Circa: 1968
Home town: Bulawayo/Salisbury

  • Angus McLean – Piano
  • Bennie Miller – Guitar

(Photographs per kind permission of Fresh Music – if you love your music, you’ll love their site! www.freshmusic.co.za)

(The content posted hereunder has been derived from conversations between the Webmaster and Rob Zipper in, Cape Town, South Africa during December 2020/January 2021.  The Rhodie Music website extends its thanks to Rob for his participation).

In conversation with Rob Zipper (right) about the OTIS WAYGOOD legacy. Cape Town. 3 December 2020.

The Zipper brothers (b. 1948), Alan (b. 1951) and Jeffrey (b. 1956) were born in Bulawayo and resided in the suburb of Kumalo, attending the local junior school.  From there they progressed to Milton High.

Rob Zipper’s earliest musical memory was as an 8 year old in Standard 1, his close friend, Morris, singing “Rock Around The Clock”. He was amazed and exhilarated by the experience and rushed home to share the experience with his mother who was nonplussed by it all.  His father was an avid jazz fan and Rob clearly remembers the day when a classic 50’s, wooden, Hi Fi console arrived at the house.  It was soon pressed into use and the home filled with the sounds of Dave Brubeck, Oscar Peterson, MJQ, Julie London, Thelonius Monk, Jerry Mulligan and Eartha Kitt.  Rock ‘n roll, however, had arrived and the jazz turntable stars were soon competing with tunes such as “Shake, Rattle and Roll”, “Be-Bop-a-Lula”, “Tutti Frutti” and “Heartbreak Hotel”.

Rob’s interest was further piqued in 1958/59 when he accompanied his father to Wednesday night rock ‘n roll sessions at a local venue called the “Dancer’s Mecca”.  Here, a live band, fronted by a young Englishman, Johnny Bower, performed, filling the dance floor with a swirl of dancers.  Bower worked for Rob’s dad in his shop.  The appeal of live performance continued to fascinate the young man.

In 1963 Rob travelled to Salisbury to attend the Habonim’s mid-year seminar at the Bothashoff School.  Habonim is a Jewish youth organization which held regular gatherings to teach the youth various skills, including life skills, camping and outdoor activities, as well as fireside activities. Young people from throughout the region attended these events and, on this occasion, it was the presence of young men like Terry Kessel and Ronnie Miller from South Africa who brought with them “flower power” and various protest songs.  They taught their contemporaries songs such as “Where Have All The Flowers Gone”, “Blowing In The Wind” and “We Shall Overcome” and introduced discussions around topics such as the activities of Martin Luther King, the Civil Rights Movement and world peace.

It was at this seminar that Rob was to meet a local musician who would be central to the emergence of the Otis Waygood Blues Band, Benny Miller. At the age of 15, and sporting long hair, a denim jacket, jeans and sneakers, Benny had already established himself as a guitar legend.  Benny enthusiastically extolled the virtues of Bob Dylan, Chuck Berry, Howlin’ Wolf and Bo Diddley.

Not long after this watershed camp, Rob visited Benny at his home.  During the course of the visit Benny took Rob into his room where he tuned a transistor radio to a BBC overseas radio broadcast.  Benny insisted that Rob listen to what was being played and told him that it was a band called the Yardbirds featuring a young guitarist whose name was Eric Clapton.  The dye had been cast, Rob’s initiation to the 60’s was complete, and his interest and passion in music was unwaveringly set for the years ahead.

In the early 60’s, Rob’s father bought the boys an acoustic guitar, a Hagstrom, which they still have in their possession.  Although Rob dabbled in basic chords, it was Alan who really “possessed” the instrument and set about learning how to play it.

