Le Sang Orchestre, The Blood Band and Romanoffs
I was MD at Blightys and asked Barry Blood to join me as guitarist/singer/harmony as we worked so well together. He said yes but insisted that I took on Dave Lee and Gary Mitchell to play bass and drums..... both excellent players.
Dave was great on bass but didn't read and the job meant backing star acts - I still can't believe that we got away with me on the organ shouting out bass notes a split second before the bar and Dave getting them right ... and this was for top stars.
Backing Peter Gordeno with Gary and Dave in this way was particularly interesting and memorable – as a dancer he had numerous weird tempo changes. I was astounded when Peter thanked us for excellent backing!!! Thank God for the band calls!
I was offered another job and put it to Barry, Dave and Garry (and ex-Art Nouveau singer Paul Howard) ... Barry said no, better the devil we know. Two weeks later he came to me and said HE had been offered a new job (the same job) and he wanted to do it but with me working for HIM ... I said better the devil I know!!!
THEN as a favour he asked me to do the audition for him pretending I was part of the band as there was reading involved and he needed me to shout the notes out to Dave!!!!!!!! Guess what - I did!!! Hence he got the job at Romanoffs!
This photo was taken just when they were starting at Romanoffs. Romanoffs in case anyone has forgotten was in the old Gaumont cinema on Oxford Street, opposite Nicky’s snack bar. The club was given permission to open on condition that they strictly kept the cinema building intact as a building of importance ... and look at it now.