Look at Life 1959 2ii,s coffee bar Guitarist playing SS deluxe

13 comments

  1. Great clip and it is wonderful to see a Grimshaw SS being played in the 50s. But it`s not Tony Sheridan. I have no ide who it is but definitely not Tony. Anyone know who it is? I`m pretty sure it`s Rory Blackwell dancing in the blue suit though.

    • Thanks for the info Frank, I kinda presumed it was Tony as the date and the guitar fitted in with his time at the 2ii,s. Someone please help and tell us who its is?

  2. The guy [playing the Grimshaw is Joe Moretti – Joe, as we all know, played the solo on ‘Shakin’ All Over’. Certainly one of the best players around back in the ’50s. Many thanks to Brian Gregg who confirmed my suspicions.

    RR

  3. In this clip – staged for the cameras, obviously – Freddy Lloyd is the singer, Rory Blackwell is dancing and none other than Brian Bennett is the drummer. Brian, of course, eventually went with Cliff and The Shadows.

    • Thanks Roger
      At last the mystery is solved and also interesting to note some of the other personel featured. As you say Joe was one the best around at the time and it shows on this video. Also thanks to Brian Gregg for confirming it is Joe Moretti.

  4. I’ve just been emailing with Freddy Lloyd, too (he’s the singer) – he remembers little about it all but confirmed the personnel. By the way, Eric, I’m indebted to my very old friend Keith Sellers who called me here in the US yesterday and pointed me towards your site. I always loved the ‘SS’ but never had one – they were almost a poor man’s Gibson 335, weren’t they? The most significant user of the SS was, for me at least, Jimmy Currie! Of course, once his fortunes changed (with Donegan) he soon had a new Gibson ES-175….
    RR

  5. I hadn’t realised how much of a Cliff Gallup fan Joe M was!!! Definitely copying Cliff’s style here – but not many could have done so in 1959!

  6. Joe was a big fan of Cliff Gallup,but he was also in to people like Barney Kessel,Tal Farlowe,Chet Atkins,Django Reinhart,I first met Joe in a dance hall in Glasgow 1958,he was playing in the support band,the Ricky James All stars,Ricky later changed his name to Alex Harvey,I was in the dressing room when i heard this fantastic guitar solo,so american sounding,when they came of i went up to Joe and was raving about his playing,I said to him if he came to London he would get a lot of work,at the time there was very few good young Electric guitar players on the london rock scene’and the good ones were in bands and working ie Jimmy Sullivan,Tony Sheridan,les Bennetts,A couple of weeks later i was in the Freight Train Coffee Bar 2am,when in walks Joe and his wife Pina,I introduced Joe to the gang and took him to the 2is,Joe was sitting in at the 2is straight away,Vince Taylor another good mate was just about to record Brand New Caddilac,Joe joined Vince and played a blinding solo on the record,Joe Morretti had arrived,Later when i was with Johnny Kidd and The Pirates,we got Joe to play the solo on Shakin all Over,and i feel sure that the reason the song made sutch a big impact, (reaching number one summer 1960)was because of joe Morretti’s superb guitar playing on his trusty Grimshaw, god bless you Joe il never forget R.I.P.

  7. Nice story, Brian – thanks!

  8. Talking about Shaking All Over.I was in Jennings guitar shop in 1959 there was this kid playing all the cool bits just like the record he was terrific, who was it RR who has spent his entire life playing the guitar playing
    golf and for the last twenty years living in the sun in Florida…..Do not get him started on Lonnie…

    • Thanks everyone who helped to solve the mystery of the guitar player. The bass guitarist is Brian Locking who along side Joe played with Vince Taylors Playboys.

  9. Thanks for the compliment, Keith! I remember that day very well, of course – I was a tyre-kicker back then, wasn’t I? Jennings, Selmers, Lew Davis – happy innocent days! I’ve had a few guitars through my hands since then (almost half as many as Keith!!!) and I now have far too many.

    Lonnie? For all of his quirks and occasional unpleasantness he was still The Man who inspired thousands of us to want to play; that should never be forgotten, although I fear that Donegan is nearly that – forgotten.

    Yes: Living in the sun but I can’t afford to retire – still out on the road to earn a crust whenever I’m asked to do it. Still, it’s warm here and, if I am occasionally unemplyed, there are worse places to be….

    RR

  10. I remember going to the second floor of the Coop building in Grays Essex in 1963 or ’64. (It was great, the only high rise building in the town, and oh so modern.)
    They had a guitar department with Burns models such as the Sonic, Vista Sonic, Black Bison, Double Six, and TR2s in various colours. They also had lesser items like the Watkins Rapier Circuit 4, and various Vox semis such as the Lynx and Cougar. Best guitar I ever saw there was a double cut Gretsch 6120 in, of course Gretch’s “wacky orange” (to quote Glasgow luthier Jimmy Moon).

    One day I went in with mum (kidding on we might buy one), and I got to try out a cherry red Hofner Verithin. I also tried out a sunburst semi with a double cut, asymetric body,and a curved row of 5 control knobs. Had no idea what it was till last night. But having seen the clip of someone playing a white semi in the 2Is coffee shop, I guessed it had to be the same make. Having googled “Vintage semi acoustic guitars” I saw an image of a natural blonde semi, clicked on it, and wow! it’s a Grimshaw SS! Fifty years of curiosity satisfied!

    What a wonderful thing the internet is!
    Roger

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