill Haleys bassist perform. Barrys Dad bought a Selmer guitar amp in Bennetts New Road which Barry and I both played through.
I was apprenticed to the Chef at Kimballs Osborne road at the time, and Terry Wiseman used to appear at the end of the kitchen on Saturday mornings and take lessons from Roy Richards bands drummer on reading drum parts, tapping it out on a wooden bench.
We not only played at all the venues in the area, we also opened our own Monday night rock club in the RAF hall in Cosham where we also provided refreshments in the shape of Coco Cola. A large lorry would deliver large quantities to my parents house in Algiers Road and collect the empties, my Mother had to endure crates piled up in the hall and front room all week.
We had regular spots at the LDB on saturday mornings Sonnies Club in Addlestone, the Two Eyes, Greek street, and the Mapleton Hotel Leicester Square, Rickys Club Fratton and the Pom Do'r Southsea. The band played at every venue in Portsmouth Including the Empress Ballroom at the top of Stubbington avenue where there was a supermarket but now is closed down. We won the Southern television award for 1957/58, Pic of me and Trophy. About this time we did a talent show at the Kings theatre, those on the bill were Michael Holiday, the King brothers, etc. We won and appeared on the Carroll Levis discoveries show(fore runner to the Hughie Green Opportunity knocks show) on ATV Christmas 1957. We appeared on it again in February 1958. We won another show on Bognor pier for which the prize was a series of Sunday night shows on the pier. We also had a regular gig at the Beach Club Hayling, plus of course the Saturday mornings at the LDB Landport. There were other venues which have since disappeared, the dance hall in the Odeon Cosham, Tinas night Club on western parade and another night club in Southsea Claradon road? The Court school of Dancing, who wanted to try live music, asked us to play which resulted in a regular Sunday night spot. They even took us by coach to play at another Court school in Leicestershire.
We played the the Commodore theatre I. O. W where we opened the show, others on the bill were
Craig Douglas, the Most Brothers (Micky Most went on to become a Millionaire record producer he borrowed a plectrum from me I never got it back) Ronnie Carroll, Terry Dene, Chas Mcdevitt
and Nancy Whiskey. (it was Tommy Steeles house warming that night and Micky Most asked us along) we didn't take up the invite. Our last gig was in the Savoy Ballroom on Monday March 17th1958.
I was called up and I reported to the RAF on March 20th 1958. After training I was posted to RAF Alness in in the Scottish Highlands.
In early September 1958 I managed to get a posting to RAF Colerne in Wiltshire which enabled me to get home every weekend. I formed the Combo in mid September.
This consisted of myself, two 16 year old guys from the Southern Grammar school, Steve Stevenson guitar, and Alan Songhurst on drums. Tony Seale played bass. (studio pic) Our first Gig at Caesers Club North end.
We regained the Saturday mornings gig at the LDB. Tony and Gill Hutchins came to see us there. Tony Seale left to get married and a school boy named Mike Beacon joined us on bass.
We did a show at the Troxy with The Mudlarks where we also won the Daily Mirror talent show
The prize which never materialised, was an ITV Saturday night TV show.
It was about this time we had regular resident nights at the Beach Club Hayling Island. Various clubs in Portsmouth, Civil Service Copnor Road, Dockyard club, British legions etc. This continued for a few months when we were invited to become resident band at the Top Hat Littlehampton. (Pic) This was where I met my wife Gill who was singing and playing guitar with the Crestas.
The band started to break up, Alan Songhurst (Satch) left to do his A levels and was replaced by
Pete St Clair.
Steve also packed up a few months later to continue his studies. Pete, Mike Beacon and I then formed a trio backing a girl singer whose name escapes me "Patsy ? The trio lasted until April 1962 when I secured a job as a personal Chef to an American millionaire. While In Paris I saw Digger Hart playing bass for Michael Halliday, on one of the first film Juke Boxes.
This ended my musical career until 1969 when I became a catering manager in Amesbury.
One evening a trio comprising, Hammond organ, drums, and a guitar vocalist, were playing and suddenly a fight broke out between the organist and guitarist. The guitarist dropped his guitar, told the organist to "get stuffed" and walked out, leaving behind a dented but otherwise playable guitar. l approached the "duo" and told them to continue to play as the audience were complaining, the organist who was also the singers father said " I can't play without a front man"( he also couldn't play without large quantities of beer. )
I picked up the cracked guitar, tuned it and said "do you know Lazy River?" back in the business again.
I was approached by a well known Salisbury Dance Band "The Debonaires" to play guitar and sing.
It was very successful, we played opposite the Victor Sylvester Orchestra at the West of England Ballroom Championship. We also secured regular gigs at various public schools.
Among the audiences at other gigs we were watched by members of some of the best 70s bands, including Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Titch and The Troggs.
I was transferred to Preston in 1976 and we stayed a year before settling down in Alton.
I received an urgent call in early 1977 by the Premiers, a well known band in Salisbury asking if I
could take over the Band as the lead singer had electrocuted himself when the band were rehearsing. The PA amp earth touched the live wire, the mic stand was live and he died instantly when he touched it. Back in it again.
My son David Joined the band playing bass when he was just 13, the band which now numbered 5 and we became the Debonaires again.
