24 DEC 1966
I travelled to New York for an American tour with The Yardbirds
Twas the night before Christmas in 1966 and I was to leave from England with The Yardbirds to New York to begin a short American and Canadian tour with Keith Relf, Jim McCarty and Chris Dreja on board.
ON THIS DAY… 10 SEP 1966
I PLAYED THE BALTIMORE CIVIC CENTER WITH THE YARDBIRDS
The Yardbirds played as a four-piece at the Baltimore Civic Center without Jeff Beck who was “sick” in LA. This led to the eventual cancellation of the second night there on the 11th.
ON THIS DAY… 27 AUG 1966
I PLAYED WITH THE YARDBIRDS IN SANTA BARBARA
The Yardbirds were based in LA when we played in Santa Barbara as a four piece. This gives a good opportunity to show some rarely seen photos.
ON THIS DAY… 23 AUG 1966
THE YARDBIRDS PLAY THE CASINO BALLROOM, AVALON, CATALINA ISLAND
On this day in 1966, The Yardbirds played Catalina Island. The equipment was ferried across and the band arrived by sea plane. We were surprised to find some Jordan amplifiers had been set up at the venue instead of our own amplifiers. This proved to be quite problematic because we had to play through new amplifiers for the show instead of our regular amplification, which had not been brought to the island. They couldn’t handle the dynamics electrically that we had been used to with our own equipment. Somebody made the decision about the Jordan Amps but they never owned up.
ON THIS DAY… 22 JUL 1967
I PLAYED THE SANTA MONICA CIVIC WITH THE YARDBIRDS
On this day in 1967, the four live Yardbirds played the Santa Monica Civic, having played Santa Rosa the day beforehand, so these were our LA shows before going to perform three nights at the Fillmore in San Francisco. Also on the line up were West Coast heavyweights Moby Grape and Captain Beefheart.
01. Train Kept a-Rollin’
02. Mr. You’re a Better Man Than I
03. Heart Full of Soul
04. I Wish You Would/Hey Gyp
05. My Baby
06. Most Likely You’ll Go Your Way
07. Smile on Me
08. I’m a Man
09. Over Under Sideways Down
20 JUL 1966
I PLAYED STOURBRIDGE TOWN HALL, UK WITH THE YARDBIRDS
On this day in 1966, I played with five very alive Yardbirds. Jeff was in the band and we played some twin guitars at this time, but primarily I was on bass. It was Stourbridge, waking up the Midlands!
ON THIS DAY… 21 JUN 1966
I PLAYED MY FIRST SHOW WITH THE YARDBIRDS AT MARQUEE CLUB, LONDON
In the summer of 1966, Jeff Beck had invited me to a Yardbirds show at the May Ball at Queen’s College, Oxford, where the band were to perform in a giant marquee. They were really playing well that night but the audience of penguin-suited university bods were mainly unreceptive and too busy being loud drunks. During the set, Keith Relf became disenchanted with the audience and morphed into what would later be termed a punk, with colourful language and insults to what was a drunken bunch of Hoorays. Keith was wobbling but he finished the set with suitable angst. I thought he was brilliant under the circumstances, but Paul Samwell Smith left the band that evening.
Three days after the Oxford gig, on this day in ‘66, The Yardbirds had this date at London’s Marquee club with no bass player. In the event that Paul was not going to return, I volunteered to play bass with them. This was my debut. It was not an easy job to fill the massive powerhouse role set by Paul Samwell Smith, but I pulled it off.