Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band 1965-1967

By Nick Warburton

When Dexys Midnight Runners topped the UK charts in 1981 with their “Geno” tribute, a new generation of fans discovered American soul singer Geno Washington, who had fronted British R&B/soul outfit The Ram Jam Band from 1965-1969 and enjoyed moderate chart success. The brainchild of lead guitarist Pete Gage, Nick Warburton traces the formative years of this explosive soul/R&B aggregation.

Original Ram Jam Band 1965

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band, Spring 1965, left to right: Geoff Pullum, John Roberts, Herb Prestidge, Pete Gage, Geno Washington, Lionel Kingham, Buddy Beadle (photo used with kind permission of Buddy Beadle)

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band #1

(March 1965-July 1966)

  • Geno Washington – lead vocals
  • Peter Gage – lead guitar, vocals
  • Geoff Pullum (aka Jeff Wright) – organ, vocals
  • John Roberts – bass
  • Lionel ‘Rocky’ Kingham – tenor saxophone
  • Buddy Beadle – baritone saxophone
  • Herb Prestidge – drums

Guitarist Pete Gage (b. 31 August 1947, Lewisham) had been playing with Dalston, London group, The Zephyrs in late 1964, and had penned the A-side of their single, “She’s Lost You” (released in February 1965), when he ran into Geno Washington in Southend while moonlighting with R&B outfit, The Fairies.

At the time Geno Washington was fronted Les Blues, a band that he had formed in 1963 while working as a US airman, based at Bentwaters, near Woodbridge, Suffolk. The group comprised pianist Koll Patterson, bass player Tony Coe, guitarist Morton Lewis and drummer Gerry Gillings.

Les_Blues_1964

Les Blues, 1964 (photo used with kind permission of Tony Coe)

Pete Gage had met Washington at Bentwaters on several occasions over the past year and encouraged the American to become a professional singer.

Together with his school friend Jeff Wright (b. Geoffrey Keith Pullum, 8 March 1945, Irving, Scotland), Gage considered the option of ‘buying” Washington out of the US Armed Forces and then constructing a backing group around the singer.

In early 1965, Pullum introduced Nuneaton-born drummer Herb Prestidge and his friend, Coventry-born bass player John Roberts, who’d both previously worked with the keyboardist in Germany in Sonny Stewart & The Dynamos.

Prestidge had started out with Nuneaton band, The Barracudas around 1961 before playing with Max Hollyman & The Demons for two years, where he met John Roberts. They both met Geoff Pullum while playing with Sonny Stewart & The Dynamos in 1964.

After extensive auditions, Gage and Pullum recruited tenor sax player, Calcutta, India-born Lionel ‘Rocky’ Kingham and Clapham-born, baritone sax player Buddy Beadle to complete their Ram Jam Band, named after an old coaching inn at Stretton near Oakham on the A1 in Rutland, West Midlands.

The idea was to create a UK-based Stax-style soul outfit (with an African-American singer and a backing group like Booker T & The MGs with an added horn section) that British audiences could experience live.

Ram Jam Band 1965

Geno with the Ram Jam Band, 1965. Left to right: Geoff Pullum, Lionel Kingham, Herb Prestidge, Geno Washington, Pete Gage, John Roberts, Buddy Beadle (used with kind permission of Buddy Beadle)

Geno Washington, however, remained unavailable in early 1965, and so The Ram Jam Band tried out singer Kenny Bernard (whom Gage had previously recorded with) but he was more pop that soul. The musicians next tried singer Kenrick Des Etages (aka Ebony Keyes) whose vocals were a perfect match for the band. However, Keyes was more Caribbean than Stax-soul and so the musicians next performed three gigs with singer John Holder before linking with Jamaican singer Errol Dixon.

Together with Dixon, the band cut a lone single “Shake Shake Senora” c/w “Akinia”. Also, through the Jamaican’s contacts with Rik and John Gunnell and their Soho club, the Flamingo, the musicians landed their first gigs at the prestigious venue around March 1965.

By this point, Geno Washington had demobbed from the US Armed Forces and was due to return to Indiana in the United States. Gage bought the singer a return ticket to the UK on condition that he would come back and replace Errol Dixon as front man.

