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Archie Layton

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PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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1 of 9  Fri 23rd Dec 2011 5:23pm  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:3945

I am appealing for any info & memories that members might have of Archie Layton, on behalf of Jacki, another member on here. Archie was for me, the finest piano entertainer that I ever met. He taught me so much & even at a piano led Christmas carol service that my son was playing for last Sunday, I could hear 'Archie' tenth chord sound combinations, so much the trademark of a pianist who understands music & piano inside out. Archie played at so many venues throughout the city for over half a century. I have already conveyed my memories to Jacki. Please help if you can, thank you so much. Happy Christmas to you all.
Archie Layton
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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2 of 9  Fri 23rd Dec 2011 5:43pm  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:3945

Wave I want to tell you something else about Archie. The smile on both of those pictures is not manufactured. I worked in close proximity to Archie for many years & that is how he was for most of the time, yes even at Courtaulds. It took a sad event or someone elses unhappiness to change that smile. If you were a friend of Archie, you really had a friend. Wave
Archie Layton
roseaoakwood
North Carolina USA
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3 of 9  Fri 23rd Dec 2011 8:47pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2011  Total posts:30

Hello Philip; I knew Mr. Layton, as his children Clive and Diane are very old and good friends of mine. If you like, I could put you in touch with them. Di lives in North Wales and Clive is a musician in Coventry, living in Earlsdon. Are you planning to complile a book of reminiscences? Best wishes Rose
Archie Layton
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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4 of 9  Fri 23rd Dec 2011 9:45pm  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:3945

Hello Rose. Wave Thank you so much for your reply. It's a very close friend of their family who is compiling the fact file. I remember Clive playing too. In some ways we have a similarity in that my Michael writes his own music or plays band stuff that is only hours old, whereas my stuff was from my era. I am sure that Archie & Clive had their roll which was their identity, possibly in the same way. I can't say more as we are talking about real people. One of Archie's regular play venues was the Albany pub, almost a club also in Earlsdon. On a Friday evening, the pub would be full, several deep at the bar & every seat taken. Archie, along with his friend Reg (sax) & Harry (double bass) would be playing away. Each of those players were masters. Reg could bend notes on his sax or clarinet, with ease, so to create or mimic a human voice. Sometimes Reg would play a flip on his own. You could hear a pin drop as every ear in front or behind the bar stopped everything just to listen. That was the quality of three expert musicians. Harry was no bum-bum player either. He would stand behind & slightly to the left of Archie able to instantly translate the sound even before the notes had been played. His hands often bled from such performances. The BBC had Friday Night is Music Night, but Coventry had its own Friday Night is Archie Night at the Albany. I knew people who were not pub or drinking people but went along for the joy of the trio band. A singer sometimes joined in as well. Thumbs up No joke, a gent asked them at the interval where their sheet music was. On the piano music stand was a cardex card with a list of titles and keys in & out. That was the music. Oh my
Archie Layton
roseaoakwood
North Carolina USA
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5 of 9  Fri 23rd Dec 2011 9:58pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2011  Total posts:30

So this person is already in touch with Di and Clive and you don't need their email details?
Archie Layton
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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Thread starter
6 of 9  Fri 23rd Dec 2011 10:03pm  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:3945

Yes Rose, very close but I can't say more. The lady, Jacki, may post a response when she sees this from you. She is a site member who contacted me via the web-mail. Thank you so much. Wave It is sometimes the case that even close family members are not always aware of what other family members hobbies & involvements are in detail. At one point long ago, I had turned my wife into a piano-widow, when I was playing here & there, but she could not tell you half of the facts. So she or my son might be asking about me one day. Or perhaps not!
Archie Layton
sadieshatterly
Coventry
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7 of 9  Mon 26th Dec 2011 6:44pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:5

Hello Rose, I`m Clive`s other half, so I hope that allays your worries. I`ve heard lots about Archie over the last couple of years and thought he deserved a bit of a web presence! I did of course ok this with his nearest and dearest first. But I came across Philips postings here and contacted him privately to ask about his memories of Archie. I`ve uploaded a few pictures/clippings on my Flickr page and Clive has plans to get some of Archie's songs onto YouTube in the not too distant future. Hope you both had a nice Christmas, Jacki
Archie Layton
sadieshatterly
Coventry
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8 of 9  Mon 1st Apr 2013 2:05am  
Member: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:5

Hi Philip Just a quick update to add that a version of Archie`s song - "I was born in Coventry" is now on YouTube! Clive managed to extract it from an old copy on cassette and I added the pictures on windows movie maker. It`s quite basic but it gets it out there! We hope to add more over time. Thanks again for your support, Clive was delighted to read about your memories of his Dad. Jacki
Archie Layton
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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9 of 9  Mon 1st Apr 2013 10:26am  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:3945

Hi & thank you for a very sweet memory of Archie, Jacki. Wave I think that he was playing his six octave mini-piano by the sound of this recording. I first heard this piano when his music room was a caravan parked in his garden, before he moved it into a brick extension built on to his home in Browett Rd. Archie had hundreds of cassettes. "Faded Rose" & "Into the early hours" are songs rattling around my head as I relish the sounds from that one recording on YouTube. I am humbled as well as excited with the knowledge, as I have said before, Archie lives on, not only in his own children, but every time my Michael puts his hands to his latest synth. Such was his rich influence. Wave
Archie Layton

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