Bromel Club, Bromley

John Mayall, Phaethon's Brethren, Long John Baldry, Cheminoes,  Bromley Court Hotel
1965 ad courtesy of Peter Cornwell of Phaethon’s Brethren

The Bromel Club was initially a jazz venue that was located in the Bromley Court Hotel in Bromley, south east London. During the 1960s, it hosted most of the top British bands of the day, including Cream, Pink Floyd and The Jimi Hendrix Experience.

Drawing on dates from Melody Maker and the South East London Mercury plus the Marmalade Skies website, I’ve started to compile a gig list and would welcome any additions as well as memories of the venue.

10 April 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation

29 June 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation

22 July 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation
24 July 1964 – The Soul Agents

5 August 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation
23 August 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation

21 October 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation

9 November 1964 – Graham Bond Organisation

20 December 1964 – The Soul Agents

18 January 1965 – Themselves

11 February 1965 – The Second Thoughts

11 March 1965 – The Drovers

8 April 1965 – The Tribe

23 May 1965 – Manfred Mann
26 May 1965 – Zoot Money & The Big Roll Band

29 September 1965 – Bo Diddley

17 November 1965 – The Riot Squad

29 January 1966 – David Bowie & The Lower Third
31 January 1966 – The Breed

1 February 1966 – Ken Colyer
2 February 1966 – Zoot Money & The Big Roll Band
6 February 1966 – The Untamed
7 February 1966 – The Soul System
9 February 1966 – Chrispian St. Peters
10 February 1966 – The Board Walkers
14 February 1966 – The Name
16 February 1966 – The Soul Show
17 February 1966 – The Deck Hands
28 February 1966 – L Henderson’s Soul Band

2 March 1966 – The Action
3 March 1966 – The Subjects
23 March 1966 – Gary Farr & The T-Bones
26 March 1966 – The Kinks
30 March 1966 – The Action

1 May 1966 – The Kinks
18 May 1966 – Steampacket
26 May 1966 – John Brown’s Bodies

15 June 1966 – The Moody Blues
29 June 1966 – The Yardbirds

27 July 1966 – The Loose Ends

August 1966 – The Tribe
12 August 1966 – Cream
14 August 1966 – Downliner’s Sect
17 August 1966 – Alan Price Set
24 August 1966 – The Creation

7 September 1966 – Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band

5 October 1966 – The Herd
23 October 1966 – The Loose Ends

5 November 1966 – The Tribe
20 November 1966 – The Loose Ends
23 November 1966 – The Herd
30 November 1966 – The Herd

14 December 1966 – Cream
21 December 1966 – Eric Burdon & The Animals
26 December 1966 – The New Loose Ends

4 January 1967 – The Jimi Hendrix Experience
15 January 1967 – The New Loose Ends
18 January 1967 – The Coloured Raisins
20 January 1967 – The Motivation
25 January 1967 – Georgie Fame & Blue Fames and the Little Joe Set

8 February 1967 – The Jimi Hendrix Experience
22 February 1967 – Cream

1 March 1967 – The Action
8 March 1967 – The Loose Ends
22 March 1967 – Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band

19 April 1967 – Pink Floyd
26 April 1967 – Herbie Goins & The Nighttimers

3 May 1967 – The Move
10 May 1967 – Jeff Beck Group
17 May 1967 – Prince Buster
24 May 1967 – P P Arnold
24 May 1967 – Pink Floyd
27 May 1967 – The Sassenachs and The New Breed
31 May 1967 – John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers

35 thoughts on “Bromel Club, Bromley”

    1. A great venue in the mid-’60s. The Graham Bond Organisation & Long John Baldry always gave great value. A gangly ‘Rod the Mod’ (Stewart) used to take the stage during Long John’s intervals & invariably received cat-calls throughout his set. Our band (Phaethon’s Brethren) played there in Feb 1965 but somehow managed to avoid the same fate.

        1. Lemmy,

          Sorry to disappoint but ‘not guilty’. Our line-up didn’t include keyboards & horns. Who would credit the fact that two bands would chose such a name ? The only recording we made (in an earlier incarnation of the band) was backing Rick Wayne’s ‘Rescue Me’ which I believe got an airing on Radio Caroline recently. Rock on dude.

  1. Where’s John Mayall in all this?I saw him there with Roger Dean,Eric Clapton and then Peter Green.He was always there it seemed.The Petter B’s also no mention.
    Great nights there,the first Hendrix gig very sparsely attended 7/6 old money to get in – two shows that day. The next time he showed they were queuing round the block.
    The musicians had to push through the crowd to get to the dressing room.One night Eric Clapton (with Cream)was heard to say “I hate this fucking place”.rofl.