Ram Jam Band 1965 second shot

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band, 1965, clockwise from front: Geno Washington, Herb Prestidge, John Roberts, Lionel Kingham, Buddy Beadle, Geoff Pullum and Pete Gage (used with kind permission of Buddy Beadle)

In the meantime, Gage approached the Gunnell brothers with the proposition that Washington would take over from Dixon. When the American returned in mid-April, the group auditioned for the siblings and were immediately booked to play at the Flamingo.

The original line up was responsible for recording three singles – “Water” c/w “Understanding” (Piccadilly 7N 35312) in April 1966 (the group’s biggest hit, climbing to #39 in the UK charts); “Hi! Hi! Hazel” c/w “Beach Bash” (Piccadilly 7N 35329) in July 1966 (a UK #45 hit) and “Que Sera Sera” c/w “All I Need” (Piccadilly 7N 35346) in September 1966 (a UK #43 hit).

Two tracks also appeared on an EP, “Hi!” (Piccadilly NEP 34054) released in January 1967 and comprising the A-sides of the first two singles plus later recordings.

Selected gigs:

  • 24 April 1965 – Flamingo, London with The Checkmates (first listing at Soho club)
  • 25 April 1965 – Flamingo, London with Herbie Goins & The Night Timers

 

  • 4 May 1965 – Flamingo, London with The Shevells
  • 8 May 1965 – Flamingo, London with Tony Knight’s Chessmen
  • 15 May 1965 – Flamingo, London with Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames
  • 16 May 1965 – Flamingo, London with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers
  • 22 May 1965 – Witchdoctor Club, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex
  • 28-29 May 1965 – Flamingo, London with Soul Sisters and Brian Auger Trinity
  • 30 May 1965 – Blue Moon, Hayes, Middlesex

 

  • 7 June 1965 – Flamingo, London with Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds
  • 11-12 June 1965 – Flamingo, London with Doris Troy and Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds
  • 13 June 1965 – Flamingo, London
  • 15 June 1965 – Flamingo, London
  • 18 June 1965 – Flamingo, London with Solomon Burke and The Mike Cotton Sound
  • 19 June 1965 – Flamingo, London with Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds
  • 20 June 1965 – Witchdoctor Club, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex
  • 25 June 1965 – Flamingo, London with Herbie Goins & The Night Timers
  • 27 June 1965 – Flamingo, London

Ram Jam Band in 1965

Geno and The Ram Jam Band 1965. Left to right: Geoff Pullum, John Roberts (front), Lionel Kingham (back), Geno Washington, Herb Prestidge, Buddy Beadle and Pete Gage (used with kind permission of Buddy Beadle)

  • 3 July 1965 – Flamingo, London with Herbie Goins & The Night Timers
  • 4 July 1965 – ‘Rhapsody at Racks’, Guildford, Surrey with The Graham Bond Organisation and The Herd
  • 6 July 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead with Dedicated Men’s Jug Band
  • 9 July 1965 – Flamingo, London with Inez & Charlie Foxx and Tony Knight’s Chessmen
  • 12 July 1965 – The Cavern, Liverpool with Richmond Group and Exit
  • 16 July 1965 – Flamingo, London with Inez & Charlie Foxx and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers (billed without Geno)
  • 18 July 1965 – Bromel Club, Bromley Court Hotel, Bromley, Kent with Inez & Charlie Foxx (billed without Geno)
  • 18 July 1965 – Flamingo, London with Inez & Charlie Foxx (billed without Geno)
  • 21 July 1965 – Flamingo, London (billed without Geno)
  • 31 July 1965 – New Georgia, Uxbridge, Middlesex
  • 31 July 1965 – Flamingo, London with Tony Colton & Big Boss Band

 

  • 1 August 1965 – Blue Moon, Hayes, Middlesex
  • 1 August 1965 – Flamingo, London
  • 6 August 1965 – Flamingo, London with The Byrds
  • 8 August 1965 – Witchdoctor Club, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex
  • 11 August 1965 – Manor House, London
  • 25 August 1965 – Flamingo, London with Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers
  • 26 August 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 27 August 1965 – Flamingo, London with The Shevells
  • 29 August 1965 – Flamingo, London

gino__program_front_cover_1965

  • 4 September 1965 – Flamingo, London with Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds
  • 5 September 1965 – Flamingo, London
  • 8 September 1965 – Flamingo, London
  • 10 September 1965 – Flamingo, London with Lou Johnson
  • 15 September 1965 – Manor House, London
  • 18 September 1965 – Flamingo, London with The Peddlers
  • 19 September 1965 – Bromel Club, Bromley, Kent (billed without Geno)
  • 22 September 1965 – Manor House, London
  • 25 September 1965 – Flamingo, London with Zoot Money Big Roll Band

