It was with great sadness that we learned of the death of former club member, Steve O’Connor, earlier this week. He had undergone major surgery last year to remove a large brain tumour but unfortunately succumbed to another tumour which was only discovered a few weeks ago. Steve joined the club in 2007 and, together with his wife Cheryl, had worked on the club committee before moving back to New Plymouth in 2010.
Steve was a very talented guitarist and could play a wide range of styles but his first love was the blues – having a real appreciation for early Fleetwood Mac material along with the other 60’s Blues Boom players. Being brought up in England in the 60’s, he was also fortunate enough to have seen many of these bands when they were still touring.
Since leaving Wellington, Steve and Cheryl would make regular trips back to the capital and always coincided these trips with a jam night at the Bristol. He loved getting up and playing with the house band. The last time they were down Steve brought his Les Paul and played several of the old Mac songs – and despite still recuperating from surgery at the time – put on a stellar show. Our sympathy goes out to Cheryl and his two children, Liam and Kerry.
It is with great regret that we say farewell to Earl Pollard – a wonderful man, a great drummer and a friend to many. We send condolences to his family. Earl played many a gig at Roomfulla Blues with band leaders Bullfrog Rata and Laura Collins. From all who played music with him, and from all the audiences who enjoyed listening to him, may Earl rest in peace – we’re sure he’s in drummer heaven.
The Blues moves people and makes them want to get up and dance and that’s just what blues fans will be doing at Capital Blues Inc.’s 5th birthday.
The club president Trudy Benham says “The thing about blues is that it expresses experiences common to us all. The birthday celebration will be held on August 16 at the Hotel Bristol. We are going to go a little bit special. With a weekly spot at the Bristol, Capital Blues hires mostly local bands but also bands from Auckland, Hawkes Bay, Wanganui and the South Island. Every now and then we treat ourselves to an outside band but mostly we promote local blues. NZ has very few blues clubs. There’s one in Hamilton, and a blues bar in Christchurch. In Wellington, Thursday night blues is here to stay. I don’t know why Thursdays work so well but they do. There’s only one more working day so it kick starts everyone’s weekend”.