Ken Brown no longer had a group but still wanted to play. So, he set about forming another band. His first port of call was my brother Pete. Pete was always tapping his fingers on worktops and tables, spoons and forks on pans, and then came Bongo drums. Ken asked Pete if he wanted to be a drummer in his new group. Pete loved the idea but didn’t have drums. Mo bought him a set of Premier. Pete then asked two of his school buddies who played if they wanted to join him and Ken. Ken Barlow on lead guitar and Chas Newby on bass guitar. They had their band, The Blackjacks. Once rehearsed they too became part of the groups playing the Casbah, groups being watched by John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Stuart Sutcliffe, The Silver Beetles. Their friendship with Pete became stronger and Ken became more nervous. The Silver Beetles didn’t have a drummer and Ken felt something was in the air. His suspicions were confirmed when Paul phoned Pete telling him The Silver Beetles had a professional engagement in Hamburg Germany arranged through Allan Williams reputedly the group’s first manager. Would Pete like to audition for them? Pete did the audition and became a member of The Silver Beetles. Some rehearsals were thrown together at the Casbah before they were all crammed into a mini-bus van with equipment precariously balanced on top to begin their journey to Hamburg and their Baptism of Fire.
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