The Black Velvets


Colin Thomas

Lead Vocals & rhythm guitar
Harry Donnelly Lead Guitar

Gary Heywood

Ian Thompson Bass guitar

The band was originally formed in the mid sixties as the IMPALAS, then became the BLACK VELVETS, a four piece Rock & Roll / Country style outfit who were one of the warm up acts for Top of the Pops when the programme was filmed at the old BBC studios on Dickenson Road in Manchester.

In the late sixties, they were joined by Harry’s brother, Jack Donnelly on lead vocals, Colin moved to keyboards, Ronnie Williams (the Impalas original drummer) replaced Gary, and the name was changed to LIQUORICE FIX.

Brenda Strickland and Ian Thompson


click image for larger picture




Tommy Brown's dance places were over local Co-ops, where we went 7 nghts a week in the good ol 60s!The Black Velvets gigged at Levenshulme & Stretford very often - they were brilliant band - very friendly lads & great musicians.

Colin was on keyboards & did great version of "If I were a carpenter". They carried on to become Licquorice Fix - one of the best local bands of the time!

Happy days!

Pat Hall nee Howarth

Ian Thompson, the original bassist, is now living in France and does occassionally play with a local band, but spends most of his time on his motor yacht.

Ian Thompson

I have clear memories of the Commer van used by the (then) Impalas and later the Black Velvets. Ian Thompson lived at the house on the corner of Davyhulme Road and Delamere Avenue in Stretford. Ian Thompson drove the van. I recall the 'Wolf-whistle' siren attached which Ian would greet you with when driving down Chester Road.

The Impalas were a well-established Stretford group when, in 1962, the Vincents started out. I recall well the night we played at the Sevenways Youth Club with The Impalas and being mesmerised at their version of Mona Lisa - the Conway Twitty arrangement -with some amazing lead guitar playing by Harry Donnelly.

Peter Royle

I remember this band well, they played at the Limit on Wood St, Middleton many times.  Also used to play regular at the Cons Club Heywood. They had a great following, me being one of their followers in 1964/65. Very happy memories of Harry Donely who I dated for a while.

Elizabeth Meade

As a teenager I helped raise money for the Mentally Handicapped Society and that Ian Thompson kindly accepted to play for us in the church hall on sevenways Stretford. Delamere Special School was built just over the road to Ian Thompson's house. Thank you ever so much for doing this I am sure lots of teenagers remember these two gigs with fond memories.

Joan Flanagan (nee Smith)


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Topic: TheBlack Velvets
Paul webmaster (Bairnsdale Australia) says...
Can you add to this page? Grin
19th August 2017 8:45pm

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