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For bohemians everywhere

June Hudson – Start Spreading the News . . .

‘Start Spreading The News…’

 

 

Jonathan Broughton interviews Bohemian resident, songstress and charity fundraiser extraordinaire June Hudson, May 2014

June Hudson at Music Hall Tavern, Blackpool

June Hudson at Music Hall Tavern, Blackpool

 

June is a singer and entertainer. Born in the Cheshire village of Haslington, near Crewe, she began performing when she was very young.

“I was brought up by my granny, Emily Cooper. Dad worked for Rolls Royce on the planes and my mum worked in a factory making bombs and incendiary bombs. My dad was in the Home Guard and was injured when Rolls Royce was bombed.”

June loves to reminisce, in fact she often includes anecdotes and stories about the old days in her act.

“There was no electricity in granny’s house. We had an old tin bath which came down once a fortnight for us to have a bath in.”

Her love for singing began when her dad took her to The Cozy Club in Haslington. “He lifted me up onto a table and I sang. To everyone’s surprise I was really quite good.” And a star was born.

Back at home, June spent hours twirling round and round the garden like a ballerina. Her granny agreed to let her have tap dancing lessons at a shilling a week. “That was a lot of money in those days.”

At the dance class, Carroll Levis, a talent-spotter singled out June and invited her to join a troupe that he was putting together for a show to be performed at the local theatre. June loved being on stage and bitten by the show business bug she has been performing ever since.

“My big influence is Vera Lynn. I’ve been told that I sound like her and I wrote to her and to my surprise she wrote back and sent me a signed copy of her book with ‘To June. Good luck with the singing,’ written inside.”

Her association with Vera Lynn continued when June performed in Blackpool.

“I was singing at The Conservative Club and someone from the Burma Star Association was in the audience and afterwards they asked me if I’d sing for their annual get-together at the Winter Gardens Theatre in Blackpool. They loved the old songs and my little stories. I was very nervous before the show, but when I went out onto the stage, with that big band and all those lovely people out to have a good evening, I had the time of my life.” June was singing at the RAF Club in Cleavleys. After her act, the African Star Association approached her and asked her to sing in the Planet Room at the Winter Gardens, in Blackpool.

June supplemented her income by working at Littlewoods Stores. “I ended up being one of their supervisors and buyers.”

One evening, she and a friend went to The Mecca in Blackpool for a night out. There she met Ron, her future husband, and they have now been married for forty-five years. They had two sons, Michael and Edward. Sadly, Edward died when he was just three from a heart condition. This tragic event triggered June’s tireless fund-raising activities for charity.

The family left Blackpool and moved to Tunbridge Wells. June and Ron heard through their local church, the United Reformed Church, that the Kent and Sussex and Pembury Hospital needed money to buy a CAT (Computerised Axial Tomography) scanner. June and others formed a committee and set about organising events and raising awareness. At one event they raised five hundred pounds in one day – when she told fortunes at Tonbridge Castle when footballer Emlyn Hughes stopped by – see pictures below:

June Hudson and Emlyn Hughes 1982

June Hudson and Emlyn Hughes 1982

June Hudson Fortune Teller 1982

June Hudson Fortune Teller 1982

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The family moved back to Tunbridge Wells after her mother died and June sang in local clubs and pubs to raise money for charity. Her husband Ron, a class one football referee for 37 years, helped with June’s fund-raising appeals by blowing the whistle to kick off festive draws and announcing the winners of prize winning holidays.

June appeared on television in ‘My Kind Of People,’ when she sang with the star of the show, Michael Barrymore.

June and Ron moved to Bohemia twelve years ago. They are regular baptised members of the King’s Church on the Ridge.

“Singing is exhilarating. It’s great for exercise and general well-being.” June bought herself an amplifier which she uses nearly every day and when Ron had to go into hospital in 1998 for a heart operation, he asked her to record some of his favourite songs so that he could listen to her as he recuperated.

 

 

 

NOWADAYS June has made a second CD, Nowadays, (pictures below) which features over twenty songs and is sold to raise funds for the King’s Church, Hastings.

June Hudson Nowadays CD cover March 2014

June Hudson Nowadays CD cover March 2014

June Hudson aged 14

June Hudson aged 14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“NOWADAYS” CD

Andy Davies, musical director and arranger. The recording made in Bohemia in March 2014.

Notes from the CD

June Hudson, accompanied by Andy Davies and Alan Reid, both keyboards. Track listing:

1. Nowadays (from “Chicago”).

2. I can’t give you anything but love.

3. I believe.

4. Sentimental Journey.

5. What a difference a day made.

6. It’s almost like being in love.

7. As time goes by.

8. You make me feel so young.

9. Embraceable you.

10. Old black magic.

11. I left my heart in San Francisco.

12. I’ve got you under my skin.

13. New York, New York.

14. Can’t smile without you.

15. The nearness of you.

16. That’s my desire.

17. Crazy.

18. Hurt.

19. You’ll never know.

20. When I fall in love.

21. Say it with flowers.

22. It’s magic.

23. (i) Sitting on top of the world.  (ii) Slow boat to China.   (iii) Who’s sorry now.   (iv) It’s a sin to tell a lie.   (v) Bye bye blackbird.

