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Mike Slater's Organ notes

A few of the articles written by Mike Slater for The Stage

Thursday 18 May 1961
AMERICAN organist Eddie Layton, in this country for a tour of Hammond demonstrations, has been featured at the following locations: May 4, Royal Festival Hall; May 12, City Hall, Sheffield; May 13, Metropole Hotel, Leeds; May 15, Technical College, Bolton; May 17, Blue Coat Concert Hall, Liverpool; May 18, Grand Hotel, Manchester.
Charles Randolph, former GB organist at Weston-super-Mare and Rotherham, who for the past ten years has been at the Queens Hotel, Rawmarsh, Rotherham, playing Hammond organ, has now left this location and is playing at the Cricket Club, Rawmarsh, on Compton Melotone, and is demonstrating for Rotary Electric Co. in Sheffield, being a firm of organ specialists.
At the Theatre Royal, Lowestoft, for the summer season will be Ray Morton accompanying the show on his own organ.
At the opening of the new 1.300 seater ABC Sheffield theatre.May 18, Peter Kilby will be playing for two weeks, presumably on Hammond. ABC have two such Hammond organs which are used for touring where their theatres do not have pipe organs.
THE Northern Region of the BBC recommence their theatre organ recorded spots during May on Friday evenings and on May 19 will feature Doreen Chadwick playing the Wurlit zer organ in the Gaumont, Manchester. May 2 will feature Watson Holmes, the Blackpool Tower Company organist, this time playing the Wurlitzer in the Opera House, Blackpool.

Thursday 25 January 1962
THE north of England seems to be streets ahead of the rest of the country when it comes to entertainment in pubs and clubs. In an area covering south York shire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Lancashire, one can usually find a choice of entertainment ranging from pianists in small houses to large scale entertainment with top line artists appearing.
IT was reported that one club in South Yorkshire was negotiating to build a hotel to accommodate their visiting artists. Appealing at this club on Hammond organ is former theatre organist Charles Randolph, who until recently was at the Queens Hotel, Rawmarsh, Rotherham; his place there having been taken by Jack Green, one of Charles's many organ pupils.
THE Cinema Organ Society, Northern Area has purchased and removed the Wurlitzer pipe organ from the Gaumont Cinema, Oldham, for their headquarters at Hampsthwaite, near Harrogate, where re-building is under way.
THE Saml. Smith Brewery organisation of Tadcaster, keep their organists on the move (as reported last issue) latest move being removal of Hammond organ from Fighting Cocks Hotel, Rawmarsh, and organist Cyril Coombs leaves the company. In at the White Rose, at Rossington comes organist George Wood on Hammond. All these brewery houses are on large scale with concert halls to seat 200 or more and feature dancing and concerts nightly.
Organists with own organs seeking good class, all year round work, could easily find themselves in one of these houses by writing to the Brewery offices at Tadcaster, Yorkshire.
BILLY SHAW (Wurlitzer spinet) with Jock on drums and Clarrie doing vocals and trumpet work, can be heard at the Cherry Tree at Calverton. Notts. This group, a show in themselves appeared for some time at Nottingham's Variety Club.

Thursday 29 June 1961
THE Priory, Whitley Bay, is the venue this season for the Frieda Hall Show which commenced with a civic opening on June 24. Frieda Hall accompanies the show with her Hammond organ and appeared on Tyne Tees TV June 20, with two theatre organ broadcasts Light Programme June 16 and Northern Home Service July 14.
ERIC LORD, former Odeon, Manchester, and Newcastle organist, is mine host at the Old Hall Hotel, Stockport Road, Timperley in Cheshire where he entertains patrons on Hammond organ. The hotel is in the centre of a full size golf course the 19th hole being the lounge.
ALAN GOUGH, the young organist at the Silver Blades Ice Rink. Liverpool, appeared at the Gaumont, Oldham, recently in a Cinema Organ Society recital at the Wurlitzer organ there. Also in the bill were Ron Curtis, Doreen Chadwick, Alan Neeley, Mike Slater and David Woloweic.
CINEMA ORGAN SOCIETY recital for July is at the Granada, Mansfield, featuring Arnold Loxam at the Wurlitzer organ. The date is the 30th and the time 1 p.m.
Thursday 28 March 1968
ORGAN activities in the city and county of Nottingham are now under way with the formation in October 1967 of the Nottingham Hammond Organ Society.
Recitals are held each month and so are the informal sessions which are held with a view to helping members to acquire better skill. The recitalists who have appeared to data are Stanley Whittington, Charles McNicholl, Arnold Loxam, John Mann and Bobby Pagan.
Plans are afoot for the summer programme which includes recitals by Frieda Hall, Albert Brierley, Charles Smitton, Trevor Wiiietts and Watson Holmes.
In the first four months of their society the Nottingham Hammond Organ Society have well over 100 members and the first informal meeting held was attended by Keith Buckingham from the Hammond Organ Society.
To mark the Christmas season last year even though they had only been formed for two months, the energetic committee arranged a party which was attended by 'Jimmy' Gibbs, Managing Director of Hammonds and their Sales Manager Peter Tozer.
The committee produce a monthly newsletter which appears to be looked forward to eagerly by the members and their annual subscription is 21s.
GATHER that a very enthusiastic band of Organ Enthusiasts, they call themselves the Sheffield Theatre Organ Enthusiasts, have purchased the Compton Theatre Organ from the Astoria Brixton and expect to bring this to the Sheffield area for the benefit of their members.
This is indeed a very worthwhile project and when this organ is completed will be the only Compton Theatre organ in the area which will be available for enthusiasts to hear and possibly play. Good luck to the Sheffield Theatre Organ Enthusiasts. Recitalists for the society include Albert Brierlev, Arnold Loxam, Trevor Willetts and Charles Smitton.
ON Sunday, March 24 at 1.30 the Cinema Organ Society met at the Granada Theatre, Mansfield for a programme from the Wurlitzer organ. This recital featured Roy Bingham who was broadcast over Radio Nottingham recently playing that Wurlitzer theatre organ which is installed in his home at Castle Donnington.
The Mike Slater Bio
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