mardi 4 novembre 2008


Left to right: Pete Newman (sax), Brian Norman (drums), Dave Sutch (vocals) and Vic Clark (guitar). Photo courtesy Vic Clark

In 1959, resolved to be a rock'n'roll singer, Dave Sutch attended auditions at the famous Two I's Coffee Bar in Old Compton Street, Soho, London.

The coffee bar run by Tom Littlewood being a mecca to budding pop stars - The hottest place to be - as it was here that Tommy Steele and Cliff Richard were discovered. Apparently Rock star Vince Taylor, who was one of the main acts at the venue, would recommended Sutch to Littlehood after he heard him scream somewhere.

Although auditions were interrupted because the auditioner got fed up with all the Elvis Presley look-alikes who came.
Littlewood advised the newcomer: “Get a gimmick, and you’re in”. So Sutch decided to swap his former apparel for the 'wild man of Borneo' look after he saw a pair of old buffalo horns for sale at 15 shillings in a place called "Jack's Second Hand Shop".

The next day,
Sutch returned to the Two I's Coffee Bar, disguised with buffalo horns glued to his crash helmet and his aunt's leopard skin jacket, which he tored the sleeves off.

Flaunting his wild man image, he impressed at his audition, singing an old song called “Bullshit Boogie”.

Tom Littlewood remembers his first encounter with SLS:

“One afternoon a strange individual came in, presenting himself as Mr. Sutch and asked if he could do an audition. I was very much amazed when he arrived, looking like a rag-and-bone man. He had with him a large bundle of miscellaneous equipment – sheepskin, pair of Buffalo horns, a man-trap, snow shoes and so forth. He sang an obscure old number called “Bullshit Boogie”.

He therefore landed a spot singing at the Two I's, and began to pick up bookings for gigs. Although he spent the proceeds of his first two gigs reimbursing his aunt the cost of the coat. The material of his debut is impossible to pinpoint though his early influences were Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry, Little Richard and Bo Diddley. Also impossible to determine: who was backing him at that time? Perhaps guitarist Glen Stoner and his friends who used to performed there as The Two I's Coffee Bar Junior Skiffle Group. Waiting for the big day, David Sutch let his hair grow...

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