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Nine Piece Memphis Soul band who have withstood the test of time

History: 1969-1972

 The All Night Workers #9 (Circa December 1969 - circa March 1970)

Clyde Barrow – lead vocals

Keith Kendall – lead guitar

Doug Ayris – bass

Johnny Baker – sax

Geoff Glover – sax

Jim Park – drums

Originally from Hayes, Middlesex, Kendall had gone to Mellow Lane School where he played with Brian & The Fantoms at the age of 12. In 1963, Kendall joined The Limelites who had been resident Sunday night band at the Clay Pigeon in Eastcote. Soon after, the group changed name to The Legends.

When the opportunity came to record for Pye Records with the legendary Joe Meek, the producer told The Legends that they would have to change their name because there was another band with the same name (Doug Ayris’s group, The Legend) and they became The First Impressions.

Led by Peter Watkinson (lead vocals) and also including Kevin Sparks (rhythm guitar), Rick Eagles (bass) and Tony Watkinson (drums), The First Impressions recorded a lone single – “Looking For Her” c/w “I’m Going Home”, which was released in March 1965.

However, when the US soul band, The Impressions threatened a law suit, they reverted back to The Legends and recorded a second Pye single, “I’ve Found Her” c/w “Something’s Gonna Happen”.

Later that year, Kendall left to return to a revised Brian & The Fantoms but it proved short lived. When the opportunity to sign with Andrew Loog Oldham and record for Decca Records fell through the band imploded.

By mid-1966, Kendall had joined up with some old friends from Mellow Lane School in The Soul System, which also included Geoff ? (lead vocals); Rik Jones (organ); Dave Horn (sax); Duncan Wilkes (trumpet); John Bartovski (bass) and Keith Jellows (drums).

In early 1969, Kendall met Johnny Baker at Music Exchange and invited him to join The Soul System. Soon after joining, Dave Horn left followed by John Bartovski, who was replaced by future Strawbs member Chas Cronk.

By November/December, however, Baker had returned to The All Night Workers and Kendall re-joined Brian & The Fantoms. Soon after, Kendall was offered the guitar position in the reformed The All Night Workers.

Jim Park did not stick around for long and Hans “Herbie” Herbert, who’d played with The All Night Workers during 1966-1967 returned to the drum stool for about a few months after playing with Geno Washington.

Around March 1970, Johnny Baker also left and was succeeded by John Conway, whose previous group had folded around May 1969. The band started to move away from its soul roots and began playing more jazz/rock material.  

The All Night Workers #10 (Circa March - April 1970)

Clyde Barrow – lead vocals

Keith Kendall – lead guitar

Doug Ayris – bass

John Conway – sax

Geoff Glover – sax

Hans “Herbie” Herbert – drums

By this time, The All Night Workers were playing covers of Chicago and Blood, Sweat & Tears material. Herbert, however, soon returned to play with Geno Washington and introduced his replacement Pete Amos before he departed.

According to Conway, the band’s name was spelt “All Nite Workers” while he was with them. Soon after joining, the group did an audition with the BBC at its Maida Vale studios.  

 The All Night Workers #11 (Circa April 1970 - circa January 1972)

Clyde Barrow – lead vocals

Keith Kendall – lead guitar

Doug Ayris – bass

John Conway – sax

Geoff Glover – sax

Pete Amos – drums

Barrow briefly quit the music business but later returned to the live scene in the mid-1970s after moving to the Bournemouth area.

Kendall reformed The Soul System. After playing the live scene from 1972-1973, Kendall left to join Redhead, which morphed into Junior High & The Rockets and recorded some material.

Geoff Glover gigged with various London bands until his City job relocated to Bournemouth in 1976. Based on the south coast, he worked with a number of groups before playing with soul & blues outfit Max Temp and The Fahrenheits and Fifties rock ‘n’ roll band, Rockola. Glover currently performs with The Christchurch Band of the Royal British Legion, and the Wessex Military Band. He is also currently rehearsing a 17-piece Big Band.

Doug Ayris established a business (Savage-Ayris), a management/agency company along with Derek Savage and booked Blackfoot Sue, Greyhound, Brinsley Schwarz, Ducks Deluxe, The Stranglers and Dave Edmonds to name but a few. They also worked with Elvis Costello and Dave Stewart in their early years. Ayris went on to own a music shop, where Mick Underwood taught drums and Ayris also ran rehearsal studios where the likes of The Sex Pistols, The Tourists, The Slits, Graham Parker & The Rumour and many others frequented.

Many people helped piece this remarkable family tree together. My thanks go to: Mick Wheeler, Brian Mansell, Brian Sell, Mel Wayne, Brian Hosking, Doug Ayris, John Sergeant, Malcolm Randall, Roy Doughty, Ted Hare, Iain Pitwell, Johnny Baker, Geoff Glover, Alan Barratt, Clyde Barrow, Keith Kendall and John Conway.

Nick Warburton

History Overview

History '66 - '67

History '67 - '68

History '68 - '69

History '69 - '72

The final All Night Workers played regularly at Pantiles in Bagshot in Surrey and at the Bag O’Nails in central London.

In January 1971, Conway left and the band carried on as a five-piece. Towards the end, however, gigs became few and far between, and in early 1972 the band finally dissolved.

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