The Kellarmen

Anybody remember the resident group at the Bier Kellar?

Led by Dave Pearson - an amazing guitarist/bass player/arranger and if I remember rightly was ex IVY LEAGUE (lives in Wythenshawe I think).

Drummers included Brian Pearson (ex Henderson Chambers and Jimmy Ruffin), Derek Carr (ex FOUR TOPS uk tour, London Palladium, Strictly Top Cats? with Wolf Montgomery and Dave St.James.

I joined on Hammond organ in 69/70 ish (7 nights a week) and stayed for 7/8 years.

We were unfortunately called the Kellermen by the management and did everthing from sing along to rock covers.

Visiting cabaret included Light Fantastic from Birmingham, Sweet Chariot (when Pete Oliver was driving a Bentley), Wayne Fontana (we were the Mindbenders with no dots!), a topless all girl group from Sweden, Stoney End (Jenny Darren & Tony Baker on keys (now Peter Kay's MD), Mac and Katie Kissoon (USA).

For Nathan Solomon, your dad played with us on a sunday night along with Ray Johnson on Saxes and Syd Ayhurst on Trumpet.

Anyone remember  Big George at the Auto Club (I Know Pete Olly will) - best steak in town.

When I started at the Keller there were 32 house bands (from keyboards and drums upwards) in and around M/c Centre - when I moved on in `78 there were 3. All replaced by DJ`s I seem to remember. 

Glynn Buckley

I carried on to be MD at the Metropole Hotel in Blackpool for 5 years plus a season on the North Pier.

At the same time I was running Prince Organ Centre in Oldham. I followed that with six years on the cruise ships. Topless Band could have been the "Sweethearts".

Ask Pete Olly when you next in touch about the time he told Walt at Beaujangles Motors off Regent Rd in Salford that his Bentley would take off faster than Walts 7 litre Mustang Cobra Jet (the car held a street altered record at Santa Pod).

Pete tried to give us a demo - and promptly snapped a half shaft in the middle of the street. How we laughed!  

Worked with Sweet Chariot at Jack Dillon's Lonsdale club using Andy's gear.  What about Swans getting a mention....and also Little Bob Stubbs the best engineer, with his partner Chris, or ACE Organ Repairs as they became.

Glynn Buckley

I was digging through my old pile of memorabilia the other day, when I unearthed a these set lists from a couple of occasions in the late 70's when I provided holiday cover on bass guitar for the Kellermens' resident organist.

I can't for the life of me remember how the gig came about, but I must have been recommended by someone for my busking ability. The other two guys in the band then were Dave Pearson on guitar/vocals and John Groom on drums/ vocals.

At the time the band were playing every Thursday night through to Sunday night and had been doing this for the previous five years. The first Thursday I did with them went very well, I fitted in with what they were doing and the place was pretty quiet. The baptism of fire occurred when the weekend came and the place was packed. All the beers were poured out in advance to cope with the demand for the super strong German brew that the punters were pouring down their necks at an alarming rate.

The thing that struck me was that in a regular band, you build up the show in the first half and bring it to a climax in the second half. At the Bier Keller, the first half was the liveliest, because by the time the band got round to the second set, the punters were all comatose, vomiting, fighting or canoodling.

Come Sunday night, things would quieten down, and the band would play some really intricate songs as opposed to the regular crowd pleasers.

I remember one quiet mid week night when we were playing "Alright Now." John was singing away and I wondered why he was loudly and angrily shouting "Hey!" in between the regular lyrics. I then noticed that some guy in the audience was trying it on with his wife/girlfriend. John waited till my my bass solo in the middle of the song, leapt off his drum stool, went into the crowd, punched the guy, and then resumed the song, all without missing a beat. The final elongated chorus then got faster and faster as John took out the rest of his rage on his drums.

The thing that struck me about Dave and John was that they never got blasé about what they were doing and treated each gig as if it were the first. I suppose that was how they managed to stick it so long.

All in all, my stints with the Kellermen proved to to be a great education and experience, and I've never forgotten them. I hope the guys are still doing well wherever they are.


Geoffrey Phillips

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Comments (1)

Topic: The Kellermen
Paul webmaster says...
Thanks for great info and set lists, Geoffrey.
4th July 2015 10:36am

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