Author Topic: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s  (Read 69770 times)

sheldonboy

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Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« on: May 03, 2009, 07:58:37 AM »
Are there any old Mothers Freaks out there?. MOTHERS CLUB High Street Erdington It Was known as the best Blues club in the country. John Peel appeared there regularly. The first band I saw there was Deep Purple for just 10 bob. the next week it was Pink Floyd (same price). Standing by bar one night and Mark Bolan  popped in for a beer and chatted to us. The Who, Fleetwood Mac, Edgar Broughton band all played there loads of times. scrumpy Cider was only 1/6d.
 (less than 8p).
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Fatangel

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2009, 08:55:36 PM »
Amazing, there I was doing a google search for something else and your post appears. I had never heard of this site.
I used to virtually live at Mothers, what an amazing place. The likes will unfortunately never be seen again.
Do you remember Lenny on the door ( Please have half a crown with your note, Junior Eyes next week).
The Pink Floyd gig was I think the one when they recorded part of Umma Gumma if I remember right.
There was a sort of booklet printed a few years ago about Mothers which was available from Erdington library which coincided with a reunion at Ronnie Scotts on Broad St. Unfortunately I missed out on that as I was away on holiday at the time.
Jimmy Franks did a show on WM a couple of years back about Mothers which was very interesting. I have a tape somewhere.
Led Zeppelin played one of their first gigs there & Robert Plant was a regular visitor.
My favourite band was The Pretty Things who played there a few times during the S F Sorrow period. Most underrated band ever. I saw them at the 100 Club in Oxford St in January & they are still brilliant.
I see your name is Graham. I am Dave and the only Graham I knew was one that lived in Sutton & came
back to my mate Plods place a few times to get totally wrecked. 

sheldonboy

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2009, 09:44:49 PM »
Hello Fantangle  Nice to know you went to Mothers. The Graham that you knew who came from Sutton, is probably the bloke we all new as Fred, he was a good guy as far as I can remember and I think he ended up working there. It was called MOTHERS The home of good sounds, and it certainly was. It was also the home of good people.  I inhabited the hottest club in the country (as some of the bands new it) for a couple of years and never heard so much as an argument.
The book that you mention was published by Birmingham public libraries, there are three passages in there written by me (Graham Holyoak).
You mention Ummagumma the Pink Floyd Album. Yes that was part recorded at Mothers, it was a double album, one abum recorded in the studio and the other recorded live, part at Mothers and part at a Manchester College. We paid a 10 shilling  (50p) entrance fee (sometimes got in free helping bands carry equiptment up the fire escape). The Who played Tommy all the way through at Mothers, two weeks before it's official premier'e in London. The resident DJ was a guy called Erskine T (Thomas).  Erskine worked full time at the Diskery, a record shop in Birmingham City Centre. He gave up his desk to John Peel on a fairly regular basis, John used to talk to some of us about bands we had seen there and would mention some of our comments on his radio show. John Peel is sadly missed.
Strangers are just friends you havn't met yet

Fatangel

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2009, 10:03:02 PM »
Yeah, I remember Erskine T from the Diskery. A guy called Rod took over then I did it for a few weeks.
I have original photos that were reproduced for the cover of the book. I will have to check out the passages you wrote.
People I mainly hung around with there were Plod, Bernie, Warwick, Ken Weeks, Rick, Phil, etc etc.
Were you lucky enough to see Spirit when they performed there? One of the best live bands ever.

sheldonboy

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2009, 05:02:11 AM »
Hi Fantangle No sorry I didn't remember the names you mentioned, I didn't see Spirit either, I started working in a pub in the last few months of Mothers life so my visits were a bit limited.  One of the best quality bands I ever saw there, or in fact anywhere was The Savoy Brown Blues Band they were just incredible. A band I never missed and saw about 8 times was John Hisemans Colluseum what a band and John was a superb jazz drummer. I used to go to Mothers with my mate Paul Strong, we used to hang out by the doors at the side of the stage, right next to the small bar. It was easier to get a drink that way, but a bit of a [censored] to get to the toilet on a buzy night. We used to go and get drinks for the bands and occasionally bought us one, we wern't very rich in those days (nothing chages).
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Phil

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #5 on: May 04, 2009, 04:46:33 PM »
Hi Fatangel

Welcome to the forum, it doesn’t matter how you found us the main thing is that you did.

I think if you look back through the forum you will find a thread on Mothers. I also think I said on there the only time I ever went in there was in the late 90's after a fire when we stripped it out.

As I said if I'd have known then what it used to be I would have tried to sell the dance floor and stage as souvenirs.

Phil
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sheldonboy

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2009, 08:05:05 PM »
Fatangel
 Sorry mate, I managed to change your name. My wife noticed I have been calling you Fantangle I must be losing something.
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Fatangel

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2009, 09:11:50 PM »
Never noticed my name change, Sheldonboy, so no problem.
I notice on another thread you talking about the Yardley area. Did you ever go to Mothers 2 at the old cinema just up from the Redhill Tavern?
Never took off there. Just shows how hard it is to recreate something special.

sheldonboy

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2009, 09:07:01 PM »
Hi Fatangel
No mate never got to Mothers two, I don't think it could possibly be anywhere near like the old one, that was a total one off. Around 1969 I started working full time in a pub so my band chasing days were rather curtailed.
 There have been a few good places in Brum over the years, The Bulls head Coventry Road Small Heath My mate Paul Strong and I saw one or two good bands there. Then there was the Railway Curzon Street in the 80s , I remember Spitfire on the odd Friday night had a great guitarist I remember Roger Hill. The Trevor Burton band played there fairly regularly I remember. One Sunday lunch time Dave Gardner and I were watching a jazz session and Steve Gibbons wandered in nice guy asked us to join him and his mates and bought us a beer.
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younglight

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2009, 04:44:05 PM »
Hey guys! I'm new here and unfortunately I have never been to Birmingham... :(
I've always heard of an amazing Pink Floyd gig at Mothers, has anyone here attended it?
Cheers,
YL

sheldonboy

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Re: Mothers ---High Street Erdington. Late 1960s
« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2009, 10:08:13 PM »
OH YES  welcome to the forum and the best family around.

 The Pink Floyd gig you mentioned was when the album Ummagumma was part recorded there it was a hot night at Mothers, they all were. Originally it was The Carlton Club in Erdington High Street. The only seating was bench seating around the outside walls. The stage was at the far end. The ceiling over the stage was very low, most of the bands said it was the hottest club in the country. The first band I saw there was Deep purple the second was Pink Floyd this was in the days when their equiptment fitted into two transit vans, instead of six artics.
 The album Ummagumma was a double album One disc was a studio job and the other was recorded partly at Mothers and partly at Manchester Polytechnic I think. The evening was absolutely brilliant as many nights at Mothers were. It was a special place as nowhere else in the country existed like it. It was also very important for the "Rock/Blues" scene at the time. John Peel appearing there on a regular basis helped. Many many bands progressed thanks to Mothers and John Peel.
         Back to the Floyd they were unbelievable live, VERY LOUD, and staggering musicians.  Put a pair of headphones on, turn the volume up shut your eyes, when the atmosphere is perfect. Just remember Mothers was a hundred times better, and we had scrumpy cider at 1/6d  (7.5p) per pint.  You could always get to talk to the bands, try doing that at the NEC. The testimony of the quality of what we saw and heard is proved by the fact that many of the are around today 40 years on.
I was incredibly proud to have been a Mothers member and people used to come from afar there has never been another place like it, It was probably the best time of my younger life.   Very nice to know you are interested younglight how did you hear of it.    SB
Strangers are just friends you havn't met yet