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Encore at the Griddle

March 19, 2012

Hi Diddle GriddleAfter posting about the Hi Diddle Griddle on Auckland’s K Road, I came across this invitation to a night at the influential dine-and-dance cabaret that I would have loved to use in Blue Smoke.

The post also generated this evocative response from Stan Halpin:

“Bob Ofsoski and Lyle Laurent used to play regularly with Jimmy Warren’s band at St Benedict’s dance hall, upper Symonds Street, on Saturdays. How do I know this, and the fact that they were the very best cover band ever playing ‘The Big Noise from Winnettka’? I just happened to be the MC there for the last year before that Saturday’s dance closed.

“I just hated to see the boys, Jim, Dale, Murray, Frank, Bob and Lyle* lose out on a long-lasting gig like that. We had a blast. I last talked to Jim when I visited the home country in 2004, but the movie of all that great music is still in my head somewhere. Just wish I could download it to you. Then there was Pitt Street before St. Ben’s and I remember the pit downstairs at the Crystal Palace in Balmoral as well, with Bobbie and the boys (wasn’t he on trumpet then?) too.
Back then two shillings and sixpence got you a lot of Saturday-night fun.”

* The musicians Stan refers to are: Jim Warren, Dale Alderton, Murray Tanner, Frank Gibson (Sr), Bob Ofsoski, Lyle Laurent and Bobby Griffith.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. John Shears permalink
    March 19, 2012 1:22 pm

    Great story especially the comment

    but the movie of all that great music is still in my head somewhere. Just wish I could download it to you.

    What a lovely bit of english


  2. Sally Warren permalink
    May 21, 2012 9:45 am

    Jim Jennings was my grandfather who immigrated to the States which is where his daughter and my family are from. Love seeing the article and will purchase the book. The “invitation” mentioned appears to be the front cover of the Griddle menu unless it is different on the inside of the example given here. Would appreciate anymore information that might be out there concerning Jim Jennings as I am completing a Jennings Family History book for publication in 2013.

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