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Riffs welcomes constant info on gigs, line-up changes and general band associated news.
(Please note that the further down the page, the older the News) 


(all as supplied with no editing or corrections)
Once again ,  i  want  to thank Nige` ,,for  printing  all these great memories and stories of my  life  on  the road with  some  of  the best bands ..that  never achieved stardom  ... You look  on  t.v now and  see all  these (c) rap posers..girl/boy bands all  miming ..and  all  the rubbish in  the charts !  sorry ..rant  over ...
In 1989 i  was  working  with Cenrefold   pictured ....Did  some memorable shows plus  support ..the  likes  of  Bob Ritchie.. Al Meechie   3times.... ( where  are they now ? ) On  the 25th Jan we  all  helped in  a charity show at Forest  Hall  club  for  Danny..taxi  driver and  friend  who  died  in North  Shields ...bands  included 3D,,,Talisman ..Messanger and  Little Mo  ..Alot  of money  was  raised  for  Dannys widow ,,,and  a brilliant night  was  had  by all  ,,were  you  there ? In  March  Centrefold got  part  time resideny  in Zoots  Newcastle every  Friday , sometimes  Saturday..until  end of april ,,including one gig at  Zoots  felling ..Some  interesting `new` bands  were doing  the rounds inc`  Vancouver..The Action ..Twylight Zone ,,Mainstreet,,Invision ,,Playboys...Officers  Club..Boogyhoppers....Buster..New Invision ..Anthill  Mob ...,,,,,,,.In May Paul Defty (drummer) left  Centrefold...but not  b4 we  had  an interesting gig at Acklington Prison !!!!   No ..not  for the inmates ...but  the warders ,,,! A new  lineup in June saw  the new  drummer ,  and Peter Harrison join  the band ,,,and  first gig  was at  Victoria Park   .It  was a   red hot July and  we  did 20 gigs! In August we did Rosyth (H,M.S cochrane..lion  club) Edinburgh ...for  2nights ...Also Crimdon Dene clubhouse al  day ..September we  did Strangs riding  school (ponderosa)  at Washington ..Is  it  still  there ?...In oct..i  did 3 clubs  i  had never  done b4 !!!  the No1 Amalgamated club in Boro,,,Mardi  Gras..Darlington...and M/boro  buffs ...Also in November we did a great  show  for the Officers Mess 8thsignal regiment . at  Catterick Camp ..but ...in  the second  set ..there  was a bomb  scare ,,and we  were all  evacuated from  the camp , leaving  all  the gear !!...Went back  the next day  to  pick up ...then straight to the  Ivy Leaf  ...its a hell  of  a hump into the club!  December was very  busy ...including ....Cheers...old East end club s/land ...(still  there ?)  Catterick  camp  again at  Gazza  barracks (no  bomb scare)...I,C,I.  Wilton works private  party ...Pennywell with Perfect match and Bobby Knoxall  ...The  Heaton  Buffs  Xmas  party  was with Talisman and Prism ...  1990.....Saw Alibi,,,  with Alan roadhouse and  Dogg (ex Cirkus)   ...than it  was back  up to Scotland at Hellenburgh navel  base .Glasgow   and Heaton Buffs with Bob Ritchie   Charity  do` Other  notable shows were at Cleater Moor in Whitehaven ...Pegswood S,C ,,for footballers do....` and Chesters farm` reet  oot in the wllds !!!!...It  was for  the  young farmers.

1987 started  badly ..Idle  Hands  broke  up !   Then  Jynx came  along ,,,Dave  and Carol from ~Eshington ```..a  formidable duo with a great band behind  them ,thay got plenty of work  Ncle .Gateshead.S/land Hartlepool...Durham  and Darlington ..Then in March good news....Hands Down  were  hitting the road after  rehearsing at Campbells (freezer)  club in  Jarrow ..i  remember  it  was perishing  in there...memorable early  gig was  at  Thomas wilson  club g/head with Powerhouse  and Pirahnas ..Meanwhile ..Cirkus ..Becket / Talisman ..Six  of  the best   After  midnight .. were getting  plenty of  work ..  In  April I went  up  to  Kinloss and  Lossiemouth in  the wilds`  of  scotland with  Jynx...did  2  `officers mess `  gigs..We  were  supposed  to be supporting the Batchelors...but  all  the airmen came  to  see the band ...We  all  stayed on  camp ..had lots  of  excellent  food and  drink Next  day we  were dashing  down Early to Billingham  cons`  club for  the next gig !  Early June Jynx  were  in  the recording studio ...thats  when yet  another  new music  show  started up in  the t.t.t.v. studios ...It  was  ... ROXY    ..It  `ran` until April 88..with notable  groups  like Chris Rea...Ultravox...Echo  and  the bunnymen...The  Cure..Hew@Cry..Def Leppard...Wet wet wet ..Squeez/ House  Martins ..Steve Winwood Bryan Adams... ( see me picture  with Bryan in  the `last instalment `)......  TPau and  carol  Decker ...Brian Ferry ..Joe  Cocker ..Climey Fisher ..Stranglers..Billy  Ocean..Belinda  Carlisle .and ,,.Vanessa Paradis  she  was  gorgeous !   Meanwhile when  all  that was  going  on  new club ...bands were appearing  on the scene   remember these ?   French  Curves ,,.Yankee  rose.... Playboys....Miarage ...   Tony  Liddle  and  the Law.....(did some  shows  with Tony )  and Quebec...also  worked with these guys ...In December i  got  a call from Carol  Johnson{Johnna`s  ex wife) invited me to  a party at  their `swish` house oposite  the corner  house pub  in  heaton ...but  ,,there  was  no  beer !!  just  champagne !   ..This  was  after  we all went to  to the city  hall  to  see Shake  the Tree`(ex  jogging  waiters),,,who  she  was managing `...They  were  supposed  to  be  supporting Wet wet wet ...but they  got  held  up in London  after  doing `top  of the pops`   and  they  were fogbound ...Anyway  the band  went  on  and entertained all  the `teeny  boppers` and  their parents ..it  was  a good night ...Then  i  was down in Blackburn with Quebec...another  goodun `The  Heaton  buffs  had Talisman and the Pirahnas on  for  their annual  xmas  party ..
The begining of  88  saw Whitesnake  at  city hall ...awsome !..then in Feb..Quebec  split  up ..Got  called   up for `rent  a roadie ` to work  at the Mayfair in  the toon ..working  with  the  Cross....(Roger Taylor .Queen ) plus Ya ya supporting ...  what  a brilliant  voice  this  guy has ..and  he  playing  2 different drum  kits ....March saw Ac/dc doon  at Wembley with  Hylton Valentine and Johnna`s brother   backstage ,,got  some great  pics of  Angus  a nd  theboys` ,,but  they  were  all drinking  tea....! NO BOOZE  allowed on  tour ! Angus  said to me `there is  a baby`s  bath full of  ice  over  there` ...roll  ya  sleeves up  dip  both  hands in and  what ever  you bring  out ,ye  gotta drink ,,,,bottle  of  Jack  Daniels and  a can of lager ,,,happy  days ,,...Saw  Wishbone  Ash  at  Mayfair...wow ... ....In  April did  a gig with Jynx at  the newcastle Boat Club ,,right  on the Quayside ..dont  know if  its  still  there ,,but  had a brillnight In May South  Gosforth stopped the rock  bands on Tuesday nights ,,very sad ~     In May  `The  Magnificent Bimbo  Brothers  were `born` )  Ex  hands ,,,one of  the first  gigs was upstairs   at Co-op Rainbow rooms in the toon   ,,they  went  down  a storm`  I  always  remember  the night  we  done Peterlee  Labour club ,,Peter  was  singing  that  classic ,,dancing  in  the dark , by  springsteen , when one  of  my pyrotechnics set  fire to  my backdrops when  he  was  singing ``cant start  a fire ``..  hahahah  ...July saw  the bands  back  on  `Gossy  club` by public  demand ..And  in Sept..Peter  Harrison left the `bimbos `  after the Ryton  social  club!....Come  October . had  a spell  with `Mind  over  Matter`..while Caffrey Bros were  in red  nose studios Shieldfield ..then in November was  with Centrefold ..and  the brilliant  Debbie ...In dec...we did 22gigs  including Allenbrook army  barracks ,Thirsk ,,but  i still  got  to see Talisman and  the Amazing  squibs at  the buffs  xmas  party ...more  to follow from  89..

