Live: Grosvenor Ballroom, Wallasey

8.00pm, Saturday 2 July 1960 (53 years ago)

The Silver Beetles had been performing regularly at the Grosvenor Ballroom in Liscard, Wallasey, since 4 June 1960. This time, however, they were joined onstage by a special guest: Johnny Gentle, with whom they had toured Scotland in May.

Johnny Gentle – real name John Askew – was visiting Liverpool on a weekend off. He and his father had called in at the Jacaranda, where owner and The Silver Beetles’ manager Allan Williams told him they were performing at the Grosvenor.

Gentle decided to surprise them at the Grosvenor, where the singer took to the stage for a few songs with his old backing band. They ran through their complete Scottish tour repertoire: Buddy Holly’s It Doesn’t Matter Anymore and Raining In My Heart, Elvis Presley’s I Need Your Love Tonight, Ricky Nelson’s Poor Little Fool, Clarence Frogman Henry’s I Don’t Know Why I Love You But I Do, Eddie Cochran’s Come On Everybody and Jim Reeves’ He’ll Have To Go.

The Beatles performed at the Grosvenor Ballroom on 14 occasions between June 1960 and September 1961. The other dates were 4, 6, 11, 18 and 25 June; 9, 16, 23 and 30 July; 24 December 1960; 24 February; 10 March; and 15 September 1961.

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