JUNE 2009
Gill Walley reports…
These are the words and images of my friend Gill Walley who reports on my behalf owing to the fact that I was incapacitated for this convention.

June meeting

Now where to start? The meeting followed its usual format with concerts and different acts – so not much change there then, so I asked one or two people different things..... and wrote down a few observations.... so here goes.

Funny bits.......

In the shop – best seller this meeting was the banjo badge. There were also some new ranges - a whole lot of new DVDs of George’s Columbia films which weren’t available before and these were selling very well. Dennis’s wife reported that they had not been asked for anything strange and unusual because “the people behind the shop were strange enough!” Cyril sang ‘Delilah’ which is Stoke City’s Anthem in front of a Port Vale compere who was definitely not amused! The band were asked what was the strangest or funniest comment they’d heard? Dickie Speake replied..... There was one continental member – I can’t remember who when I asked which key they were playing in replied, “Key H” Dickie: “What?” and looked at Tony who shrugged his shoulders. Dickie: “You start and we’ll follow!” Half way through they found it was in key B. Matt Richards: When people start playing in the key of D and end up playing in G! Or... when they play in one key and sing in another.

Members News.....and Views....

Good News for Frankie She went to see Eagles music in Huddersfield by Steve Noon and now she’s going to play with the Kruger Brothers and at the very last second found that they were famous American Banjo players who were two brothers. She played with them and they told her that she was “really, really good” and they are making a ukulele for next year and have asked her to launch it. Frances Terry- a real trouper! Will be 80 on 13th August this year. Comes four times a year, catches 5 trains with costumes, cases and ukes. Has been a member since 1991 and loves every minute. She says her best moment was winning the Abbott copy uke in the 2001 raffle and her worst moment was forgetting the first lines of four verses in one song on stage which meant she couldn’t do anything and left her feeling stupid. (And I’m sure that’s happened to lots of us!)

Marcus Whittle

New member from Gateshead, it was his very first meeting. He came with Joe Brown. His first impressions of the Society were, “Wonderful, made to feel welcome as soon as I walked through the door.” What a compliment for the society!

Mervyn Kay

Best moments were joining the society....seeing George at the Opera house and buying a ‘D’ model His worst moments was the first day of playing the uke and realising that he had fingers like sausages His funniest thing is when he performed ‘You Can’t Go Wrong In That’ this time on stage with lady members dressed in underwear! (Yes it was very funny – see photos when you get them) Gitte Rynning – From Copenhagen in Denmark, aged fifty eight is our latest continental new member. This is her first meeting. She found out about the society from the internet (nice to know its being used) and joined last November. She wants to learn the Formby style – she can play the uke, and performed her very first concert on the Sunday. What a start.

Sean’s Launch.

Sean Rutter a brilliant teenage uke player, who’s been playing for only seven months, and who’s dad bought his a uke at the last convention, actually braved the stage. He’s dreadfully shy and shared his first spot with John Walley who said, “He’s a better uke player than me” and then abandoned him to the uke solo in their shared spot... and he proved his talent for playing. Later on John persuaded him to play and sing in his first solo spot. What a father’s day present for his dad! Mind you, coming off stage Sean was heard to say “Never again!” but do you believe him? Tommy Teabag So called because he works for the Post office and all he does all day is drink tea – was heard saying to the band, “Am I in the right key?” and “I’m all right when I’m at home” and to the compere, “Just tell them I’m Tommy and I sweat a lot, but not as much as I used to and they all know me!” Cyril Sondells seen in photo with Pat in the Saturday afternoon concert, was Jackie Jones’ friend from 1947 when they entered into a talent contest. He said, “Both of us came from St Helens and the contest was Carol Levis’s discoveries at the Town Hall. We won and Jack Jones came second. Just a wonderful friend and we spent many really happy hours with our music.”

The worst moments..

A fine of £275, being clamped and towed away! Yes it happened to Chris, (plays the keyboard in the concerts) Patrick and Peter Palmer!..... And Patrick was the new member, just up for his first meeting.... and it was the first time Chris had come all the way from Devon by car! They’d parked the car in the car park earlier that day (Friday) and were enjoying a Greek Meal, and gossiping with us, when they remembered (too late) that they needed to put more money in the car park and after that there was no point in rushing, but it was still a shock. (Patrick’s wife is a Cordon Bleu cook.) The irony is that once they had paid the fine, had the car returned they still had to park it in the same car park. Dennis Mitchell also ate in the Greek restaurant but refused to pay for our meal!! Tommy Teabag- lost the keys to his boarding house- spent most of Sunday looking for them, but he did admit to sticking them in the pocket with the hole....! They never did turn up. He’s hoping there’s another set.

Odds and Sods

Is Peter Nixon the tallest, left handed player in the society? Kitty’s raffle made £140 for the society – didn’t she do well – and she didn’t manage to sell a ticket to my husband....! By September Pam Baddiley (can’t get rid of the red wiggle so might have spelt it wrong) will have left the chalk face and become a lady of leisure – watch out Jonathan. The Uke raffle was held at 3pm on the Sunday and was drawn by Geraldine-George’ niece. It was ticket 380 that won, a Don Howcroft... but was he in the audience and has he paid his subs? And can we reach him? The mystery thickens! Don Haughton sold music at 25p per sheet and this made £55 which he’s given to the society. We also raffled a piece of the tile that the Formby statue stood on, a little bit of history is how Gerry described it – it fetched £25 for the society – bought by Rick Lunt Now I’m told it’s been suggested that we should think of digging up a piece of the floor stood on by Dennis Taylor and auctioning that as there would be more of it! The Crewe Branch were out in force Catherine Darlington (Cathy to the Crewe members) made her first appearance as compere and handled it very well – another step forward for women members! Gill Walley
JUNE 2009
Gill Walley reports…
These are the words and images of my friend Gill Walley who reports on my behalf owing to the fact that I was incapacitated for this convention.