In due course, Alan Zipper formed a high school band in Bulawayo called MOJO whose members were:

  • Charlie Bates – Vocals and guitar
  • Paul Amato – Guitar
  • Alan Zipper – Bass
  • Ivor Rubenstein – Drums

Having completed his senior schooling, Rob attended the University College of Rhodesia where he had enrolled to study Economics.  His interest in music soon drew him close to others of similar disposition, including Benny Miller, who continued to inspire those around him.  Rob describes him as “a maven and a master”.  Under Benny’s guidance, coaching and influence they formed a weekend band they called BLUES CRUSADE (1968 – 1969).  The band’s members were:

  • Rob Zipper – Vocals & harmonica
  • Benny Miller – Lead guitar
  • Leigh Sagar – Rhythm guitar
  • Alan Zipper – Bass
  • Billy Toon – Drums
  • Martin Jackson – Flute
  • Angus McLean – Saxophone & keyboards

Whilst most of the band’s members were self-taught, Martin Jackson had acquired some music expertise through the classical training he had received, passing a number of grades in his learnings.  He could sight-read and had an understanding of music theory superior to that possessed by those around him.

The band also made use of the services of a trumpeter whose name was Kevin.  He was not at UCR and had a daytime job.  Angus McLean had been discouraged by his parents from continuing to play the sax after it had been discovered that he had a “hole in the heart”.   Although he did not own a sax, the band would hire one whenever it was required.

As a result of Angus’ unavailability on sax, Rob started to teach himself the instrument, a role he was to perform regularly in the band in the following years.

It was during this period (1968) that the band, still playing under the moniker of the “Blues Crusade”, travelled to Bulawayo to participate in the annual Texan Rock Band Contest at the Trade Fair.  With Benny Miller prominent in the line-up the band delivered a powerful set.  They were just too different, however, to win any accolades but were satisfied the outing had been a good one in terms of spreading their blues doctrine and growing their audience.

(It was Robert and a friend, Stanley, at the age of 16, who had played at John Butcher’s Warnborough venue, where they had to share the dressing room with a stripper!!  This was quite an experience for two such young and innocent lads.)

It was as the band were preparing to take the stage at a similar event at Glamis Stadium in Salisbury when one of their supporters, who had access to the stage and backstage area, suggested that they change the band name to “Waygood Otis”.  This individual was so enthusiastic about the idea that he’d even had a handful of T-shirts printed with the name proudly embossed on them. The band immediately warmed to the suggestion, not only for its obvious allusion to the Waygood Otis lift company but because Otis was a “good Blues name”.  After all, some of their icons included musicians such as Otis Redding and Otis Rush.  Opting to switch the words around to Otis Waygood, their arrival on stage was announced as the OTIS WAYGOOD BLUES BAND, the first time this name was used.

As was the case at the Rock Band Contest in Bulawayo, the band didn’t win any prizes but they had brought their sound to a wider audience.  Whilst many of the music-loving youth were quickly converted, the critics and media “just didn’t get it”.  A particular article by the Entertainment scribe in the popular magazine, “Look & Listen”, gave the band a real panning which was in keeping with many such views being expressed.  Fortunately, their audiences were far more receptive to their sound and roots, quickly building up a large following.

The Otis Waygood Blues Band had quickly established a strong multi-racial following in Salisbury and Bulawayo and were one of the few White bands, at the time, to play gigs in the Black townships.    The venues they appeared at in the townships were usually community halls where they enjoyed positive responses.

BATTLE OF THE BANDS (1969). (Courtesy of Rob Zipper).

In 1969 Rob was completing his degree, Alan was writing his A-levels at Speciss College in Salisbury, Leigh Sagar was completing his second year of Physics and Martin Jackson was a second year post-graduate in Bio Chemistry. Ivor Rubenstein, who had been a member of  the MOJOS, had replaced Billy Toon on the drums.  The band proposed that, as a swansong to completing their studies and breaking up, they spend the December holidays playing in and around Cape Town.   It would be an appropriate “working holiday” to bring that era to an end.

A friend who was studying at the University of Cape Town, arranged for the band to appear as guests at the annual “Battle Of The Bands” competition at Cape Town’s Green Point Stadium.

