By Mal Jefferson
Mersey Beat: September 3 1964
Hi everybody from all us Mastersounds here in Hamburg. We are lying half-naked in our pad at the Top Ten club in sweltering heat. Adrian is completely naked except for a pair of socks and we all miss Liverpool and all our friends very much.
Let me tell you about the club
Two groups work here every night except for Fridays and Sundays when they employ another band (usually the Staccato Four from Scotland or the German Soundnicks). We are working alongside a fine group from Ipswich, the Unit 4, but strangely enough most of the bands that work here are Scottish.
Talking of Scotland here is the real gas of the club. They employ permanently one Glasgow girl singer in the form of one fantastic Miss Isabelle Bond who sings like a cross
between Timi Yuro and Brenda Lee - only better. Also they employ another Scot - Ricky Barnes, who used to play with Tony Sheridan on tenor sax and who is working with us during our stay. He can play an octave higher than our sax player Gerry in a register that is so high it's ear-splitting - and Gerry used to lead and write arrangements for a 16-piece London band on sax. Ricky is really essential.
Out Of This World
The club is owned by Peter Eckhorn and is run by Iain Hines, a great guy and a terrific organist. He played organ with us the other night and our line-up was drums, bass, rhythm and lead guitars, two tenor saxes and organ. The sound was out of this world. There is drinking till the early hours of the morning and the audience is very friendly and responsive. The atmosphere is very intimate and in our opinion better than the Star Club's.
In the Star Club there are of course four Liverpool groups performing there at present - the Chants, the Harlems, the Liverbirds and the new Gibson Kemp/Paddy Chambers group the Eyes. We saw the Eyes perform the other night and were very impressed - they are solid and powerful and had only been together for a week.
We also met Mike Hart of the Roadrunners who was passing through to Kiel Star Club and he sends his regards.
Really, this place is just like a second Liverpool with the groups and English folk - even the Beatles 'A Hard Day's Night' (retitled 'Yeah, Yeah, Yeah') is showing for a season opposite the club.
However, next time we'll tell you more about the Star Club, the Liverpool bands there and the Mambo Schanke Cafe around the corner where all the groups eat and drink.