He still plays the odd gig with me, but usually, these days, I just do solo gigs, and are either for the diminishing club circuit, or private parties etc. We have bookings till New Years Eve 2012 when I celebrate my 75th, I've said I'll retire then, but it depends, I don't use agents, but if someone asks me to play then,... ? regards, Mick Glover.
I was in Kansas Kountry from Dec 1971-Jan 75. We played our first gig together at Netley Central Club in Dec ‘71. The line up was Trevor Fry, Charlie and Alan Dawson, Jonathan Kirton guitars, Monty Hibberd drums, and Mike Hampton vocals. We played several places during my time with them including The Joiners Arms, Acorn Cub, Fair Oak, The Ponderosa, The Swallow and The High Post Hotel, Amesbury amongst others.There were a few line up changes.
Others joined and left including Mandy Field, John Lines, Richard Croft, Bob Bennett. Other people who played with us were Kevin O’Rourke and a drummer called Alan, sorry can’t remember his surname.
After several differences of opinion, I left in Jan ‘75. I did do one more gig with them in 1976 at a barn dance near Droxford. After that I finished singing on stage. I still do karaoke now and then.
Before Heaven by John Gordon
Barry Paul and I, both from Chichester, first played together in The Machine, a soul and pop band. I had been playing rhythm and then lead in various bands, before being asked to join The Machine on bass in 1967 (I think). The band split in 1968, and Barry joined Coconut Mushroom. I think The Machine used to get some work through MMF - we used to go and see Blackout, Mushroom and other Portsmouth bands - so I think that's how Barry got the approach. When Mushroom's bass player broke his leg, I stood in for a while.
Soon after that, Barry left Mushroom and we started Paper, recruiting Kenny Durow, who had played with Steamhammer, on drums. We worked through MMF and were managed by Ann Luckett. We played a mixture of the standard three-piece stuff - 'Crossroads', 'Born To Be Wild' - and some off the wall re-arrangements, like Leonard Cohen's 'Suzanne'. In 1969, we were the first MMF band to do the cruise to the USA and back - a story in itself - but, on our return, it was all a bit of an anti-climax.
It was either in 1969 or early 1970 that the agency suggested that we add a singer - Terry Scott. We had seen him with a Southamton band, the name of which I can't remember, and had been impressed. He joined, and we got on well, but it was only a short time afterwards that we were approached to join a re-jigged Heaven.
You probably remember what it was like then. There were loads of bands in Commer vans, navigating the south coast clubs, youth clubs, schools and bowling alleys, all playing the same material and very few having any originality. That's what made the first Heaven stand out; they wrote their own songs and people liked them. Looking back, it's easy to see that a local agency and management and gigs in youth clubs were not a fast track to stardom, but we were all not long out of school and some had day jobs. To be gigging at all seemed a privilege, and, at that age, it took a while on the circuit before you started to wonder if it was all ever going to go anywhere. At first, Barry and I talked about our ambitions, but by the time the Heaven opportunity arrived, we weren't talking about the future much, and it was probably on the cards that one of us - probably Barry - would soon get a another gig through the Melody Maker 'Musicians Wanted' adverts.
You may know more about it, but I have some vague recollection that Heaven had had some dialogue with Rikki Farr, but that he wouldn't get involved while Ricky Martin and MMF were managing. Certainly, despite the two of them signing an agreement, it didn't take long for Rikki to get rid of Ricky - as Ricky predicted. I suppose Ricky Martin knew that he couldn't stop us talking to or signing with Rikki, but he took it all with good grace - he was a nice guy.
I heard that Dave Margereson left CBS under a cloud and signed quickly to A&M.
Trouble In Heaven
This is the story of the second incarnation of the band Heaven, or ‘Heaven 2’. I have to make some things clear; all this is from my perspective, and others might view events differently, or even have a different recollection – it was forty-odd years ago; this is not an exercise in blame, at least, not as far as others are concerned – I’m aware that I could have been less cowardly at times; a lot of the opinions I voice here, I kept to myself at the time, and that was probably because I was thinking of my position; there were no arguments or recriminations, and people behaved with dignity, even when the way they had been treated might have justified a bit of shouting; finally, it’s a bit like having car trouble – you focus on the faulty parts and not the parts that work fine. There were a lot of good times, and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.
Along with Barry Paul, Terry Scott and Ken Durow, I was in a band called Paper, working through Ann Luckett at M.M.F. agency, where Ricky Martin managed Heaven. Barry and I lived in Chichester, Terry lived in Southampton, and Kenny lived in Havant. We were like thousands of other little bands; gigging around Hampshire and Sussex and hoping to get the chance to play ‘Born To Be Wild’ live on Radio 1 Club. Heaven were the top dogs, and with good reason. They wrote their own songs, played them well, and had their sound sorted, always balanced and listenable, and they were nice guys – self effacing and, it appeared, united in their musical goals. On top of that, they were recording an album.
So it came as a bit of a surprise when the agency told us that Ray King, Dave Gautrey and Nobby Clarke were going to split from the band, and were interested in forming a new Heaven with Barry, Terry and me. They felt they were under utilised in the current set up, and wanted to stretch out more, and they had the support of Ricky Martin. I wondered why the management were going with Ray, Dave and Nobby, and why the name ‘Heaven’ was migrating with them rather than staying with the songwriters – Brian and Andy, but the trend then was to prioritise virtuoso musicianship over song writing, despite the charts being filled with great pop songs.
