Wild Silk (Swinton)

 Line-up included

  • Paul Turner - bass
  • Eric Benson - organ
  • Pete ? - sax
  • Ray Gibson - drums
  • Leslie Crompton - lead


Original members of Wild Silk were Paul Turner, bass guitar, who later played with Strictly For Cash, Eric Benson, organ, and Pete ?, sax and flute. Wild Silk was formed out of Michael's Angels.

The name came from advertising for a roadie, who turned up in a wildly painted van with the name Wild Silk splashed all over, it saved having to come up with a name. Manager of Wild Silk at the time was Alan Wrigley who worked for the Browns Organization and was an original member of Hermans Hermits.

In 1968, Wild Silk toured France backing Kirk St James, and The Chantelles, a Manchester vocal trio. Wild Silk also played as a group in their own rights including Belle Vue opener for The Who.





Kirk St James was the front man in Wild Silk, as on the Dave Bowker site. We toured France with the original Wild Silk line up with a singing group as added attraction, The Chantelles? This time 9 of us in another clapped out van! We toured all over, luckily with hotels included. West and Ssouthern France in summer, that van was hot and it was black. We never had a wage - just "pocket money".

We were heading for the ferry home about 4 am and skint with just enough cash for fuel, no grub. The van ran out of fuel at the top of a gradient and coasted down to a petrol station. An old guy was fast asleep behind the counter with two alsation dogs also sparked out. Alan the roadie switched on the pumps inside and we filled up with fuel and sweets then pushed the van away started it up and awav. The sprit of Agincourt!

I suppose the old guy got a good bollocking, don't know about the Alsations. We arrived back home in one piece. We arrived in Manchester and as I lived in Glossop, the roadie dropped me off to sleep in Moss Side - the bastard, 2 am in the morning. Bad memories of The Nile Social Club where we had a gig with Hobo Flats months previously,and were told, with total lack of decorum, "fuck off ya white honkies, we ain't payin yass".

We were playin John Mayall stuff but they wanted reggae! Kennedy Street did pay us however to give them their due.

Asleep on the settee in Moss Side I awoke to a clicking sound, switched on a light and the whole floor moved with hundreds of cockroaches! I got the 125 bus to Glossop never having slept a wink.

Halcyon Days? Next adventure Beirut.

Leslie Crompton - 2/10/11

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