This website was established in 1998 for several reasons. The most important was to remember those involved in the local Townsville bands and other personalities who were associated in some way. Several years ago back medical issues and prolonged academic research, travel overseas interrupted the ‘bands’ research and for this I apologise.
Ten years ago some musicians and I did get together in Canberra to play some 50s/60s music and light Jazz. However, this soon evolved quickly into 'thump' rock of the 70s and 80s. The 60s feel was just not there, especially for instrumentals and the sound got further and further away from what we started out to do. However, I wish I could have played and sang as well as I do now in the early 1960s. My unwanted call up to military service in April 1966 ended my involvement in bands in NQ. I hated the Army and all that went with it. However, I continued to play while in military service in Sydney and Canberra. When I returned home music, people and interests had changed. A colleague Keith Ross introduced me to ‘Bluegrass’ an interest I continue to enjoy and play. During this time I met one of the best musicians and nicest persons put on this earth. Terry McCarthy played, with excellence, most bluegrass instruments but excelled at the 5 string banjo. It is extremely unfortunate that Terry is now deceased. However, I have treasured memories of the time we played in the 'BlackRiver Bluegrass' - with Ray LeFeuvre, Jack Rush, John Sinclair and many others but that is another story.
This website originated from interest in the local bands that played in Townsville in the 1960s by Ray Hurle and myself. Ray was one of the old mob from the ‘YCW Record Hop’. If you read this page and were part of a band or went to the dances it would be great to hear from you.
If you have any photographs or can remember who was in which band, and when, please contact me with the details or use the form provided. If you have any photographs, memories or newspaper cuttings please forward a scanned copy to my e-mail address. If you do not have access to a scanner, a copy of the photograph with a digital camera would be great.
Many bands changed names and musicians over time, so if you can assist to correct or fill in the gaps please let us know. You have our humblest apologies for any omissions or errors to date. If you would like a copy of any of the photographs please ask. If copyright does not apply I will do my best to send a copy.
Personally the website provided Jen and I the most pleasant opportunity in reuniting with Frank Gough the drummer I first met in the ‘The Arctics’ in 1964. Upon relocating to Brisbane from Canberra, Frank, Jen and I have shared some wonderful memories. We were very lucky to meet all The Arctics and their beautiful wives of many years in Brisbane.
A most significant event has been the association with Bob Anderson, Gary Miers, John Graham, Bert Clements, Donald Leong and Cliff Sunn. These guys have shared their time, memories, photographs and newspaper cuttings.
The response to the website has been so overwhelming that the bands cannot continue to be confined to Townville nor the era to the 1960s. Hence this new website starts with bands from the 1950s through to the 1980s and expands geographically from Cairns to Brisbane.
My special thanks to you all especially:
Bob Anderson, Gary Miers, Ray LeFeuvre, Bert Clements, Fiona Clements, Tony Firth, Veronica Firth, Jenny Tracey, Bob Knight, Henry Johnson, Donald Leong, Cliff Sunn, Barry Voss, Max Lees (Charlies' Son), Nick Lees (Charlies' Grandson).