Quique Villafañe@ 7:29pm 09-06-2012
I don't know why it took me so long to write this,we are in 2012 and
these things happened in 1992, a few days before Ollie's death. I'm
Quique Villafañe, I was the drummer in Kevin Ayer's band on the Still Life With
Guitar tour and had the privilege of playing with the great Ollie,
although it wasn't the first time I played with him (before that, we did a
Spanish tv video and some concerts in Spain with Kevin Ayer's
Ollie played awesome during the tour, I couldn't believe my ears.The band
sounded great most of the time (there was Claudia Puyó on
keyboards and vocals and Marcelo Fuentes on bass). Ron Wood, the
road manager, recorded all the concerts. Unfortunatly, the tapes were
stolen in Paris, while we were having dinner at a restaurant.
Ollie was such a humble person, he NEVER used to talk about
himself or the people he had played with. Actually, I learned all about his
career after his death. We got along very well. He used to come every
time we played in Madrid with Claudia's group (Los Románticos de
Kevin's tour finished in London (Bernard Shaw theatre). I
remember Ollie (and us) singing some daring lyrics to a famous
opera leitmotiv, during dinner at a London restaurant. A couple
of days before coming back to Madrid, Ollie took Claudia and I to an
Indian restaurant and after that he called a taxi and took us to see
London Bridge and Tower Bridge. It was late at night and there was
nobody around. It was a foggy night and the scene was very oneiric.
Ollie told us about the big 1666 London fire. I think it was his way to say
good bye to us, although he wasn't aware of it.
We were so shocked when he died, we couldn't believe what was
happening, we had had great moments playing together during the
30 day tour.
Now I can say I feel better sharing these memories with Ollie's
fans. I'm one of them.
Quique Villafañe,Madrid 2012
Replied on: 12:27am 09-07-2012
Many thanks, Quique. It's great to hear from you. I will reply in detail to your email later.
Pier Paolo Farina@ 11:14am 08-31-2012
I enjoied Halsall and his pards in two different concerts with Tempest, in Italy, during 1973. For the first of them, in Fano, I managed to involve lots of my friends musicians, not informed about Patto and Tempest things like me! What a pleasure looking at their faces! It was a general "Unbelievable! Extraterrestrial! What and How the fuckin' is he playing?! The second time, in Ancona, Ollie went up the stage with his white Gibson, dressed in... pink! Pink trousers and pink jacket, and under the jacket nothing! Breast, paunch and fur. Approached the microphone, crackled an incredible blasphemy in italian and at once a mortal guitar scale, long, fast, clean and groovish! In the meantime Hiseman and Clarke were themselves on the stage and "Dance To My Tune" started. Everyone blown away!
Replied on: 12:33pm 08-31-2012
Grazie per il tuo messaggio, Pier. C'è una recensione del concerto di Paul Fano Casisi qui: www.olliehalsall.co.uk/fano.htm
Chris Stone@ 9:18am 08-27-2012
Love the olly covers. The only reason I rate Hendrix above Ollie is that Ollie played some Hendrix covers. I live in hope that someone can find a Hendrix Ollie cover.
Replied on: 9:49am 08-27-2012
Unfortunately unlikely given the chronology. I do wonder, however, whether Jimi ever saw Timebox. It would have been quite possible. Someone would surely have mentioned them to him.
Steve Rawson@ 3:30pm 05-29-2012
Great work keeping the memory and legacy of a fine musician.
Replied on: 4:52pm 05-29-2012
dave chalk@ 9:38pm 03-15-2012
great site. I remember ollie when he used to drink in the royal oak in abbots langley, very close to where he lived.great guy and very funny man.when i get time i will leave a couple of storys.
Replied on: 11:58pm 03-15-2012
Thanks, Dave. Look forward to hearing them.
tom russell@ 11:54pm 02-22-2012
hello friends , great to find more info on ollie . I have him on Patto, and a Boxer fan as well. Any tips or links please let me know. Esp . on Tempest as we never got enuf of them other than the solo effort with Holdsworth.
