FRED Wyllie ~ A Memory
By David Webster Musn RMB/x2034. Clart & Violin and thanks to Fred - Sax.

I served with Fred in the band of HMS Kenya in the first commission after the war to the West Indies. This was a band of fifteen under Bandmaster Wilmot and Bd. Cpl. John Willows. Seven of the members of this band were young musicians just out of training on the IOM. The remaining six were experienced musicians all of whom had considerable wartime experience. Fred Wiley was one of the experienced Musicians and loved playing the dance music of the day. Bandmaster Wilmot also played alto sax but Fred wanted a front line of four saxes. After a run ashore Fred came back on board saying he had found a tenor sax for sale in Hamilton, Bermuda and persuaded me to take out £100 from my post war credits to buy this sax. I did it without having seen the sax and never having played one. So Fred had his front line of four saxes!! Peter Waddington and the Bandmaster on alto and Fred and I on tenors. The trumpet player was 'Taff' Lewis (who later turned pro and the last time I saw him was touring with Des O'Connor) pianist was Fred Wain (whose death was recently recorded in your columns) Bass was 'Winnie' Winstanley and drums Fred Cappell. We had to play for all the quarter deck cocktail parties etc after usually beating retreat on the dockside. The marine flunkies kept us well supplied behind our specially made stands!!! Fred was a great tenor player and taught me a lot as a result of which I earned quite a lot of money when dance bands were the vogue. We used to meet when we both played with the 'All Stars' at Margate. We had many a laugh about getting my tenor sax which had really seen better days but I got my money back when I eventually sold it and never regretted Fred's acquisition for me.

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