FROM HOXTON MARKET TO THE TOKYO HILTON
"I'm a lucky man, I had a dream and it has come true. Here is me and here is my story" Steve Laffy
Steve grew up in Hoxton, London in the 1950s, living in a council flat with his parents and 6 siblings. The only music he remembers was the Salvation Army band marching in the street on Sunday mornings. Moving to a council house in Camden there was no music around and being at a Catholic grammer school, the only instruments available there were piano or violin, so music had no part in Steve's early life.
The swinging 60's bypassed the coucil estate 'youths', but music was in the air, with the sounds of Motown and the emerging UK bands, Stones, Beatles etc on the radio. The first time Steve heard a drum kit live was at Saturday morning pictures when a local band played in the intermission. He first came across a drum kit at a 'posh' school friends house in Kensington and he was allowed to have a go and was intruiged by the array of things to hit and sounds they made - the seed was sown!
At 15yrs old when Steve left school, The Roundhouse in Camden held an event called 'Implosion' every Sunday from midday to 11pm, with live bands all day long. That was the 1960's London music scene playing live, opening Steve's ears and eyes and where he spent many happy hours absorbing the music and culture and being captivated watching the many drummers doing their thing!
After turbulent teenage years Steve bought his first drum kit at the age of 19yrs. Although not allowed to take it into his family house, he was kindly invited to his friend Chris Duffy's house where he and Chris started to jam. Making 'such a racket', that arrangment did not last too long and the kit was moved to The Winchester youth club nearby.
At 'The Winch' Steve started to jam with Chris Duffy and Rene Go, a talented Dutch man Steve met while working at Twickenham Film studios, where lots of music films were produced, further developing Steve's interest in music and becoming a musician.
Eventually Rene invited Steve to join him on a new music project, when Steve had to decide if he really wanted to develop the nessesary skills to play drums properly. The decision was a tough one and with the support and encouragement from Rene, this new project became a total immersion into music and drumming, including practising drums 5 hours every day (many times during the night), while working in the day as a hospital porter and to the exclusion of everything else for a total of 3 years.
The emergence became the career that Steve has described on the following pages.
Click to listen to 'The Imperial Hotel ' live in Japan with Thanks to Robert Webb.
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