In order for the band to make the trip to Cape Town, Joe Lamy, the band’s manager, kindly lent them his Combi in which to drive the 1200 miles to Cape Town.  It came as a surprise to the band when, a week before their departure, Benny Miller advised that he would not be making the trip.  To lose their lead guitarist at such short notice placed them in quite a predicament, however, Leigh Sagar came to the fore and learnt, within the week, to improvise Benny’s lead parts.

And so it was, after a handful of rehearsals, that the band headed south through the highveld and Karoo to Cape Town where, at 2:30 pm on a hot, blue, Saturday afternoon in December, they traipsed into the Green Point Stadium.  Selwyn Miller, later to become the famous impresario, “hardly greeted them” as he immediately ushered the band on stage.  At their feet sprawled a sleepy-looking crowd of a few thousand.

With little ado, the band launched into their repertoire, “filling the air”, as Rob describes it, “with pumping, tight, hard-driving blues, wailing guitar, winnowing flute and hollering vocals”.  This onslaught immediately jolted the crowd from their reverie as the atmosphere electrified.  In a final flourish at the end of the set, Rob launched himself from the high stage and into the crowd who provided him a safety net and ensured that he was unharmed in what was, undoubtedly, one of the earliest acts of “crowd surfing”.

The band had been an overwhelming success and Selwyn Miller booked them as the headline act at his venue, the Rotunda, in Sea Point.  The supporting act was “Omega Limited”.  The event was a sell-out and the band were to spend the following six weeks playing throughout the Cape Town area encountering, for the first time, bona fide hippies, communes and the “impenetrable mystery of meaning”.   With a hugely successful holiday season behind them, their swansong completed in glorious style, the band climbed back into their Combi to commence the return trip to Rhodesia.

As fate would have it, however, the Combi’s engine started to give trouble in the Karoo and they limped onto Johannesburg to have it attended to.   After a mechanical inspection they were advised that it would take two weeks to repair the vehicle.  The delay presented them with an opportunity do some gigs in Jo’burg and they landed a temporary residency at The Electric Circus in Linksfield.

Otis Waygood Blues Band – Johannesburg (1970). (Photo courtesy Rob Zipper).

One night, after closing, whilst coming up to the street from the basement club, they were approached by a clean-cut young man who introduced himself as Clive Calder. Calder had recently been employed as an A&R man for the record company, EMI.  He explained to them that he had just returned from the United States where he had been involved with, and had witnessed, the launch of Grand Funk Railroad.  Although a tad sceptical about what they were hearing, Calder seemed to have an authenticity about him and they considered his proposals to be genuine ones.

(Prior to being employed by EMI, Calder, a guitarist and bass player, had been a member of various South African bands, including The Four Dukes, The Furies, The In Crowd, Birds Of A Feather and, most notably, Calder’s Collection. Calder’s Collection had a number of local hit singles and albums.  He subsequently became one of the most successful personalities in the international music scene establishing companies such as Jive Records, Zomba Music Publishers, Zomba Management and Zomba Books.)

Calder offered them a 10% royalty, the highest ever paid to unknown artists at that time, nationwide tours and high-level promotion through his separate company which he partnered with Ralph Simon.  This approach had been totally unanticipated and placed the band in a new predicament which would impact on their immediate future plans.  They sensed that it was an opportunity to be explored so returned to Bulawayo (in the repaired Combi!) where they discussed the matter with their parents and families.  As a result of these “consultations” they duly returned to South Africa to pursue Calder’s offer.

Their first few weeks in Jo’burg were a rude awakening. A number of undertakings that had been made to the band did not materialize and they ended up camping on Rob’s girlfriend’s flat floor in Hillbrow.   At the residency, at The Electric Circus, things were slow and the outlook, in general, did not look too promising.

