Please click here to see final financial statement
180 present, more than £1,400 raised for Alder Hey, and it was stupendiferous.
The performers were on fire. They could never have sounded better.
We had local people telling me: "I wish I'd known that things like this were on here. I'm coming again." I just didn't have the heart to tell them that they were attending something unique.
I know I'm prejudiced, but I thought the whole experience was amazing.
Mags Cummings reports
The night started with Daniel as DJ and later excellent compere.
Harry introduced the show saying that Billy’s last public at Sunnyside back in December 1982 . It is now a pub but when Billy played there it was a nightclub.
The first artiste to appear was Geoff Howlett who we were sitting with. Geoff got up to go to the stage and squeeze past my chair; I tried to help and squashed his foot with my chair leg! Like the trooper he is, Geoff didn’t let this affect his fine performance; he opened with ‘Poetry In Motion’ followed by ‘Like I’ve Never Been Gone’ which he dedicated to Jean and Albie. Playing guitar he went on to sing ‘Fools Errand’, ‘Rave On’ a great audience foot tapper and ‘Have I The Right’ to end with ‘Please Please Me’ and ‘Here Comes Summer’ which my hubby John said to Marie and Jean reminded him of his first girlfriend Elsie Brearley! Great set Geoff.
The big lad from Leeds, Russ Dee was next wearing his trademark white jacket.
He opened with ‘Welcome To My World’ followed by ‘Unchained Melody’, ‘You’re Swell’ and ‘Don’t Turn Around’ which brought a big audience reaction. To the Anagrammers on the Message Board he dedicated ‘That’s Love’ and closed his set with a big favourite, ‘Cross My Heart’. There was a huge round of applause, well deserved for a smashing guy.
The auction came next with Chris Eley doing the honours. All the money raised from the evening was for the heart fund at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, the official charity of the Billy Fury website. The items are listed below:
1 A cushion and shopping bag made and donated by Pauline Swindells £10
Dave Michael in his black leather outfit with open fronted shirt was next to perform starting with a Billy fav ‘Like I’ve Never Been Gone’, ‘It’s Only Make Believe’ and audience pleaser ‘A Fool Such As I’. More Elvis, ‘Loving You’, ‘One Night With You’ and ‘American Trilogy’ finished off a very popular set. Sophie was photographed with Dave to much audience applause.
Johnny Storme in his leather suit was next up to much cheering from the ladies present……….especially Jean and Marie! He did look very brooding and sexy sitting on a high stool with subdued lighting. He started with ‘Angel’, ‘I Must Be Dreaming’ the song that Billy recorded but never released. ‘Maybe Tomorrow’ was next as requested by Kat who asked that it be dedicated to all the ‘Message Boarders’, thanks Kat. For Moya in New Zealand ‘I Will’, ‘Be Mine Tonight’ to a good reception and ‘Love Me Tender’ receiving cries of ‘more’ and fantastic applause. Thanks Johnny, you’re a star.
Harry announced that Vince Eager had arrived and was going to do the raffle after
Roger Sea and Trackback who were next up starting with the instrumental ‘Foottapper’ joined by Roger for Marty’s ‘Teenager In Love’and ‘Do You Want To Dance’, which got everyone onto the dance floor. ‘I Saw Her Standing There’, ‘I Gotta Woman’ ‘Nothin Shaking’, lots of applause for that. ‘Johnny B Goode’, ‘Please Don’t Tease’, ‘Everyday’ finishing with ‘A Thousand Stars’. What a stonking set boys; brill.
Daniel announced a roll call and photo opportunity of all the acts so far to huge applause and cheers.
Vince was presented by Harry to perform the raffle and joined by Sophie age eight, Billy Fury’s youngest fan at the gig to draw out the tickets, she looked really lovely in her white top and skirt with long white boots. The first ticket out of the hat was to receive the top prize of £50 of M & S vouchers and bless Sophie, she drew my ticket! I was surprised and delighted as I don’t usually do very well with raffles. There were 40 prizes, too many to mention and as well as me, Jean, Marie and Judy all won prizes. John and I were sitting with Jean, Marie, Babs and Colin, Cathy and her lovely daughter as well as Geoff and Judy which I mentioned previously. Jean and I were reminiscing about our ‘Billy experiences’ back in the 50’s and 60’s and feeling just like teenagers again. We had such a smashing time with all our mates from the website.
Laura commenced the closing half of the evening with her powerful rangy voice and personality and tremendous presence accompanied by Nick McNulty on guitar.
She opened with her disco beat intro of ‘When Will You Say I Love You?’ followed by ‘I’m So In Love With You’? help Kevin!. ‘Forget Him’, Laura’s favourite Billy song then she was joined by her thirteen year old sister Emily for a superb ‘Collette’ with great harmonies. Nick then left and they continued with a medley ‘Locomotion’, ‘Baby Love’, Lipstick On Your Collar’and ‘Da Do Ron Ron’ which brought the house down.
