BANDS - FROM HARTLEPOOL & TEESSIDE IN THE 60'S
A Kirklevington Country Club reunion, organised by Ottie McLaughlin and Alan Fearnley, was held at The Crathorne Arms, Crathorne, near Yarm, on Thursday, January 26th with a band that featured the remaining members of The Crawdaddies, Rivers Invitation, Tramline and The Fabulosa Brothers. It came about after a recent funeral when it was said the only time they all met was at sad times - so Ottie and Alan put the night together for happy reunion with music and memories. The photograph on the left shows Ray Dales on sax, Ray Johns on keyboards, Terry Sidgwick on bass, Terry Popple on drums, Tom Ludley on guitar with Al Harrington on the right. On the second photograph is Ray Johns on piano, John Taylor on guitar, Paul Smith on drums, Ottie McLaughlin on percussion with Al Harrington on guitar. Behind Al Harrington is Ken Thwaites playing organ who is not in view. The photographs, which are copyright © John Foster and used with thanks, can be viewed in a slightly larger size by clicking on them.
How nice it was to take this photograph of the happy smiling faces at another reunion which took place at the Blacksmith's Arms in Hartlepool on Monday, November 21st. It shows previous members of the town band The Hartbeats along with musicians who played with them at some time during their careers in the 60's. It shows Ken Officer, John Hart, Roly Thompson, Derek 'Deke' Evans and Derek 'Jo Jo' Thompson. Ken Officer has been a resident in Spain for almost seven years and lives in Gran Alacant on the Costa Blanca. He was in town to visit family, friends and former band members who he hadn't seen for up to 10 years!
Geoff Callaghan, from Thornaby, was kind enough to send us this photograph. It features a band called Al and The Vendors at an unknown venue on Teesside about 1963-ish. On the right is singer Alan Drew, who came from Teesville in Eston, at the rear and almost hidden is Barry Pottage the lead guitarist who came from Stockton, George Temperton the rhythm guitarist is in the centre and also from Stockton. We do not, as yet, have a name for the bassist but we do know that Geoff Callaghan is the drummer.
Geoff also says that he has no contact with the guys now but sincerely hopes they are all well and, like him, enjoying their families and retirements. He also says he'd like to get involved with a 60's style band again so if you are interested let me know and your email will be passed on to him.
Two of the latest bands to grace our music pages are The Legends and The Mizares. Both groups were in action during the mid to late 60's and were based around the Horden and Peterlee area. You can view these photographs in a larger size, and read details about the individual band members, by visiting our Various bands page.
How it all started: For almost fourteen years I lived on the Costa Blanca in Spain. Following a visit I made to my hometown of Hartlepool in June 2004, it was suggested to me to start a web page featuring some of the old bands, or groups, that graced the pubs and clubs of the area back in the 1960's. The idea started after Billy Crallan, George Hart and Ed Saul all joined forces to play some of the old songs to help celebrate Ron Blair's 60th birthday. Billy Crallan, Ron and I played together in The Trakkers and George, of course, was the original lead guitarist of The Hartbeats.
The photograph above shows George, Billy, me and Ron at Hartlepool Cricket Club. So, what started as an idea has now expanded into many pages - and is dedicated to the great bands of that era and the friendship we all enjoyed. Photograph © Marion Crallan.
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