We had a meeting in a pub in Chichester, and the deal was done, with little thought for those who would lose out; Kenny, Paper’s drummer; Annie, Paper’s manager; Barry Edney, Paper’s roadie (none of us could drive) and the other members of Heaven. We got together for a play in the cellar below Barry Paul’s parents’ shoe repair shop, and we were off.
We had a band, but we didn’t have any songs. Ray introduced us to Frank Zappa’s ‘Hot Rats’, and we jammed on ‘Willie The Pimp’, which became a standard for us, and we knocked some riffs and lyrics into songs, but song writing was the weak spot. Our first gig was at a charity show in Portsmouth, something to do with the Lord Mayor. I can only remember that we were under rehearsed, that the material felt thin, and that I was overplaying like mad to try and compensate – it doesn’t work now, and it didn’t then. I came away worried about where new songs would come from, but it was soon resolved. I got to Barry’s cellar early, for a rehearsal, and he told me that he didn’t like the band and that he was quitting.
It wasn’t a long discussion. I could see his point – I had similar misgivings. But he was the local hero guitarist, and a damn fine one, and there was no doubt that he would progress in the business, whatever the route. I didn’t have that confidence in my own abilities, so I was sticking with whatever prospects Heaven might offer. I wanted to get out of Chichester. I wanted to go to London and play in a band.
It’s hard now to convey what ‘London’ meant in the music world then. London had venues and record companies and studios and publishers and big-time agents. London was where A & R people could see you and sign you up – they weren’t going to travel to Southsea or Dorchester. London was the hub of the music business, in a way that is difficult to comprehend in the era of internet, mobile phones, social media, Youtube and, believe it or not, better road links.
Terry got in touch with Eddie Harnett, who had worked with the Mojos and other Southampton bands, and he joined the same day that Barry left, bringing with him the song writing that the band had so far lacked.
Then it was out on the road, gigging round the country in our truck, a diesel with separate cab and body. We took it in turns - except for Dave Gautrey, who drove – riding either in the relative comfort of the cab, or in the back with the gear. Admittedly, the gear was behind a bulkhead, and we had rows of aircraft seats, but the only windows were forward facing and so high up that the only way you could see out was by balancing on one leg on the worse than useless heater and craning your neck to get a view of where you were going. We froze in winter and roasted in summer. The engine was governed to 45 mph and a gig in Penzance meant leaving Portsmouth before daybreak and getting to the venue with just time to set up.
Terry Scott would always be described as ‘gravel voiced’, and I marvel that I can’t remember him having a sore throat, or worse, considering the abuse heaped on his larynx. He was a consummate ‘front man’; when he sang, you watched and listened.
Ray King was a self taught reeds player – all sorts of saxophones, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, flute – and his tenor solos had a unique quality that hinted at jazz, blues, folk and shades of the original Heaven.
Dave Gautrey played trumpet and flugelhorn, drove the truck and looked after the PA. He didn’t waste words but, as you can imagine with someone who habitually wore Scholl sandals and socks, he was his own man, and when did speak, we listened.
Eddie Harnett – trim, big moustache, always smiling – played guitar, sang a high harmony (and some lead) and wrote a fair few songs, always melodic, and usually demo-ed on his reel to reel tape recorder. He had been reunited with his father soon after joining the band, and moved into his dad’s house in Southampton. We were gigging at a London club when the police arrived to break the tragic news that Eddie’s dad had died in a tragic accident at work. Later, we spent many days and nights jamming, rehearsing and writing at what was now Eddie’s house.
(Malcolm) Nobby Glover was not your average band drummer. His kit had more of a jazz tuning, and his technique was jazz chops with rock power. He was quick on the uptake and musical, and I can still picture the way his eyes locked onto the ride cymbal as he played a neat swing groove.
After signing the record contract and before starting the album, Derek Somerville joined us, on tenor, to fill out the horn section. Derek was younger than the rest of us, and quite shy, for which he got mercilessly ragged. His arrival was significant; we had not started out as a Blood, Sweat and Tears / Chicago – type band. As mentioned, Zappa’s ‘Hot Rats’ was a big influence, and if we thought about it at all, we would probably have put ourselves in the same category as Jon Hiseman’s Coliseum, rather than the brass rock bands. Now, we had a horn section, and Rikki Farr’s influence was taking hold, of which, more later.
All of them were good natured, funny, upbeat, and good companions on the road. We experimented with instrumentation – at one time, I was playing flute, fiddle and bass, though not all at the same time - and, at that stage, the wind instruments sounded integral to the songs – rather like the original Heaven. Dave was expert at running the WEM PA, and we gradually got played in and comfortable with each other. But there was a problem. London calling was calling.
Ricky Martin and the agency were doing their best for us, but the country was filled to overflowing with bands trying to ‘make it’, and if we were going to ‘make it’ we would need a finger on the scales. Eventually, Ray suggested that we contact Rikki Farr and ask him to help us. We met him at his boutique – I think it was in the Tricorn – and he readily agreed to get involved, phoning Dave Margereson at CBS records as we sat there. A cynic might conclude that, since his boutique was about to go out of business, there was a certain attraction in taking on a band and procuring some record company funding, but, to be fair, he had the contacts and the chutzpah, and that’s why we approached him. Soon after, we took a ferry to the Isle of Wight, to the house where Rikki and the Foulkes were organising the 1970 festival, and there we signed with Rikki Farr. There’s a photo on the web, taken outside the house, and you might be forgiven for thinking that we were at a wake. Ricky Martin was with us, and, on the ferry back, he told us that it would only be a matter of time before he was out on his ear. We protested that we wouldn’t let that happen, but it did. Another friend overboard.
