I said “She’d better watch out because he’s in one of those mad moods at the moment,” and true as usual he was walking around with her. But he had got a handful of plastic knives, forks, and spoons behind his back and was making out that he loved her hair and was stroking it and inserting a knife or fork or spoon each time. The poor girl had one of those bouffant hair do’s which stand up quite high off the head and now looked like she had just arrived from outer space with all these plastic things sticking out. Sadly, the manageress caught sight and that was that. We were all barred out of the coffee bar.
I remember many years later Freddie was appearing at the Palladium in London and I had popped around to see him with a couple of pals. When we got there Freddie was very pleased to see us all, and when he saw that I had a Monkey Bike (miniature motor bike) he wanted to have a go on it. So off he went up and down Argyle Street, at the front entrance of the Palladium. A crowd of people were queuing for the next performance and here was Freddie as usual playing to the crowd, giving them a free show of him kneeling, side saddling generally messing about on my Monkey Bike. He was having a great time and the crowd loved it too, then Freddie said that he had to go into the dressing room to get changed in readiness for the performance and said to us “Come on in we’ll have a laugh before I have to go onstage”
We did and one of my pals, John, asked Freddie if he could use the toilet. Now John was wearing white trousers, and Freddie said “They don’t have toilets in the Palladium, you have to Piss in the sink.” So poor John hung his thing over the edge of the sink and Freddie waited till he was in full flow and then made a loud knocking sound on the wall and shouted as loud as he could “Come in.”
John tried to stuff his member into his trousers which of course now had urine all over the front of them, and Freddie being Freddie opened the dressing room door and promptly pushed John outside. We were all laughing and Freddie wouldn’t let him back in despite his pleas, the poor man what a state he was in, which made Freddie laugh even more.
Anyway, to resume the story: We were booked to go to Germany again but not to the Star Club. This time it was the New York City Club in the south of Germany. We found out later that it was run by gangsters who really didn’t want to pay us what was owed at the end of each week. I was sent in each time to collect the money and had to go through all sorts of excuses that there didn’t seem enough money to pay the full amount. This went on for weeks and weeks and in the end I told everyone that I would rather be back home than have to go through this all the time.
The master plan: I rang up Manfred Weissleder and told him that we were here in Germany and wondered if he had any use for us to come up to Hamburg and give us some work in his club. Luckily he said that he had opened up some more Star Clubs and ‘Yes’ he liked us and would give us a couple of months work if we drove up to the Star Club. When I told the rest of the band they were over the moon and said we should get our wages from the New York City Club and sneak our gear out and do a runner.
We did sneak the equipment out and I went over to the hotel. The Frau there said that she hadn’t been paid and she wouldn’t let anybody leave till she got her money. Oh Oh, here I am in the Hotel and the rest of them had already taken their clothes out to the van around the back and I was stuck. So I opened the window and threw my case down to the ground. Then I had to shin down the drainpipe as I wouldn’t be allowed out of reception. My hands were covered in tar from the drainpipe and I had nowhere to clean them so I dashed around to the van. Then Howie announced that he was going to go to France with a pal of his and wouldn’t be coming with us up to Hamburg.
Just then one of the girls we knew from the club ran over and told us to get out of town as the boss and his thugs were looking for us as they’d been to the club and found there was no equipment there, so now they were going to shoot us. I believed this as they used to like to show us their guns now and again.
“Right in the van and we drive straight to Hamburg now” I said, and there was mega agreement too. We waved goodbye to Howie and one of the girls said that she would come with us and show us the way to the motorway. She said that she thought we were nice guys so she would come to Hamburg with us if we would look after her. YES, resounded from our sheepish group, now rearing to go and get out of the area as fast as possible. We’d been on the road for about half an hour when I said to Dave “Pull off the motorway and park on the slip road.” I don’t know why I said it at that time maybe a sixth sense, but about five minutes passed and the girl said “Look there it’s their car, the big Mercedes they always drive.”