Remembering Bristol's rock and roll years with Johnny Carr and The Cadillacs
AS a regular reader of Bristol Times, I was delighted to read the letter from Mike and Mary Toogood (BT February 26) about Johnny Carr and the Cadillacs.
I had the pleasure of seeing them on many occasions, including a couple of the "Group's Galore" gatherings at the Colston Hall.
In December 1960 I was the Boys' Secretary of the Somerdale Youth Club at Fry's and booked them for our very first dance through fellow club member, Barry Poole.
He was a great friend of the drummer, the late Dave Purslow, as they were both members of the Speedwell Air Training Corps band.
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Barry was a very popular member of our club and very highly thought of.
Knowing that I was arranging a Christmas dance he mentioned that he knew of a good group ("the best in Bristol," he said) and that he would try and get them to come along. My big concern, however, was whether we could afford them.
But, as they knew Barry, they said that they would come and play for a couple of pounds cheaper than the normal price.
We built a temporary stage for them to perform on, but then found that we could only get the drummer and the drums on it.
Johnny and the other members of the group, who ended up performing in front of the stage, were absolutely brilliant.
The evening was a great success with about 100 or so teenagers having a great time.
We had many more dances in our club, with Johnny Carr and The Cadillacs coming back several times.
We booked other groups through a very well known local agent, Harry Barter, manager of Dale Rivers and The Ramrods, who also worked at Fry's.
Bob Williamson, who also worked at Fry's, was a brilliant drummer who played for The Sheridans, a group who were also featured in Bristol Times a few weeks ago.
Pete Budd and the Rebels were also a great Bristol group.
Now lead singer of the Wurzels Pete also worked at Fry's
I loved Rock 'n' Roll and, in the early 1960s, would follow Johnny Carr and the Cadillacs wherever they were playing, even as far as Melksham and Radstock.
When they made a couple of records (1964/ 5) we really thought that they would be going places, but, unfortunately, it didn't happen.
But they were a great band who finally broke up in the early 1970s
Malcolm and Heather Jefferies
I remember seeing Johnny Carr and the Cadillacs at the Top Rank Social Club in Kingswood in the mid 1960s.
A really good group, with a large local following, they also had some records released.
Another popular group at the time were Johnny Slade and The Vikings, who went on tour with Joe Brown and The Bruvvers.
I wonder if they released any records?
If so then they must be collector's items, worth a considerable amount of money.
Editor's note: In 1964 Johnny Carr And The Cadillacs released (1) Respectable/ Remember That Night, followed, in 1965, by (2) Do You Love That Girl?/ Give Me A Little Time.
The two seven inch singles were released on the Decca and Fontana labels.
I REMEMBER Johnny Carr and the Cadillacs very well.
Ray Truscott, the guitarist, who had strawberry blonde hair, dated my sister, Evelyn Ellis, who lived in Bellevue Crescent in Cliftonwood in the 1960s.
His two friends, Roger and Mike, had black curly hair.
We all used to meet up at The Glen, at the top of Blackboy Hill, near The Downs, whenever they went on stage.
Life was good in those days – happy times to remember for ever.