  2. Spencer Davis group used to play regularly, probably 1965 onwards? Also used as a backing band for touring American acts, quite possibly Sugar Pie De Santo, Champion Jack Dupree. Rod Stewart often sang with Baldry pre Steampacket , duetting on Up Above My Head, playing harmonica etc. jumbled memories but basic facts are, I think, correct.

  3. Best remember Ska nights, Tuesday or Wednesday I think, particularly dancing to Prince Buster “Al Capone”. Guns don’t argue!

  4. I definitely saw Sonny Boy Williamson at the Bromel Club in about 1965. I’ll never forget it, a brilliant evening. Also Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames but earlier than Jan ’67 as listed here.

    1. Sonny Boy Williamson also appeared at The White Hart Bromley, and interval gig, I think Barber or Colyer were the headline act. George Webb used to organise those Tuesday Nights. I 1963 the Dutch Swing College jazz band were at Bromley Court.

    2. I was there,great night,met him at the bar,bought him a treble brandy nearly broke me ,signed my club card and then on stage shouted “for the gentleman at the back( me) the skies is crying.

  5. From cbeee

    Started going there when it was the Bromley court jazz club
    Later as the bromel club
    Perhaps twice or more a week
    Lots if great bands
    Spencer Davis did a residency for weeks
    Lots of old blues men
    Howling wolf ,sonny boy,Memphis slim,john lee etc.
    Alexis corner blues incorporated,was the start of many other bands that appeared there
    Hendrix smashed his axe,and walked off,leaving it running at top volume,the management stood around looking very worried,had no idea what to do.
    Huge numbers of bands could be added to the list!
    Remember a band,almost ,singer was the boxer, terry downs , brother
    Used to jump and knocked himself out on the low ceiling.
    Was a dance factory,kept changing,one dance,to” bonanza ska” was exactly the same as gang am style but many many many years before

    1. Thanks Chris B. for the Jimi recap. Bill Wyman was at the same gig, but his memory of Jimi also burning his guitar there seems unlikely by your account. What say you?

  6. Bill Wyman
    I was one of the first people to see him here, when he played a club in Bromley [The Bromel Club, in 1967]. It might have been the first gig he did. There was hardly anyone else there. But he still poured lighter fuel on his guitar and set fire to it that night.

    What do you all think? Can Bill Wyman’s memory be trusted on this one? Any way to verify or disprove? This is important! As things stand the only verified burnings are Saville Club and Monterey. With unverified rumors of Miami and Washington DC and now Bromley? February 8, 1967?8

    1. Sorry for the poorly worded message above. Obviously its JIMI HENDRIX that Bill Wyman is talking about. Is there anyone living who can corroborate whether Jimi burned his guitar at the Bromel Club. This is a very important matter to Hendrix scholars.

  7. Hi
    I work at the Bromley Court Hotel for a number of years along with many other South London clubs. I remember Jimi Hendrix playing there but have no memory of guitar burning.
    Any more questions on the club/s please ask.
    Happy days.

  8. Hi,
    I’ve just found this thread.
    I was at the first Jimi Hendrix gig at the Bromel Club on Jan 4th ’67, and he definitely did NOT set fire to his guitar.

    Now I’m puzzled: yes, he played there, but was he the main attraction? I thought that he was “fitted in” to the gig; if he was “fitted in” then I can’t remember who else was playing that night.
    In fact, I seem to remember that it wasn’t very crowded, and not many people knew who he was, therefore I can’t believe that any famous people rolled up to watch him, unlike later.
    Either way, he did NOT set fire to his guitar that night.

    The second time that he played the Bromel Club, I, together with loads of others, couldn’t get in, so the next time that I saw him was at the Saville Theatre, in town.

    Macabre aside – I once knew a medical secretary who was present at the post mortem of Hendrix: our joke was that I’d seen him twice live, and she’d seen him once dead!

  9. Bob Hodges from The New Jump Band has dates from his diary which are missing from 1965 when the band was known as Red White’s Blues

    19 July 1965
    9 September 1965

  10. A little off topic, but does anyone remember the name of the small club that was on the small street running down the side of Bromley South Station? My memory is failing me but I’m sure I saw Clapton and Cream there. The place was (I think) on the second floor above a butchers shop or meat packing place. Real small room as I remember.
    Thanks

    1. I remember the club and it was over a meat importers Waddell or something. When the fridges / freezers for the meat store switched on the place was freezing. Don’t remember live bands but went to blue beat or ska record D J sound system nights…..pulled out of the club by my dad when I had bought some gear from the dealers outside BROMLEY SOUTH STATION possibly in 65 or 66.

