All the members had a wonderful evening being transported back to the 1950’s with Jim Finn’s talk and music on Monday 10th November 2014. Jim said that the 1950’s were exciting times and a great awakening after World War Two as towns and cities started to rebuild their shattered lives. Liverpool built up activities and entertainment – with football, comedy and music.
The fab four in the 1950’s were Rita Rosa (Liverpool’s answer to Shirley Bassey!), Billy Fury – nearest to Elvis, Frankie Vaughan (Mr Moonlight) and Norman Milne (better known as Mike Holliday). These four people put Liverpool back on the map. Rita Rosa was the highest paid female singer whilst Frankie Vaughan was the true gent and Tom O’Connor said that he was the nicest person he had ever met. Jim told us that Mike Holliday joined the Merchant Navy and then went into the Royal Navy when war was declared. Mike Holliday was on the same ship during the war as Russ Conway (what a combination!).
Jim sang some wonderful songs firstly “Daddies Little Girl” which was on the A side of Frankie Vaughan’s first record and said that he should have had “Green Door” as the A side. Jim then sang “Green Door” and then the favourite song of Mike Holliday’s “I wonder who’s kissing her now”.
Jim went on to say that as there was no TV in those days so everyone listened to the radio. Everyone would tune into Dick Baron and Sexton Blake and then on a Sunday Bill Cotton Band show, Around the Horn and at lunchtime everyone would have on “Family favourites”. Nearly every week someone would ask for the famous Pat Boone song “I’ll be home” because the requests came from people serving abroad with the forces. Jim took up his guitar and sang “Writing Love letters in the sand” and most of our members joined in. The most famous programme was on a Sunday evening “Sing something simple” with the Mike Sam Singers. This programme ran from 1950’s until the 1990’s.
Jim went on to tell us about his days at the Collegiate School and how every boy had to wear a cap and if not, they were taken in front of prefects and given 6 slaps with a slipper! The children in those days with no TV would join the Scouts, Brownies, Guides, Boys Brigade etc and he joined the Boys Brigade and went to the Isle of Man on a camping trip and slept on straw! He went on to tell us about the pubs closing at 10pm and how his Gran always wore a hat and fur coat. She would play the piano all night when they had “a do” and her favourite song was “Im shy Mary Ellen, I’m shy”. Jim then took up his guitar and sang “I’m shy Mary Ellen I’m shy” to us. Jim ended his talk with the song his Grandmother always played “Let me call you sweetheart” and all the members joined in.