Backstage Pass: Redcar Jazz Club by Dennis Weller, Chris Scott Wilson and Graham Lowe (RJC Media Group, £29.99)
IN 1958, on the seafront at Redcar, a trad jazz club was born which very quickly outgrew its roots and became one of the best places in the North-East to see the biggest bands of the Swinging 1960s.
It is extraordinary how many seminal names played the Redcar Jazz Club: from Acker Bilk through to Manfred Mann, Joe Cocker, Cream, Black Sabbath and The Who. Anyone who was anyone played there, from Rod Stewart, Long John Baldry, Spencer Davis, Steve Winwood, Eric Clapton to David Coverdale. The club grew quickly, starting out in the Royal Hotel but soon establishing itself in the larger Coatham Hotel, where the long queue in the teeth of the howling sea wind was almost as legendary as the sweaty nights inside.
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Those heady days have been captured in a glossy hardback book, 160 pages long and containing more than 200 atmospheric of the stars at play. Many of the pictures, which were taken by Dennis Weller and Graham Lowe, have never be seen before, and with Chris Scott Wilson's purple prose, they really do transport the reader back to another era.
As you turn through the pages, you can feel the 1960s swinging: what started out as proper jazz became beat music and rhythm and blues which turned into rock and even progressive rock in the early 1970s.
It was those changing times that did for the jazz club: it couldn't compete with the new discotheques, and closed in 1973.
The large format book, which is superbly illustrated with vintage memorabilia as well as the photographs, is available from redcarjazzclubmedia.com or from Waterstones, Middlesbrough; Guisborough Book Shop; The Book Corner, Saltburn; Clock Gallery and Kirkleatham Hall Museum, in Redcar, and Sound It Out Records in Stockton.