I think that at that point, I decided that, as regular jobs as such were becoming fewer and fewer with the passing years and venues which used to have bands some of them as big as 10 pieces and larger were cutting such features down and even dispensing with them altogether, the only thing to do was to try and build up a good gig connection.
This did not happen overnight and I would now like to tell you some of the names of some of the band leaders, some of them well known and famous that I worked for.
Nat Temple, Noel ‘chappie’ D’amato, Bill Savill, Harry Saville, Geraldo, Tommy Kinsman, Rudy Rome, George Jay, Syd Lipton, Sam Stewart, Maurice Winnick, “The Sweetest music this side of heaven fame,” Lew Stone, Frank Chacksfield, Van Stratton etc. etc.
Some of the films I have worked in include, The Life of Rudolph Valentino, Rudy Nureyev was the star and in one of the scenes he had to jump of a table he was dancing on that required 29 retakes, a film with David Niven, the Four Feathers, and a Scarlet O’Hara film and a Peter Sellers film.
And here are some of the ‘greats of the entertainment industry’ I have worked and played for in cabaret:
Sid James, Ronnie Corbet, John Le Mesurier of Dads Army, Tommy Cooper and when you talked with him as a private individual, he was still very, very funny, Ernie Wise, quite a gentleman, Jimmy Edwards and I must tell you how I inadvertently caused a hiatus in his cabaret act.
We were doing the backing for his cabaret act at a function at the Savoy Hotel. During the rehearsal, when he was doing his stuff on the trombone I found that I had to do an answer to one of his antics on my flute. To play the flute, the facial and mouth expression must be just right otherwise no sound will come from the instrument. Well. Come the night and after the dinner and some dancing it was cabaret time. Half way through his act came a sort of duet between Jimmy Edwards and myself and when it came to my response, NOTHING, for I was laughing so much, I just could not blow the flute. I’m afraid I did rather let him down but being the professional that he was, well he just carried on and duly completed his act.