Recorded March 2014 at Bohemia Road “Studios”, St Leonards-on-Sea, Sussex.  Running time: approx 74 minutes. A Ron Hudson production.

To order copies of the CD (£5 each), please call Sue at King’s Church, The Ridge, Hastings, on 01424 755990 or 753322.

 

 

 

“. . . I’m going to be the heart of it . . . (New York, New York)”

 

NOWADAYS – reviewed by Dean Wilforth

Imagine you are in Blackpool, walking along the front, you pass a dance hall and on an impulse go inside. A dozen couples are dancing around the floor to familiar tunes from Cole Porter to Patsy Cline, Barry Manilow to Broadway. The rhythms change, the singer June Hudson moves easily from one style to another. Her voice is rich, powerful and she can belt out a torch song like Shirley Bassey, or sing tenderly in an intimate way and has that essential northern soulfulness.

June Hudson is a musical trouper who can just stand there and pour out the songs in a smooth interpretive flow. Even if there were an altercation in our imaginary ballroom, June would carry on unperturbed – because she loves singing, conveying emotion and sheer joie de vivre. She knows what life is about. On her CD ‘Nowadays’ she sings her way through 23 standards from the eponymous title song, although the final track is a compilation of five including ‘Slow Boat to China’, ‘Who’s sorry now’, and ‘Bye Bye Blackird’ as a rousing finale, so 28 songs in all with a playing time of 74 minutes. Recorded in March 2014 at the ‘Bohemia Road Studios’ (by husband Bob Hudson?) with the help of Michael Allen.

June is obviously a great live performer and this CD has a ‘live’ Feel – so if you wanted to recreate an instant atmosphere at a wedding reception or some other social gathering where you want to have fun and dance, this could the disc to have ready to put on. June is accompanied by Andy Davies and Alan Reid on keyboard (synthesisers) at times they emulate a jazz quartet, at others there are shades of seaside organ, but it all jogs along nicely in changing dance rhythms. June knows how to ‘deliver’ and communicate the essence of a song, and would be good anywhere people want to party.

Dean Wilforth, April 2014.

 

LINDA OF BLACKPOOL WRITES (6 June 2014): 

Dear Ron & June, Just a little note to say how much I enjoyed listening to the CD, and I thought the website paper was super – it made for really good reading. As I was watching the D-Day celebrations and remembrances on TV this evening, I thought of you and your Vera Lynn songs! God bless and love. Linda, XXX.

 

Picture gallery:

 

 

8 Comments

  1. Hi June,
    Tina from the Co-op, great pictures, you look so glamorous.
    Played your cd and its really great. My favourite song in Nowadays and Crazy

  2. Hi June – it’s Pat’s daughter, Andrea. Back from Doha and have just listened to your CD – it’s wonderful! What an amazing life you have had!

  3. It is such a joy to have got to know June and the enthusiasm with which she uses her amazing voice to still seek to raise money for charity. Her current album NOWADAYS is a feast of beautiful old time songs, which are timeless really. She wants to use the money from selling this to help the church she belongs to help the people of Hastings where June and her husband now live. I am 100% behind this and wish her all blessings to achieve her aim, and at the same time to bring such joy to others who listen and join in with her singing. June and Ron are such lovely people who love Jesus and care about others from their hearts. God bless them both, love Shirley (Green)

  4. Hi June & Ron, Good to get your phone call last week. Heard your CD on Bob Roberts BBC radio show last Sunday at around 10pm. What a treat – every song I could sing along to, and so well put over by you. Keep up the good work, I am sure it will gather momentum. All the best to you and Ron. Grant James

  5. Hi June, Angela here from Canada, .. Just found out about that you are my mum’s cousin who lives in the UK.. Just wanted to say that mum love’s your CD and i would also like to say “Good Job” & Good Luck with the new Album xx

  6. Well done, June. We remember seeing you at the Music Hall Tavern Blackpool and the Chelsea Pensioners cheering when you sang We’ll Meet Again. Glad to know you’re still going strong, sound as good as ever, rolling along, singing your songs.
    Adrian and the lads.

  7. Well done June lots love ibrahim from moons jewllers . Your great woman love your cd xx

  8. Great to see June on the web and just wanted to say having known June and Ron since 1982 when they offered lodgings for the Kent police, they are a wonderful couple and would help anyone. They deserve a medal for the good causes they have contributed to and June’s love of singing shines through. Good luck with the new album and all the best for the future.
    Much love
    Shirley

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