I have no photos or details of the early days, as they all got destroyed a long time ago, including my band suits.
FRANK JACKSON bass 1961
About the group The Hi-
Born 11th April 1940 in Sunderland, for some reason the family moved to South East London. I went to Sydenham Junior School and later on I attended Tavistock High School in West Croydon. I’m from a family of five. Mum and dad came from Up’t North and I have a daughter Yvonne Sheila Jackson, who lives in Germany.
I first started to play the double bass aged 14/15 and joined my first group Rod Lyward &The Hot Rods around 1956, because Rod got in touch asking me to join them, I took over on the tea chest bass. The names I can remember in the group then, was Billy Wells (guitar), later on Dave Steel (banjo tuned as a guitar), Alan McIvor (guitar), Dave Bridges ( guitar), Bob Marsh (drums), and a little later on Les Smith (piano). When Les left he then joined Sony Stewart .
When I left the Hot Rods, can’t remember why, I joined The Hi-
I only remember a few things from then, playing mostly at the Park Lane Ballroom in Croydon. The owner Ed Waller played the piano pretty good and looked a bit like Arthur Askey. Also the Ebbisham Hall in Epsom and Playing The Market Hall in Romford with Neil Christian and The Crusaders on the same bill and Len Ford talking a lot with Jimmy Page, who he was a friend of. The Co-
After the Hi-
The full line up was; Dave Dale(aka Constable), drums, Frank Jackson, Fender bass, Roger King (piano),Ian Duncombe(lead guitar) Sonny Stewart vocals(aka Arthur Champerlain). He was a great showman and singer. Sometimes he drove a 1960 Chevrolet “Impala” We played the US bases Chicksands, Brize Norton, Laken Heath etc and always went down great.
We also played at the US airbases and The Top Ten Club in Germany and appeared with some famous names on the same bill. As I was a huge Bill Haley fan, appearing with him and The Comets was special. Others of note were; Gerry & The Pacemakers-
Germany was a great time for me but sadly it all came to an end. I moved back to the UK and got my old job back at Radio Component Specialists, on Whitehorse Bridge, Whitehorse road, Thornton Heath, Croydon. My old boss John Ladd took me back and when he retired I purchased and took over the business.
During this time I carried on playing and at one stage I was in 3 different groups, mainly country bands “Country Scene” was one of them. I remember 3 really good vocalists. John Smith, Colin Fuller, Martin Monaghan, he was Mony from Johnny & Mony. He did great versions of Roy Orbison songs with Brian Shields (lead guitar), Dave Benyon (drums), and me on bass. I did get bored of playing the 2 beat stuff and so;
I joined up with Len Ford and Malcolm Wright as The Chess Set and for 2 or 3 years, played local gigs and a residency at The White Swan in Crystal Palace. I had to give this up when my boss John Ladd retired, due to my excessive workload.
I always kept in touch with Len and Malcolm and spent many good times fishing with Malcolm, a pastime that gave me great joy over the years. My workmate Dave Monk and ex Hot Rod Dave Bridges introduced the sport to me in 1975
I gave the business up in 2003 when I retired, also giving up playing bass, so if anyone would like to buy a black 1960 Fender Precision Bass, please get in touch;
Remembered quite a lot really didn’t I, thanks to some help from Len Ford.
Billy Wells. David Steel. Frank Jackson. Bob Marsh. Rod Lyward. Dave Bridges.
Sonny’s Chevrolet Impala
This picture shows the line up after Ian Duncombe and Roger King left
Malcolm Wright (bottom left) and Len Ford (top left) with Frank circa 1995
Frank Jackson Ian(Jimmy)Duncombe. Dave Dale The Top Ten Club. Hamburg. 1961
Frank Jackson. Geoff Pulham. Sonny Stewart.
Dave dale. Pete Budd.
The Top Ten Club. Hamburg. 1962
Sonny Stewart. Frank Jackson. Dave Dale. Pete Budd.
Acadia Tanz Club. Frankfurt. 1962
Pete Budd. Sonny Stewart. Dave Dale. Geoff Pulham. Frank Jackson.
Top Ten Club. Hamburg. 1962
These pictures from the German clubs have been supplied by Frank Jacksons daughter. Yvonne Sheila Jackson and Dave Dale
Colin Fuller. Johnny Eastern. John Smith. Frank Jackson.
Late 60’s Frank was a member of; Country Scene, and evolved into Root 5,and shortly after became Pony Express, with personnel changes along the way .The final line-
Picture and details courtesy of John Smith.