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Bebop Spoken There

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Monday, August 23, 2010

Tommy Henderson on Eddie Farrow

I was pleasantly surprised to hear some recordings of my late friend EDDIE FARROW, a brilliant pianist who worked for me for three years in my 'sixties band', on the Frank Wappat radio show a while ago.
Eddie worked on the Queen Mary and the QE2 with Nat Gonella's band and Nat once told me a little story about Eddie - He saw Eddie waving to them from the quayside as the ship left harbour (he should have been on board with them ) but he did like a drink or three. They had to fly him to the next venue.
Eddie joined my Latin American group, playing in EMERSON'S Newcastle after my Greek pianist Spiros was unfortunately inducted into the Greek army while on a quick visit home. After EMERSON'S we moved as a resident group to the CLUB A GOGO in Percy Street,where we played for a listening audience in the jazz lounge before moving into the main hall playing Latin American music.
We later moved to Sunderland for the opening of WETHERELLS club where we accompanied the cabarets.
Eddie worked with me until sadly his wife died and he retired for a while returning later to the cruise ships where as well as working with the orchestra he played in the piano lounge and also accompanied the Church services.
Whenever he was on leave he would look me up to say hello and sit in with the boys. It would be nice to hear more memories and stories of Eddie Farrow who sadly passed away in 1977.
Tommy Henderson.

5 comments :

Russell said...

Hi Lance/Tommy

Where was Emerson's. Was it Emerson Chambers on Blackett Street (now occupied by Waterstone's)

Russell

Lance said...

The very same - possibly the first classy wine/dine/dance venue in Newcastle. Not a jazz club but lots of jazz played there.
Re Eddie Farrow; a great pianist who, because of his drink problem, never reached his full potential. In his latter years he had a short spell as resident organist at Jarrow Buffs CIU Club - his talent totally lost on the club audience.
In his autobiography, "A Travelling Musician" Martin Taylor speaks lovingly and sensitively of the summer seasons they played together in Morecombe. As a matter of interest, Maine Street drummer Mike Humble is also mentioned within the pages of that tome. It's a good read.

Hil said...

Mike (Gilby) if he was able would have to have added to the comments about Eddie. Alas due to Mike's continued ill health he is unable to do so.
Mike and Eddie worked on the QE2 with Jimmy Bence's band. They were great pals and enjoyed the jazz clubs that the frequent trips to NYC gave them. This was I know, Mikes reason for working on the ship. He can still (sometimes) recall the great and good that they heard in some little out of the way jazz bar in Manhattan. Not to forget the pilgrimage they made to Hoboken.

R.I.P. Eddie Farrow another great musician and one of life's true characters.

Trevor Wakenshaw said...

Can anyone shed any light on the Jimmy Bence band when they played Newcastle Mayfair in the mid 60's? In particular the singer they had at the time named John Little (though he may have used the name Osbourne as well).

Lance said...

Trevor - Could this be Johnny De Little who is on at Louis' Restaurant, Jesmond on Tuesday Jan 25?

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