Formed by pupils at Falmouth Grammar School. The band would practice in the front bedroom of the Woolcock house in Penwerris Terrace, Falmouth, much to the annoyance of the neighbours! The band were manged by Dave Rabone and had severals hangers on including Olly Simpson, Ben Lang and Andy Dalziel.
Thanks to Neil Andrew for the update on Backstairs Influence;
I recall that it (the picture) was taken in Penwerris Church Hall by Tim Evans' Mum on a Saturday afternoon before a youth club gig in the evening - probaby in 1966. From left to right the line-up is Jeff White (bass), Tim Evans (vocals), Dave Woolcock (drums), Rick Woolcock (lead guitar/vocals) and me on rhythm guitar. Rick, Tim, Jeff and I were very impecunious sixth-formers. Dave was a few years below us. Jeff's bass was home-made. Rick is playing (upside down because he was left-handed) my home-made guitar. I am playing Paul Hodder's Strat which we had borrowed for the gig. The mike is a torch casing with a telephone transducer in the end! Rick was the electronics wizard and enthusiastic leader of the band. During the interval in the evening the Strat was knocked off its stand and suffered a small dent on one edge. I gave Paul all my appearance money - perhaps £1-10 shillings! - as compensation.
The Pretty Things were our heroes and a lot of our material was covers of their songs. We also covered the Yardbirds, Stones, John Hammond, American Blues icons, Who, and Beatles (Norwegian Wood comes to mind). In our short career we played church youth clubs on Saturday evenings - Penwerris, Laburnam Drive, King Charles and St Mary's. I left soon after the start of my final year in the Sixth to concentrate on A-levels and university admission. Also I was into competitive sailing in a very big way and couldn't really juggle the time to be in a band as well. To be honest I was never going to be that good, and I haven't played a musical instrument since. I can't remember when the rest of the band broke up. Like me, Tim and Jeff also went away after A-levels in 1967 so they would certainly have left then, if not before to concentrate on getting the required A-level grades. Rick and Dave kept going either with another line-up or with another band (Blood and Sand?).
BI never played outside Falmouth when I was a member. I remember, after I left, going to watch them play at a youth club dance at Mylor Bridge, and making a guest appearance for a few numbers. I travelled to and from Mylor on my Norman Nippy moped.
Thanks to Tim Evans for a Backstairs Influence update
They were wonderful times. I was recruited to be drummer because I was always tapping two rulers in class. Of course I was dreadful at the audition and then Rick said 'can you sing?' Well I was an imposter but I did have one thing going for me. I was an actor and a show off. So it was form over content.
I remember the microphone in the torch. And I recall finding it very hard to know when to start singing. Rick would nod to me....'now'.
Neil was wrong about the extent of our shows. We had one in Truro supporting our heroes the Dissatisfied. The two drummers put there kit together and made Baker like double bass drums. They were very kind.
We were into loads of feedback a la WHO. And I can still see me on a stool whirling the mike and smashing the cymbal and turning to see the entire hall frozen and watching. Weeks later I was in Truro shopping with my mother and a girl pointed me out to her friends and shouted 'there is the singer from that band.' I felt wonderful but too shy to reap any benefit.
The band ended when Rick decided to join Blood and Sand. I remember the night he came to my house and climbed the stairs to my room. It was very sad for me but a big break for him.