The Bamboo Club (83 London Road, Hazel Grove)
According to a posting at viewmanchester.co.uk, the Bamboo was originally opened as a jazz club in 1961 by John Beeley - and he is still at the helm!
It began featuring rock/pop groups in 1964. I recall seeing Chris Barber's band there amongst others in those early days.
It was a slightly strange experience to visit the Bamboo then, as it occupied a shop premises that opened off the main shopping street. The interior consisted of one long room with spartan furnishings. There were no bar facilities.
The club reopened in January 2009 after a fire. There is a gallery of pictures at its website thebambooclub.co.uk
Times there certainly have changed!
Alan Thomas - 20/1/10
I sometimes used to go to the Bamboo Club on a Wednesday night to see the Gordon Robinson Septet. The line up was Doug Whaley on trumpet, Brian Smith on tenor sax, my mate Bernie Brown (Crooks Brown Band) on baritone sax, Gordon Robinson on trombone, Alan Hare on piano, Ron Johnson (I think) on bass and that notable nutcase, Pete Staples on drums. Alan Hare, a great and late lamented musician, wrote the arrangements. Bernie was replaced by another old acquaintance of mine, Tommy Brown, a good all round musician who also played tenor sax and clarinet. At one time Tommy worked at the Co-op toffee Works (The CWS Confectionery Factory) in Reddish where he achieved fame by modelling a hand out of marzipan and sending it down the conveyor belt, complete with cochineal blood. This was after someone had lost a finger tip in an accident and it had ended up wrapped in a jar of sweets. The sweet packing ladies manning the conveyor belt were not amused when the disembodied hand came down the line. I think that Tommy left soon afterwards. He later worked at Granada Studios.
Gordon Robinson is still playing and only this week I heard that he is currently depping for Eric Brierley in Mart Rodger's Manchester Jazz while Eric is away playing on a jazz cruise. Pete Staples also played with Mart's Band but he has now retired from playing. I understand that Doug whaley and Brian Smith are still gigging. I believe that Alan Hare died not too long ago; he also used to run and write for the Alan Hare Big Band which used to rehearse in Stock and Chapman's basement. They were resident at the MSG and they backed Earl Hines amongst others. He was a nationally acclaimed jazzer. A great loss.
I used to hang out at my mate Vin Trulio's poster studio in Stockport. Vin (a great trumpet player but a total misery) used to do the posters for John Beeley and every week when John came to collect his posters, he would bring us meat and potato pies - which he charged for. During the day, the Bamboo was a bakers and confectioners and their meat and potato pies were delicious if a bit peppery. You can't get a meat and potato pie here in the Cotswolds, peppery or otherwise.
Alan Clarke from the Hollies used to hang out at the Bamboo and I think that the Hollies sometimes played there on a Saturday night when John had 'pop' bands on. It's good to know that John's still at it.
Pete Crooks - 18/4/10
I started going to the "boo" about 1967. It was mainly a jazz club in those days, but when the band went for a break and the dj came on, more people got up dancing to the records. Jazz was getting to be a minority kind of music, so I think it was enevitable that jazz would be phased out. Why pay big money for Humphrey Littleton when a dj would cost a fraction of the price?
The main entrance was on the A6 and Bob used to be on the door. Me and my mates used to go all the time and eventually I got a job glass collecting (£1 a night) plus the odd drink or two that I forgot to pay for. My other mate got the job of dj (Dave Faversham) and he was there for quite a few years.
I had some great times there, I even met my wife there, and lots of other great people. I seem to remember, before it became a disco, such artists as the Bonzo Dog Doo Da Band, Johnny Johnson and the Bandwagon, and occasionly a comedian such as Colin Crompton and George Roper.
Glad to see John is still about, hope his brother Cclive is too. I've not been for a few years and don't suppose I ever will again (I'm 64 now and live in Spain anyway) but I will allways have fond memories of the boo.
Hello to anybody who remembers me. Adios
Dave Moore - La Marina, Spain - 15/610
I used to work in the Anchor Pub across the road from the Bamboo. An old guy called Bill owned the pub then ... I believe it is still there. I remember the "love of my life" (at the time) dumping me in The Bamboo for some peroxide blonde little schoolgirl he'd met (there were no laws against that kind of thing then!!!). I never went to the Bamboo again after that.
I have to say (that aside) it was my least favourite club and I didn't miss it when I stopped going.
Joanie Thompson - 2/12/10
"The BOO" was the place to be on a Monday night. Meet up with old school friends, see a live band, hear some of the best motown/ soul and sup a few pints if you could get to the bar.
My mates and I would frequent the Boo most Mondays from the late 60s to the mid 70s. We celebrated many a birthday there. I remember seeing such bands/groups as Stan Webbs Chicken Shack,with Christine Perfect (McVie) on keyboard. Mud, well before they hit the big time and playing some great music. Young & Renshaw mentioned on this site along with many more of the "locals". Fancy Dress at Christmas or New Year was always a feature. You would pass queues of pirates, vicars, tarts, toga clad emperors all waiting at the bus stop in the freezing cold. Not everybody had a car in those days.
Loz Timperley - 12/1/12
Brian Newmann worked at the Bamboo Club 1975 to 1985 approx - a very popular dj. Where is he now?
Brian Wood - 3/2/14
Jimmy Witherspoon at the Bamboo Club - with Gordon Robinson Septet 1964. Photo by Alan Hare