Rikki Farr put us on the festival, on the Sunday afternoon, in the midst of the cream of British bands – Tull, Ten Years After, The Moody Blues, Free – all match fit and at their peak from touring the USA. Hendrix was top of the bill. We had a police escort from the ferry, and, after playing, we stayed until halfway through Hendrix’s set, then dashed for the ferry. A week later, we were in Paris for a short residency at a club, then back to a record contract with CBS records. I seem to recall that they advanced £36,000. Rikki moved into a plush town house in Mayfair with two staff, and we moved into a very different town house in Putney, with dormitory like sleeping arrangements and two Scouse labourers living in the garage.
The record company advance was haemorrhaging cash; the band were on £25 a week each; rent was being paid on houses in Mayfair and Putney. We had new instruments and amplifiers – trading in our old ones, not necessarily a good thing – and then Rikki saw and heard a Kelsey and Morris PA. We got a complete custom built rig, and then, it seemed, modified, added to or changed it every few weeks, all at a cost. The old truck had to go, and we bought a brand new Mercedes hi-top van, complete with aircraft seats and 8-track. We weren’t gigging much – we had started recording – so there wasn’t much money coming in, but we didn’t care; we had no desire to look at the books. We would make a million-selling album and have more money than we could spend in a lifetime.
We recorded the album at CBS studios in New Bond Street. It was big and a bit lacking in atmosphere, and we were relative novices. Rikki was producing, but he didn’t have the ears or the musical knowhow to get the best from us, or suggest how as song might have a better structure, or recognise when something just wasn’t good enough. By this time, he had decided that we would be another Chicago (CTA), so the horns were augmented in the studio by trombone and another trumpet. Whereas, in both the original Heaven and, thus far, in Heaven 2, the wind instruments had been integral, they now became a superstructure, bolted on to the songs and a bit unwieldy, a bit top heavy. We all did our best – Nobby was outstanding – but our best needed to be better, and it could have been – with the right producer.
Rikki’s forte was overkill. More guitars, more horns, a string quartet, a double album with the mother of all gate covers, too many liner notes. He was likeable, charming, convincing, a big character, and he probably thought the band and the album were going to ‘make it’, but, leaving aside the quality of the music, there was no plan, no strategy. We didn’t release any singles, yet both Chicago and BST had got to the wider record buying public through singles. Consequently, we weren’t on the radio and, apart from one Disco 2 appearance, we weren’t seen on television. We didn’t get support spots on tours or major gigs, and we didn’t even play the sort of gigs that we had played when we were based down south. Not that we cared; it would all work out.
One day, soon after we had completed the album, Rikki dropped a bombshell. Ray, Dave and Derek (who joined before we started recording) would have to go. They didn’t have the rock n’ roll image and they didn’t sound like Chicago. Dave was going to stay on as sound engineer. I remember sitting in the dressing room at a gig, telling them that it was all Rikki’s doing, not mine, and that I had no choice but to go along with it. We’d asked Rikki to manage, and we got what we asked for. I had got to London, and I was going to stay there. Two more friends tossed overboard.
To replace Ray, Dave and Derek, Rikki recruited Norman Leppard on sax and flute, Martin Drover on trumpet, and John Bennett on trombone. They were all experienced and superb players, but they were from a different background. They didn’t live with us, or travel with us, or listen to the same music as us. They were great fun on the road, and they were guys we could learn from, but it now seemed like there was Terry, Eddie, Nobby and me, plus Dave (although he was starting to seem more a part of the management than the band, which was fair enough) and horn section who were there on a paid-to-play basis. I imagine they were getting more than £25 a week.
We had some great times in Germany, mostly Munich and Frankfurt in summer, once playing in the main square in Frankfurt in the late afternoon, with all the traffic and shoppers, and people hanging out of office windows. We had to start after the clock chimed for four o’clock and finish before it chimed for five. By this time, the band was getting slick, confident and professional.
With an album that was still-born, I started to wonder – where to next? Even I had begun to realise that we didn’t have what would now be called ‘a viable business model’. We weren’t writing new material, and, although it hadn’t been mentioned, we would have to get more songs recorded and released if we were to stay in the game. I got back to the house in Putney, after a weekend in Chichester, to find Terry in pensive mood. He thought Eddie was our problem; his guitar playing wasn’t up to scratch and his songs were too ‘poppy’. I agreed – the prospect of change, any change, felt like progress, even if it wasn’t – and so we sacked Eddie, who had written more songs than the rest of us. Another friend overboard.
We asked Barry Paul to rejoin, and he jumped at the chance. His opinion of the band and the music hadn’t changed, but he freely admitted that he would do anything to get away from Chichester. He wanted to get to London.