In  Jan 84.`  Geordie were playing the White  Swan down Billingham ..great  night `s...,and  the Junco partners  were doing  `rock  at the heaton  buffs`  ..Also  saw Lone  Wolf and  Arizona at  `the Swan`  in feb ..Hylton Valentine formed Brown Jack..which turned  into Byker `which  played  at Wallsend  Labour  club and R.A.F.A,  club ..Hartlepool ..In April Idle Hands were  formed .they  were  brilliant ! Also  ,  the  same month .  i  was  off to Paris with  B.B.Faith for  6days . played  in  a huge  football stadium with 5  other  bands ,all  from  Europe ...Back  home  i  was with Pauline  Gillan band (Ian Gillan`s sister) } at Middleton club At  M/boro ..also atS/s Legion ...
Then back  to  the  ~swan `  with Geordie and Black  Rose ..Meanwhile Alan Roadhouse  exCIrkus.. joined  `Harlequin` resident  band at Westerhope  club..And ...At  the R,A,F,A club Hartepool The  Shine` (Ex  Saigon ?) went  doon  a `storm` ..In  October the `Force` and  Idle hands  were getting  plenty  exposure ...It  was  another  sell  out showow at  the Mead` with the `faith  and  chubby`  !!
At  the start of 85 Hellsinki rocked  the Pheasant pub doon, Preston  Grange ,  North Shields...this  was to  be a great  venue for loads  of bands ,,  Saw the Groundhogs and Bombay  at  Newbottle club   ...did  a `fashion show  ``yes ,,,at  Seaham Hall ..,,,,Back  at  t.t.t.v. one  day  we  had  a long flat  loader  wagon with Rebel  Run playing  live out  side  the studios ,,trying  to  get  `noticed` by the `Tube ` 
In  June ,, Me  and Mr  Mo ,, the Flakes and Punishment  of  Luxury ..played Tiffany`s ...remember it  well ..Idle  hands did  the Washington Whitehoos with  Tramp and  Swank plus Bobby  Knoxall   ,,were  you  there?....In Sept the french band (B.Zadar)  we met  in Paris, supported B,B.Faith at Brandon club ..Also  in this  year  we had  Geordie Aid at  the Mayfair.
By the  end  of  85 B,B,Faiith  played  their  last  gig  at Ivy Leaf  club S/land ...then along  came  `Asleep  at  the wheel `  great  name for  a band ,,did  some good  shows  with  these  guys ...what  they doing  now ? ,,,,, December saw  the Razzamatz christmas party  at  t,t,t,v,  studios ,,,  with Phil Lynott...Roy  wood...Jenifer  Rush ..Kim  Wild,,John Parr,,Fergal  Sharkey,,,   and  then it  was  back to Idle Hands,,,, at Usworth and  district....Coatsworth  G/head ...Washington  white hoos /Thornley ...Newton  Aycliff  and  Hetton  b4  Xmas  ..
January  1986  started  great ...went to Playhouse in  Edinburgh.to  see AC/DC  with  Hylton Valentine and  Johnna `s  brother ...it  was  muckin  fagic!  ....In early Feb  did Beechwood  and Easterhouse  club Darlington...with  the `hands`,,,There  were lots of  north  east bands  appearing down here at  the time ..and  ,, if they  recall  beers/lager were 40p  a PINT....  unbelievable !!!   did  the Swan Billingham  with Powerhouse..and  got  lock  in at  birtley Rex club with  the Pirahna  Bros ....Saw Ronnie  James  Dio on  the Tube ..In  April  a new show  came  about  at t.t.t.v.  called TX45,,,,it  featured lots  of  local  talent ,,including Well  well  well ...Zoot  and  the roots..Flaming  Musolinis...my  old  friend Pauline  Gillan ,,Death  wish and  the Edge ,,,May  saw  a new Iveco truck  for  the `hands` loadsa  room  ...and on 28th  May ..Cirkus  were back on  the road ...first  2 gigs  were  Coatsworth and forest  Hall clubs ..Did Walker  social  club  with Talisman on  the Sunday morning and  then went to  downhill club  in  the afternoon !  hell  of  a place Dooonhill` the little kids  from  the estate used to  say ...```look  after ya van Mr.` for 50pence...We  used  to  say `nar ,,we  got  a big dog in  the back ..Kids  reply ..```Aye  . but  does  it  like  fire`  !!!  ye gotta  laugh !!!      In June/July  Razzamataz was  back in the studio `s with Midge Ure..Taxas..INXS...BAngles..Jim Diamond ..Dr  and  the medics...Steve  Harley ......End  of  July did Dryburn Hospital  with Rhythm Method ...lots  of nice  nurses ..then  following  day  (friday)did Steels club ...Saturday  with Talisman at Usworth  ...Sept  at  theMayfair N/cle saw  Mad Jacks  travelling  circus..747,,,Foxy ..Villa  Latina ,  Wallop  ,and  the Pirahna  Bros....   In  oct saw  that `fateful` ZZtop sham on  the  Tube special !  ...but ,we  also  had  `live  bands ` on  in December  with John Bon Jovie,,Suzie  Quatro Heaven  17 ..It  Bites ,,,etc...Doctor Feelgood..the  Blues  burglars,,and  After Midnight did Tiffany`s ...Got  tickets  for  the City Hall to  see `Chubby` ,,and  the Xmas party at  the buffs were Talisman and Pirahnas..brilliant ...

pic: Oby and Bryan Adams
Before  i  go  any  further ..i  just  want  to mention,,the reason i wanted Nige` , (and  its  thanks  to  him ..who put  all  this stuff  up  on  the `news page) `...was to leave  some kind  of  documented history of  what was  happening in  the social club/pub scene  back  in early 80`s........When ` i  peg it ` .( not  for  awhile  yet  i  hope )..wor  lass is  gonna  chuck  all  my Diaries`.band  posters ,  pictures , parafinaylia in  the bin..!!!  So... Who  remembers  all  these  bands from nearly  40yrs ago ???    In  March 1980..Chris Cool  band formed ,  and  were  an instant hit in  the  clubs ,  what  a great  singer , ..The  Pirahna Bros  , from Blyth  ..Showbiz  kids .Once  bitten (Ex  Tyson)..747   Ex  Goldie ...Dance  Class,,who  were  awsome ...The News,,Geordie ,  with  Rob turnbull replacing Johnna ,  who  joined  AC/DC///Rhamm ...In  82 ,,Armagedon and Davy  Ditchburn ..Baby sitter , from Teesside........Micky  Hutton joined  the King  Crabs .....
Howard Baker formed Blueprint !...In October  this  year Roy  `Chubby  Brown ` did my  `house  warming  party,,` worra  hoot !!  Also  saw Armageddon ,Dance  Class ..John Miles,, Eric  Burdon.. and  Johnna  at  the Heaton Buffe  Xmas  show ...Blueprint ..then became B.B Faith ..The  Caffrey Bros started  doing  the clubs ..and Raven made it  big doon  London .......In 83,,Paul  .  the original singer from Cirkus , joined  Easy  Touch .. while  The Toy  Dolls  (Olga) stormed the Shieldfield club   I  remember B.B .Faith  did  a gig at Murton Victoria club ( and in June 84)  ,,and  all the hells angels wanted them to  do  a show in S/land ..after  the gig ... we  found  our  selves in the  middle  of  a long street  of  terraced  houses..and some one  had  knocked  2  or   3houses  into  ONE !    Well.. the sun  was  coming up when  we  packed  the wagon to go  home ! great times ...and ,,there  was  not  a pick  of  botha !  Did  a show at  the Grey  Hen in s/shields with with Next ...and  the Crabs ...dont  know  what  happened  to  those  lads ,,,,or ,,even  these bands  which  you  will  all  have heard  of ....The  Business,,Black  Rose ...B.15,,,,Legend  ....Teaser....Slinky ...the Cast....French  Curves ,,,Digital  Dog...Boxer  ...Shanghai...E.S.P... Powerhouse ...23 Skidu..Rythm Sticks ....Becket..Rocky ....Cruella  de  Ville Mad  Jacks  travelling  circus etc  etc  ...About  this  time  there were  rumours  that Pete  Barclay was  gonna  join the Caffrey  Bros?.....I  put the `Faith`  on  the heaton meadowfield for  the Xmas  party with chubby brown ... charged  50p  for the  tickets , plus  pie  `n` peas ...Tickets  were always  sold  b4 they  were  printed ...  you could do  a lot  for 50p  in  thise days !!....more  to  follow ..