Kevin Summerfield, Laura’s manager then asked Harry to come forward for a presentation of an original painting of Billy by Dave Whateley, presented by Sophie and Cathy who had made the collection suggested by DR for all the time and effort that Harry puts into this fabulous website. This brought huge applause from the audience, well deserved Harry, thank you so very much. Maureen, Harry’s wife was presented with a bouquet for all her patience in allowing Harry to dedicate so much time to all our benefit. Harry said that the site started almost seven years with a couple of pages and had somehow grown to be the site that it now is. He mentioned that there wasn’t a nasty person amongst all the folk who frequent the site and this was received with cheers.
Laura continued her fine set with ‘I Love How You Love Me’, ‘Let Me Go Lover’, and he raunchy ‘I’m So Blue(over you)’. Next was the ‘Sunnyside Girls Choir’, all the ladies from the message board joined hands and stood in a semi-circle around Laura to sing ‘Legends Never Die’. Sophie joined Laura at the microphone and sang like a little trooper, fabulous!
There were more thanks from Harry and then Rob Dee and The Fury Sound were announced to the ‘Juke Box Jury’ tune played by the band. As Rob made his entrance in a white jacket black shirt, white tie and black leather trousers to do his all Billy Fury Set.
‘I’ll Never Find Another You’, ‘A Thousand Stars’, ‘Maybe Tomorrow’, Cross My Heart’, ‘Like I’ve Never Been Gone’, ‘Once Upon A Dream’, Devil or Angel’, Running Around’, ‘Wedding Bells’, Forget Him’and ‘It’s Only Make Believe’. The Fury Sound then played ‘Telstar’ after which Rob reappeared wearing all black with no tie. ‘Fools Errand’, Moya Gleave dedication of ‘Iwill’, ‘When Will You Say I Love You?’, Don’t Knock Upon My Door’, Nothin Shaking’, ‘That’s Alright Mama’,
‘Gonna Type A Letter’, ‘Johnny B Goode’ and ‘In Thoughts of You’. Everyone was cheering for more so Rob did the honours with the perennial ‘Halfway To Paradise’ followed by an accapella version of ‘Nobody’s Child’ to which everyone sang along. Great stuff Rob!
What a fantastic night thanks to the efforts of Harry and all the artistes involved. When’s the next one Harry?
Rob in action
TONKA WRITES: Daniel and myself arrived
at the Hilton about 4pm and settled into
our room then decided to head into town for a few drinks (good job too
cos the prices in the hotel bar were abit extortionate!!!) While waiting
for our taxi in the foyer we met Marie and Jean, the first of many
wonderful people that I hope I can now call friends. After a quick
wander and a few drinks around town we headed back to the hotel to get
ready for dinner.
See Calvin Bassant's photos on http://cbassant.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/Sunnyside/Sunnyside.html
KEVIN SUMMERFIELD WRITES What
a night - what an atmosphere - what a show that every artist put on!
and I set off and met Pauline and Henry at the Car Ferry at 9.30 Friday
Morning. A big thank you to you both for being our guides for the entire
weekend. Without you we'd have been still travelling the motorways!!
Friday night's dinner was a great time to meet everyone who had booked
into the Hilton, what a great crowd of people!! Swapped my watch with
Harry's watch, which had once belonged to Billy, but he rumbled me in
seconds.... Daniel gave us a demonstration of his magical talent... what
a guy!! Superb.
Roger Sea writes: Being hard-up musicians and living fairly local’ish we didn’t stay on the Friday night so
therefore missed out on the festivities at the Hilton…Maybe Tomorrow…well next year!
We arrived in three separate cars, it just isn’t the fact that we have lots of gear, it’s ‘cause
we don’t normally talk to each other!
Anyway the first people we met were Harry and Kevin, who told us to go inside a get a
drink before Russ Dee, Johnny S, Dave M, Geoff H and the rest of them drank the place
dry. We were just shutting the car doors (it’s a custom where we come from) when up
drove Rob Dee with a much younger looking woman….hi Chris. Rob was sporting his 60’s
style ‘shades’, no wonder his car is full of dents and scratches, he can’t see a thing in those
sunglasses. His eyesight is not the good at the best of times. We shook hands but my electric
shock machine failed to have any affect whatsoever on Rob (will we ever top the bill).
When we got into the bar there they all were sat in a big circle like cowboys being attacked
by Indians. I swear Johnny Storme was still drinking the same cup of tea as he had at FF03.
