I started playing the bass guitar in groups when I was 14 and the first song I learned to play was “Don’t Bring Me Down” by The Pretty Things
This is me in my parents upstairs front room (above the pub they ran) and in my best “Pete Townsend” pose. This was where our band rehearsed every week and all my friends would come and watch us.
I had a 28 inch waist in those days – just like today (yeah right)!!!
The guitar I’m playing was a red colour Hofner bass with stickers that I added to make it look good. My parents were very supportive and my dad bought me a VOX AC30 amplifier from a shop called Ken Stevens. This was the same shop where people like Syd Barrett and David Gilmour from Pink Floyd bought their equipment, although I didn’t know them as they were about 4 years older than me.
These are the “business cards” of the bands I played in. My second group called The New Generation actually recorded 4 songs with the legendary producer Joe Meek at his studio in December 1966
Sadly Joe killed himself a couple of months later. He was certainly very clever, the sound he got from my amplifier in the recording studio was stunning. I’m told the tapes still exist – somewhere!
With my third group – if only we had added the word “Pistols” to our name! The name was very controversial for the time and the local newspaper actually refused to print it. The business card for my band LSD is actually bright florescent orange but is impossible to be reproduced on a computer. By this time I was playing lead guitar and changed my surname to Marshall because I used a Marshall amplifier.
This is the only photo I have of the bands I played in. I bought the van for £30 and we were are outside Ken Stevens music shop. Our roadie “Phil” is on the left, then Brian Fisher – bass guitar, John Bottomley – drums, John Rowlands – vocals and Lee Wood – lead guitar
To the right is the Cambridge Guildhall and behind us is a pub called The Red Cow which ran a blues club. I saw bands like Chicken Shack and Aynsley Dunbar plus many more in a room above the pub.
I was standing in Ken Stevens shop one day when David Gilmour walked in and purchased a yellow Fender Stratocaster that someone had ordered but then couldn’t afford. David paid for it, nodded to me and walked out of the shop. Two days later I was reading Melody Maker with the story of him joining Pink Floyd.
This is me and a few “hippy” friends in the summer of love at the beautiful botanical gardens in Cambridge. The local newspaper saw us giving out flowers to people in the city centre and brought us here for a photo shoot
On the left is a guy called Cilla, then my stunning girlfriend of the time Mandy Harvey with me, then unknown friend, then Mandy’s friend and a guy called Ray who I will forever be indebted to as he made me aware of the record called Reflections of Charlie Brown by Ruperts People.
This was 1967 and the world was a wonderful place to be. This was the year I saw everyone from The Doors and Jefferson Airplane at the Roundhouse to The Crazy World of Arthur Brown to The Rolling Stones playing at the local cinema with the Spencer Davis Group as support band. Great times.
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