Fancy a `rocking  ` holiday  in  the sun in October? ...Why  dont  you e,mail  Cyprus  Rocks `  and  see if  you  can get  yourselves a gig  right on the beach in sunny  Cyprus ..We  witnessed  some  incredible tribute   bands .. including Ac/Dc   at  theyr very best .the Who .. Led Zepplin Deep purple etc  ..  Click  onto Cyprus Rocks , or  the  facebook  page ..See if  you  can get   the band  on  an unforgetable trip   ..its  mega ,,,,,good luck,,,,,,  Oby

''While  working  with Cirkus..  got  a great  job at  T.T.TV.    on  City  road ...I  thought i  was  made  for life ...I  had  the pleasure  of  seeing  some brilliant  pro` bands and  artists on  television ..(.and  i  saw many  `up  and coming new  local  bands that  were  `doing  the  rounds`)        Who  remembers Alright Now? ..it  was  the first of  some great  programmes for  well  known  pro` groups  who were  playing  live  in  the studios ...including  Rory  Gallager .Dr  Feelgood ...long before Robert  Kane from the Animals  joined  ...Saw  the  Tourists ...Squeez..Nick  Lowe... Mike  Oldfield..etc...that  was  in  1980....Then  in  81  Razzamataz  exploded  onto your  t.v. ..We  had  Kim Wild   .Elton John   Bad  Manners...Stu Copeland ..Toyah ..Stray cats..Kate  Bush..Kiki Dee...Gary  Newman  The  Shadows ,,,I  remember  in April  of  this  year i booked  Roy  Chubby  brown for  the club  bar one  friday  night ..It  was  a sell out ..He  did  a 2hour show ..well. the tears were  rolling  down our faces  laughing..Even  Cathy  Secker who  was the  contimuity anouncer was   there  on  her  break ...Roy  and  i  became very  good  friends ,,even had  him for  my  new house  `warming  party `   he  stole  the show ..He  used  to  ring  me  up  from Teeside ,  where  he lived and would  ask  me ..do you know  where Morpeth  Comrades / Ashington Central / and  other clubs up  north  were ..Yes  i  said...O.k i  will  pick  you up  at  the Tyne  Tunnel.
i  have pie  and  peas  suppers /strippers private  shows  to  do ...had  some  brilliant  nights  with  him ...sold  loads of  t.shirts,cassettes etc  at half  time ......
In Jan 82  Razz returned ..and  we had Depeche Mode /Haircut 100/Godley  and  Creme .Boomtown  Rats..ABC..Toyah...Phil Lynott/ John Sykes..A flock  of  seagulls... and more ,,,Then  we  had  the BIGGEE!   ..In  November     Tyne  Tees Tele ..produced the TUBE  LIVE`  on  friday nights  for  channel 4   ..Met  some real  supa stars `  on  this  show   the  tickets  to  get  in  were  like GOLD...!  Opened  up  with The  Jam.(.Toy  Dolls... Remember them ?)Sting  and  Pete  TownshendDuran  Duran ,,Simple  minds ..Robert  Palmer ..Robert  Plant ..Twisted  Sister..Blancmange ..U.2 ..Dance  Class ( brilliant  band ...after  the  show  they  performed at  Henderson Hall College ,,,we  `blagged  our  way  in ` showing  our  t.t.tv passes )  then next  up  were Pat  Benatar / Thin lizzy.
Paul Young .Madness..Eurythmics ...`In  november  83 Tube  returned with ,,ZZ TOP...this was  one  off special ...I  got  all  of  Idle  Hands in  for  this  one ..Me  and  Peter  Harrison  were  amazed  when we  noticed  they  were `Miming !!!!   bloody  disgrace ,,! Then  it was  up to R.E,M  ..Style  Council ...Pretenders ...Echo  and  the Bunnymen /Judas  Priest..The  alarm ..Sade  (who  tyne   tees discovered !) Thompson  twins ..Siouxsie`...Gary  Moore ..Big  Country ..China  crisis ,,Howard  Jones / Ultravox ..The  Cure / Joe  jackson Big  country ..UB40          ...Motorhead (Toooo  loud.. everyone had  cotton  wool  in  the lugs )  Tom  Robinson band ..Stranglers ..Toy  dolls  (again) ..Water  boys....Frankie goes  to  Hollywood ....this  band  went  down  to  the Quayside  after  the  show and  tried  to  get on  the Tuxedo Princess..( floating  nightclub)  The  bouncers  threw  them oot ...then  they  were then  called `Frankie  goes  to  gateshead ,and  got  beat  up `.........Clit  Pilchard ...Meatloaf..Bangles ...Bryan Adams was  brilliant ..they  were  on  tour  with  T.pau  at  the  time ,  and  Carol  Decker actually  took me  and   Bryans  pic ( 2nd  picture ) in  the dressing  room ..Met  Bryan again on tour  in Limassol . Cyprus in 2013    ...other  notable bands  on  the  Tube  were .  Chris  Rea ..Dead  or  alive ...Robert  Palmer  Level  42 ...Tom  Waites ..INXS...Ronnie  James  Dio ,,Jon Bon Jovie ...It  Bites ...All  of  who  SANG LIVE!!''

Oby has just sent Riffs some interesting old pics of
Cirkus and rare pics of LucasTyson . . .(bottom pic shows the bass player next to Oby's sister).


[As received - no editing whatsoever]
''Remember Friday  evenings in  the  70s...when you  would  buy  the Evening Chronicle .Go..straight to  club  pages...There  were  2 full pages  of  club`s All  of  Newcastle /Gateshead.area.and  even  further  affield ;;You  could  plan  the whole  weekend with  your favourite groups....Now  .  i believe,  in  the  same  paper (half  the size) you  get one  or  two clubs telling  you  about  the bingo nights /go  as  you  please and single  artists ...There  were  hundreds of  `working  mens clubs in  the  North  East .  all  putting  on great  entertainment ...Now  .  sadlly ,,,  they  have  either closed  down turned  into  care  homes ` etc ,,,or  just  hiring out concert  rooms  for  private bookings .. Hi,  my  name is John , but  everybody  called me  Oby ..I  have been living  in Cyprus  for  the last 13 yrs.I  came across  this old  diary of  all  the bands..for  30yrs  i  used  to  follow  , and  work  with ..back  in  the `good  old  days`.. I  would  like  to  share my  experiences with  you  all ,,maybe ,  jog  your  memory ..You may  recall..i  remember that  club/band .................I will  never  forget queing up  to  see the  `turns`  at  the  heaton  Buffs ..South  gosforth  Forest  Hall ..Byker ,  bottom and  middle  clubs ...then  there  were  all  those  clubs  in  Gateshead ..great  nights ,,,excellent  bands ..cheap beer ,,and  always a chinese  takeaway on  the  way  `yem` !  Fast forward 50  odd  yrs ,and if  you  want  see a good  band now ..i  hear....,,,the pubs  are  the  place  to  be ..I  first started going  to  watch  groups in 76`  and  i  was  hooked`...bands like Lucas  Tyson,, [below right]  Geordie ..Cirkus ,,Brass  Alley etc...I followed Tyson  around  all  over ,especially when  they  played  the `old Labour  club next  to  st james`s .park..on  a sunday  morning ,,( incidently  ..can  anyone  tell  what happened  to Peter  Barclay .last  i  heard  the lead  guitarist was  unwell )..What  a  place  that  was ...you  had  to  to get there early  ( 11.30 ) ..when they  opened  up  the  bar  upstairs  was full  of  already poured pints  of  beer ..exhibition  / scotch.  lager ...ready for  you  pick  up  and  grab  a table ..the  strippers  were on first ,  followed  by  the longest  game  of  bingo you  will  ever  play (  they  had  a song  for almost  every  number)  then  the bands would  come  on and  rock  the hoos   doon !   Just  what  you needed,,,a few  pints,  great band  , then home  for  ya  sunday  dinner ..I  started  keeping a  diary of  all  the bands i  was following ,Next ,,  i  got   a job  `roadying `  for  Cirkus ,,,what  brilliant entertainers .. but that  `melatron `  (keyboards) of  Dereks was  a swine to  hump  upstairs  .,,that  was one band  that  definatly should  have made  it to  the top !  I  have got signed pictures of  them all ,,and  a signed..copy  of  Cirkus  One [check out: https://www.progarchives.com/artist.asp?id=2451] ...plus  pics  of  the  band playing  live ...I  believe Alan the  singer still sings locally ..
In the middle 70s Cirkus [left] were  playing at least 20  gigs a month !  venues like ...huntington  hotel.Stanley..Anfield  Plain democratic club..Shildon Civic hall..Sunderland  boilermakers/ Gates head  Central... Wallsend  miners...Thornley,,,Doxford  park ...Thornley...Great  Lumley..West  Denton... Birds  nest club  Walker....Wallsend East end   ...Hebburn  trades &labour ..Nova  Castria //
Windy  Nook G/head...Wingate..Shiney  Row.....Gypsies Green,,afternoon ..GatesheadBritish  legion at  night ....etc  etc.How  many  of  these  clubs  are  still  putting  on bands??.....In April 1980 Cirkus travelled to Guernsey for  a 3 week  residency..and  in July they toured the  shetland island rigs with Sweet  Sensation ( a name from  the past)......Sadly ...Cirkus  last  gig was at Westbourne club in  Walker...on 9th Jan 1983...   A typical `setlist` was  Wall  street (10cc)  Baker  street ..Bat  oota  hell .,,Space  oddity. Echo  beach...Rat trap.......Sabre  Dance(Dogg).....Ohhh  Vienna ...with  my  pyrotechnics at  the end .!..
well  i  hope i  briough tback a few memories for some  of  you older rockers....Thanks  to  Nige  for  letting  me reminisce with  you  all ....Maybe ,,,if  i  get  any  feedback .....i  will  send  more  memories ...''
Oby's email: ybo1948@yahoo.co.uk


