Starting next Sunday, I will be running a new column featuring local musicians from the sixties and seventies. These were the people who made a name for themselves whose works were mainly recorded in English. They had a huge following and there isn't one household which did not have at least one album from them. The artistes featured will be from both sides of the Causeway since Singapore was part of Malaysia then. For those who longed to hear them again, this is the time to take a trip down memory lane.
I am a musician myself who started to learn to play the guitar when I was in Form 2. It was a rave then in the sixties when it was like a kind of a must for each school to have at least two or three bands, all playing cover versions of music by The Shadows or The Ventures. One of the pieces we must know how to play before one can actually be accepted in a band is The Shadows' "Apache".
I formed my group "The Larrikins" when I was in Form 4 to start earning my keeps, and although we were not rated as a top band, nonetheless we performed frequently on weekends either at Chinese weddings or Malay weddings, @ RM50 which was not bad considering the time we were in then.
The group broke up the following year, and after that I went free-lancing with other groups. Today, I still perform at corporate functions and you could see the smiles on some of the guests to be able to hear those guitar pieces again. Yes, it was nostalgic alright.
That's me on the right with The Larrikins performing at a Chinese wedding dinner at the Mak Yee Restaurant, BB Park, where Bukit Bintang Plaza/Sg Wang Plaza now stand.