The Ollie Halsall Archive

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The Torrington
 

A rare photo of the inside of the music rom from an earlier jazz age.

Here, as far as I can establish, are all the dates Patto ever played the Torrington, North Finchley:

1971
Sun 11th July
Sun 7th Nov

1972
Sun 2nd Jan
Sun 6th Feb
Sun 9th Apr
Sun 11th Jun
Sun 6th Aug
Sun 12th Nov

1973
Sun 21st Jan
Sun 6th May [without Ollie]

Melody Maker 5-12-73  

Sun 17th Jun [Dick and The Firemen]

1975
Sun 6th July [Reunion]

Sounds 7-19-75 

 


 

 

The Torrington Arms, 811 High Road, Finchley, London N12 [corner of Lodge Lane]
Images include the pub in 1890 and 1920

Well, this is where it all happened. The 'Mucky Duck' [Black Swan] Sheffield and The Torrington, North Finchley [pictured here in various incarnations] were probably The Pattos' favourite venues.

The 'Duck' was their last gig before Ollie left in May 1973 - although they did both the final 'Patto' gig without him shortly after and the last ever gig of the 1975 reunion at The Torrington in July 1975.

Promoter George Blevins started booking jazz bands in 1968 and switched to rock in 1970. He carried on for 30 years. Early performers here were Shakin Stevens, Alan Bown, Nucleus, Heads Hands & Feet, and Bob Downes’ Open Music.

The Torrington was part of the 1970s pub rock circuit, booking bands like Brinsley Schwarz and Dr Feelgood. Towards the end of the venue’s life Pete Feenstra took over as promoter. By then blues rock and tribute bands were much more common.

The venue finally closed on 3 October 2004 and part of the building is now a Starbucks and the music room is a dance studio, which isn't, perhaps, quite as bad.

Perhaps the best illustration of the excitement they generated in concert occurred some two years after they had split up.

On a Friday [Sunday - Ed] night in July 1975. at the Torrington in Finchley (one of Patto's regular gigs and the scene of their farewell show two years earlier), the four original members played a one-off benefit for the family of one of their old roadies, who'd been killed on a trip to India.

The queue stretched round the block, literally hundreds were locked out, and inside Patto were playing like they’d never been away.

They performed songs from all four albums, with some of their stage favourites like "Mummy", "Shakin’ All Over", and "Stairway Of Love". It was the best way to remember them, belting through "Loud Green Song", "Hold Your Fire" and "San Antone".

Nick Saloman, Record Collector magazine August 1990

The Torrington
London, 9 April 1972

Intro [Soley Soley]

Move It

Hold Your Fire

Maud, I'm Bored

Little Jimmy Brown

Lonely Nights

Rebel Rouser

Oh Carol

Tell Me Where You've Been

You, You Point Your Finger

Money Honey

Walk Don't Run

Big Hunk of Love

San Antone

+ Gary Windo [sax]

LISTEN

Essential listening because it is one of the few remaining complete performances and includes much of the sheer lunacy that was Patto. Appalling quality recording via [John Halsey's] portable cassette recorder, but somehow it works.


'And That's Jazz!
The Torrington, London
21 January 1973


San Antone

Hold Me Back

Holy Toledo

Singing the Blues on Reds

My Days Are Numbered

Tell Me Where You've Been

I'm Baroque [?]

Dear Landlord

The Dream I Had Last Night

Flat Footed Woman

Turn Turtle

Peter Abraham

Loud Green Song

+Dave Brooks [Sax]

Excellent quality recording made at the gig by Colin Johnson. Probably the best example of live Patto there is.

Particularly revealing on this session are Clive's bass and The Admiral's drumming - with which I'm sure he even surprised himself.

But, if you listen to nothing else, check out Ollie's solo on 'Hold Me Back' - possibly the finest example we have of what he was all about in those day. Prepare to be jaw-droppe.

'Im Baroque' is what I think the song is called. Colin names it 'Playing in Oz' Anyone?

The title 'And That's Jazz' derives from the inexplicable singing of the phrase at the end of 'My Days Are Numbered'

The Torrington London 6 July 1975
[Reunion benefit concert]

THE LAST EVER PATTO GIG

Anecdote (The Midwife)

Hold Your Fire

Loud Green Song

I Got Rhythm

Stairway of Love

Mummy

Walk Don't Run

Route 66

Hold Me Back

My Days Are Numbered

Sittin' Back Easy

Singing the Blues on Reds

Government Man

Shakin' All Over

A Big Hunk O' Love

Lonely Nights

Hi-Heel Sneakers

HI HEEL SNEAKERS WAS THE LAST SONG PATTO EVER PLAYED

Review Sounds 7-19-75 .

I do remember someone, maybe Boz recording a late Patto gig from the back of the room with one of those 'human skull' devices which I think he told me should make an excellent recording. I also remember Martin Ace standing in for (or alongside) Mike. Quite a surprise - I didn't even know they knew each other.

One more memory. Early seventies, I went to a late night Time Out Party with Patto as the featured band. Topless waitresses, waiters with flowers in their hair and a trans-sexual stripper (very odd). The sound for Patto's performance was 'shite' so I accosted the sound man with some fury. He then improved it considerably. Mike beamed and gave me a thumbs up.

- George Blevins 2016

Here's George Blevins's closing words over the 'standing ovation' [well, there wer no seats anyway] at the 6 Jully 1975 Patto reunion above.

Torrington Music
FaceBook Group

Patto

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