Metal On Metal OR
What Is And What Should Never Be
(Anvil - Trillians, Newcastle, Thursday, Feb 8)

Growing up (some say I didn't) there was hardly a Friday or Saturday night I didn't travel to Newcastle for Rock and/or Metal. City Hall, Mayfair . . . er . . . was that it? - but it was enough. Brilliant memories:
Mott the Hoople turning up at 1am to play the Mayfair; Nutz and Heavy Metal Kids double bill at the City Hall for 50p!! AC/DC walking off the Mayfair stage after one hour (still never found why); Mayfair breaking every fire safety rule in the book to squeeze people in for The Choirboys. Even the unforgettable memories are getting forgotten now. But I still can't believe the Mayfair has shut down (I still can't believe Lemmy has gone either) so God bless Trillians - as I believe he has and is still doing so (well he will have nothing else to do as the world is just peachy).
No matter what your taste in Rock or Metal I defy you to look at Trillians extensive gig list and not be tempted by a plethora of bands - and yes, I AM going to get to the point!!!
There is, surely, no better example of how being competent musicians is not enough to ensure success. On paper I just couldn't tell you why I like Anvil, but they are that infectious, whacky, intriguing bunch of misbegotten souls that demand your attention; listening to their music is less than half the satisfaction; if you haven't seen them live then you just don't know Anvil.
Nothing excites a band more than taking to the stage and seeing an ocean of faces from wall to wall. So there was no reason for Steve, Robb and Chris not to be mega-excited tonight - Trillians was bursting at the seams.
If you weren't there then you misssed out big time, but support your Rock and Metal bands.
The headlines? Oh, well Metal On Metal speaks for itself; and as for What Is And What Should Never Be:
Trillians Rock Bar
Trillians Country and Western Bar
It's up to you................


Looks like the Pemberton Arms bites the dust on the 25th of this month. Thanks to Norman Force for this. (I mean for the info - I really don't think the closing down is his fault).



Great coup for our very own Trillians in Newcastle on Thursday the 8th when those incredible Canadian nutters Anvil take the city by storm. If anybody remembers what a stunning set they did supporting gritty Rockers Accept at Newcaste Riverside 2016 they will know what value for money these guys give. Get along and give your metal head a treat. What a night. What a band. What a cheesy grin!!
£10 / £12. Buy a ticket, pay at door - just go!

Creator Of RONNIE JAMES DIO Hologram Says 'Dio Returns' Concerts Are 'Unforgettable Experiences'

The CEO of the company behind the hologram of Ronnie James Dio says that the first leg of the "Dio Returns" tour was a resounding success, with "thousands" of fans coming out every night to take part in "an unforgettable experience."
died in 2010 at the age of 67 from stomach cancer. His hologram was created by a company called Eyeillusion and made its debut at the Wacken Open Air festival in August 2016 in front of more than 75,000 fans.
The production uses audio of Ronnie's live performances from throughout his career, with the DIO band playing live, consisting of Craig Goldy on guitar, Simon Wright on drums and Scott Warren on keyboards, along with Bjorn Englen on bass. Also appearing with them are former JUDAS PRIEST singer Tim "Ripper" Owens and LYNCH MOB's Oni Logan.
Seems it hasn't gone down very well with Rock fans. Check it out on youtube here.
Check out the full story with comments here


I'm sure there's not many amongst us who don't have fond memories of Maiden England. Anyone living in the North East who appreciates quality Rock must surely have attended at least one of their concerts. And who can forget their momentous gig at Stormin'? Well, they're getting back together and are now seeking a Paul Dianno style singer for their set which will feature the very first two Maiden albums. If you are interested, or you know someone who may fit the bill, then contact 07800791447 666markcraig@gmail.com



Riffs will always try and be as accurate and transparent with everything we do and to this end we have asked venues (and bands) to inform us of accurate start times at gigs - not a time they wish punters to arrive so they drink more and put more pennies in the till!! But Dave from High Howden Social Club has pointed out that it is sometimes beneficial for punters to arrive early, as sometimes their 'headline' gig nights fill up fast. So, take note of the start times, but if you really want to make sure you are there in good time for your fave band then yes, by all means, get there early.


Update on the Rising Sun in Crawcrook - looks like the staff have been telling porkies as the management has left the pub and it looks extremely unlikely that any booked gigs will go ahead.....


Just heard (thanks Jeff) that The Riverside Morpeth is shut. They have, apparently, informed relevant bands of the situation, which is greatly appreciated.


Hmmm, strange things afoot at The Rising Sun, apparently it has not closed and none of the staff seem aware of any closure - but we also have it on good authority that two bands have been told their gigs have been cancelled due to imminent closure. If anyone can shine any light on these curious goings-on we will be most grateful....

Rising Sun Crawcrook pub now closed so, needless to say, all gigs cancelled.

Mainsforth Music Fest (Raising funds for Motor Neurone and Parkinson's disease), Mainsforth Community Centre, Ferryhill. feat. George Shovlin & George Lamb, Russ Tippins, Bernie and the Bluenotes, Gary Grainger, Zoe Green. Tickets £10. Doors open from noon.


Looking for covers band for Friday Dec 8th at Seaton Carew Social Club. This is a annual Charity event (budget is max £250 or less if ur feeling generous!!!) arranged by Ambulance Service for local charities. After a wide range of good time material...it's a Xmas Party. Been let down twice already. Anyone interested, call Kevin 07734449033.




Livewire AC/DC Show supported by Strangers in The Night a tribute to UFO, Blackhall Community Centre Sat 17th feb 2018 , tickets on sale now; 07841033579 or online @ENTS24 £15.


A special memorial concert is to take place at the Newcastle O2 Academy on Wednesday the 10th of January. It's being titled 'RODFEST', and it's to commemorate and celebrate local rock vocalist Rodrigo BVevino, who unfortunately passed away in early October this year. Known to his friends as Roddy B, this Brazilian born singer came to this country to follow his dream of performing in the UK. His distinctive power-house vocal style got him the attention of local musicians and eventually landed him the lead singer in Maiden England, which he held for the last few years of the band's existence. Since then he had been involved with several bands, some covers acts, some doing original material, yet always done to high standard with his trademark Brazilian passion stamped all over it. He was involved with so many various rock musicians in our region, and his passing has been deeply felt by so many people that he worked with, those he entertained, or even those he called friends. 
Local promoter (and good friend of Roddy), Gary Melling, has organised the Rodfest event to mark what would have been the singer's 43rd birthday. And to celebrate the evening he has amassed a line-up of some of this region's top rock acts, with the aim to raise money for the Roddy B Foundation which has been put together by Gary in association with Roddy's wife Eli. The line-up includes Deep Purple in Rock (featuring former members of Maiden England), Alcatraz House Band (who completely wowed the audience at this year's Stormin' The Castle bike rally), The Dirty South (highly popular southern rock ambassadors), Sticky Fingers (the band that's been bringing metal to the pubs for quarter of a century), The Force (one of the most respected rock acts in this region and beyond), and finally The Kill (probably the hardest working and partying rock band, who also perform as Bon Jovi Forever).