 

  • 10 October 1965 – Nottingham Boat Club, Nottingham
  • 28 October 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead

 

  • 4 November 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 8 November 1965 – Basingstoke Town Hall, Basingstoke, Hants
  • 18 November 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 25 November 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead

 

  • 2 December 1965 – Bird Cage, Portsmouth, Hants
  • 16 December 1965 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead

Ram Jam Band pictured in 1965

Geno and the band in 1965, left to right: Geoff Pullum, John Roberts, Herb Prestidge, Geno Washington, Buddy Beadle, Pete Gage, Lionel Kingham (used with kind permission of Buddle Beadle)

  • 6 January 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 13 January 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 15 January 1966 – Twisted Wheel, Manchester with The Drifters
  • 27 January 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead

 

  • 1 February 1966 – Bird Cage, Portsmouth, Hants
  • 3 February 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 10 February 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead

 

  • 12 March 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton with The Peter B’s

 

  • 2 April 1966 – Bird Cage, Portsmouth, Hants
  • 8 April 1966 – Flamingo, London with The Peter B’s and Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames
  • 8 April 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 9 April 1966 – Assembly Hall, Barking, East London with Long John Baldry & The Steam Packet and John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers
  • 14 April 1966 – Mister McCoys, Middlesbrough
  • 19 April 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead

 

  • 6 May 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 29 May 1966 – Mister McCoys, Middlesbrough

 

  • 7 June 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 25 June 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 27 June 1966 – The Hop, Woodhall Community Centre, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire

 

  • 1 July 1966 – Corn Exchange, Newbury, Berkshire
  • 10 July 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 14 July 1966 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire
  • 15 July 1966 – California Ballroom, Dunstable, Bedfordshire with The Mark Barry Group
  • 16 July 1966 – Flamingo, London with 5 Proud Walkers

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band #2
(July 1966-August 1966)

  • Geno Washington – lead vocals
  • Peter Gage – lead guitar, vocals
  • Geoff Pullum (aka Jeff Wright) – organ, vocals
  • Rick Parsons – bass
  • Lionel ‘Rocky’ Kingham – tenor saxophone
  • Buddy Beadle – baritone saxophone
  • Herb Prestidge – drums

John Roberts (aka Robbo to the group) had contracted TB earlier in the year and had spent six months in a clinic in Warwick. During his absence, Gage asked his friend John Baldwin (aka John Paul Jones) to cover initially on condition that Roberts would regain his place when he was better.

Rick Parsons, who had previously played with The Noise, was announced as the new bass player in the music press on 16 July but did not stay long. When Parsons’ replacement Peter Carney (see later entry) proved to be an excellent bass player, it became clear that John Roberts would not re-join and he went on to play with Jimmy James & The Vagabonds.

Selected gigs:

  • 21 July 1966 – Ricky Tick, Guildford, Surrey
  • 23 July 1966 – Toft’s, Folkestone, Kent
  • 26 July 1966 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 28 July 1966 – Ricky Tick, Harpenden Town Hall, Hertfordshire
  • 31 July 1966 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex

 

  • 4 August 1966 – Bedford Corn Exchange, Bedford, Bedfordshire
  • 5 August 1966 – Starlite, Greenford, Middlesex
  • 6 August 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton with The Gass
  • 8 August 1966 – The Hop, Woodhall Community Centre, Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band #3
(August 1966-February 1967)

  • Geno Washington – lead vocals
  • Peter Gage – lead guitar, vocals
  • Geoff Pullum (aka Jeff Wright) – organ, vocals
  • Peter Carney – bass, vocals
  • Lionel ‘Rocky’ Kingham – tenor saxophone
  • Buddy Beadle – baritone saxophone
  • Herb Prestidge – drums

West Londoner Peter Carney had a long pedigree, having started out with Ealing band, The Krewsaders in 1962. After played with The Flexmen and touring Poland with The London Beats, he joined Tony Knight’s Chessmen in late 1965.

