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Birmingham's King of Swing brings his Rock 'n' Roll Show show to Fletchers on Sunday 10 May

Award winning vocal entertainer Chris King appears in a special show at Fletchers on Sunday 10 May to commemorate the glory days of the old Ritz Ballrooom on King's Heath's York Road

When the ballroom first opened, the audience danced the night away to the big band sounds of the Charlie Simpson Orchestra and then to early appearances by Vince Hill and Engelbert Humperdinck.

Later they danced the night away to great international rock 'n' roll stars like Bill Haley, Jerry Lee Lewis and Gene Vincent and also up and coming English groups like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Kinks.

Chris will make you smile, laugh, sing and want to dance along to a great selection of the finest rock 'n' roll and swing songs ever written from the 1950's and 1960's onwards in a unique concert to commemorate the rich musical legacy of the old ballroom.

Previously voted Best Male Vocal Entertainer by the Birmingham Entertainments Secretaries Council, Chris always provides a great show that has proven to be a big hit with audiences of all ages.

Don't miss a fantastic 3 hour Lazy Sunday Afternoon Session in KIng's Heath starting at 3 p.m. Advance Tickets cost just £3 from the Kitchen Garden Cafe or £3.30 from www.wegottickets.com/event/311745

Any remaining tickets will cost £4 on the door.

 
Help Fund A New Ritz Arts Centre For A New Generation!

ABOVE: Donate at least £30 and get one free ticket to see ex-Kinks members "The Kast Off Kinks" perform at the Hare & Hounds on 12 June 2016 to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the The Kinks' Birmingham debut at King's Heath's old Ritz Ballroom

A new Ritz Arts Centre Charitable Incorporated Organisation is being registered with the Charity Commission and you can help us to try to raise money to create a New Ritz for a New Generation.

Everyone who pledges at least £15 gets a great reward. And the more you donate the better the reward!

The new Arts Centre will seek to celebrate the past, present and future musical and cultural talent of the local area.

We hope that it will include a multi function performance and rehearsal space capable of being used by a new generation for live music and other cultural activities and a Pop History Museum that commemorates the pivotal role that the old Ritz Ballroom in York Road played in Birminghams Pop Culture of the 1960's before it was destroyed by a fire in 2013. The ballroom witnessed some of the first performances of Birmingham groups like The Move, The Moody Blues, The Spencer Davis Group, Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant and Black Sabbeth's Ozzy Osborne and Geezer Butler as well as the Birmingham debut of The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Dusty Springfield and The Kinks!

We want the centre to become a major attraction that will add to the area's already vibrant live music scene.

You can help turn our dream turn into a reality by donating money at www.crowdpatch.co.uk/ritz/

The more you donate the better the reward you can claim.

The first 5 people who donate at least £60
get an A4 mounted copy of Rob Geoghegan's (Funny Brummie Pictures) painting
"The Beatles Birmingham Debut at The Ritz Ballroom" worth £30

The first 8 people who donate at least £40
get an A5 mounted or framed copy of Rob Geoghegan's (Funny Brummie Pictures) painting
 "The Beatles Birmingham Debut at The Ritz Ballroom" worth £20

The first 50 people who donate at least £30
get one ticket worth £15 to see ex Kinks Members "The Kast Off Kinks"
perform at the Hare & Hounds on 12 June 2016
to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of The Kinks appearing at the Ritz Ballroom

Everyone else who donates at least £15

gets an A3 Ritz Ballroom Commemorative poster worth £5 designed by graphic artist Gareth Austin.

To donate or find out more go to www.crowdpatch.co.uk/ritz/

 
Beatlemania will return to King's Heath on Sunday 15 February

Beatlemania will return to King's Heath on Sunday 15 Febuary as we celebrate the 52nd anniversary of the first ever Beatles gig in Birmingham at the old Ritz Ballroom on King’s Heath’s York Road which was sadly destroyed by fire in 2013. From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m top local musicians will play their favourite Beatles songs in a sold out acoustic session at Fletchers Bar on York Road directly opposite the former ballroom.