It's a fabulous billing of some amazing local talent. With tickets priced at a very reasonable £10 (for the main stage of the Academy), this is an opportunity not to be missed. Not only to see some of this region's giants of rock, but also to raise money for a very good cause, and to pay respect to a much-loved great entertainer. Anyone who ever met or knew Roddy, instantly recognised this man's passion for rock music. He really did live and breathe it. This is a fantastic moment for people to come together and show their support, as he'll be so sorely missed from the stages of the North East. All proceeds going to ‘The Roddy B Fund’ to be distributed as bursaries to young musicians.
O2 Priority Pre-sale – Tuesday 24th October 2017 at 9am
General sale – Thursday 26th October 2017 at 9am 
(Riffs is obliged to Colin Smoult for the above. As with most media, we rely on people 'in the know' to let US know).
Heavy rockers The Force (pictured above at the Penny Gill) are well-known in the North-East for their professionalism and attention to detail - indeed, their covers are superceded only by their superb self-penned numbers. And we understand they dropped everything to be free for this night. As spokesman Norm told Riffs: 'The Force are more than happy to support this cause. Rodrigo played with Phil and Geordie in Lovedrive, their Scorpions tribute band, and they both loved his talent and his personality.' It's always sad when someone who is so deeply into Rock leaves us, but so comforting to know that there are always those who will celebrate their life in the way that they would love - a night of solid Rock.
This week in . . .
1974, Suzi Quatro was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Devil Gate Drive', the singers second UK No.1 and fourth No.1 for the songs writers Chinn & Chapman.

1974, 'Rebel Rebel' by David Bowie entered the chart, the single reached No.5 the following month. Originally written for an aborted Ziggy Stardust musical in late 1973, 'Rebel Rebel' was Bowie's last single in the glam rock style that had been his trademark. It was also his first hit since 1969 not to feature lead guitarist Mick Ronson; Bowie himself played guitar on this track.

1976, AC/DC shot the video clip for "It's A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" for the Australian music television program Countdown. It featured the band's then-current lineup, along with members of the Rats of Tobruk Pipe Band, on the back of a flat-bed truck travelling on Swanston Street in Melbourne. In May 2001, Australasian Performing Rights Association celebrated its 75th anniversary by naming the Best Australian Songs of all time, as decided by a 100-member industry panel. "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" was ranked as the ninth song on the list.

2003, Howie Epstein bassist with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers died of a suspected drug overdose in New Mexico. He had replaced The Heartbreakers original bassist Ron Blair, Epstein also worked with Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Stevie Nicks, Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, Linda Ronstadt and Del Shannon.

1967, Pink Floyd started their first sessions at the EMI Studios, St. John's Wood, London on their debut album The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn, working on the song 'Matilda Mother'. While Pink Floyd were recording their album with former Beatles engineer Norman Smith, The Beatles themselves were working in the studio next door, recording 'Fixing A Hole' for their Sgt. Pepper album. Micky Dolenz from The Monkees attended the mixing session during the day.

1972, Led Zeppelin released 'Rock And Roll / Four Sticks' as a 7 inch single in the US, peaking at No.47 on the chart. The song was written as a spontaneous jam session, whilst the band were trying to finish 'Four Sticks'. Drummer John Bonham played the introduction to Little Richard's 'You Keep A-Knockin' and Page added a guitar riff; with the tapes rolling the basic song was finished fifteen minutes later.

1986, Metallica released their third album, the highly influential album, Master of Puppets, considered by many in the metal community to be the best metal album of all time. This was the last Metallica album with bassist Cliff Burton who was killed when the group's tour bus over-turned in southern Sweden while touring to promote the album.

2004, Mud singer Les Gray died of a heart attack, whilst fighting throat cancer, aged 57 (1974 UK No.1 single 'Tiger Feet' plus 14 other UK Top 40 singles').

2014, A statue of a weeping Kurt Cobain was unveiled in Aberdeen, Washington - the hometown of the late Nirvana frontman. The statue, which sees Cobain crying a single tear, is situated in the Aberdeen Museum of History. Kurt Cobain Day would now be celebrated annually in the city of Aberdeen. Of the day, Mayor Bill Simpson recently read a proclamation, which stated: "Aberdeen residents may justifiably take pride in the role our community played in the life of Kurt Cobain and the international recognition our community has gained from its connections with Kurt Cobain and his artistic achievements."

2014, A crew member working on a biopic about Gregg Allman died after being hit by a train during filming. Police in south Georgia said the woman was struck after the crew for Midnight Rider placed a bed on the railway tracks in Doctortown. Wayne County Sheriff John Carter said several other people had been injured, two of them seriously.

1965, The Kinks were at No.1 with 'Tired Of Waiting For You', the group's second No.1. According to Ray Davies, the music for 'Tired of Waiting for You' was written on the train to the recording studio and the words were written at a coffee shop during a break in the session.

1972, On their first Australian tour, Led Zeppelin rescheduled to the following night their concert at the Memorial Drive, Adelaide, after heavy rain left the stage and equipment unsafe. Zeppelin had brought to Adelaide the largest PA system seen in Australia to produce what was expected to be the loudest rock show ever heard.

2000, An American court ordered the release of FBI files relating to John Lennon's interests and activities including his support for the Irish Republican cause and the Workers Revolutionary Party. The British Government told the US that it wanted the files to remain secret. MI5 also had files on Lennon, which they had passed on the FBI during the 70s.

1970, On this day, Friday the 13th, Black Sabbath released their debut self-titled studio album on Vertigo records in the UK. Peaking at No.8 on the charts, the album has been recognised as the first main album to be credited with the development of the heavy metal genre.

1972, The Greasy Truckers concert took place at the Roundhouse in London, featuring Man, Brinsley Schwarz and Hawkwind. The eveining was recorded and released as a double vinyl album, in a limited edition of 20,000 which sold at just £1.50. The release rapidly sold out, becoming a collector's item.

1980, Police raided the home of former Sex Pistols John Lydon, who greeted them waving a ceremonial sword. The only illegal item they found was a canister of tear gas, which Lydon claimed to be for defence against intruders.

2005, Readers of The Sun voted George Michael’s ‘Careless Whisper’ as the greatest British pop single of the past 25 years. Oasis came second with ‘Wonderwall’ and Kate Bush third with ‘Wuthering Heights’. The rest of the Top 10: No.4, Robbie Williams ‘Angels’, No.5, The Jam ‘Going Underground’, in equal 6th, Sex Pistols ‘God Save The Queen’ and Joy Division ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’, 7th was Queen ‘We Are The Champions’, 9th, The Stone Roses ‘Fool’s Gold’ and 10th The Undertones ‘Teenage Kicks’.

2016, All four members of English indie rock group Viola Beach; Kris Leonard (guitar and vocals), River Reeves (guitar), Tomas Lowe (bass guitar), and Jack Dakin (drums) along with their manager Craig Tarry, died in a car crash in Södertälje, Sweden. Witnesses said they saw the car fall through a gap on the E4 motorway bridge, which was open to let a boat pass. The band had played at the Where's the Music? festival in Norrköping the previous day. The band had been scheduled to support Blossoms on a tour of the UK and Ireland during February and March 2016. The following year Arriva Buses launched five buses in the home town of Viola Beach in Warrington. Each vehicle had a picture of one of the band members and their manager.

1968, Hal Cone former manager of The Monkees and Head of Jones Records was found guilty of theft, forgery, receiving stolen property and conspiracy.

1981, American singer and musician Bill Haley who became known as the first Rock 'n' Roll star, was found dead, fully clothed on his bed at his home in Harlingen, Texas from a heart attack, aged 55. He scored the 1955 UK & US No.1 single 'Rock Around the Clock' as well as 'See You Later, Alligator’, ‘Shake, Rattle and Roll’, ‘Rocket 88’, ‘Skinny Minnie’, and ‘Razzle Dazzle’. Haley was blinded in his left eye as a child due to a botched operation and later adopted his distinctive spit-curl hairstyle to distract attention from his blind eye.

1997, Scottish singer Brian Connolly with the Seventies Glam rock group Sweet died of kidney and liver failure aged 51. Connolly replaced Ian Gillan (later of Deep Purple and Black Sabbath ) in Wainwright's Gentlemen who became Sweetshop and then shortened to Sweet. The group scored 15 UK top 40 hits including the 1973 No.1 hit ‘Blockbuster’.