The new bass player remembers that his first outing with the band was a live radio session at BBC Radio 1 with Herman’s Hermits at the Playhouse Theatre in London.

This line up was responsible for recording (albeit it with a studio bass player) a lone single, “Michael (The Lover)” backed by arguably the group’s best outing, the Pete Gage/Geno Washington co-write “(I Gotta) Hold On To My Love” (Piccadilly 7N 35359) in January 1967 (a UK #39 hit).

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band also cut two tracks – “Always” and Pete Gage’s “If I Knew”, which appeared on the EP “Hi!” (Piccadilly NEP 34054), also released in January 1967.

For the “If I Knew” session, Geno Washington learnt the song from a demo sung by Ebony Keyes (aka Kenrick Des Etages). Gage says that the group may have also cut “Never Like This Before” at the same session and that they definitely recorded two songs – “Tell It Like It Is” and “Girl I Want To Marry You”, which were held back and later released as a single (Piccadilly 7N 35403) during September 1967.

While producer John Schroeder preferred to use a session bass player for the studio sessions, Peter Carney did feature on the band’s live recordings and he appears on the debut LP Hand Clappin’, Foot Stompin’, Funky Butt…Live! recorded live at Pye’s Marble Arch Studios with an invited studio audience. The LP broke the UK Top 5 and stayed on the charts for 38 weeks.

HandClappin

Selected gigs:

  • 19 August 1966 – Newbury Corn Exchange, Newbury, Berkshire
  • 19 August 1966 – Ricky Tick, Guildford, Surrey
  • 20 August 1966 – Twisted Wheel, Manchester
  • 25 August 1966 – Ricky Tick, Harpenden Town Hall, Harpenden, Hertfordshire
  • 26 August 1966 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex
  • 26 August 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 27 August 1966 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire
  • 29 August 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton

 

  • 9 September 1966 – Tiles, London with The Equals
  • 27 September 1966 – Klook’s Kleek, West Hampstead
  • 30 September 1966 – Ricky Tick, Newbury Corn Exchange, Newbury, Berkshire

 

  • 2 October 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 5 October 1966 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex
  • 6 October 1966 – Dorothy Ballroom, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire
  • 7 October 1966 – Chelmsford Corn Exchange, Chelmsford, Essex
  • 9 October 1966 – Starlite, Greenford, Middlesex
  • 13 October 1966 – Ricky Tick, Guildford, Surrey
  • 14 October 1966 – California Ballroom, Dunstable
  • 18 October 1966 – Aylesbury Borough Assembly Hall, Aylesbury, Bucks
  • 20 October 1966 – Finsbury Park, London with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 21 October 1966 – Odeon, Birmingham with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 22 October 1966 – Odeon, Leeds with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 23 October 1966 – Gaumont, Doncaster with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 25 October 1966 – Odeon, Manchester with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 26 October 1966 – Odeon, Liverpool with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 27 October 1966 – Gaumont, Sheffield with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 28 October 1966 – Colston Hall, Bristol with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 29 October 1966 – Odeon, Cheltenham with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 31 October 1966 – Gaumont, Southampton with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue

 

  • 1 November 1966 – Odeon, Bolton with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 2 November 1966 – ABC, Carlisle with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 3 November 1966 – Odeon, Glasgow with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 4 November 1966 – Odeon, Newcastle with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 5 November 1966 – Gaumont, Hanley with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 6 November 1966 – Odeon, Leicester with The New Animals, Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, Eyes of Blue
  • 10 November 1966 – New Yorker Discotheque, Swindon, Wiltshire
  • 11 November 1966 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire
  • 12 November 1966 – Toft’s, Folkestone, Kent
  • 13 November 1966 – Starlite, Greenford, Middlesex
  • 22 November 1966 – Bedford Corn Exchange, Bedford, Bedfordshire
  • 25 November 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton

Geno on stage late 1966Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band, live on stage in late 1966/early 1967, with Peter Carney on bass (photo used with kind permission of Buddy Beadle)

  • 4 December 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 8 December 1966 – Club A-Go-Go, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyneside
  • 9 December 1966 – Chelmsford Corn Exchange, Chelmsford, Essex with The Mooch

 