It was at this point that Peter Feldman, who wrote the Entertainment section for the Sunday Times newspaper, and was a close associate of Clive Calder’s, headlined an article in the Entertainment section with the bold statement: “Historic Deal for Unknown Band”.   This served to capture the entertainment industry’s attention and, within a short time, the band received an advance from EMI, duly upgrading their equipment.  They found a house in Parkhurst and bought a Combi – the same vehicle they would eventually take to Europe on their travels.  The band opened a common bank account into which Clive and Ralph paid their monthly salary which Rob recalls to have been about R800, a fair amount in those days.

In 1970 Clive and Ralph organized two nationwide tours of South Africa with several bands and road crew.  A few days before they were due to appear in a town, Clive would send an advance party to hand out leaflets in the streets and to promote the gigs.  He would also organise interviews with local radio stations and commission articles in the press.  By the time the bands arrived, there was an air of excitement and expectation.   In 1970, the sounds and influences the band reflected in their music captured the imagination of South Africa’s youth and they were on a roll.

These tours saw the band perform alongside many of the country’s class acts including Freedom’s Children, Abstract Truth, Suck and Hawk.  The band found Abstract Truth’s music of particular interest and were influenced by them.  Another of the contemporary bands was The Conglomeration which featured Trevor Rabin, Ronnie Robot, Allen Rosenberg and Neil Cloud.  They subsequently renamed themselves Rabbitt and went on to enjoy significant local and international success.

Alan Zipper in full cry on bass. (Photo courtesy of Rob Zipper).

It was an exciting year which saw the release of three albums on the EMI label – the seminal “black” album which was followed by “Simply Otis” and, finally, “10 Lights Claps and A Scream” and two hit singles, “Fever” and “You’re Late Miss Kate”.  Clive Calder played the piano on the latter recording.

It was after the first album that flautist, Martin Jackson, confronted by a host of personal challenges and issues, decided that it was time to leave the band and duly quit, returning to Salisbury.   The band soon recruited Harry Poulos who had played keyboards with the recently defunct Freedom’s Children.  It was after the release of the first album that the band dropped the word “Blues” from their name, hence the second album’s title, “Simply Otis Waygood”.

The albums were recorded at EMI’s studios in Johannesburg. Despite this great year the band sensed that their race had been run.  The title of their final album, “10 Light Claps And A Scream”, was a reflection of the mood and response at one of their final gigs before a small and disengaged audience.   The band had made some controversial comments in the media and they had been hassled by the Police on occasion.

(For those who are interested in album artwork and design, the “black” album’s design evolved from ideas shared between Rob Zipper and Clive Calder.  The photograph which came with the poster in the sleeve was shot at Narias in Hillbow by a chap called George.  The second album, “Simply Otis Waygood”, was designed by Clive’s second photographer, Rick.  The concept for the third album was Rob’s.  The artwork was done by Tamara Messite-Tooze who father was the headmaster of Milton High School.  Rob met her in 1970 when she was studying Art at Pietermaritzburg.  The design depicts the sensory perceptions entering the brain through the eyes, ears, nose and mouth, with a third eye of perception and creativity at the centre.)

After some reflection, the band decided to relocate to Europe, initially Holland, and shipped the Combi and their equipment to that destination. In the meantime, they returned to Bulawayo to bid farewell to their families and friends.  Having done this, they flew out of Bulawayo, Europe-bound.  Upon arrival in Amsterdam they booked into the Elim Hotel, a Salvation Army Hostel on the banks of the Singel Canal.  The quartet who made this trip were Rob and Alan Zipper, Ivor Rubenstein and Alan Leigh.   The entourage was completed with Dov Robinson acting as Manager and Phil Roberts on keyboards.

Dov Robinson was originally from Salisbury but had studied at Wits University in Johannesburg.  Having finished his degree he was at a bit of a loose end and being passionate about the blues, its roots and origins, accepted the group’s offer to join them on their European sojourn as manager.

