In My Day
the rambling of Hubert James

In my day it was about this time of year when young people with time on their hands first discovered music. Not the big old orchestral stuff but something a bit more raw; Rock and Roll. Many older folk were shocked especially when they started messing with grammar and ‘and’ became just ‘n’!


Suddenly something called a teenager emerged from the egg of childhood and developed an interest in fashion and hairstyles.


This new spare time led to some previously undiscovered talent popping up. Kids began to sing and dance. One or two lads mastered the art of strumming guitars and bashing drums and we got our first pop music beat combos.


I don’t pretend to understand any of this but I do remember a lad called Harry Webb who had been in the church choir as a boy treble and had a lovely voice. Nice lad, he had a couple of mates; a lad from Cardiff who strummed and wrote songs -they called him Bruce the Welsh. Then there was Marvin, now he had an electric guitar and could really play. He was a rather straight talking lad, we called him frank Marvin.


All three of them had day jobs with Lawman’s Coaches but played in the pubs in the evening. Very popular. I remember they had a girl called Irma who always got up and danced at their shows. Irma, that was it, lovely girl. I was there the night she collided with an amplifier at the Dolben during a particularly lively Twist. We thought she’d broken something but it turned out she just stubbed her toe. After that we called her Irma Stubbed.


Now it was about this time of year when the four of them borrowed an old bus and drove all the way to Greece for a holiday. Apparently, at that time Greece was a bit behind the times. All the lads were still wearing leather jackets and most of the girls went for pink satin tops and flared polka dot skirts.


Still it was a proper adventure. Bruce the Welsh filmed it all on an old Bell and Howell cine camera and when they got back we had a film show at the Mission Room.. I don’t remember what happened to them all but I did hear that Harry is still a bachelor and lives abroad somewhere. Oh, they called the film; Strummer Holiday.