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7 November 2014

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You are in: Hereford and Worcester > Entertainment > Friday Session > Features > The missing trophy

Entrance to Malvern Winter Gardens

Entrance to Malvern Winter Gardens

The missing trophy

BBC H&W's Music Map throws up a mystery - what happened to the trophy from a Battle Of The Bands at the Malvern Winter gardens in the 1960's?

The tale of the missing Battle Of The Bands, dating back to a contest in the 1960's, first came from Joe Dunnett, who used to play in a band called The Suedes.

He contributed his story to BBC H&W's Music Map - his band was one of those that took part:

"We used to play the Winter Gardens Malvern in the early sixties rock contests, with The Buddies (later Mott The Hoople), The Ravens (all girl band) and later supporting The Who, The Yardbirds, Dave, Dee, Dozie, Beaky, Mick and Tich."

The story of the missing trophy came from John Thompson, whose band The Rascals, won the contest, and the chance to support a '60's pop star.

"In 1962 Malvern Winter Gardens held a rock group contest on Friday night once a month - the place was packed to the rafters.

"The winner of each heat got to play on Saturday night.

Adam Faith

Adam Faith in his 60's heydey

"The prize for the winners was an appearance on ATV's 'For teenagers only', on a Thursday night, to play at Malvern on New Year's Eve, and a very nice trophy.

"My band, The Playboys, won it, and played with Adam Faith.

"Other bands that competed were The Kossacks from Worcester, Cherokees from Evesham, The Hellions and the Sundowners.

"Where are they now?

"What ever happened to the trophy? - we had to give it back for the next contest."

California dreaming

The next contributor to this story on The Music Map was the one-time lead singer with The Kossacks, Dennis Key, who now lives in California.

"I was lead singer in The Kossacks, but I've no idea where the trophy went.

"I kind of figured that Doug Webber, the fellow that owned it and the actual organiser of the concerts, might have ended up with it.

"I think he had some thing to do with some engineering firm in Malvern, and they made it for him.

"It was great fun - the time of our lives. We were kicking over the apple cart. The music had been trad jazz and orchestras, and then rock and roll came along, and we all tried our best to be rich and famous.

"I still play music, in fact I've just come back from a four hour gig. I actually play instruments now, rather than sing.

"As you get older your voice gets a little less competent, shall we say, so I took a little more interest in the actual music part, rather singing the songs and flirting with the girls.

"Since (the Music Map) I've actually found Zed Huckster, who was my bass player in the Kossacks, and he's actually in South Australia.

"I did a Google search on him, found his phone number, and I had a chat to him for about half an hour, reminiscing about old times. It was quite fun.

"When the band thing was over I got the chance to work in New York, and I ended up doing advertising jingles and voice-overs for other people

"So somewhere, buried in the archives, I'm on the old Coco-Cola commercials and so on."

If you have a story about gigs you've seen in Herefordshire or Worcester, or about meeting a rock music legend, then we'd love to hear you story, and include it in our Music Map.

last updated: 05/12/07

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