June meeting

Now where to start? The meeting followed its usual format with concerts and different acts – so not much change there then, so I asked one or two people different things..... and wrote down a few observations.... so here goes.

Funny bits.......

In the shop – best seller this meeting was the banjo badge. There were also some new ranges - a whole lot of new DVDs of George’s Columbia films which weren’t available before and these were selling very well. Dennis’s wife reported that they had not been asked for anything strange and unusual because “the people behind the shop were strange enough!” Cyril sang ‘Delilah’ which is Stoke City’s Anthem in front of a Port Vale compere who was definitely not amused! The band were asked what was the strangest or funniest comment they’d heard? Dickie Speake replied..... There was one continental member – I can’t remember who when I asked which key they were playing in replied, “Key H” Dickie: “What?” and looked at Tony who shrugged his shoulders. Dickie: “You start and we’ll follow!” Half way through they found it was in key B. Matt Richards: When people start playing in the key of D and end up playing in G! Or... when they play in one key and sing in another.

Members News.....and Views....

Good News for Frankie She went to see Eagles music in Huddersfield by Steve Noon and now she’s going to play with the Kruger Brothers and at the very last second found that they were famous American Banjo players who were two brothers. She played with them and they told her that she was “really, really good” and they are making a ukulele for next year and have asked her to launch it. Frances Terry- a real trouper! Will be 80 on 13th August this year. Comes four times a year, catches 5 trains with costumes, cases and ukes. Has been a member since 1991 and loves every minute. She says her best moment was winning the Abbott copy uke in the 2001 raffle and her worst moment was forgetting the first lines of four verses in one song on stage which meant she couldn’t do anything and left her feeling stupid. (And I’m sure that’s happened to lots of us!)

Marcus Whittle

New member from Gateshead, it was his very first meeting. He came with Joe Brown. His first impressions of the Society were, “Wonderful, made to feel welcome as soon as I walked through the door.” What a compliment for the society!

Mervyn Kay

Best moments were joining the society....seeing George at the Opera house and buying a ‘D’ model His worst moments was the first day of playing the uke and realising that he had fingers like sausages His funniest thing is when he performed ‘You Can’t Go Wrong In That’ this time on stage with lady members dressed in underwear! (Yes it was very funny – see photos when you get them) Gitte Rynning – From Copenhagen in Denmark, aged fifty eight is our latest continental new member. This is her first meeting. She found out about the society from the internet (nice to know its being used) and joined last November. She wants to learn the Formby style – she can play the uke, and performed her very first concert on the Sunday. What a start.

Sean’s Launch.

Sean Rutter a brilliant teenage uke player, who’s been playing for only seven months, and who’s dad bought his a uke at the last convention, actually braved the stage. He’s dreadfully shy and shared his first spot with John Walley who said, “He’s a better uke player than me” and then abandoned him to the uke solo in their shared spot... and he proved his talent for playing. Later on John persuaded him to play and sing in his first solo spot. What a father’s day present for his dad! Mind you, coming off stage Sean was heard to say “Never again!” but do you believe him? Tommy Teabag So called because he works for the Post office and all he does all day is drink tea – was heard saying to the band, “Am I in the right key?” and “I’m all right when I’m at home” and to the compere, “Just tell them I’m Tommy and I sweat a lot, but not as much as I used to and they all know me!” Cyril Sondells seen in photo with Pat in the Saturday afternoon concert, was Jackie Jones’ friend from 1947 when they entered into a talent contest. He said, “Both of us came from St Helens and the contest was Carol Levis’s discoveries at the Town Hall. We won and Jack Jones came second. Just a wonderful friend and we spent many really happy hours with our music.”

The worst moments..

A fine of £275, being clamped and towed away! Yes it happened to Chris, (plays the keyboard in the concerts) Patrick and Peter Palmer!..... And Patrick was the new member, just up for his first meeting.... and it was the first time Chris had come all the way from Devon by car! They’d parked the car in the car park earlier that day (Friday) and were enjoying a Greek Meal, and gossiping with us, when they remembered (too late) that they needed to put more money in the car park and after that there was no point in rushing, but it was still a shock. (Patrick’s wife is a Cordon Bleu cook.) The irony is that once they had paid the fine, had the car returned they still had to park it in the same car park. Dennis Mitchell also ate in the Greek restaurant but refused to pay for our meal!! Tommy Teabag- lost the keys to his boarding house- spent most of Sunday looking for them, but he did admit to sticking them in the pocket with the hole....! They never did turn up. He’s hoping there’s another set.

Odds and Sods

Is Peter Nixon the tallest, left handed player in the society? Kitty’s raffle made £140 for the society – didn’t she do well – and she didn’t manage to sell a ticket to my husband....! By September Pam Baddiley (can’t get rid of the red wiggle so might have spelt it wrong) will have left the chalk face and become a lady of leisure – watch out Jonathan. The Uke raffle was held at 3pm on the Sunday and was drawn by Geraldine-George’ niece. It was ticket 380 that won, a Don Howcroft... but was he in the audience and has he paid his subs? And can we reach him? The mystery thickens! Don Haughton sold music at 25p per sheet and this made £55 which he’s given to the society. We also raffled a piece of the tile that the Formby statue stood on, a little bit of history is how Gerry described it – it fetched £25 for the society – bought by Rick Lunt Now I’m told it’s been suggested that we should think of digging up a piece of the floor stood on by Dennis Taylor and auctioning that as there would be more of it! The Crewe Branch were out in force Catherine Darlington (Cathy to the Crewe members) made her first appearance as compere and handled it very well – another step forward for women members! Gill Walley