  • 6 January 1967 – Bluesville ’67, Manor House, London
  • 19 January 1967 – Bird Cage, Portsmouth, Hants
  • 20 January 1967 – California Ballroom, Dunstable, Bedfordshire with Force Four
  • 21 January 1967 – Twisted Wheel, Manchester
  • 26 January 1967 – Guildhall, Southampton, Hants
  • 27 January 1967 – Ram Jam, Brixton

 

  • 5 February 1967 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 11 February 1967 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire
  • 12 February 1967 – Blue Moon, Hayes, Middlesex
  • 16 February 1967 – Plaza, Newbury, Berkshire
  • 18 February 1967 – Twisted Wheel, Manchester
  • 19 February 1967 – Clouds, Derby, Derbyshire
  • 20 February 1967 – New Cellar Club, South Shields, Tyne & Wear
  • 24 February 1967 – Ram Jam, Brixton

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band #4
(February 1967-April 1967)

  • Geno Washington – lead vocals
  • Peter Gage – lead guitar, vocals
  • Geoff Pullum (aka Jeff Wright) – organ, vocals
  • Peter Carney – bass, vocals
  • Lionel ‘Rocky’ Kingham – tenor saxophone
  • Clive Burrows – baritone saxophone
  • Herb Prestidge – drums

Pete Gage had been looking to improve the band and had started discussions with Eddie Thornton from Georgie Fame & The Blue Flames about getting a really punchy brass section together. He also planned to use Clive Burrows from The Alan Price Set to arrange the songs instead of writing all of the arrangements himself.

Unhappy about the current situation, Buddy Beadle left to join The Amboy Dukes but would return in June 1968.

Clive Burrows, who’d started out with The Wes Minister Five, and had gone to work with Zoot Money’s Big Roll Band before joining The Alan Price Set in 1965, came on-board around late February.

The new line up started to cut some live recordings, which appeared on the band’s second LP, Hipsters, Flipsters, Finger-Poppin’ Daddies! (Piccadilly NPL/NSPL 38032). Released in September 1967, the album also featured live tracks by the next version of The Ram Jam Band, and peaked at #8 on the UK charts.

Hipsters-Flipsters

Selected gigs:

  • 3 March 1967 – Bluesville ’67, Manor House, London
  • 4 March 1967 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex
  • 10 March 1967 – Albany Institute, Deptford, Kent with The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band and The Lee Hawkins Group
  • 11 March 1967 – Toft’s, Folkestone, Kent

 

  • 11 March 1967 – ‘Beat Club’ German TV with The Smoke, Jimi Hendrix Experience, The Who and Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers

  • 21 March 1967 – Goldsmiths College, New Cross, Kent with The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band and The Drovers (possibly the Tuesday evening)
  • 22 March 1967 – Bromel Club, Downham, Kent
  • 23 March 1967 – Chelmsford Corn Exchange, Chelmsford, Essex and The Coletrane Union
  • 26 March 1967 – Ram Jam, Brixton
  • 28 March 1967 – The Marquee, London with The Amboy Dukes

 

  • 5 April 1967 – Locarno, Stevenage, Hertfordshire
  • 7 April 1967 – California Ballroom, Dunstable, Bedfordshire with Stacey’s Circle
  • 8 April 1967 – Bird Cage, Portsmouth, Hants
  • 11 April 1967 – Paris Olympia, Paris, France with The Rolling Stones, The Move and The Clan
  • 13 April 1967 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire
  • 14 April 1967 – Brighton Arts Festival, Brighton, West Sussex with Paul Jones, The Move, Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers, Jimmy James & The Vagabonds, Mike Stuart Span and others
  • 16 April 1967 – Daily Express Record Star Show, Empire Pool, Wembley, Middlesex with Cream, The Move, The Alan Price Set, The Kinks, Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds, The Troggs, Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers and many others

Unhappy about the way the Gunnell brothers were treating the band, Pete Gage challenged the group’s management. Rik Gunnell took Geno Washington to Paris (most likely on the weekend of 15-16 April) where he encouraged the singer to recruit new musicians to replace the guitarist, Geoff Pullum and Herb Prestidge.

The 16 April gig was most likely Gage, Pullum and Prestidge’s final show. Gage and Pullum saw a lawyer to see how they could keep The Ram Jam Band name that they had created. However, they soon realised that they could not afford legal representation, especially one that could hope to match the Gunnells’ financial clout.