Phil Roberts was a friend of the band’s members and had been a member of the Salisbury band, THE PLEBS, where he had played bass. He was, however, accomplished on keyboards.

Youth culture in Amsterdam in 1971 was thriving.  The Government were subsiding youth clubs, free concerts in Vondel Park, promoting live music, deejays, light shows, health food, art cinema and a moratorium on the use of cannabis products.

The man who introduced the band to the local scene was an elderly, charitable, idealist who used his own house in Amsterdam to accommodate rehabilitating and recovering opium addicts.  He introduced them to a colleague who headed up the commune and organisation that oversaw the Amsterdam centre for this initiative, The Paradiso.  Since being established, The Paradiso had become synonymous with the hippie counterculture and rock music of the day.  It was one of the first locations in which the use of soft drugs was tolerated.

The band began their life in Amsterdam making themselves at home in the roof space area of the rehabilitation centre.   It wasn’t long before they secured a regular Wednesday night spot in the main hall and toured the circuit of these publicly subsidized youth centres.  They soon rented a house and vacated their rehabilitation centre digs.  For a short time, they renamed themselves ISIAH but soon reverted to OTIS WAYGOOD.

With the six month lease on their house soon to lapse, Leigh and Dov visited Germany to seek out contacts and opportunities, driving and sleeping in the back of the van.  As a result of their findings on this exploratory trip, the band spent the summer of 1971 touring a great deal of Germany playing open air festivals, clubs and pubs.  They also secured a weekly spot on radio station, Sudwestern Funk Radio.  At a later stage, recordings from these sessions would prove fateful in bringing the band to the UK.

As the summer ended, a Dutch promoter, who lived near Maastricht in the south of Holland, offered the them consistent work in the area.  The band rented a summer cottage next to a farmhouse close to the village, Geulle.  Winter had arrived, the promised work did not materialize, and cold and unemployed they decided to disband.

As a result of this decision, Alan and Ivor returned to Bulawayo whilst Leigh, Dov and Rob went to London where Dov and Rob shared a bedsit in West Hampstead.  Rob had in his possession the recordings they had made at the Sudwestern Funk Radio station.  Some of these songs had been co-written with Phil Roberts who was now living in London.  Rob was keen to play the demo tapes to him but they needed professional studio facilities to do this.

Phil’s partner, Jean, had a friend who was in the music business and arranged for Phil and Rob to go to his music business in Earl’s Court.  On visiting the premises, Phil and Rob met the proprietor, Del Newman, who, they were to discover, had produced and arranged for stars such as Shirley Bassey and Cat Stevens.  On the spur of the moment he offered to record the band at his own expense. Fate had intervened yet again!

As a result of this offer, the band reconvened in London again in March 1972.  Once again, their accommodation arrangements went through a transition as they moved from sharing a room in the Earl’s Court hotel to a refurbished 15th Century farmhouse in Walsham Le Willows in Suffolk.  The property owner also had a house in Islington Terrace and a generous arrangement was struck with him, in terms of which, when he required the use of the farmhouse, usually over holiday periods, the band would do a swop and move into his Islington house.

It was during this period that Rob received a telephone call from someone who introduced himself as Simon Draper.  Draper said that he used to follow the band in Cape Town and that his cousin, Richard Branson, had inherited some money and was planning to launch the Virgin record company.  He had bought a manor house in Oxfordshire and had converted the squash court into a recording studio.  Simon expressed a keenness to record the band and it was agreed that they would prepare a song which would be recorded at the new Manor Recording Studio.  As a result, Simon became a regular visitor to Walsham to monitor progress with the material they were working on.

In the meanwhile, the recording with Del Newman had been extremely successful and the band were delighted with the results.  They regarded them as the best recordings they had ever made.  Sadly, the recordings have since been mislaid.