1971, Led Zeppelin announced a small club tour which would see the group playing Universities and small venues with ticket prices at 12 shillings (60p). Zeppelin manager Peter Grant said 'We decided to do the clubs and forget about the bread and the big concert halls'.

1982, Kraftwerk were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'The Model / Computer Love', the first German act to score a No.1 single. The single spent 21 weeks on the chart.

1990, Billy Idol suffered serious injuries when he failed to pull up at a stop sign and crashed from his Harley-Davidson motorbike into a car.

1996, Former Jam members Bruce Foxton and Rick Buckler reached a high court settlement with Paul Weller after suing him for more than £100,000, after claiming they were owed royalties and group assets.

1998, American singer and guitarist Carl Wilson from The Beach Boys died aged 51 after a long battle with lung cancer (Wilson was diagnosed with brain and lung cancer in early 1997). He sang lead vocal on 'God Only Knows', 'Good Vibrations,' and 'I Can Hear Music.' Wilson also sang backing vocals on Elton John's 'Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me.'

1998, Austrian singer Falco (Johann Holzel) was killed in a road accident after his car collided with a bus. He scored the 1986 UK & US No.1 single 'Rock Me Amadeus' making him the first-ever Austrian act to score a UK and US No.1 hit single.

2001, Guitarist Don Felder was fired from The Eagles. He would later launch a $50 million law suit against drummer Don Henley and guitarist Glen Frey, alleging wrongful termination and breach of implied-in-fact contract. Henley and Frey then countersued Felder for breach of contract, alleging that Felder had written and attempted to sell the rights to a "tell-all" book. Both parties settled out-of-court for an undisclosed amount.

2011, Irish guitarist and singer Gary Moore died aged 58 in his sleep of a heart attack in his hotel room while on holiday in Estepona, Spain. Moore had been a member of Skid Row, Thin Lizzy, and Colosseum II, before going solo, scoring the 1979 UK No.8 single 'Parisienne Walkways'. Moore's greatest influence in the early days was guitarist Peter Green of Fleetwood Mac, who was a mentor to Moore when performing in Dublin. His 1990 album Still Got the Blues featured contributions from Albert King, Albert Collins, and George Harrison.

Week commencing January 29 . . .
1967, Pink Floyd spent the day recording parts for the Syd Barrett songs 'Arnold Layne' and 'Candy And A Current Bun' at Sound Techniques Studios, Chelsea, London. Floyd also turned professional on this day after signing a deal with EMI Records.

1972, Chuck Berry had his first UK No.1 single with a live recording of a song he'd been playing live for over 20 years 'My Ding-a-Ling'. UK public morality campaigner Mary Whitehouse attempted to have the song banned due to its innuendo-laden lyrics. The Average White Band members guitarist Onnie McIntyre and drummer Robbie McIntosh played on the single.

1979, Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious was released on bail after attacking Todd Smith, singer Patti Smith's brother, at a Skafish concert. John Lydon has since stated that Mick Jagger stepped in and paid for the lawyers for Vicious.

1995, Richey Edwards guitarist with the Manic Street Preachers vanished leaving no clues to his whereabouts. He left The Embassy Hotel in London at 7am, leaving behind his packed suitcase. His car was found on the Severn Bridge outside Bristol sixteen days later. Edwards has never been found, despite constant searching, and in November 2008 he was declared officially dead.

Week commencing January 22 . . .
1968, Pink Floyd played their first gig without Syd Barrett at Southampton University. They were supported by Tyrannosaurus Rex (later to be renamed T Rex) featuring Marc Bolan and percussionist Steve Peregrine Took.

1973, Sweet were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with 'Blockbuster'. The glam rockers only No.1 of 15 Top 40 hits.

1975, The BBC 'Omnibus' documentary 'Cracked Actor' a film about David Bowie was shown on TV. Filmed in 1974 when Bowie was was a cocaine addict, the documentary has become notorious for showing Bowie's fragile mental state during this period.

1977, Former Fleetwood Mac guitarist Peter Green was committed to a mental hospital following an incident when he threatened his accountant Clifford Adams with an air rifle when he was trying to deliver a £30,000 royalty cheque to him.

1986, Allen Collins, guitarist from Lynyrd Skynyrd crashed his car, paralysing him from the waist down and killing his girlfriend Debra Jean Watts. Collins had survived a plane crash in 1977 that killed two other band members.

1989, American soul singer Donnie Elbert died of a stroke aged 52. In 1955 he formed a doo-wop group, the Vibraharps making his recording debut on their single ‘Walk Beside Me’ but it wasn’t until the Seventies when he had major success with the solo hit 1972 US No. 22 & UK No.11 single 'I Can't Help Myself', Sugar Pie Honey Bunch', as well as the hits 'Where Did Our Love Go?' and 'A Little Piece of Leather'.

1948, Born on this day (Friday), Corky Laing, drummer with heavy rock group Mountain who had the 1971 album 'Nantucket Sleighride'. Also worked with Jack Bruce.

1969, Pink Floyd appeared at the Sixty Nine Club, Royal York Hotel, Ryde, Isle of Wight. Support band was The Cherokees, who had had a minor hit single in 1964 with Seven Golden Daffodils produced by Mickie Most. They later changed their name to New York Public Library.

1975, The last Sunbury Rock Festival in Victoria Australia was held. The promoters who had made heavy losses only paid Deep Purple. AC/DC were scheduled to play after Deep Purple but a fight started on stage between road crews after Purple's set when they began packing up the lights and PA and denied AC/DC use of them, who then left the festival site without playing at all.

1986, US manager Albert Grossman died of a heart attack while flying on Concorde from New York to London. He managed Bob Dylan (between 1962 and 1970), Peter, Paul and Mary, The Band, Janis Joplin and Todd Rundgren. Grossman built the Bearsville Recording Studio near Woodstock in 1969 and in 1970 he founded Bearsville Records.

1992, The inaugural Big Day Out festival took place at the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney. Acts appearing included, Nirvana, Beasts of Bourbon, Box The Jesuits, Celibate Rifles, Cosmic Psychos, The Clouds, Club Hoy, Died Pretty, Falling Joys, The Hard Ons with Henry Rollins Hellmen, Massappeal, The Meanies, Smudge, Sound Unlimited Posse, Ratcat, The Village Idiots, Violent Femmes and Yothu Yindi.

1949, Born on this day (Thursday), John Cooper Clarke, 'Bard of Salford', Manchester, poet laureate. Well known for 'Kung Fu International', 'I Married A Monster From Outer Space', 'The Day My Pad Went Mad'.

1967, Pink Floyd spent the second of three days recording the Syd Barrett songs 'Arnold Layne' and 'Candy And A Current Bun' at Sound Techniques Studios, Chelsea, London. 'Candy And A Current Bun' was first known as 'Let's Roll Another One' and contained the line 'I'm high - Don't try to spoil my fun', but it was decided that Syd Barrett should rewrite it without the drug references.

1969, New Jersey state prosecutors issue a warning to US record dealers that they would be charged with distributing pornography if they were caught selling the John Lennon / Yoko Ono LP 'Two Virgins'. The front cover of the album showed the pair frontally nude, while the back cover showed them from behind. The album still managed to reach No.124 on the US, but failed to chart at all in the UK, where only 5,000 copies were ever pressed.

1970, James Sheppard, the lead singer from the Heartbeats and Shep and the Limelites, was found murdered in his car on the Long Island Expressway. The US singer had been beaten and robbed. The Limelites reached No.2 in the US in 1961 with 'Daddy's Home'.

1970, Led Zeppelin appeared at Leeds University. It was at this show when Zeppelin had a meeting with fine arts lecturer Zacron to discuss their ideas for the album sleeve of the band's next album, Led Zeppelin III. Zacron, born Richard Drew, had studied at Kingston College of Art with members of the Yardbirds.

1977, The Buzzcocks appeared at the Roxy, in London, supported by Chelsea. Also appearing at the venue over the last week; The Damned, The Boys, The Adverts, Slaughter And The Dogs and Squeeze.

1981, Adam And The Ants started a 10-week run at No.1 on the chart with their debut album 'Kings Of The Wild Frontier'.

2017, American drummer Butch Trucks from The Allman Brothers Band died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head in West Palm Beach, Florida, at the age of 69. He played in various groups before forming the 31st of February while at Florida State University in the mid 1960s. He joined the Allman Brothers Band in 1969. Their 1971 live release, At Fillmore East, represented an artistic and commercial breakthrough.

