Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Growing up in Eltham in the 1950s ......... stories by Eddy Newport no 9 .... new friends and Count Basie

Another in the series by Eddy Newport taken from his book, History of a War Baby.

My stay at the Gordon school was to last for two years.

New friends were made during which I met a boy who was to make a big influence on me David Burt. He had a freckled face and a mop of red hair. He and I became best friends and socialised outside of school.

We would cycle off into the country to explore fields and places sometimes visiting members of his family who lived in Plumstead.

David introduced me to the habit of smoking. He had an uncle who played the drums in a band called Cyril Bodkin’s and his dance orchestra.

My interest in drumming was rekindled as David’s uncle played records by Count Basie, Benny Goodman and Duke Ellington. Duke Ellington’s “Skin Deep” with Louie Bellson playing the drums was a firm favourite.

That was just the best there was in classic jazz drumming. Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa both highly acclaimed drummers in America and an inspiration to any budding drummer. These moments were to spark an interest in jazz that was going to stay with me for the rest of my life.

© Eddy Newport 2017

Picture; from the collection of Eddy Newport

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