A few rehearsals, a bigger and better (and more expensive) PA, and we were off to Germany again. The band was pretty good – tight and professional, and sounding more like Rikki’s idea of a British Chicago. But we still weren’t writing, and it was now obvious to us that we had stalled. There wasn’t much chance of CBS throwing good money after bad, certainly not without some evidence that we could come up with new songs that they could sell, and Rikki’s ‘business model’ wasn’t self financing; it required a record company to finance his and our lifestyles.
Another trip to Germany, and this time with Nobby working out his notice period – we (me, Barry and Terry) had fired him before the tour, but asked him to do the German gigs, as we had failed to find a replacement. I can’t even remember what we were thinking when we wanted to sack him. Probably, he was the latest sacrifice that would persuade the Gods of Stardom to smile on us. By the end of the tour, in Hamburg, we were asking him to stay, but I don’t remember apologising to him.
I’m a bit hazy about how I left. I remember that I had been jamming with Gary Farr whilst staying at the Mayfair house. We would sit and just play his songs, and listen to the Grateful Dead’s ‘Working Man’s Dead’. I had started to get a liking and a feel for music where the bass would lay back and let the song tell the story, instead of grinding out gymnastic riffs. Gary wanted to form a band, and he offered me the bass chair. I worked out my notice with Heaven – in Germany – and that was that. Mick Feat, from Portsmouth and Coconut Mushroom with Barry Paul, took over. It didn’t last long after that, with the trumpet and trombone leaving, and the band trying to find a direction. That was the end of Heaven 2, and the start of a few more versions, all with Terry, and all with better songs than we had, but not brass rock, and a long way from the floating melodies of the original Heaven, or even ‘Willie The Pimp’ in a cellar in East Street, Chichester.
I gigged with Gary for a while – including the inevitable Germany – in a band with Denny Barnes, a great guitarist from Portsmouth, who went on to play with Sam Apple Pie and then emigrated to Australia. Reg Isadore was on drums, and he went on to play with Robin Trower among many others. Mike Deacon, from Vinegar Joe and The Greatest Show On Earth, and, afterwards, Suzi Quatro, Darts, Roy Wood, Ginger Baker and countless others, was on keys. It never really jelled, although I learned a lot and – hey – I was still in London. After that, I joined Supertramp for a year, and didn’t play one note in anger. They wanted to write and record a new album, and didn’t want me to learn the old material. Actually, I think the real reason was that Roger enjoyed playing bass more than guitar, so they gigged with him on bass and without guitar. We tried to record some of the songs that would later make ‘Crime Of The Century’ a massive hit, but it didn’t work. I wasn’t the only thing wrong with it, but I struggled with the songs, and the results were nothing like the hit versions. After a year, Roger told me that it wasn’t working, which was a polite way of firing me, and I headed back to Chichester for a year, to regroup and improve my bass playing. As a footnote, the following summer I was on holiday from my factory job, and I took a day trip to London to see some people. I saw Terry, and then I saw Dave Margereson at CBS records – the guy who had signed Heaven. After relating to him the story of my year with Supertramp, I finished off by saying that, although I couldn’t see a future for them with the current line up, if ever he had the chance to sign Rick and Roger, he should do so, because they were exceptional songwriters. He later moved to A & M, where he signed Supertramp (Rick and Roger plus musicians who played the songs the way the writers heard them) and later became their manager. It’s a funny old world.
I visited the house in Mayfair, to find that Rikki Farr was running a PA hire company, using the equipment paid for from Heaven’s record advance. I joined Heaven with a bass and an amplifier; I left with just a bass. Dave was still with him, and they eventually moved to the USA, where I believe they have been successful.
After a year working in a factory, I joined a band in – that’s right – London. I played with various bands and artists until 1980, when I quit playing professionally. I retired in 2009, and now I’m a ‘pro muso’ again, working regularly, with a bit of recording and some trips abroad.
The obvious question is; what lessons did I learn from Heaven 2? To be honest, I’m not sure. What would I do differently? I’d like to say that I wouldn’t dump friends to get what I wanted, but I’m not sure that it would be true – certainly not for the twenty-two year old me. I would probably say that musicians should get to know about business, but it wasn’t like that then, and we were only like all the other bands who thought that success was a low hanging fruit and who couldn’t see the essential differences between what they were doing and what the those who had ‘made it’ were doing.
What stands out for me is how nice all involved were - maybe too nice, but it’s hard to see that as a fault now. Even Rikki, although I have been critical, was a lot of fun and, after all, we went to him to get a leg up the greasy pole, and he delivered. We knew him by reputation, so it was up to us to look out for ourselves. He didn’t make us superstars, but he was only one of the factors in our failure.
I wrote this because my son had found some tracks from the album on the web, and, unusually for him, was not totally dismissive of them. I had a listen, and found that I could forgive the musical fumbling of the youthful me, and that in turn led me to an fresh and honest look at the whole episode. I can hear now a little of what some people heard then and maybe still hear now, and I’m glad if we made music that moved them.
From Ray King
Not quite as I remember it but mostly right. It’s interesting to see the whole episode from his perspective. Strange, but I was under the impression that John actually wanted to get rid of us (Derek, Dave and myself.) I know that, at my last gig with them I did make the comment that if we all stuck together none of this would be happening. I got the answer back from Eddie “well if I was crap I would expect to be fired as well”!
