|Bobby Crossland (11)
|Eddie Crossland (12)
|Malcolm Massett (11)
||Tea Chest bass
|Terry Hopkinson (10)
In 1959 Bobby and Eddie playing as a duet won a talent contest at Butlins Holiday Camp, Pwllhelli in Wales. Years later as the group thing faded they were to play together again as a very successful duo.
Getting together with other friends and Malcolm Massett moving to the drums they became Bobby Dell and the Dellstars. Over the next few years with a few line up changes they performed at all the top venues in the North West.
Bobby Dell and the Dellstars #1
Tony Cooke later played under the well known pseudonym of Hickory Smith.
Allan Herricks eventually left the group and was replaced by Bernard Rix. Tony Macdonald replaced Malcolm Massett on drums.
Bobby Dell and the Dellstars #2
Les Farrell, guitar, played for a very short period with the Dellstars temporarily making them a six piece group.
Further changes of line up and a group name change led the group into a phase where many pundits claim it was their best ever line up. Les Farrell replaced Tony Cooke on lead guitar and Antonio (Toni) Bonacci replaced Bernard Rix on bass guitar. The group changed its name to the In Crowd but because a London group called 4+1 had recently done the same the boys renamed themselves The Manchester In Crowd.
Below is a list of where all the group members originated from.
Bobby Crossland - Clowes Street, West Gorton
Eddie Crossland - Clowes Street, West Gorton
Malcolm Massett - Lilford Street, West Gorton
Terry Hopkinson - Margaret Street, West Gorton
Tony Cooke - Nelstrop Road, Levenshulme
Alan Herricks - Thornwood Grove, Gorton
Bernard Rix - Wilton Road, Crumpsall
Tony Macdonald - Gatley Road, Sale Moor…. a posh kid
Antonio (Toni) Bonacci – Ardwick
Les Farrell - Rylance Street - Ardwick/Openshaw
Pasquale - Hyde
"This is the first band I ever played in, that's me on the left with the old harmony guitar. It was new then, back in "63" or whenever it was, that album behind my head, of the "Beatles" had just been released
I first joined the band when I was at school, I was about thirteen years old, I'm sixteen or seventeen here.
The club was called the Rockingham. It was on Queen St, Manchester, very aptly situated. It was Manchester's first GAY club, the owner Reg was a raving gay and Harry the doorman was a giant (a very nice one) .
The first meeting with these guys was at an audition in Granada TV studios several years previous to this photo, the gay rights act of the sixties hadn't come to being, the program we were auditioning for was scrapped.
We were pipped at the post by Gerry Marsden at the BBC Playhouse, we never heard any more than that except the usual crap like "we will keep you in mind for future reference" .
Anyway Reg and Harry and friends attacked us after the audition, saying how good we where (poor mans Beatles) and they insisted to book us at their club for DOUBLE our normal money £15-00 we got £30,all they said, it was because the club was a little bit different!!!!
Different on arriving at the door a tiny hatch opened and the face of Harry appeared, saying GOOD EVENING BOYS sounding like someone was squeezing his bollocks in a vice!
I strolled through the dancing couples to find a bar maid, yes! a woman. She told me not to worry about the strange behaviour and shown me the dressing room. After chasing down Deansgate for Bobby, the lead singer, who had decided he couldn't hack it. We finally did the night, it was like being a film star, the audience sat on the floor grouped in a semi circle, and twittered and clapped like little old ladies.
We had a great night and became good friends with Reg and Harry not forgetting Peter Harry's boy friend. We played that club for about three years. never knew Why???? I think it was the roadie!! we later employed funny, we met him (Dennis) at the club, he resigned with a fat lip one night, after trying to touch me up.
Incidentally Reg died in the early nineties, after fighting the battle for all day pub hours. He owned the Rembrant at the time, my wife and Ispent many an evening there. What a guy Regie Killduff God bless him."
(sadly passed away)
"Every Saturday morning at 11am I arrived at Reno's on Oxford St, for my lesson, it cost five bob (5 shillings) a small fortune then 25p now. My old man must have hated me!!! That was FIVE pints + bus fares. On Saturday Nights when my dad was home (he was a long distance driver) Him and mam went to Mount Rd transport club in Levenshulme M/c. If my two elder brothers where out they would take me along (with guitar) with them, I used to sit in the football teams changing rooms playing guitar wiith a packet of crisps and a lemonade (beats a plectrum).
A lad a year younger than me also a BEER ORPHAN was Glynn Ellis or now known as WAYNE FONTANA. We became good pals, he got a guitar and brought it along, I used to show him what I'd learnt that day. He was barmy! diving round doing impressions of Elvis.
I lost contact with Glynn about a year after he left school. "Spurley Hey" Levenshulme (we played together at his leaving assembly) The next I heard he had formed the JETS who later became Wayne Fontana and The Mindbenders."
Hickory Smith - website - more info along with some great original music for download. Worth a visit.
Also have a look at The Ivan Brothers