1967, The Monkees performed live for the very first time at The Cow Palace, San Francisco to a sell-out crowd.

1994, American musician Rhett Forrester was shot and killed at a Northwest Atlanta intersection after he refused to give up his vehicle in an attempted carjacking, he was 37 years old. He was best known as the lead singer for New York-based band Riot from 1981 until 1984.

2002, English keyboardist Peter Bardens died from lung cancer aged 57. He was a founder member of the British progressive rock group Camel and also worked alongside Rod Stewart, Mick Fleetwood and Van Morrison, and recorded solo albums.

2017, English bass guitar player Pete Overend Watts and founding member of the 1970s rock band, Mott the Hoople died from throat cancer aged 69. Watts helped start the Buddies with guitarist Mick Ralphs, a band that evolved into Mott the Hoople after periods in which it was known as the Doc Thomas Group, the Shakedown Sound, then Silence. They became Mott the Hoople after Ian Hunter joined in 1969. Watts continued with Dale Griffin, Morgan Fisher and Ray Major in the Mott successor British Lions. He later became a record producer, producing albums for artists including Hanoi Rocks and Dumb Blondes.

Week commencing January 15 . . .
1965, The Rolling Stones recorded 'The Last Time' and 'Play With Fire' at the RCA studio in Hollywood, California. Producer Phil Spector played acoustic guitar on 'Play With Fire.'

1967, The Jimi Hendrix Experience recorded an appearance on Top Of The Pops performing a live version of "Hey Joe". They also played a show at the Seven and a Half Club in Mayfair, London during the evening.

1974, Former members from Free (Paul Rodgers & Simon Kirke), Mott The Hoople (Mick Ralphs), and King Crimson (Boz Burrell), formed Bad Company. The band went on to top the charts with their debut release.

1981, Wendy O. Williams of The Plasmatics was arrested on stage at Milwaukee and was charged with the offence of simulating sex with a sledgehammer. Williams later filed a multimillion dollar civil suit against the Milwaukee Police, claming they sexually assaulted and beat her during the arrest, but a jury rejected her claims.

2000, Spencer Goodman was executed by lethal injection in Huntsville, Texas. Goodman was convicted of kidnapping and murdering the wife of ZZ Top manager Bill Ham in 1991. Ham was present for the execution.

2011, The largest collection of Beatles memorabilia went on display in a new museum in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Rodolfo Vazquez, a 53-year-old accountant, turned his mammoth Beatles collection into a museum with more than 8,500 objects - setting the new world record for the largest collection of Beatles memorabilia. Some of the items included a box of condoms bearing the names of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, a brick from the Cavern Club, a chunk of the stage from the Star Club in Hamburg, and certified copies of the band members' birth certificates. Among his favorite items were 64 boxes of chewing gum in the form of Beatles records.

2015, American session drummer Dallas Taylor died of complications from viral pneumonia and kidney disease, aged 66. He is best known as the drummer on Crosby, Stills and Nash's debut album, Crosby, Stills & Nash (1969) and their follow-up with Neil Young, Déjà Vu (1970) as well as appearing on Stephen Stills' eponymous first solo album in 1970. Taylor was the drummer for Stills' group Manassas in 1972 and 1973. In 1970, Dallas sat in with The Doors accompanying John Densmore on drums. Jim Morrison acknowledges him on The Doors Live in New York album.

1964, The Beatles played two shows at the Olympia Theatre, Paris, France, the first of an 18-night engagement. This first show was attended mostly by Paris' 'top society' members (all dressed in formal evening attire). The French press had little good to say about The Beatles in the next day's papers, but the foursome didn't care because they'd just received news that their single 'I Wanna Hold Your Hand' had hit No.1 in the US, selling 10,000 copies an hour in New York City alone.

1973, Bruce Springsteen appeared at Villanova University, Philadelphia, to an audience of 25 people. Due to a strike by Villanova's school newspaper The Villanovan, this concert went unadvertised, so this is probably the smallest crowd Bruce and The E Street Band have ever played in front of.

1985, David Bowie's schizophrenic half-brother Terry Burnes killed himself aged 47 after laying down on the railway lines at Coulsdon South station, London. He was killed instantly by a passing train. This incident was to be immortalized in the line ‘a crack in the sky and a hand pointing down at me’ in Bowie’s song ‘Oh, You Pretty Things’.

1987, TV presenter and pianist Jools Holland was suspended from Channel 4s UK music show The Tube for 6 weeks, after using the phrase 'groovy fuckers' during a live trailer broadcast in children's hour.

1992, Eric Clapton recorded his unplugged session for MTV. The set which included his current hit single 'Tears in Heaven' and a reworked acoustic version of 'Layla', earned six Grammy Awards for the album including Record of the Year.

1996, Jamaican authorities opened fire on Jimmy Buffett's seaplane, mistaking it for a drug trafficker's plane. U2 singer Bono was also on the plane; neither singer was injured in the incident. The incident inspired Buffett to write a song called 'Jamaica Mistaica'.

2000, American singer Will Jones died aged 71 from the effects of diabetes. He is best known as the bass vocalist for The Coasters and The Cadets. The Cadets' biggest hit was ‘Stranded In The Jungle’ and his bass vocals can be heard on The Coasters' hits ‘Yakety Yak’ and ‘Charlie Brown.’ He also sang lead on The Trammps cover version of ‘Zing! Went the Strings of My Heart’.

2000, It was reported that Mick Jagger had lost the chance of a knighthood because of his errant ways, Prime Minister Tony Blair having doubts about the message it would give about family values. This decision was changed and on 12 December 2003, Mick Jagger was made a Knight Bachelor by The Prince of Wales for services to music, as Sir Michael Jagger.

2013, It was announced that Joe Strummer was to have a city square named after him in Spain following a Facebook campaign. More than 2,000 residents of Granada, where The Clash frontman became a frequent visitor, signed a petition calling for him to be honoured. City hall officials agreed to the proposals and a square in the area was set to be renamed Plaza de Joe Strummer.

1965, The Who released their first single 'I Can't Explain'. With Jimmy Page on guitar and The Ivy League on backing vocals, it went on to reach No.8 on the chart.

1967, The Rolling Stones were forced to change the lyrics of 'Let’s Spend The Night Together' to Let’s Spend Some Time Together when appearing on the US TV The Ed Sullivan Show, after the producers objected to the content of the lyrics. Jagger ostentatiously rolled his eyes at the TV camera while singing the changed lyrics, resulting in host Ed Sullivan announcing that The Rolling Stones would be banned from performing on his show ever again.

1969, George Harrison had a five-hour meeting with John, Paul and Ringo where he made it clear that he was fully prepared to quit The Beatles. Harrison wasn't happy with plans for live performances and the current Let It Be film project.

1971, David Bowie released 'Holy Holy' as a single in the UK which failed to chart. A more frantic version of the song was recorded in 1971 for The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars but was dropped from the album, but subsequently appeared as the B-side to 'Diamond Dogs' in 1974.

1972, Led Zeppelin's 'Black Dog' made its debut on the US singles chart. The group's third single peaked at No.15 and spent 8 weeks on the chart. The song's title is a reference to a nameless, black Labrador retriever that wandered around the Headley Grange studios during recording.

1994, American singer songwriter Harry Nilsson died in his sleep of heart failure after spending the previous day in the recording studio. He recorded 'Everybody's Talkin' from the film Midnight Cowboy and wrote hits for Three Dog Night and The Monkees. Had the UK & US No.1 single with his version of the Badfinger Evans & Ham song 'Without You,'.

2002, 1980s British pop legend Adam Ant was admitted to a mental ward 24 hours after being charged by police with pulling a gun on staff in a London pub.

2015, American record producer, singer and musician Kim Fowley died of bladder cancer in Hollywood, California at the age of 75. He is best known for his role behind a string of novelty and cult pop rock singles in the 1960s, and for managing The Runaways in the 1970s. With Gary S. Paxton he recorded the novelty song ‘Alley Oop’, which reached No.1 on the charts in 1960 and was credited to the non-existent group the Hollywood Argyles. He arranged 'Nut Rocker' for B. Bumble and the Stingers, which became a No.1 hit in the UK in 1962.

Week commencing January 8 . . .
1963, Charlie Watts made his live debut with The Rolling Stones at The Flamingo Jazz Club, Soho, London. Before joining the Stones, Watts played regularly with Blues Incorporated.

