Leave a comment

Pinch of Salt?

Many thanks to Paul Way, who alerted me to this online news item about a bloke called Rikki who managed London Clubs the Marque, the Brave New World, and Kimballs

No honestly, he did. It says so here in this newspaper. Really.






Kimbells R&B

Some of you will remember the days of ’64 (Graham? Lenny?). I started something on the Facebook site today and then corrected myself. The story is that there was an R&B club on Sunday nights where Georgie Fame & Blue Flames played quite often.

But I thought it was promoted by the Concorde Club, and it wasn’t – they promoted mid-week gigs. I’ve found their list of gigs on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays and they included Graham Bond (with Bruce & Baker), Alex Harvey, Soul Agents (with Rod Stewart), Chris Farlowe, and John Lee Hooker with John Mayall – Mayall played the Guildhall recently, just 54 years later!


A Question or Two

I’m not sure if this one rates as one of the ‘Great Gigs’, but I’ve been asked to help with some information – it’s a Poly Students ‘Rag Week’ gig and I’m pretty sure I went.

think there was a Bomb Scare which turned out to be a false alarm. I cannot recall whether the gig then went ahead but I do have a memory of being outside the hall, milling about.

Can anyone remember?

Humble Pie

Leave a comment

And another one

OK here’s my second nomination which some of you will be familiar with. Tony Crombie was a top jazz and dance band drummer, but that was no way to make millions so when Bill Haley came along he spotted his chance. Copying their style and approach he formed Tony Crombie & his Rockets and in the UK, they were the very first professional, recording, touring rock & roll act. Their big launch was at the London palladium in September 1956 but as a warm-up they spent the week before in a variety bill at Pompey’s Theatre Royal – which makes Pompey the genuine Birthplace of British Rock & Roll! Sadly Tony’s dreams came to very little – a minor hit, a place in a dodgy movie and he went back to what he was good at, while Tommy Steele became the first British rock & roll star. In the mid-1960s I saw Tony Crombie upstairs at the Cambridge Hotel – a jazz gig with top UK organist Alan Haven. Back then I had no idea about his key role in Pompey’s history.

Rock Atlas 2 P Pop


The Top 100?

Here’s my first double post

I’m inviting nominations for the best gigs ever witnessed in Pompey. You don’t have to have been there (see my first choice) but any information is welcome

My first nomination goes back to the first week of May 1939 when the famous jazz pianist/singer FATS WALLER spent a week in variety at the Hippodrome on the spot that is now Sainsbury’s , just south of the Guildhall Square. The Hippodrome was destroyed by the bombing a couple of years later, along with the Guildhall.

At this time we were into a twenty-year period when jazz groups and bands from USA were not allowed in the UK because of a Musicians’ Union dispute – but solo acts could come, so Fats did.

What’s more Pompey was really rocking on that Monday; two days before, at Wembley, Pompey beat Wolves 4-1 to bring home the FA Cup for the first time.Fats Waller