Oh well, we live and learn. I must confess as not being very proud of myself with the way the first Heaven was ended. In my defence however at the time it seemed to me that Brian was only interested in one thing. I remember that on one gig we just had enough money for fuel to get home (it was not cash on the night). Brian wanted some money to get himself a beer. Dave said we don’t have enough. In the end Brian made such a fuss that Dave scraped up enough for him to go down the pub. Myself I got nothing to eat! Then Brian told me that in future he would do all of the wind arrangements. My input was not needed anymore. Finally, at a gig with the Third Ear Band Brian, Ollie and Andy were really impressed that the Third Ear Band only played for 20 minutes. They made the comment that’s how we should be. I don’t know about you but I wanted to play more not less! I don’t think the Third Ear Band were asked back! I don’t remember where that gig was but I do know that we were asked back on many occasions.
Dave Allen with Gerry Houldsworth
Many thanks for bringing round the copy of your ” Pompey Pop Pix ” book. I will endeavour to read it from cover to cover as well as just looking at the pictures, very interesting to see Terry Flynn on Vibes in the Club Quintet, he later took over from Ron Bennett and I played for it once when I first came out of the army. Previous to that he had a very modern jazz outfit with Ricky Price ( mechanic at Wadhams ) and Sid Hayward ( Co-op roundsman ) on tenor playing the Miles Davis ” Birth of the Cool ” numbers, and I played for them whilst I was still in the Lower Fifths at the Grammar School, no pictures I’m afraid of those early days.
The Trevor Nabarro Quartet was all PGS , being Trevor on alto, Tony Day Piano, Lew Morey drums and me on double bass. From 52- 54 we played virtually every weekend at every church hall for every youth club for miles around before three of us had to go for army service. This band also had to augment with more semi-pro players for more formal occasions in real dance halls. The quartet at the 1956 festival at the Savoy did not have we three because all being in the same year at school were all away from 54-57 so missed all the action in the last days of dance music before “Rock Around the Clock in 1956?, Trevor being deferred at university.
This past week I have been searching through many thousands of old photographs ( I was the staff photographer at Metal Box for fifteen years ) and hopefully I will find some band pictures and again hopefully my wife will scan them in and I will send them in a next email.
1967 – THE BROTHERS BLUE
Chris Hughes (drums & or bass) – Roger Hughes (drums and or bass) – Geoff (guitar vocals) – Brian ?? (guitar)
My first band where I played drums or bass at the Pomme D’or, Southsea with my brother Roger.
1967 – AUNTY MAGGIES REMEDY - ROSEMARY GREEN - CINNAMON SET - SHRINE - DOG JAW
Chris Hughes (drums)- Adrian Brown (guitar) – Charlie Old (guitar) – Steve Poingdestre (bass) – Graham Maddison (vocals) - Chris Pearce (effects).
Steve left to get married and was replaced by Richard Geehan around ???? At one point Larry Tolfree came in and we practiced but never gigged as a double drummer band. We did home recordings and not many gigs. Inexperience and a lack of leadership were the barriers that we simply didn’t overcome. Charlie left to join a working band around 1973 and it simply folded though lack of interest.
1974? - Gosport roundhouse, Jammed with Jacky’s boyfriend Steve, a great guitarist who later died. (suicide?).
1974? – Portsmouth Rehearsed in a double drum band with a black chap who kept his spare sticks in his back pocket!
1974 - HAYLING BAND (Aubrey small?)
Chris Hughes (drums) – Steve Poingdestre (bass) - Andy Scarisbrick (guitar) - Brian Kemp (keyboards) – Brian May (saxophone)
This band never really took off although we rehearsed for a month or so in the summer of 1974, only pictures remain.
1975 - PINK GIN – RAGSTONE - SLEEPER
I replaced John Maleedy on drums, – Mick Knight (guitar) - Dave Saunders (bass) - Dave Graver (keyboards) - Mark Foggo (vocals) Dave Graver was the first to leave, Mark was the next, the many replacements were:-
John Rumble (vocals), Terry Holland (guitar), Ron Hughes (guitar),Chris Hughes(guitar!), Dave Javvins (drums), Mick Javvins (saxophone), Steve Cole & Jim Zimmerman (guitars), Ken Hughes (drums), only Dave Saunders remained throughout.
We were pretty good initially and there were recordings and mini tours but no big breaks. We played many gigs and were even compared with Joe Jackson/Mark Andrews band Edward bear. After continual leavings and replacements resulting in many different versions it eventually fell over. Sleeper was the last version consisting of Charlie Keenan vocals and guitar, Ron Hughes guitar and vocals, Dave Saunders Bass and vocals, Ken Hughes drums and vocals.
1976 - WILD AFFAIR
Chris Hughes (drums) – Charlie Keenan (guitar/vocals) – Mick Knight (guitar) – Mick? (bass)
Part time band that ran in parallel with Ragstone for a while with a regular gig at the “White Horse” in Rogate.
1977 - CLEAVER
Chris Hughes (drums) - Mick Green (bass) - Mark Foggo (vocals/guitar)
An attempt at going “big time” as a punk band that I jacked in as I didn’t get on with Mick the bassist.
1982 - EQUALISERS
Chris Hughes (drums) - Shaun Meagre (bass) – Colin Ray (guitar) – Steve Whitehead – (vocals)
Steve and Colin were very good song writers and worked well together making a good sound and we did a few fairly well received gigs but when the opportunity of a regular working band came up with RAC, I left.
