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Snapshot from the Melody Maker (1959)...
The "Melody Maker" was the leading weekly music paper and the clips below from the November 7th, 1959 issue featured the opening night of Ronnie Scott's club at 39 Gerrard Street, Soho. Bert Courtley and Don Rendell of The Jazz Committee were also opening clubs...
Opening night at Ronnie's club (l-r): Ronnie Scott, Spike Heatley, Eddie Thompson, Terry Shannon, Tubby Hayes, Jeff Clyne and Peter King...
Melody Maker November 7, 1959
Jazz group runs its own clubs
Friday the 13th of November is not exactly the best date on which to open a jazz club. That is, if you are super-stitious. The Jazz Committee, rapidly becoming one of Britain's most popular mainstream / modern jazz groups is not.
In fact, the five members of the Jazz Committee, co-led by tenorist Don Rendell and trumpeter Bert Courtley, are quietly confident that this new club at the "Two Brewers" in Wandsworth, will be just as popular as the other three they run, once word-of- mouth advertising gets around.
This new departure in modern jazz - a group running it's own clubs all over London - is part of a resolution adopted by the Jazz Committee some weeks ago.
The aim? to circumvent club ownerswho want a rake-off from ALL the group's activities, broadcasts, record dates, TV dates, tune royalties in exchange for a club residency two or three nights a week.
Says Rendell: "We already run clubs at the 'Princess Louise' in Holborn on Mondays, at the 'White Hart' Southall on Tuesdays and at the 'Railway Tavern' Dagenham on Wednesdays.
"Naturally, if more lucrative dates crop up on these dates we take them and put in other groups, but we are finding that our own clubs are becoming financial successes in their own right.

First time
"We reckon on a minimum audience of 150 - 200 to make a club feasible proposition and we already get more than that at one of the clubs."
Bert Courtley finds the un-commercial atmosphere of the Jazz Committrr's clubs worth fighting for .
"For the first time in my playing career," says 30 year old Bert, I find that I am making most of my living by playing jazz, a situation I have been striving for over a number of years.
"In our clubs the Committee plays a mixture of standard like 'Polka dots and moonbeams', 'For you for me', 'That old feeling', 'you are too beautiful' and our own originals such as 'Minutes', The Chairman', and 'China plate', pianist Eddie Harvey's 'Bertrand's bugle' and Don's 'Board meeting' and 'honest Injun'.

Own pieces
"The audiences seem to enjoy the mixture and we certainly do. In fact drummer Jackie Duggan and bassist Pete Blannin have been moved to write their own pieces so we are all contributors now."
Does the Jazz committee really think that modern jazz is on the upswing and is capable of supporting a sizeable contingent of full-time players?
Rendell and Courtley nod an enthusiastic yes.
"It's doing that already," says Bert, "and the signs are it's going to attract an even larger following, and in all modesty the Jazz Committtee is doing the same.
"We're getting TV and radio dates, we've an EP out soon for Decca, and we recently broke club attendance records at Coventry and Uxbridge."
Cheering news. Here's hoping it sticks to the same pattern next Friday, the 13th, at the "Two Brewers" in Wandsworth.

Melody Maker November 7, 1959
Bass player Johnny Hawksworth has been nominated by the American ''Playboy'' magazine as one of the outstanding jazz artists for 1960.
His award will be presented at his Jazz at the Circle club by MM editor Pat Brand on Sunday.

The jazz stars turned out in force for the opening of Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club on Friday. Toasting the success of the club (above) are (l-r) Duke Ellington's trumpeter Ray Nance, Tony Kinsey, Scott and Tubby Hayes.

RONNIE SCOTT became a club proprietor on Friday when he opened his new premises at 39, Gerrard Street, Soho.
In addition to presenting the top names of British jazz, Ronnie intends to feature promising young musicians at the club and Friday's guest stars included the new alto sensation, Peter King.
Other first-night stars included the Tubby Hayes Quartet - with it's new bassist Jeff Clyne, drummer Phil Seamen and pianist Terry Shannon - and the resident Eddie Thompson Trio.
Eddie now leads two trios, one for his normal round of one night stands, and the other at the club, which features Spike Heatley (bass) and Stan Roberts (drs).
Duke Ellington trumpeter Ray Nance dropped into the club on Friday to wish Ronnie luck. Ray spent the weekend in London en route for New York after Ellington's tour of the Continent.