Now Johnny comes from overseas and told me that he had a terrible journey getting there,
he was shipped wrecked twice, lost all his jewels to pirates and had to sell his hairpiece to
buy back his song sheets! He came the long way ‘round, via the cape of good luck, or
something like that. He followed Pauline and Henry who started their journey to Sunnyside
on New Years Day.
We couldn’t stop for a drink (not that anyone offered us one) we had to get the gear in.
Now it was my Dad’s birthday on the following Monday, a very young 80. Dad’s been
carrying my gear off & on for the past 35 years, so as it was his birthday I said he could
have the following week off and handed him the heaviest case I could find. I have a bad leg
and had to sit down and watch Dad and the Track Back lads (I use the word very loosely)
carry the gear into the concert room.
People came and went and we were busy getting the gear hocked-up. Rob Dee and his
merry men worked hard to get things right. The noise cheques were complete and it started
to get dark. Now I had visited the venue before, but that was in the light, had we known that
there was a shortage of electricity in that area we would have put more candles in the lights.
Alternatively we would have told the audience to wear miner’s lamps.
Harry got to the mic first and introduced the show. Daniel (I thought he was a bit quiet)
introduced the acts. First up was Geoff, a genuine nice guy who we keep intouch with by
email, good voice, good act but lives in Hull. My wife’s from Grimsby, so you’ll have to ask
Geoff what that means!
Next up the big man from Leeds (no not Jacky Charlton)… Russ Dee, he actually made it
this time. Russ sometimes has problems getting places!! What a powerful voice and a really
authentic Fury sound. Of course coming from Leeds, Sunnyside was all new to Russ…
electric lights, central heating, carpets. (he knows I’m joking)
Then came Dave Michael looking very Elvis’y in his black leather gear. He said my wife
could borrow it if she wanted, it’ll go well with her whip and handcuffs! Dave did an
excellent job as usual, long may he continue. (I’ll bring the leathers back next week Dave…
they’re at the cleaners at present)
The lights dimmed (the fuse blow) and there he sat (‘cause he has great difficulty standing at
his age) the great Johnny Storme. The last time I saw Johnny he was hiding back stage at
Newark (probably from the tax man…or is the IOW a tax haven?) to surprise Harry. What
a performer, what a performance, well done Johnny mate. We’re coming to the Island soon;
maybe you’ll come and see us. The warden will let you in and we’ll tell you when visiting
time is!! We did a similar club a while ago, funny name for a club….Strangways.
What a great surprise to see Vince Eager who did the raffle and bunged one down to the
misses for the old times. Must ask Vince how he knows the misses. Anyway, while Vince
was raffling, Track Back needed to get their gear ready. Then Daniel shouted
something…sounded like…. “oh you bloody tooth” and the lads were away with the shads
“Foot Tapper”. Then the girls started screaming, so did the PA (from fear…not excitement)
and I was on with “Teenager in Love” …….why must I be a teenager in love…. nowadays
I sing…why can’t I be a teenager in love… Anyway we did our 30’odd minutes and just
hope that we did something for everyone. The lads, Dave and Doug, are great musician and
fab people, they’re a lot older than me of course and do take some looking after, that’s why
they had to leave before the second half….they had to get back to the “home” before
matron locked them out…again. I, of course stayed to the end…I had some of the gear to
take back and as Dad was still sober, he carried it to the car.
I hadn’t met Chris Eley before, what a clever guy…can count as well. Next time I’ll bring
my old Boy Scout uniform and see if he can makes a bob or two on that. Nice to have met
Laura and her lovely sister were great. I’ve seen Laura before but not with her sister. They
harmonise beautifully together, anyone would think they’re related (silly boy)
Very impressed with Laura who is maturing into a real class act. Well done to you Laura
and to Kevin, and also to Nick McNulty for some great acoustic guitar backing.
Then it was Rob’s turn, out goes his Zimmer frame, on comes the make-up (he buys it
wholesale you know) Being serious for a moment (what me) Rob and his Fury Sound are a
truly great act and they do Billy’s music proud. Despite recent changes to the line-up, the
Fury Sound, lead by a really good keyboard player (and a nice person), kept it tight and
clean. Very well done Rob and the lads.
Then all to soon it was time to go. Dad struggled carrying the remaining gear to the car,
however, he enjoyed the run home but said he would have been more comfortable inside the
car…sorry Dad you filled it up with equipment!!
I met many of the MB people for the first time, including my nearest Billy fan Linda C from
Peterboro, Tonka, Babs, the Southend on Sea Fury fans, Mags, Chris, Cathy, Pauline,
Henry and many many more. What lovely people you really are. Last but by no means least,
thanks to Harry and everyone who made it happen. Here’s to the next time.
Ticket sales less performers/
Balance of collection for HW
Ebay sales of donated items
Donations for show DVDs
Donation for sales of CDs