1983 - RAC - TREBLE CHANCE
Chris Hughes (drums) replacing Dave Houghton! – Tony Gilson (bass) – Mark Andrews (guitar/vocals)
Changed to Treble Chance (Chancers) and eventually merged with Dave Gilson and Nick Hug to form DBH&THA.
1984 - DEAF BOY HUG AND THE HEARING AIDS
Chris Hughes (drums) – Tony Gilson (bass) – Dave Gilson (guitar) – Mark Andrews (guitar & vocals) – Nick Hug (Keyboards, Harmonica & main vocals) Depping by Robbie Richardson (saxophone), Alan Robertson (guitar and or bass) & John Wigan (bass). Tony left to join ?? and was replaced with Alan Robertson & or John Wigan . Tony rejoined at some point. Mark formed a splinter group with myself & Tony as XL5 around 1995. Nick and Dave reformed with Robbie, Ray Luckin, & John Wigan as “Something for the weekend”
1995 - XL5
Chris Hughes (drums) – Tony Gilson (bass) – Mark Andrews (guitar/vocals) – Pete Marsh (keyboards) – Rob Fowler (guitar)
Mark fell out with Rob and he left, Pete Marsh got married and left, the band did carry on as a trio for a while but Mark eventually left to join a band called “Signature”.
1997 - JUDDICA
Chris Hughes (drums) – Bret Hutchinson (guitar) – Paul Simpson (vocals) – Bret ?? (2nd guitar)
A few gigs but it didn’t last, especially when Nick asked myself and Tony Gilson to rejoin him in SFTW.
1998 - SOMETHING FOR THE WEEKEND
Me to replace Ray Luckin (drums) – Nick Hug (vocals/keyboards/harmonica) – Dave Gilson (guitar) – Tony Gilson to replace John Wigan (bass) – Robby Richardson (saxophone/keyboards) A very successful band that lasted and progressed until Nick sadly died in 2006.
2004 - HSBB (HUG & SULLIVAN BLUES BAND)
Chris Hughes (drums) – Nick Hug (vocals/keyboards/harmonica) – Tony Sullivan (bass) – Can’t remember guitarist
Couple of gigs to break away from SFTW as a more serious blues band, didn’t last.
2006 - ANGIE HAYNES BLUES BAND
Chris Hughes (drums) – Steve Browning (bass) – Steve Lawrence (guitar) – Angie Haynes (vocals)
Depping by Dave Rapheal (harmonica) – Matt ?? (harmonica) - Buster ?? (guitar)
Ran in parallel with “Hat trick” for a while until Steve B, had a disagreement with Steve L. He left and I played out the remaining gigs to eventually leave after a replacement was found. Occasional gigs to fill in with Tony Gilson on bass.
2006 - HAT TRICK
Chris Hughes (drums) – Ron Hughes (guitar/vocals) – Nigel Baker (bass) – Helene ??? (vocals)
Chris Hughes replaced Ken Hughes(no relation) when he decided to retire with back problems. Helene left after a year or so and the group still plays today as a trio.
2006 – CAHOOT
Chris Hughes (drums) - Martin Scott (guitar) and others. One off church gig in December 2006.
I'll keep it short and sweet. So I was born on 5th November 1948 and I picked up my first guitar when I was 14 and started practicing. I was fat and spotty so no one I knew, who played, was anywhere interested in me. With the exception of Adrian Newlyn who had a guitar and Terry Threadingham who wanted to play the drums. Terry went on to be an excellent drummer and played with 'Cherry Smash'.
Having lost weight, spots and grown my hair; when I was about 18 I teamed up with Colin Dowsett and Ed Barber. Colin was an excellent guitarist who gave it up to study Russian. We called ourselves 'The Riverside Blues Band' and did very few gigs.
We did play at the free concert given by local bands on Southsea Common.
Why Dave Allan wants to do local bands of the 60's I really don't have the foggiest idea. Most of the 60's I was practicing and didn't come into my own until the 70's.
Anyway while bumming around (musically speaking) you get to meet likeminded people and the word gets around about your playing abilities and in 1969 there was a knock at the front door and these 4 motley individuals said I'd been recommended because they were looking for a new Bassist. They were called 'Dear Rachel', and as they had a few gigs lined up I decided to join them.
The gigs meant we played for French students at a few halls around the area for £5 a gig.
They like us so much they booked us as support band for their end of term dance at the Guildhall; who was the main band. . . . . Status Quo.
We had found ourselves a practice room at the back of the Museum Gardens Pub, which is now The Contented Pig, so we increased our repertoire and our playing abilities and tightness as a band.
We decided we needed a new name and I came up with 'Truth' which was the new album by Jeff Beck featuring Rod Stewart on vocals blah. . blah. . It sounded fab and groovy at the time.
