A blues singer/guitarist working in clubs and pubs in Manchester,
Stan Ellison was a true eccentric, born to perform.
He influenced many Manchester musicians.
He helped form Manchester legends Greasy Bear and gigged with Brian Marks who later formed The Grit Band with guitarist Chris Smith.
Stan then formed his own group Firecracker.
Yes, "Black" Stan - not black at all - except for his hair and full beard. A wonderful, and influencial guitarist and singer. He arranged the tune "Blackwaterside" for guitar for Anne Briggs (much copied since!)and even had a tune credited on her album. Stan was a regular at our club in Salford and his version of "Handsome Molly" lives on in the memories of everybody who heard it. I last met him in the Salutation pub near the art college (a long time ago!) he was sans beard and in high spirits! He is still living in Manchester, and as he told me via e-mail, "still making music that no-one wants to hear".
Stan Ellison played in Lea Nicholson's first LP Horsemusic (Trailier '71) and then they formed the duo Ellison Smiles. Recorded an LP, but split before its release. The album God Bless The Unemployed (Transatlantic '72) was credited to Lea Nicholson & Stan Ellison, while the title track was issued as a single and credited to Lea Nicholson only. But I presume they remained good friends as Lea's next single was Lazy Afternoon, written by Ellison (Virgin '76), which had some success in France.