The Little BIG Band.
After I regained consciousness - from the 7 Year Itch Band and it's Psychological trauma - I picked up the Phone - "Hello Jim!"
It was the Birth of 'The Little Big Band'. Jim Hopwood and I were together for 10 years and were the (innovators) of the so called Backing Tracks, but now sadly anything goes.
* * *
Jim Hopwood -
During 'The Little Big Band' days. Jim was one of the first ever to use a 'Roland GR - 707 Synthesizer Guitar', he was certainly a 'Master of his Craft'. Together with Peter Eddleston, Barry I'Anson and Pete Taylor, were all members of the Electones back in the 60's. They later changed their name to, - the Summers. - Weather. - Surf Side Six. - and finally they teamed up with Marty Wilde ('Teenager in Love' Hit), for quite some time after, supported Bob Monkhouse, who was in the line of fire with, -'Bernie!-The Bolt' from the British T.V program 'The Golden Shot'.
Peter has now passed on R.I.P.
| Above Photos - Left to Right -
1. The Little BIG Band. Wammy & Jim Hopwood.
2. Jim Hopwood with his GR 707 Guitar.
3. Jim & I, in Pete's Studio.
4. Peter (Peg!) Eddleston. (R.I.P).
A few more memorable faces - info below.
The Weather - Jim Hopwood on Right.
I arranged the 'gigs' without any 'Agency manipulation' and toured the North of England with no problem at all, Locally we were established and in demand for that 'Era' although we got much of the 'Flack' for not having a 'live' drummer. We were the instigators of the 'self contained' duos and paved the way through quite some 'Airy' situations. The Working Men's resident musicians practically went on strike at a few venues but I applied a bit of expertise to overcome the proposed outcome. After all, most of the so called 'club backing musicians' could not read music. they were probably friends of the concert Sec! Sadly we were heading into a computer language of which 'Clubland' was not aware of. I remembered one committee man saying "Clubland will never change". But sadly, how it has!
5. Wammy & Gerry Donague. (Photo c/o Pat Walmsley).
Taken at the Key Street bar in Clitheroe Lancashire - later the Alexandra Wine Bar in Chester -
After moving to England, Gerry soon became a respected member of the developing British folk rock scene.
He recorded and/or toured (Quote) with artists such as Joan Armatrading, Gerry Raffarty, Robert Plant, Elton John, The Proclaimers, Johnny Hallyday, Cliff Richard, Chris Rea, Hank Marvin, Roy Orbison, Nancy Griffith, The Beach Boys,
Bonnie Raitt and the Yardbirds. then in 1990, he founded the 'Helicasters' with Will Ray and John Jorgenson. (Unquote).
6. Steve Gibbons. (The Steve Gibbon's Band.). (Photo c/o Steve Gibbons)
I bumped into Steve on a couple of occasions, during the Isle of Man T.T. races and was lucky to be invited to one of
the Steve Gibbon's gigs at Paramount City. The Band were rockin' especially when the song - B.S.A.- was 'kick-started' -
(Click on Link) Street Parade/Saints & Sinners -
During 1977 the band released a Chuck Berry song - 'Tulane' - recorded on the Polydor Label and hit the top ten.
I was amazed when Steve turned up at one of my Gigs at the Ridgeway Hotel in Douglas during the Isle of Man T.T. one year -
Good on ya Steve, Top Man!
The RIDGEWAY Hotel, Isle of Man.
(Now converted into offices).
My Autobiography tells the story.
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