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Saturday, May 02, 2009

Info on Syd Warren Wanted.

I received the following EMail, I'm sure we can help Maxene:
Hello, I wonder if you can help me. My dad was Syd Warren, tenor sax player in the north east for many years. My dad sadly passed away almost 14 years ago.I was wondering if you had any photos of him as, unfortunately, I have lost contact with his second wife. When my dad was 15 he played at the Oxford Galleries in Newcastle, I can remember as a child a photo of him in a big band, I think the Band Leader was George Evans but I am not sure. I would be really grateful if you could come up with anything of him. About twenty years ago he made a record with Scott Adair, Colin Haikney, Kay Rouselle, Derek Dixon, and Ray Harley. I have just recently started listening to it and the memories come flooding back of his playing and happy times. I wondered if any of them are still with us. Can you help me with that? I would love to hear from you and I know it is a tall order.
Kind regards
Maxene Wells .
Maxene, I've tried to EMail you but the server was having none of it. I've put a few photos together here. There may be more to follow. In the above photo Syd (tenor) is with American trombone player Jiggs Whigham, Derek Dixon (bs) & Willie Payne (gtr).


Maxene said...

Just a big thank you for the photos of my dad Syd Warren, they are great, what lovely memories to see him again.
A big thank you.
Kind regards
Maxene Wells

Maureen said...

I worked with Maxene's Mum, Cathy Warren, in the late '50s/early '60s at Eve Brown Fashions on Northumberland Street, Newcastle, where I was a window dresser and Cathy senior sales on the ladies' coat department.
Many times I was baby-sitter to Maxene at their home in Wellfield, Whitley Bay, so that Cathy could accompany Syd to one of his gigs or to a party afterwards. The last time would have probably been early 1961 with my husband (then my fiance) and I remember many Saturday nights dancing to the George Evan's big band, with Syd on saxophone, at the Oxford Galleries.

Lance said...

I recall the jazz club at The Rex, Whitley Bay, on Sunday evenings. To get there, involved a bus ride, a walk through the pedestrian tunnel, then two further bus journeys but it was worth it to hear Syd playing Rosolino's "Blue Daniel". Strangely, I can't recall who else was in the band - perhaps someone can enlighten me?

jon said...

Syd was my flute teacher from 1986 until I finished school in 1992. I'd have lessons once a week at school where his patience with struggling beginners was amazing. He would occassionally pick up his flute and fly off into a jazz warm-up to which I'd just sit back and wonder if I'd ever be that good. He also used to lead a group of woodwind students every Saturday morning at Mortimer School (South Shields) and later at Laygate primary. When we were up to scratch we joined the other kids and staff in the Stage Band and performed with local professionals. I can remember George Evans coming along to play at one concert (my sister was loaned his bass saxophone which lived in a box the size of a coffin). We even performed charity concerts, one with Johnny Heanan singing Sinatra classics in The New Tyne Theatre, Newcastle.

Syd was a great teacher and excellent musician. It was great to see pictures of him here. I'm forever grateful that he taught me the flute and I'm glad to say that i still play now, although without the confidence and skill that Syd had on flute, clarinet and saxophone!

Lance said...

Great memories from Jon. Any more of Syd's pupils out there?

Anonymous said...

what was the title of the record sid played with scott adair

Peter Fraser said...

I was one of Syds pupils on the saxophone. When I first started Maxine used to sit with her fingers in her ears. I knew Syd a long time in fact the last time I saw him was when he opened the Carousel Club in Chester le Street . I left to work in london as a music copyist and was a regular at Ronnie Scott's i used to do work for them. I saw most of the ham shanks tenor sax players and you can take it from me they were not as good as Syd Warren. I came home for the weekend and my mother told me Syd had passed away.
Peter Fraser Blyth Northumberland

John Cox said...

Also know that a good friend of his was [the late] Stan Coates.

John Cox said...

Forgot to mention. Hedworth Lane primary school and Boldon Comprehensive.

John Cox said...

Syd was my clarinet/sax teacher from 1983-92 when music was still free. Played in Laygate big band with him when I left school too. If it wasn't for him I wouldn't have had my passion for music. Eternally grateful. Great guy and an absolutely awesome musician.

Anonymous said...

Just reminiscing and came across this post!

Like Jon, Mr Warren was my clarinet and sax teacher from 1984 until I went to university at Boldon Comp and Saturday big band sessions.
We still kept in touch and played together at Gosforth Park Hotel and Park Hotel Tynemouth. He did so much for young musicians and I still have a gold saxophone necklace he gave me.
His funeral was very musical!
A friend, Ian Trewhella, also a fellow student, bought his tenor sax and I believe he will still own it! I have his saxophone stand.
Sadly no photos but very happy memories!

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