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Jim’s pop music history quest

Jim Proudfood - compiling a history of pop music.

Jim Proudfood – compiling a history of pop music.

Jim wants your help. Jim Proudfoot, 43, of St Paul’s Road, is compiling a book of Hastings’ pop history over the last half a century and wants people who attended the various gigs to get in touch. Jim, who confesses to always having an interest in popular music, has unearthed some very famous names indeed. To take just one year, 1964, for example, the Rolling Stones appeared on three separate occasions on the pier. Others included Freddie & the Dreamers, Screaming Lord Sutch, the Hollies, the Chants, Cilla Black, the Swinging Blue Jeans, the Kinks, the Interns, the Alex Harvey Soul Band, the Mojos, and the Honeycombes. In June 1964, a rival to the pier opened, the ‘Witch Doctor Club’, located at the Dolphin, Marine Court, St Leonards. This venue attracted arguably an even more amazing line-up of musical talent including Little Richard, the Animals, Alexis Corner, Zoot Money’s Big Roll Band, Steve Marriott’s Moments, Georgie Fame, Rhythm & Blues Incorporated, the Migil Five, Long John Baldry, Van Morrison and the Merseybeats. In November, a young David Bowie made his debut [whatever happened to him?] The working title of Jim’s book is A Short History of Popular Music in Hastings 1956-2006. “I wasn’t there in the 50’s and 60’s, and I want to talk to people who were – I want to know what the music scene was like – please tell me how it was,”
“I’ve been researching back copies of the Hastings Observer from 1957 on, at the public library, and it’s an arduous task. I’d love to have some informal chats over a cup of tea with the people who attended the gigs on the pier and other venues.”  Jim hopes to publish his book by next Christmas. He lives with his partner of 20 years in St Paul’s Rd, and has a son, Dylan, 15, and a daughter, Sidney (after Sid Viscous), 17.
If you have any memories of the 50s, 60s or 70s music scene, and would like to reminisce with Jim, please contact Bohemia Village Voice and we’ll pass on your details. Or phone Jim at home on 446404. Or e-mail him:

Jim Proudfoot writes ( Nov 2007) Dear Sir, I had fantastic feedback from your article about me [Voice 43, Dec 2006]. I am a local historian, researching a book about the history of popular music in Hastings from 1957 to the present day. I would like to interview anyone who has memories that they would like recorded in print: anyone who went to the Pier, the Witch Doctor Club, later known as the Cobweb, anyone who played in jazz bands in the 50s and 60s, mods and punks from the 70s and 80s and ravers who went to the all-nighters on the pier in the early 90s. I’d also like to speak to promoters who organised gigs or bands that played at the Falaise Hall, Carlisle, Aquarius Club, the Caves, Chatsworth Hotel, Rum-ours, etc. I would especially like to hear from anyone with photos, flyers, tickets or posters that I can scan and return. My interviews are very informal, over a cup of tea or maybe a pint. It is often the small details that help me form a picture of growing up in Hastings and watching live music. Please contact me on 01424 446404 or email
Jim Proudfoot, St Pauls Rd

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