Doors will then open at 7 p.m at the Hare & Hounds for a Special Concert by top Midlands tribute band The Born Again Beatles who last year starred at Liverpool's Cavern Club where the Fab Four started out.Tickets for the evening concert are also selling fast and need to be bought quickly

The Beatles appeared at the Ritz Ballroom – one of 4 venues run in the 1950′s and 60′s by the legendary Irish couple Ma and Pa Regan – on 15 February 1963 shortly after releasing their second single “Please Please Me”. Originally scheduled to appear on 11 January, they had been prevented by blizzard like conditions from making the 11 mile journey to King’s Heath from one of the Regans other venues – the Plaza in Old Hill.

When they did eventually make it on 15 February Beatlemania had really started to take off and the Beatles were only able to enter the Ritz by climbing up a ladder from Milford Place. In fact, the Fab Four almost had to appear as the Fab Three after George Harrison arrived late by taxi and was trapped by screaming fans.

“Tell them to turn that racket down” is what Pa Regan is rumoured to have shouted while they were practising! But he was a very happy man really. He had persuaded their manager Brian Epstein to agree to them performing for their previously agreed fee even though they were now No. 1 in the charts! They performed the rescheduled gig at The Ritz during a break from The Helen Shapiro Tour on which they started off as only 4th out of the 11 acts on the bill!

No more advance tickets are available for the afternoon Acoustic Session. A few tickets and returns may be available for £4 on the door.

Advance tickets for the evening concert by The Born Again Beatles are also selling fast and cost £5 and are available from the Kitchen Garden Cafe or on-line for £5 plus a booking fee from 

www.wegottickets.com/event/306145

www.hareandhoundskingsheath.co.uk 

Any remaining tickets will cost £7 on the door.



 
Brum Beat rock 'n' roll legends Dave Lacey and Buddies to play Fletchers on Sunday 7 December

Come and hear 1960's Brum Beat legendary singer Dave Lacey with his current group Buddies in a special three hour concert at Fletchers on Sunday 7 December. Dave Lacey and the Corvettes were regulars at King's Heath's Ritz Ballroom and other clubs on the Regan circuit in the 1960's . Now  Dave along with The Corvettes' rhythm guitarist Roy Pinson and drummer John Dudley will return to  King's Heath and be joined on stage at Fletchers by lead guitarist Dave Brettell and bass guitarist Anthony Smith in a great line up known as Dave Lacey and Buddies. Originally formed to play Buddy Holly songs, the hugely popular Stourbridge based group now play a fantastic selection of great rock 'n' roll songs from the late 1950's onwards.

Dave Lacey and the Corvettes were regulars at the Regan owned Plazas in Old Hill and Handsworth in the 1960's but frequently doubled up by playing at the Ritz Ballroom on the same night as well. They supported many of the greatest artists of  the 1960's including The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Animals, Bill Haley and Jerry Lee Lewis. With the Regans acting as their agents, they performed 3 songs on the famous Brum Beat album released by Decca and had a single "That's What They All Say", penned by Dave Lacey, released on the Phillips label.

Starting at 3 p.m. Dave Lacy and Buddies will appear as the main act in the latest of our popular Lazy Sunday Afternoon Sessions on Sunday 7 December. Support will be provided by the up and coming acoustic duo Trailing Tales performing a variety of "feel good" songs.

Advance tickets cost just £3 from the Kitchen Garden Cafe or www.wegottickets.com. Any remaining tickets will cost £4 on the door.

Below: The Corvettes photographed on stage at the Ritz Ballroom in the 1960's by Dave Lacey


 
By popular demand the Award Winning Out Of The Shadows return to Fletchers on Sunday 12 April

By popular demand the award winning West Midlands group Out Of The Shadows return to Fletchers on Sunday 12 April after their last two performances had the audience dancing in every conceivable space!

Expect to hear some of the greatest pop songs and instrumentals from the late1950's onwards including Eddie Cochran's “Summertime Blues”, Cliff Richard's “I Could Easily Fall In Love With You” and Dire Straits' ”Walk Of Life” along with a string of top instrumental hits including The Shadows' “Apache” , “Wonderful Land” and “Cavatina – Theme From The Deer Hunter”.

Hailing from Stourbridge, they have regularly been voted Top Club Act by local club entertainment officers and audience members.

If you have not seen them before, don't miss out again on another great Lazy Sunday Afternoon's entertainment. Three hours of top quality pop music guaranteed!

Tickets cost just £3 in advance from the Kitchen Garden Cafe or £3 plus booking fee from www.wegottickets.com/event/311744

Any remaining tickets will cost £4 on the door.

 
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