39, Gerrard St., W.1.
(No horses allowed - we don't have the facilities for them)

Friday, Nov 6th, 7-30 -12 midnight
The fabulous JOE HARRIOTT QUINTET, SHAW, SOUTH, GOODE, ORR. THE TRIO, Eddie Thompson, Spike Heatley, Stan Roberts. RONNIE SCOTT & GUESTS.

Saturday, Nov 7th, 7-30 -11-30
The TONY KINSEY QUARTET, LE SAGE, BRANSCOMBE, MUDDELL. THE TRIO, Eddie Thompson, Spike Heatley, Stan Roberts. Special Poll winning guest, VIC ASH. RONNIE SCOTT & GUESTS.

Saturday - "The Late Show" , 12 midnight/dawn
Sensational new alto star, PETE KING, Eddie Thompson, Spike Heatley, Stan Roberts. RONNIE SCOTT & MANY GUESTS.

Sunday, Nov 8th, 7-30 -11 pm
The Great TUBBY HAYES QUARTET, SEAMEN, SHANNON, CLYNE. THE TRIO, Eddie Thompson, Spike Heatley, Stan Roberts. Special Poll winning guest, VIC ASH. RONNIE SCOTT & GUESTS.

EXTENSIVE BUFFET - Hamburgers, coffee, cakes.

Membership up till January 1st, 1961. Apply by P.O. and S.A.E. or in person to Pete King Ltd., 39, Gt. Windmill St. W.1.
The Best Jazz in the Best Club in Town

Incorporating "Rhythm"
Editor: Pat Brand

Melody Maker November 7, 1959

England's greatest-ever jazz club
Sam and Jeff Kruger's
33-37 Wardour Street, W.1.
Comfortable new seating,
Air-conditioned, Dance or listen,
Guests always welcome.
*Friday (6th), 7-11:
Our greatest-ever Friday show! swinging TONY CROMBIE ORCH. It gets better all the time. Back again TUBBY HAYES QRT. with Phil Seamen, Shannon, Clyne. Come as early as you possibly can.
*Saturday (7th), 7-midnite:
Modern jazz for every taste! the dynamic "JAZZ COMMITTEE" with Don Rendell' Bert Courtley. EDDIE THOMPSON TRIO. Guest hornman Leon Calvert (tpt) and great new alto star Pete King.
*Sunday (8th), 7-11:
The great new group that packs 'em in! Good to listen to, look at and dance to! The "new sound" TONY KINSEY QUARTET with Alan Branscombe (alto), Bill Le Sage (vibes, piano, CLAVIETTA), Joe Muddel (electric bass) Plus the shouting, swinging TONY CROMBIE ORCH. starring Stan Tracey, Napper, Calvert, Condon, Newman, Wellins, Clyne, Come early!
Watch for sensational opening attractions.
Comperes: Tony Hall, Bix Curtis. Membership now only 5/- till January, 1960. Send SAE and PO to 9, Woodlands, North Harrow, Middx.

Tony Harris and Rik Gunnell
33-37, Wardour Street W.1.
*FRIDAY, 11.30-4 a.m: JAZZ CHA CHA session, Rudy JonesQuintet, guests.
*SUNDAY AFTERNOON, 3-6 P.M: "JAM SESSION" Live and disc. Excellent snack counter.

Saturday, Nov, 7 7-11 p.m.

Sunday, Nov, 8 7-11 p.m.
20 Gerrard Street W.1. Licensed bar

HINDS HEAD, Chadwell Heath, Monday Nov 9, A FREE night for girls JOE HARRIOTT featuring Joe, Hank Shaw, Coleridge Goode, Bobby Orr, Harry South; plus Steve Kennell Quintet. Wonderful atmosphere! Great sound!


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