LilyFogg.com - Clarence's and the 1960s to 1980s music scene in Halifax

Lily's gossip column 2009
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Name: Charlie Collinson
Date: 18 Nov 2009 14:14
From: London
Some memories are hazy and accuracy not guaranteed.

Early seventies:

Sassafrass - S. wales band with singer whose name I may remember later. Heavy rock, not a particular favourite.

String Driven Thing - Rock with fiddle, pretty good as I remember. Fiddle player appeared as a session player on TOTP once.

Brownsville Banned - Jug band very good as far as I can remember, quite an unusual booking for Clarences

Ace - The best band I saw at Clarences. Just before they got 'How Long' in the charts. I got to talk to Bam King (gtr) who was previously in a band called Mighty Baby (London). They'd been to see Sheffield Wed. or United that afternoon as one of them came from that area or something, I think he mentioned something about some-one streaking on the pitch, which was a very popular hobby in Hx at the time! I remember Edgar (Dave Paterson) standing on the bannisters watching them with great enthusiasum.
Interestingly about half the punters left as Soul / Funk was regarded as uncool in those days.
Incidentally, Fran Byrne, their drummer joined our band Crayfish Five in London in the eighties.
They moved to California for a time and had a fair bit of success. Paul Carrack as you know has been successful since. Fran moved back to Ireland a few years back. He also played in a great Celtic/Soul band called Alias Ron Kavana.

Mid to Late Seventies:

Dr. Feelgood - Wilco...scarey guitarist great energy, shape of things to come?

101 ers - Joe Strummers band before the Clash

Kilburn and the Highroads - Ian Dury on drums and vox.

For the moment that covers Clarences, I'm sure you remember much of this, so
apologies for duplication.

I remember as a lad seeing a big American car with Champion Jack's Tour of America emblazoned on the side of it. I assumed that he must be a boxer (which incidentally he had been) but this was Champion Jack Dupree of course the great New Orleans piano player. He lived in Hx for a while giving piano lessons in between gigs, and I remember a young lad at school who had an unlikely talent for New Orleans boogie, obviously a recipient of that tuition!
I think CJD moved to Sweden and Paris after a while. While he lived in Hx Sonny Terry and Brownie McGee appeared at the Victoria theatre a few timesas they were old friends of CJD.

Talking of the Victoria theatre I saw Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames with Bernie Holland and Mitch Mitchell in the line-up. Still one of the best bands on the circuit today!

I also remember Sparks (Mael brothers) coming into Nichol and Browns Sports shop where I was working at the time, they were all sporting long hair. They caused quite a stir being American and 'rock-star-like', several of my female colleagues were taken by an attack of swooning! Unfortunately I can't remember where they were playing, it may have been Clarences or the New Victoria Theatre, sorry.

Well that's all for now, more if the synapses recover.

Hope this has been some use/interest
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