During our forays out into the big world of entertainment, we used to visit the 'Indigo Vat' a club in the basement of one of the buildings in Hampshire Terrace. Now we couldn't afford the price of admission for all of us so we clubbed together and one went in and paid; then went to the gents toilet and opened the back window, meanwhile the others went round the back and skipped over the garden walls and entered via the aforementioned window. Being a bit of a smoothie I was the one who went in and paid and I got to know the person who ran the Indigo Vat. It was Ann Luckett who eventually ran 'MMF' agency in Gosport. MMF = Alan Matthews, Ricky Martin, Robin Ford and Ann Luckett. They gave us our 'big break' into paid gigs around clubs locally and eventually all over England. We started with a 'Test Gig' at the 'Tricorn Club' alongside The Alan Bown Set.
Then we decided to go pro, three members left and were replaced. So that was my contribution to 60's local bands. . . . TWO
Riverside Blues Band. (everyone hated being called 'The. . . ')
Terry ?? Drums.
Colin Dowsett (G), Dave Knight (BG), Terry?? (D) Ed Barber (D) replaced by Paul Sevier (D). Years 1968 - 1969
Dave Knight Bass and backing vocals
Paul Lundquist Lead Vocals
Neil Plunkett Lead Guitar and backing vocals
Alan Slack Rhythm Guitar and backing vocals
Ian Harner Drums (no vocals he was actually tone deaf)
Later became Truth. 1969
Paul Lundquist (V) Alan Slack (GV) Ian Harner (D) Dave Knight (BGV) Neil Plunkett (LGV) Previously Dear Rachel 1969-1972
When TRUTH went professional in 1972, :-Paul Lundquist (V) Terry ? (LG) Mark Lundquist (GV) Dave Knight (BGV) Derek Quinton (D). 1972 +
1973 Dave Knight Left:- TRUTH Paul Lundquist (V) Terry ? (LG) Mark Lundquist (GV) Dave Walker (BGV) Derek Quinton (D)
Finally TRUTH (Not sure what year) Paul Lundquist (V) Terry ? (LG) Mark Lundquist (GV) Gary Twigg (BGV) Derek Quinton (D) not sure when they disbanded.
More from Dave Knight
The very first line up for "Suspect" for one gig only was Kevin Dawson Keyboards - Dave Knight Bass - Karen Illingwoth Bailey Vocals and Derek Quinton Drums (the drummer from Truth - for one night only because we were still auditioning).
Then our regular Drummer was John Bodle who turned out to be Geoff Davis's Nephew.
Karen then left after a couple of years. She originally played the Bass until I came along and she wanted to branch out so she began learning the Drums. She left to form Bluebird with Fred Illingworth on Guitar, Malcolm Crowle on Bass, Mick Crowle on Lead Guitar and Frank Brown on Rhythm Guitar.
"Limelight" - Karen Knight, Dave Knight Steve Farrow
"Riverside" (should be Riverside Blues Band) turned into Dear Rachel into Truth. In actual fact Dear Rachel consisted of Paul Lundquist (V) Alan Slack (GV) Ian Harner (D) I don't know who their original Lead Guitarist or Bass player were. They just came to see me one night after getting my address and asked me to join as Bassist. The next thing I remember is our Lead Guitarist was Neil Plunkett, about 1969
Plus Riverside never had a female vocalist; although on deep recollection which has caused me a near headache, one of Colin Dowsett's friends (I'll remember his name when I'm 70 or 80) who played sax and woodwind who practised with us for a short while brought some tart along one day - she thought she was another Janis Joplin. So we thought sod this and broke up. Colin who was a thouroughly good egg and Guitarist to boot went back to college to study Russian.
In fact I've got a reel to reel tape, and player, with us practising slow Blues (yup, boring).
I've remembered his name - Paul Sevier, he was our drummer in Riverside a damn good drummer.
I WAS KNOCKING ABOUT WITH A GUITARIST CALLED TONY MITCHELL IN ABOUT 1966/67 HE COULD PLAY LIKE HENDRIX, BELIEVE IT OR NOT BUT HE WAS A BIT OF AN EGG HEAD,WE NEVER GOT INTO ANY BANDS ALTHOUGH WE TRIED HE EVENTUALLY WENT TO SOUTHAMPTON UNIVERSITY TO STUDY AERONAUTICS AROUND THE TIME I JOINED UP WITH COLIN DOWSETT IN AROUND 1967/1968 THEN INTO TRUTH AROUND 69/70. I WENT TO THE 69 AND 70 I. O. W. FESTIVALS WITH TONY.
Benny Freedman, band leader - he was our music teacher at Hilsea Modern. Really nice fella, I used to talk to him about classical music while the others took the p*ss, about 1965.
The School group, named The Jays, left to right, unknown, Adrian Newlyn burns guitar, Terry Threadingham drums, Dave Knight guitar. We were all at school together, yup, at Hilsea Modern Boy's in Kipling Road Hilsea, now has houses built on it.
The photo was taken by Adrian's dad outside Highbury Tech's sports hall. I'm not sure what guitar the Bassist had. Yes that's probably a Burns but would need some research. My guitar is some old scratch built jobby, with no name or indication of make. When I was 14 or so I swapped my large collection of rubber building bricks for the guitar. The drums I think were premier and belonged to the college. I know (as you can see) we all plugged into Adrian's amp. Vox AC30, coz his dad was rich. So this was only about the second time we got together to practise. Then Terry's dad bought him a kit, I acquired some home built 15 watt amp and speaker cab for £12 which I bought off of David Cleif.
Then on the right above is the same group on the same day, but scrawled across the top is the name, The Sound Waves! ???