Herb Prestidge reunited with John Roberts in Jimmy James & The Vagabonds. Geoff Pullum moved into academia and is currently professor of general linguistics and head of linguistics and English language at Edinburgh University.

Pete Gage did production work initially before playing with Jimmy James & The Vagabonds in 1969. The following year, he formed and ran Dada and then formed and ran Vinegar Joe, recording with both acts.

After doing sessions for artists as diverse as Joan Armatrading, Elkie Brooks and Keef Hartley, he put another version of The Ram Jam Band together in the 1980s before moving into production. He currently resides in Australia.

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Sources: South East London Mercury, Guildford Advertiser, Hayes Gazette, Melody Maker, NME, Newcastle Evening Chronicle, Nottingham Evening Post, Dave Allen (Bird Cage gigs), Spencer Leigh (The Cavern, Liverpool), Fabulous 208.

Huge thanks to Pete Gage, Geoff Pullum, Peter Carney and Tony Coe for helping with the band history. Thanks to Buddy Beadle for the amazing photos.

www.rockpopmem.com
www.swindonmusicscene.co.uk
www.california-ballroom.info/gigs/
http://manchestersoul.co.uk/TWheel/1966.html
http://dizzytigerstu.proboards.com/thread/880/witch-doctor-1964-1967
http://www.readysteadygone.co.uk/
http://chelmsfordrocks.com/cornexchange.html

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Copyright © Nick Warburton, 2014. All Rights Reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced or transmitted in any from or by any means, without prior permission from the author. To contact the author, email: Warchive@aol.com 

Comment by Dave Else

It is a common mistake that “Shake Shake Senora” was recorded with Errol Dixon. The label on the single actually states “The Ram Jam Band with Geno Washington”, so it was recorded after GW joined and was released in July 65.

Comment by Nick Warburton

I found these further dates in Fabulous 208 magazine for the June 1966-April 1967 period. A few are from local papers: Crawley Advertiser and Lincolnshire Standard
21 April 1966 – Starlight Ballroom, Crawley, West Sussex with Fleur De Lys
2 July 1966 – Marcam Hall, March, Cambridgeshire
3 July 1966 – Black Prince Hotel, Bexley, Kent
5 July 1966 – Odean Ballroom, Chesterfield
6 July 1966 – Corn Exchange, King’s Lynn, Norfolk
7 July 1966 – Civic Hall, Guildford, Surrey
9 July 1966 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex
19 July 1966 – Town Hall, High Wycombe, Bucks
22 July 1966 – Youth Centre, Stanford-Le-Hope, Essex
24 July 1966 – Agincourt Ballroom, Camberley, Surrey
26 July 1966 – Civic Hall, Grays, Essex
30 July 1966 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex

3 August 1966 – Orford Cellar, Norwich, Norfolk
12 August 1966 – Club A Go Go, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyne & Wear
13 August 1966 – Elizabeth Club, Glasgow, Scotland
16 August 1966 – Blue Lagoon, Newquay, Cornwall
17 August 1966 – Falcon Hotel, Eltham, Kent
18 August 1966 – Stoke Hotel, Guildford, Surrey (Ricky Tick?)
21 August 1966 – Mojo Club, Sheffield
24 August 1966 – Carousel Club, Farnborough, Hampshire
28 August 1966 – Flamingo, London
30 August 1966 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex

2 September 1966 – Il Rondo, Leicester
3 September 1966 – Sunshine Floor, East Dereham, Norfolk
4 September 1966 – Country Club, Kirklevington, Stockton-on-Tees
5 September 1966 – Majestic Ballroom, Reading, Berkshire
7 September 1966 – Bromel Club, Bromley Court Hotel, Bromley, Kent
8 September 1966 – Public Hall, Epping, Essex
28 September 1966 – Orford Cellar, Norwich, Norfolk
29 September 1966 – Public Hall, Harpenden, Hertfordshire
30 September 1966 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex (or was this Newbury?)

