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Wed 28: Ragtime Rewind Swing Band @ Assembly Rooms, 40 North Bailey, Durham DH1 3ET. 9:20pm. £8.00. A Durham Fringe Festival event (www.durhamfringe.co.uk).

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August

Sun 01: Vieux Carre Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.

Sun 01: Jeffrey Hewer Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Leeds College of Music graduate guitarist (Masters, Jazz Performance & Composition).

Sunday, September 22, 2019

The Sumner Suite @ The Gosforth Hotel

(By Russell)
A rare visit to the Gosforth Hotel to watch the Newcastle v Brighton Premier League match on tv. A pint from the Cullercoats Brewery first half, a pint from the Whitley Bay Brewing Company second half (keeping it local) then at full time (0-0) a trip to the gents. On the wall at the bottom of the stairs was a sign 'The Sumner Suite'. 

Ah, the memories came flooding back! Way back when, every Wednesday night, 40p on the door to see a local band called Last Exit. Terry Ellis, guitar, Gerry Richardson, keyboards, Ronnie Pearson, drums and one Gordon Sumner, bass guitar. Yes Gordon Sumner, or Sting, as he was already known, was soon to hit the big time. Jazz, jazz funk, original material, Last Exit was one of those once in a generation outfits. 


Upstairs on the wall outside the room now known as the Sumner Suite is a piece about those far off days. This evening (Saturday 21 September) a function was booked into the room. The host kindly allowed your correspondent to step inside....there was Terry by the bar, Ronnie behind his kit, a bearded Gerry at the keys over on the left, and in the middle, out front, the man who was destined for fame and fortune, Sting. Happy days! 
Russell

5 comments :

NeilC said...

The following comments are controversial but its something I feel very strongly about . It is so sad they chose to name the suite after him . I think he does a disservice to the North East, he denies his roots and on occasion is really critical about the North East, unless there's money to be made . He has talent but if you notice he always surrounds himself with brilliant musicians to ensure he can effectively hide his own shortcomings . Other members of Last Exit are probably more deserving of having a room named after them but of course national fame sadly deserted them so whilst visitors might struggle for a short while identifying Sumner suite as being named after Sting but would undoubtedly fail to recognise the significance if named over any of the other members.

Lance said...

Denies his roots?

NeilC said...

A flavour of his thoughts are shown in this article :-

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/sting-hates-home-town-1664229

Patti said...

I think certain members of Sting's family here in the North East might find Neil's comments controversial too! Anyway, the Gosforth Hotel also has a sign up to say that the first issue of Viz magazine was sold there, in December 1979! Another claim to fame ......

Lance said...

He may not have liked growing up in the northeast but, in the Chronicle article, he certainly didn't deny his roots. Plus, back then, if you wanted to make it in the arts you didn't stay in Wallsend.

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