'The Andy Russell Seven'

at

The Imperial Hotel

 

'The Andy Russell Seven'

Thank you Andy Wishart for providing several photographs of members of his group, The Andy Russell Seven, performing in the 1960s at:

-   'The Place', Victoria Street

The Andy Wishart Seven at The Place in the 1960s

-   'The Imperial Hotel' Leith Walk

Andy Russell Seven at The Imperial Hotel, Leith Walk in the early-1960s

Andy tells, below, how the group got its regular booking at The Imperial Hotel.

Andy wrote:

The Imperial Hotel

"Some of 'The Andy Russell Seven' used to play on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays at the Imperial Hotel (now demolished) on Leith Walk during the early-1960s. How we landed that gig was not planned and is worth telling.

Middlemass Biscuits

"I had been approached by drummer Dave Ewart's aunt, who worked at Middlemass Biscuits.  She asked if we would play at their annual company get together which was to be held at The Imperial Hotel.  A group of employees from the company branch in the north of England were also invited so I had the idea to make them welcome by adding some traditional Scottish flavour to our normal rock and roll musical fare."

Scottish Music

"Dave arranged for a piper friend of his, Martin (Teag) Hunter from Penicuik to appear in full dress of kilt, hairy socks etc. and I asked our keyboard player, Alf Smith, to bring his accordion along that night and we could also offer the company a small selection of Scottish country dance music or 'tcheuchter biscuit box music' as we called it."

Drinks

"The big night arrived and we deposited our piper in full regalia at the bar in the Imperial, telling him to have a drink and I would call on him to play at the interval.  I guess that was my first mistake.

The band sounded great that night, the English visitors were enjoying themselves, the refreshments were flowing freely and everybody joined in singing and dancing to our short Scottish dance interlude which preceded the interval."

The Piper

"I nipped through to the bar to collect Teag the piper who, by this time, was pretty well refreshed, himself.  I propelled him to the function room entrance to let him loose on the crowd, pipes skirling, kilt and plaid swinging, lookin' good baby.

The crowd loved him.  The English employees went wild and I began to have misgivings about who was turned loose on whom as Teag marched up the room surrounded by a great bunch of English girls hanging onto not only him, but also to his plaid, his kilt and I swear I actually saw some anglo saxon fingers checking to see if anything was worn under the kilt."

Success

"The evening was a huge success.  Thee piper was eventually allowed to sit down and gladly joined in with the 'refreshments', nae bother.

The accordion was pushed out of sight and we got on with our normal programme of numbers by Little Richard, Fats Domino and Ray Charles.

A very enthusiastic hotel manager cornered me and offered a regular, three nights per week gig, starting Monday.  Who needs a band manager when you can make mistakes like this?"

Andy Wishart, Staffordshire, England:  March 13 2009

The Imperial Hotel

Here are three photos of The Andy Russell Seven, performing at The Imperial Hotel, Leith Walk.

Andy Russell Seven at The Imperial Hotel, Leith Walk in the early-1960s    Andy Russell Seven at The Imperial Hotel, Leith Walk in the early-1960s      Andy Russell Seven at The Imperial Hotel, Leith Walk in the early-1960s

 

The Place

The Andy Russell Seven also played at The Place in the early-1960s.

 Here is a photo of the group on stage there.

    The Andy Wishart Seven at The Place in the 1960s

 

Musical Groups

Recollections  -  Clubs and Discos

Recollections

 

 

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