1 October 1966 – Corn Exchange, Chelmsford, Essex
2 October 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton, London
5 October 1966 – Corn Exchange, Bedford (or was it Hounslow?)
9 October 1966 – Drill Hall, Grantham, Lincolnshire
9 October 1966 – Burlesque Club, Leicester
10 October 1966 – Majestic Ballroom, Reading, Berkshire
18 October 1966 – Public Hall, Harpenden, Hertfordshire (or was it Aylesbury?)

22 November 1966 – Ricky Tick, Bedford, Bedfordshire
23 November 1966 – Carousel Club, Farnborough, Hampshire
24 November 1966 – Bowes-Lyon House, Stevenage, Hertfordshire
25 November 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton, London
26 November 1966 – College of Technology, Loughborough

6 December 1966 – College of Technology, Headington, Oxfordshire
7 December 1966 – Public Hall, Heacham, Norfolk
9 December 1966 – Durham University, Durham with Jimmy James & The Vagabonds (also billed to play Chelmsford this day)
10 December 1966 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire
12 December 1966 – Majestic Ballroom, Reading, Berkshire
13 December 1966 – Top Rank, Watford, Hertfordshire
14 December 1966 – Farnborough, Hampshire
15 December 1966 – Reading University, Reading, Berkshire with Zoot Money’s Big Roll Band
16 December 1966 – Tiles, London
17 December 1966 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex
18 December 1966 – Saville Theatre, London with Creation and Sounds Incorporated
20 December 1966 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex
21 December 1966 – Town Hall, High Wycombe, Bucks
22 December 1966 – Guildhall, Southampton, Hampshire
23 December 1966 – Flamingo, London
24 December 1966 – Ricky Tick, Newbury, Berkshire
26 December 1966 – Cavern Club, Durham
30 December 1966 – Ricky Rick, Windsor, Berkshire
31 December 1966 – Glenlyn Ballroom, Forest Hill, London

2 January 1967 – Public, Hall, Ipswich, Suffolk
3 January 1967 – Ricky Tick, Bedford, Bedfordshire
4 January 1967 – Club Cedar, Birmingham
7 January 1967 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex
14 January 1967 – Starlight Ballroom, Boston Gliderdrome, Boston, Lincolnshire with The Symbols and The Nightbeats
17 January 1967 – Winter Gardens, Malvern, Worcestershire
24 January 1967 – Aberystwyth University, Aberystwyth
25 January 1967 – Ricky Tick, Newbury, Wiltshire
28 January 1967 – Gaeity, Ramsey, Cambridgeshire
29 January 1967 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex

3 February 1967 – Leicester University, Leicester
4 February 1967 – Winter Gardens, Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset
5 February 1967 – Starlite Ballroom, Greenford, Middlesex
7 February 1967 – Town Hall, High Wycombe, Bucks
10 February 1967 – Dancing Slipper, Nottingham
14 February 1967 – Ritz Ballroom, Bournemouth, Dorset
17 February 1967 – Boulevard Club, Tadcaster, North Yorkshire and then Crystal Ballroom, Castleford, North Yorkshire
23 February 1967 – New Yorker Discotheque, Swindon, Wiltshire
25 February 1967 – University College, Gower Street, London
26 February 1967 – Tavern Club, East Dereham, Norfolk

1 March 1967 – Blue Moon, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire
4 March 1967 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire (or was this Hounslow?)
5 March 1967 – Starlite Ballroom, Greenford, Middlesex
9 March 1967 – Winter Gardens, Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset
10 March 1967 – Goldsmith College, New Cross, London
12 March 1967 – Ricky Tick, Hounslow, Middlesex
14 March 1967 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex
16 March 1967 – Community Centre, Southall, Middlesex
17 March 1967 – Ricky Tick, Newbury, Wiltshire
21 March 1967 – Burton’s, Uxbridge, Middlesex
23 March 1967 – Sutton Baths, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire
24 March 1967 – Night Owl, Leicestershire
27 March 1967 – Baths Hall, Ipswich, Suffolk
31 March 1967 – Gaeity Ballroom, Grimsby

1 April 1967 – Dreamland, Margate, Kent
3 April 1967 – Majestic Ballroom, Reading, Berkshire
6 April 1967 – Club A Go Go, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyne & Wear
11 April 1967 – Town Hall, High Wycombe, Bucks (billed to be in Paris this same day)
13 April 1967 – Ricky Tick, Southampton, Hants (or was this Windsor?)