There’ll be a blast from the past at the end of the month as the resident cabaret act at Wythenshawe’s Golden Garter Club make a return visit to the town.
Shep’s Banjo Boys, who entertained at The Golden Garter in Rowlandsway from 1968 until 1972, will play at the Lifestyle Centre in Woodhouse Park on September 30.
The band played at the Golden Garter when Granada’s then Head Of Light Entertainment, Johnnie Hamp, saw them bring the house down and were then catapulted into the homes of millions of Saturday-night viewers in the 1970s. They have been asked to headline two shows in Wythenshawe and Stockport that promote the fight against ageism.
They provided the musical links for Granada’s series, ‘The Comedians’, alongside Manchester comics such as Bernard Manning, Colin Crompton, Ken Goodwin & Stu Francis. The Granada show ran for 22 years and spawned a 6-month season at The London Palladium in 1972.
“These days, we’re a quartet of senior citizens”, says Didsbury-based band leader Howard Shepherd, “which maybe why we got asked to headline these autumn gigs which will mark International Older People’s Day!”
Shepherd adds: “Back in 1990, when The Comedians was still on the telly, the United Nations General Assembly designated October as International Older People’s Day. The theme this year is ‘Take A Stand Against Ageism’ – so my band are back on stage to show that, despite having a joint age of 284, we’re still able to entertain just like we did when The Comedians was in the prime-time Saturday night slot on Granada TV which The X-Factor occupies these days”.
With their 50th year in show business only 12 months away, the nation’s favourite sing-along band SHEP’S BANJO BOYS have been chosen to entertain in Wythenshawe and Stockport.
On Friday 30 September 2016 at the Woodhouse Park Lifestyle Centre, Portway, Wythenshawe, SHEP’S BANJO BOYS will recreate their Golden Garter cabaret act at 2 p.m. for 120 local residents. Phone 0161 436 0560 for tickets.
Then, the following day, Saturday 1 October 2016, it’s Sing-Along-A-Stockport when SHEP’S BANJO BOYS play an early evening 6 p.m. show in The Green Room at The Plaza Super Cinema & Variety Theatre, Mersey Square, Stockport. Phone 0161 477 7779 for tickets.
“It’s all a far cry from where I started the band in 1967, playing once a week in the vault of the Southern Hotel in Chorlton-Cum-Hardy”, says Shepherd.
As the country’s acknowledged foremost banjo player, Howard Shepherd has kept the name of Shep’s Banjo Boys going for almost half a century and shows no signs of stopping.