Keen to involve their old mentor and oracle, Benny Miller, in the process, he accepted their invitation to join them at Walsham le Willows.  On the appointed day, well rehearsed and prepared for their debut Virgin recording session, the band travelled to the Manor.  At that evening’s banquet, Rob sat at Branson’s right elbow whilst the latter shared his excitement and expectations of the following day’s session.  All the portents were set for a memorable day in the studio.

The following day was an unmitigated disaster. Benny could not get his guitar to tune and the equilibrium was lost.  The band departed in ignominy without having laid down a single note and were left to reflect on what might have been.  A massive opportunity had been squandered.  With that, Benny returned to Salisbury.

Later that year, they went to see Bob Marley with Peter Tosh and the original Wailers at the Speakeasy in Oxford Circus where they sat metres away from Marley and the original Wailers.  The influence of reggae was starting to take hold.

With their current rental agreements lapsing the band were on the move once again, this time to North Farm, Pulham St. Mary, in neighbouring Norfolk.  With a pro-active approach to marketing themselves, they  soon found work in the best London pub venues such as the Red Lion and the Greyhound, as well as clubs including the Marquee and 100 Club.  Summer tours were arranged of the south coast from Brighton to Bournemouth.

One of the establishment’s advertising live music was Phebe’s in Stoke Newington. The band had an appointment with a Mr. White and duly made their way to Phebe’s, an old church, for their meeting.  Despite an awkward introduction and an unusual environment, Mr. White, a charismatic, imposing and intimidating figure of a man of West Indian descent, seemed intrigued by the band and said that he’d give them a chance at a gig on Thursday night.  Depending on how that evolved, further discussions would take place.

That Thursday night, Rob recalls, this band of “four white Jewish boys” took to the stage in front of a militant, black, reggae-inspired crowd and played hard rock.  At the outset the atmosphere was like ice but, by the end of their set, the hall was rocking and they were duly booked to play every Thursday night that followed.  At the end of every gig youths from the West Indian London community would join them on stage, trying out their instruments and helping to pack up.  As a result, they became friends with a number of these youngsters.

One night they were approached by a dashing, well-built, man who asked if they would be interested in backing his Diana Ross and the Supremes-style group, “Pat and the Ramelles”.  They indicated they were but Dixie (who had approached them) required that they add a keyboard player and percussionist to their line-up. This led to Paget King, who played the piano at Phebe’s, and Tony, another Phebe’s regular, joining as keyboard player and percussionist, respectively.  The rest of the crew came along as roadies and for several months they backed “Pat and the Ramelles” the length and breadth of London’s black clubs.

At the finale Dixie had taken them all into the famous Island Recording Studio to record a single that Phil Roberts had written.  Before the final mix was completed, Dixie disappeared never to be seen again with various rumours, hitherto unsubstantiated, doing the rounds of what had become of him.

When not performing with “Pat and the Ramelles”, the Otis Waygood Band continued playing their own gigs, now incorporating Paget King and Tony as members.  Following Dixie’s demise, the band acquired a Jewish manager and a record contract with Decca releasing three discos singles.  The two best are considered to have been “I’m Still Thinking” and “Who’s Your Friend”.  “I’m Still Thinking” was produced by Tony Carlton who had been with LITTLE FEAT.

Having been reggae fans for a number of years the band, with Paget and Tony in their midst, drifted towards an almost exclusively reggae set.  Most of their work revolved around the London reggae clubs.

Towards the end of 1977, Paget, Tony and the roadies left to form their own band, TRIBESMAN.  The original four members of the Otis Waygood Band went on to tour with TAVARES, playing the London Palladium, Bournemouth Winter Gardens, and the Liverpool and Manchester Town Halls.

Keith Hudson’s album, “Too Expensive”, in which he was backed by the Otis Waygood band.

It was whilst playing their residency upstairs at Ronnie Scott’s jazz club, that they were approached by a reggae musician, Keith Hudson, to back him on an album he intended recording.  Hudson, a contemporary and school friend of Bob Marley’s, was an already established reggae artist with something of a cult following in the West Indies and United Kingdom.  There was good energy between the band and Hudson and they duly obliged, leading to the release of Hudson’s last album before he died, “Too Expensive”.

