The Expectations
Info/pic courtesy Roy Spencer


Milton James (Vocals)
Alf Cuffey (Vocals)
Geoff Wilson (Drums)
Geoff "Chiz" Muir (Bass)
Pete Wrigley (Guitar)

Following the break up of The Rumble Fat Band, Geoff (Drums) and Chiz (Bass) were introduced to Milton James and Alf Coughie by Barry Perkins and they formed the Expectations.

A lead guitarist was needed "with image to fit in with the rest of the group" was needed and Pete Wrigley and formerly of The Uptown Line was tracked down and joined. The group was managed by Barry Perkins and Clive Kinder.

Unfortunately the group did not last very long and soon broke up.


After the demise of the Expectations I think that Alfred Cuffy formed the New Expectations with his sister Karen on vocals and another vocalist. with Hammond organ and drums. They then became Great Expectations and worked the caberet circuit for Kennedy St Enterprises with manager Harry Rawden.

I joined on drums at the beginning of 71 and stayed for 6 months and did gigs later with them on and off. The organist was Billy Davies from Eccles. They were a joy to play with, with some good jazzy arrangements. When Billy auditioned me he told me that I had got the job because I was the only drummer that he had found that could play a 6/8 jazz waltz, they needed that for a great song called Matchmaker, it's from fiddler on the roof.

I think that Billy later married the girl singer Carol. I think that Alf is still in the business with a Lionel Richie tribute act.

Brian Holden

Was quite a surprise to read the article by Brian Holden. Nice to see he is still alive and kicking.  Some of the facts not quite right but memories fade with time. 

New Expectations were formed around the time stated but the band then had several changes including singers.  Carol Cuffey (me) and Alf Cuffey are brother and sister.  Carol married Billy Davies the organist and the band went on until around 1978 when it then disbanded. 

The latter band consisted of 3 lead singers Carol, Alf and Steve Davies.  The organist was Billy Davies and there were several musician changes during the period. Great Expectations worked out of Kennedy Street Enterprises and made a number of records.  As Great Expectations the band travelled a great deal on the continent.

Carol Roxburgh (nee Cuffey)

Nice to hear that you are still around Carol. Just a few memories of my time with Great Expectations.

When I joined on drums in Jan 71 I had been pro for a short time mostly resident at various clubs including a spell at the Beer Keller in Picadilly (duo with an electric accordionist). When I joined the Expectations I was still a bit green and being from Wigan, I had an accent that stood out.

For this I had my leg pulled by the band but there was no harm meant and I didn't care because I had achieved my ambition and was playing with a good, pro, travelling band.

Shortly after joining we were sent out to Bangkok for a 3 week gig at a big hotel called the Dusit Thani, while there they had a one night special with Billy Eckstine. I was particularly thrilled to meet his drummer Charlie Persip, Charlie was/is one of the great jazz drummers with a long and distinguished recording career he had played with everybody including dizzy gillespe in the early days of bebop. I remember having to use the house drummers kit which I could never get to sound right, I had to try and retune it every night in the space of a couple of minutes, when Charlie played it it sounded brilliant he made it sing, a true pro.

I regreted leaving the band after only 6 months particularly when I heard that they had gone back to Bangkok later. We did some great gigs and had lots of laughs.  Of course there were tensions at times as with any band together for 24/7.

When I left the band in the summer of 71 I joined Faith Brown's backing band, at that time she had a good vocal act, we were called Faith Brown and The Shades. That lasted for about a year before I got tired of all the travelling.

One of my great regrets of my playing days is that I have no photos of myself playing or recordings.nothing to show the kids. I remember doing a bbc session for a radio 1 roadshow in Manchester, even a gig list for 1971, or get in touch anyway, I'd like to keep in touch. Anybody that remembers me infact. I now live on a boat in the med (curently  Turkey).

Brian Holden

Hi, i played bass with Milton in Amber World & The Harlem Knockout who also featured Lennie Zacks on tenor (who later joined Sad Cafe).

I've lost touch with Milton and would love tocontact him if anyone has any ideas

Glen Knowles




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