Replied on: 9:11am 02-23-2012
Plenty of Tempest here, Tom: http://olliehalsall.co.uk/tempest.htm
Alan Charles@ 1:34pm 02-18-2012
One of my biggest regrets was never seeing Patto, even though I was a fan of the band and OH in particular. As a learner guitar player at the time I could not figure out how so many notes could come out of one set of fingers but more importantly in such a beautifully structured and even pretty way. The was no horrible shred speed for the sake of it with him. It all tripped out so musically perfect for whatever the song was. A prodigious talent. A classic British rock voice, cracking bass lines and the must under-rated drummie of his age. I wish I could play well enough to have started a tribute band. Surely there is someone out there to pick up the baton
CHRIS PROF HOLMES@ 11:53pm 02-15-2012
worked with Ollie, in the Music Students, SOUTHPORT, any pics anyone? then the full duration of Timebox......so much to recall....but more documentation to come.....he was A ONE OFF, ..me ex Tommy Hunt, Babe Ruth Band, John Walker...albeit a few months...post Babe Ruth...and various other combos. PS Ollie should be a major post on Criminally overlooked Giutarists site..definitely no justice there
Chas Rigby@ 6:43pm 02-15-2012
I lived back to back with Ollie for many years in Southport where we were both raised. I was a drummer in the early days and Ollie would lend me his kit passing it over the hedge. His mum and mine were friends and his sisters with my sisters.
Always the brilliant Musician/ not just Guitar but capable of commanding other instruments as well.
I last met up with him at the Kevin Ayers 'Falling UP' tour at Band On The Wall in Manchester/ we arranged to meet at The Festival Hall gig days later but i couldn't make it/ I never saw him again. God bless you mate.
Stephen Barr@ 9:35pm 02-14-2012
Hats off to Barry Monks et al for this Ollieforum!
As an amateur (in the best sense of the word) guitarist for the past...(yikes!) # of years I have found most rock based soloing to be pretty easy to pick up after the fact, until that is the day I got turned on to Patto (5 years ago) by a pal at the record/disc shop I helped run in downtown Toronto.
Long story short, I am interested in sharing hints as to what the !@#$%^%^&&** Ollie Halsell is doing in for eg.- the 3rd bar of the intro solo to the mighty "Hold your Fire"!!!
An awesome brilliant motif that shows up time and again in the Patto canon (I believe Ollies' best/freeest playing) and one which totally/wonderfully eludes me still.
graham oliver@ 3:50pm 02-14-2012
great job love all things OLLIE ,see my bit O H A
Replied on: 4:56pm 02-14-2012
Glyn Jones@ 9:41am 02-14-2012
Patto were a great band live. I used to see them a lot in the early 70's, mostly at the Greyhound Fulham Palace Road.
A Fish@ 9:30pm 02-13-2012
There are very few occasions when I am lost for words but this is one of them. Patto were one of the finest live bands I have ever seen, and I have seen a good few. Ollie was just about THE most dynamic, passionate and talented musician I have ever seen. He pushed the riffs, the music, right to the boundaries where frustration is the edge.
I go back to the early days, Timebox even. The were fairly regular at The Black Swan in Sheffield. They turned out stunning, stunning sets that left me buzzing for days. I can't believe it was more than forty years ago, I can almost feel the music still, almost feel the raw mysterious power that came off the stage.
Jonathan Loonin@ 12:14pm 02-13-2012
I didn't know about Patto and Ollie Halsall until the past couple of years, but it's never too late to discover great music! Thanks to Baz for manning the helm, and for being incredibly generous with his time and the dispensing of music in his archive.
Regis COISNE@ 2:38pm 02-12-2012
What a work you do !!! Ollie was an amazing guitarist not enough known . I became a musician because of him , and some others . And he is always in my mind !
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