christine~ (eppylover) wrote,

Member of Band that Turned Down Brian's Management Offer Remembers...

What Would Have Happened If…

 It was a typical lunchtime session. The Cavern was crowded, sweaty and smelly. It was Spring, 1962, and several of the Undertakers were there to see the Beatles play. During one of the breaks between sets (the lunchtime sessions were from 12:00pm – 2:00pm, sometimes a little longer, depending…) we were all talking at the back of the Cavern, near the refreshment area. There was George and John - Paul had just walked off somewhere, I think - together with Undertakers Brian Jones, Jackie Lomax, Bugs Pemberton and me. Brian Epstein suddenly appeared, bounding down the narrow stairway and into the Cavern. He was dressed in a conservative tweed sport jacket under which he was wearing a black cotton turtle-neck sweater, which was in style with the groups, back then.

Upon seeing us, he made his way over through the crowd. After exchanging greetings, he said to us, “I’d like to see a couple of you boys in my office, later on, this afternoon.” We couldn’t help ourselves and, laughing, we all jumped and put our backs to the wall. This being a cruel joke on his sexual preferences. But, what the hell, we did it anyway. He got a little miffed at this and stormed off towards where Bob Wooler was holed up in his tiny D.J room, beside the stage.

“I know what he wants,” John said, and without waiting, and went on, “He wants to manage youse [sic].”

But, we’ve got Ralph Webster,” we replied, almost in unison. Our manager, Ralph Webster managed three venues in Liverpool and was in partnership with fellow entrepreneur Brian Kelly on a couple more. We had it real good - we were always playing, three gigs a night on Friday, Saturday and Sunday with sometimes an afternoon show thrown in for good measure.

Fuckin’ good job, too” John retorted, “Cos [sic] , he ain’t done fuck-all for us, yet!”
Which was true at that time. Epstein had been trying, unsuccessfully to get interest from the London-based record companies and entertainment impresarios. And that was that! As I said at the beginning, this whole thing took place in a few breaths of time. Of course, we didn’t sign with Brian Epstein, and we didn’t get to be as big as the Beatles. What would have happened if we had signed with Eppy…who knows? But, we did get to have a wonderful time, playing for fans all over England and making many trips to Germany.

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