    2. Hi Howard.
      The club you mentioned at Bromley South was Peyton Place. I saw Lulu & The Luvvers there in 1965!
      Apparently, it was also named as something else, but that’s slipped my memory now.
      Good days… 🙂

      1. Before it was Peyton Place it was called The Penthouse …. great club … great names … it was only small but was great …. over the meat market … long gone …

    3. It was the Penthouse for a while. It was run by Billy Cranstoun with his Savoy Sound System ( Billy’s sons formed The Dualers, ska band). Spent many Saturday nights there dancing to sombe great ska sounds.

  11. I lived about a mile from the club I knew as Bromley Court Jazz Club and went there many many times from around 1962 until I left home in 1966. I’m afraid I am not much use to the archivist as if there were programmes I never bought one (or perhaps have lost them!) but I remember many great gigs and bands. In no particular order:
    Sonny Boy Williamson, a wonderful performer and as an R & B fanatic at that time a very moving evening.
    Graham Bond Organisation-probably the band we saw the most who were always memorable. As well as Graham there was Dick Heckstall Smith, Jack Bruce,and of course Ginger Baker, cue to nip to bar during his 10 minute drum solos, he was a misery guts even then.
    Yardbirds also many times (including Eric Clapton), creme de la creme!
    John Mayall and the Bluesbreaakers, very influential and still going strong.
    Long John Baldry and the Hoochie Coochie men. John was a great singer and around half time there were a few songs by a skinny bloke(he’ll never get anywhere can’t sing) was my considered response at the time, Rod Stewart of course.
    Zoot Money and the Big Roll Band, spectacular jackets-hence the name, not technically the best band but always put on a great show.
    Spencer Davis, Steve and his brotherMuff, and Spencer,drummer’s name was Pete ??. Steve was only 15 at the time but even then had an amazing voice and played geat piano.
    Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames, before they had any hits, can’t remember too much about them,enough said perhaps.
    The Animals,( pre House of the Rising Sun, obviously). I was in a band at the time and we pinched this song, but being the purists we were stopped using it once it became a hit.
    Never saw Bowie, but saw the Herd at another venue, Peter Frampton whose Dad was one of Bowie’s teachers.
    Another local band at the time was The Pretty Things.
    Bromley a cultural powerhouse-who knew?

  12. Hi Nick

    I found this poster on http://concerts.wikia.com/wiki/June_30,_1965_Bromel_Club,_Bromley,_ENG . Take a look.

    Wed 23 June 1965 – Zoot Money’s Big Roll Band
    Sun 27 June 1965 – Ronnie Jones
    Wed 30 June 1965 – The Spencer Davis Group

    Sun 4 July 1965 – The Graham Bond Organisation
    Wed 7 July 1965 – John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers
    Sun 11 July 1965 – The Art Woods
    Wed 14 July 1965 – The Vagabonds
    Sun 18 July 1965 – Inez and Charlie Foxx
    Wed 21 July 1965 – Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames
    Sun 25 July 1965 – To be arranged
    Wed 28 July 1965 – The Spencer Davis Group

    Cheers

    John

  13. Hi Nick
    Found a few more gigs.

    13 May 1964 – The Yardbirds

    3 January 1965 – The Moody Blues
    20 January 1965 – The Yardbirds

    31 March 1965 – The Who

    28 April 1965 – The Who

    Wed 7 July 1965 – John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers and The Yardbirds

  14. Played there in 1966 as a 15 year old drumming for a band of Sevenoaks School boys, we were bottom on the bill and I remeber the Yardbirds as being top. We did our set of Kinks, Stones, Who covers, packed up, and even got paid a fiver, so a quid each! My bass drum came off the roof rack on the way back and bounced down the road but seemed ok to go on to many more gigs

  15. I’m curious about these two entries, I assume drawn from two different adverts:
    24 May 1967 – P P Arnold
    24 May 1967 – Pink Floyd
    I’ve seen Floyd listed for that date at marmalade-skies and it’s included in Pink Floyd: In The Flesh but with no comments added.
    Might they have cancelled? Or were they advertised after PP Arnold cancelled? Or a typo with the first gig on 20 May?

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