1966, David Jones changed his name to David Bowie to avoid confusion with Davy Jones from The Monkees, just in time for the release of his single, 'Can't Help Thinking About Me'.

1970, Diana Ross made her last appearance with The Supremes at The Frontier Hotel, Las Vegas. During the show, Diana introduced her replacement, Jean Terrell, who would lead the group to seven more Top 40 hits including the Top 10 entries 'Up The Ladder To The Roof' and 'Stoned Love' later in the year.

1977, David Bowie released his eleventh studio album Low, the first of three collaborations with Brian Eno termed the "Berlin Trilogy". The track 'Sound and Vision' was released as a single and used by the BBC on trailers at the time, providing much needed exposure, and helped the song reach No.3 on the charts as Bowie opted to do nothing to promote the single himself.

1978, The Sex Pistols played their last show at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco where Johnny Rotten yelled to the crowd at the outset, “Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated.” It was the last time the band played with bassist Sid Vicious.

1992, American rock drummer, Jerry Nolan from The New York Dolls died from a fatal stroke aged 45. The influential American band formed in 1972 and made just two albums, the 1973 New York Dolls and 1974 Too Much Too Soon. Nolan joined the New York Dolls in the autumn of 1972 to replace Billy Murcia, who had died of asphyxiation as a result of a failed attempt to revive him from a drug overdose while on tour in England, early in the band's career. Nolan left the Dolls together with Johnny Thunders in the spring of 1975. The two then placed a call to bassist Richard Hell, formerly of the Neon Boys and Television, to form The Heartbreakers.

2005, A $100,000 (£58,823) statue honouring the late punk guitarist Johnny Ramone was unveiled by his widow Linda at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Johnny died from prostate cancer in September 2004 at the age of 55. Hundreds turned out for the ceremony, including Tommy Ramone the only surviving band member. Dee Dee Ramone died of a drugs overdose in 2002 and Joey died in 2001 of lymphatic cancer.

1969, Led Zeppelin's debut album was released in the UK. Recorded at Olympic Studios in Barnes, London, the album took only about 36 hours of studio time to complete at a cost of just £1,782, most of the tracks being recorded 'live' in the studio with very few overdubs. The album spent a total of 71 weeks on the UK chart.

1975, The first night of a UK tour kicked off under the banner of The Warner Brothers Music Show. It featured Little Feat, Montrose, Tower Of Power, The Doobie Brothers and Graham Central Station. Also released was an album sampler featuring all the acts that was priced at 69p.

1977, The Police had their first rehearsal, held at drummer's Stewart Copeland's London flat, with Henri Padovani on guitar.

1993, Van Morrison failed to turn up at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction dinner, making him the first living inductee not to attend.

2005, It was announced that the Strawberry Field children's home immortalised by The Beatles was to close. The home in Woolton, Liverpool was made famous when John Lennon wrote 'Strawberry Fields Forever' after playing there as a child.

2017, Richard Carpenter said he was owed at least $2m (£1.6m) in royalties for the hits he recorded in The Carpenters. He claimed Universal Music had only paid the band a "minuscule fraction" of the money they were owed from downloads on sites such as iTunes and Amazon. The musician was suing for compensation, according to legal documents filed in Los Angeles.

1958, Gibson guitars launched it' 'Flying V' electric guitar. Guitarists who played a Flying V include Albert Collins, Jimi Hendrix, Marc Bolan and Billy Gibbons from ZZ Top.

1964, The first night of a 14 date UK tour 'Group Scene 1964', featuring The Rolling Stones, The Ronettes, Marty Wilde, The Swinging Blue Jeans and Dave Berry and The Cruisers, played at the Granada Theatre, Harrow on The Hill, Middlesex.

1967, The Who played their first gig of this year when they appeared at Morecambe, Central Pier. The band played over 200 gigs in this year, including their first ever US tour.

1973, Carly Simon's 'You're So Vain' (with Mick Jagger on backing vocals), started a three week run at No.1 on the US singles chart. In 2015, after keeping quiet for more than 40 years, Carly Simon admitted that 'You're So Vain' was about Warren Beatty, but only one verse of it. Simon said the other verses were about two other men.

1975, The mayor of Boston cancelled a Led Zeppelin concert after over 2,000 fans rioted trying to buy tickets. The fans caused an estimated $50,000 to $75,000 damage at Boston Garden. The gig, during the bands North American tour, was rescheduled for Feb 4th.

1980, Georgeanna Tillman singer with Motown girl group The Marvelettes died from lupus and sickle cell anemia aged 35. The Marvelettes scored the 1961 US No.1 single 'Please Mr Postman'. In 1963 Tillman was diagnosed with lupus, she also had been diagnosed with sickle cell anemia during childhood.

1993, It was reported that David Bowie had lost over £2.5 million in unpaid royalties to an Italian Mafia-linked bootleg fraud.

1997, Two bronze busts worth £50,000 were stolen from a garden at George Harrison's estate in Henley-on- Thames, Oxfordshire. Thieves had climbed a 10- foot-wall and cut the figures of two monks from their stone plinths.

2001, Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour won the right to his dot com name. Dave took legal action in his battle to reclaim davidgilmour.com from Andrew Herman who had registered the URL and was selling Pink Floyd merchandise through the site.

2006, Guitarist, trumpeter and drummer Alex St. Claire died. Member of The Omens, The Solid Senders and an original member of Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band and Frank Zappa.

2017, Norway announced that it would become the first country in the world to gradually stop using the FM radio network. The move, which aimed to ditch the analogue platform in favour of a digital one - Digital Audio Broadcasting, would bring a clearer sound to the nation's five million people. Although it is to be noted that DAB broadcasts only in mono.

1969, Appearing live on The Lulu show on TV, The Jimi Hendrix Experience were booked to perform two songs, Voodoo Chile (which was performed in full), then Hendrix stopped performing his new single 'Hey Joe' after a verse and chorus and instead launched into a version of the Cream song 'Sunshine Of Your Love' as a tribute to the band who had split a few days earlier. Hendrix then proceeded to continuing jamming, running over their allocated time slot on the live show, preventing the show's host Lulu from closing the show properly.

1976, Bob Dylan's song, 'Hurricane', peaked at No.33 on the Billboard singles chart, helping to cause enough publicity to eventually get former boxer Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter released from jail. The song promoted Carter's innocence and a movie about Carter's life, starring Denzel Washington, was released in 2000.

2002, Liam and Noel Gallagher topped a poll of celebrities you would least like to live next to, getting 40% of the vote. Readers of Your Home magazine voted the brothers from Oasis as 'Neighbours From Hell'.

2014, Phil Everly, one half of the Everly Brothers, died of complications from lung disease aged 74, in California. In their heyday between 1957 and 1962, the Everly Brothers had 19 Top 40 hits, including 'Bye Bye Love', 'Wake Up Little Susie' and 'All I Have to Do Is Dream' and influenced acts such as The Beatles and The Beach Boys. The Everly Brothers had 35 Billboard Top-100 singles, 26 in the top 40. They hold the record for the most Top-100 singles by any duo. In the UK they had 30 chart singles, 29 in the top 40, 13 top 10, and 4 at No. 1 between 1957 and 1984.

1969, The entire shipment of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's album 'Two Virgins' was seized by authorities in New Jersey due to the full frontal nude photograph of the couple on the cover. The album was eventually wrapped in plain brown paper in record stores.

1971, The George Harrison album 'All Things Must Pass' started a seven week run at No.1 on the US album chart, making Harrison the first solo Beatle to score a US No.1 album. The triple album included the hit singles 'My Sweet Lord' and 'What Is Life', as well as songs such as 'Isn't It a Pity' and the title track that were turned down by The Beatles.

1979, Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious went on trial in New York accused of murdering his girlfriend Nancy Spungen three months earlier, when he claimed to have awoken from a drugged stupor to find Spungen dead on the bathroom floor of their room in the Hotel Chelsea in Manhattan, New York.

1980, US singer Larry Williams was found dead from a gunshot wound to his head in his Los Angeles, California home aged 45. Williams had the 1957 US No.5 & UK No. 21 single 'Short Fat Fannie.' Also known for 'Bony Moronie' and 'Dizzy Miss Lizzy.' The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Dr. Feelgood, Flying Burrito Brothers, Johnny Winter, Little Richard, The Who, Ritchie Valens and Bill Haley & His Comets all covered his songs.

1997, Guitarist Randy California from US group Spirit drowned when rescuing his 12-year old son when he was sucked into a riptide in surf off Hawaii.