Here is another nice poser for you. It shows the boys dance band of
1942. I know that at least two of them are still alive. I wonder if
anyone will admit to recognizing any of them. In your own time my
old friend, when you have the time. I can let you have the names if
Click to see enlarged view
the personnel list, but firstly let me say how much the work of Leila
(and you of course,) is appreciated in the setting up and
enhancement of our offerings. Here we go with the list and a thumbnail
script for most.
The Bandmaster was someone with a very appropriate
name, that of Beecham. A man of inexhaustible patience, a really gentle
soul. The band was very well served to have had him to teach them.
On his right is Wally Hibbert, a pianist, a good hard grafter. He
also served in my Band at Portsmouth much later in our lives. He was
also a very good motor mechanic and if he wasn't in the bandroom he
was probably under my car!
"The drummer was one Lou Schmidt, (right of Beecham) whose elder
brother Paul won considerable fame at the School and later, with his
hobby of knitting. He could turn out a Shetland Isles sweater with
the best of them. Next to him was Nobby Hall (string bass) a very
intelligent man whose forehead should tell you he was in the genius
class. He ended his playing days in the Australian Air force Band."
The front rank from right to left consisted of Spilsbury whose christian
name I can't remember but he was an outstanding player. Then Ted Lee,
another absolutely first rate musician on both instruments. He was
in my squad and eventually left the Corps to go to the Welsh Guards
where he was both the principal cornet and lead violin. And still
alive I'm very pleased to say. The trombone player was Gunner Yates,
notorious for trying (very hard) to emulate Tommy Dorsey's great hit
of the time Song of India. Without being really unkind, he wasn't
Moving on, there was Geoff (Ginger) Collins a really first class tenor
sax, who left the Corps in the 60s as a Staff Bandmaster. Then Scotty
Scott who was in one of my rooms when I was a section leader. He was
a really fine player in the making and he tried all day and most of
the night to make it! Finally someone I don't know a lot about except
that he was a top class lead Sax, whose name was Pete or Roy Wooley.
a nostalgic 'photo dear Tom has sent you of the 1942 boys dance
band. It certainly brings back many memories for me. I can name
all of the members bar two, and given time I might remember
them. Yes some will not be with us any more as we are all in
our 80's now, but I wonder if the picture will bring some more
Howstrake lads out of the wood-work. I wonder if Tom has all
the names? I'll contact him….I owe him an E-Mail anyway.
Best wishes to you and all who enjoy your Website.
Ken Tyler RMBX 1883