THE TELSTARS

STOKE-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND -  1962 to 1965

COURTESY OF ALAN JONES:

 

Publicity Photo taken in 1964 at Mow Cop, Cheshire. Alan is on the right with the Stratocaster.

Personnel (left to right)

Dave Pearson - Hofner Colorama II

John Fradley - Vocals

Terry Hall - Framus Star Bass

Alan Jones  - Fender Stratocaster

 

ALAN RECALLS:

The band was called The Telstars and the members were (left to right on the photo) Dave Pearson (joined late 63), Terry Hall, John Fradley and myself. We were christened that by the club that gave us our first booking in 1962. At the time, school holidays August 1962, we three were just jamming for fun, then one Saturday night Terry's father announced he had got us a booking for a fortnight's time at The Safari Lake Club (he'd just come in from a night's drinking there!). Of course we  hadn't got a name so, as we were completely instrumental and "Telstar" by The Tornados was still in the charts, that's how we were billed. We practiced furiously and managed to knock together a dozen or so Shadows numbers and at  the gig we played them in the first session then in the second session we played them again in a different order. As the only amp was my 8 watt (I can't remember the name) Terry played rhythm guitar (he hadn't progressed to the bass yet) through it and my lead guitar was played directly through the clubs PA. This meant that the people in the other room could only hear me. God knows what it must have sounded like but we were re-booked. Our fee was 2.10.00!  We played at every working men's club within a 20 mile radius of Stoke and were always re-booked because we didn't play too loud!

John Fradley was a first class drummer (his father played drums in a 'proper' dance band) and John would certainly have made it as a pro drummer - his interpretations of Big B and Little B and the Jet Harris and Tony Meehan drum solos were immaculate. He was also lead vocals in all our numbers a la Beatles , Hollies, Searchers etc etc  etc.

 

The last band I was in, and the most successful, was 'The Lyric' comprising myself John Plant and Jeff Watts. We passed three auditions for Opportunity Knocks and were virtually assured of an appearance in the next series but along came New World from New Zealand and we are sure they 'nicked' our spot. We went on to do cabaret appearing at some of the top nightspots including The Golden Garter at Wythenshawe, Manchester, with Eartha Kitt, Johnny Ray, Bob Monkhouse, and The Talk of the North Manchester, which was an hilarious week with Freddie Starr. We were part of a full cabaret show for a long time and the star of the show was Tommy Bruce (who we backed as well as doing our own spots) and there was also a comedian/singer on the bill by the name of Pete Conway. I think his son is now something in show-business!!

The photo below was take onstage at The Golden Garter. I'm actually using Jeff's Selmer Zodiac amp. Jeff (far right) is a versatile chap - he played rhythm guitar, drums and bass.  My contribution to the amp section was my 100 watt Selmer PA amp for the three mikes. John, or Jake as he was usually known, is playing the Hofner bass -  he later switched to a Gibson EB3. 

We disbanded on New Year's Eve 1970. 

The Lyric at the Golden Garter Club, Wythenshawe, Manchester.

 

 


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