Still contracted to Decca, the band recorded four Reggae tracks at Decca’s famous West Hampstead Studios,  however,  Decca did not have distribution opportunities in the Reggae Market and passed the band on to the producer, Lynton Guest’s label, Different Records. Acquiring two additional members, Lindel Lewis on Hammond Organ, and Horace on guitar, the band changed its name to IMMIGRANT and recorded a single, “One World”, with backing vocals and a freedom song, on the B-side, from the ZAPU Choir.

Towards the end of 1978 the band returned to the studio to record an album of the Reggae material they had been working on over a two year period.  Little became of this endeavour but the material was cenrral to the later, “Reason To Reggae” project.  Despite this, the band’s members once again felt that they had come to the end of the road and, without any recriminations, separated to follow their own individual paths and interests.

In 1979, Rob Zipper revived the work from the “Reason To Reggae” project and recorded the album with TRIBESMAN at his brother, Jeffrey’s, mobile studio in London.  Due to TRIBESMAN’s contractual commitments, they recorded as ZAK-I and PHANTOM POWER. Zak is Rob Zipper’s nickname amongst his family and circle of friends.  The stripped back, bluesy reggae, says Rob, is still his “favourite sound”.  The recording was taken to an international music festival where the rights were bought by three record labels, one from South Africa, another from Russia and, the third, a Brazilian agency.

Rob Zipper composed all the material on the “Reason To Reggae” album with contributions from Leigh Sagar who wrote the melody line and chorus for the song, “Jonathan”, and Alan Zipper who created the bass line on “Exile”.

In the meanwhile, Rob Zipper was well into his tertiary studies and had decided on life after music.  And this is the direction he continued to follow, effectively surrendering any ambitions he had in the world of professional music.

Alan Zipper continued his musical activities and formed a band called “Black Market” and recorded a couple of reggae singles.  Younger brother, Jeffrey, who had also moved to London pursued a living with his Jeffrey’s Recording Studios.


Rob Zipper

Rob remained in London where he went into the field of product design in the late 70’s.  It was whilst attending pottery classes at Camden’s Arts Centre that he met a fellow female potter whose work inspired him.  In due course they married and had three children.

During this time he worked for architects before moving into the field of retailing children’s furniture, clothing and accessories for an outlet known as Le Kid.  Progressing from this he launched his own furniture business, with a partner, called Robert Lindsay Woodwork.    This venture was extremely successful and they launched their collapsible furniture to many countries throughout the world, including Zimbabwe.  (Ahead of their grand launch in Cecil Square, Harare, Rob had written a jingle for the business which they had called SHAMWARI. He took the jingle to a local radio station and asked the manager/producer if he would be prepared to flight it.  The gentleman in question had fond memories of the Otis Waygood Blues Band’s appearances in the townships in his youth so was more than happy to oblige!).

At this stage, the architectural “bug” bit and Rob enrolled at London’s Metropolitan University and completed a degree in Architecture.  In recent years Rob has concentrated on architecture and has been involved in several projects in the UK and the USA.   With close ties to South Africa, including having a son in Cape Town, he and his wife are regular visitors to the country’s shores.

Alan Zipper

Alan, too, remained in London where he married, his wife being very successful in the fashion industry.   He has always owned a recording studio in the City and made his living from recording and producing.

Leigh Sagar

After arriving in London, Leigh started life after music working for Pizza Express in Hampstead.   He then entered Law school, completed a degree and became a Barrister working from Lincoln’s Inn. Today he is in global demand for his expertise and knowledge in the field of digital property rights.

Ivor Rubenstein

Ivor met and married his partner who was working for Alan’s wife’s London-based business.  They returned to Bulawayo were they opened a successful hat and cap manufacturers, Appeal Apparel.