Roger started his DJ career at La Rochelle (Union Avenue opposite Alfie’s Pinball arcade – next to Kine cinema) in 1977. One staff member he has vivid recollections of is “Butch” who was the bouncer! Butch was, seemingly, a man of many talents as he was also a biker, as well as a parking meter warden by day. Following on from his debut time at La Rochelle, Roger worked with Jimmy Smith and Lofty Hughes at Squires Park Lane.
From there Roger progressed to the lunchtime scene at Le Coq D’Or (1977 – when “Smiler” was there!). He then moved onto Club Chicago (where The Sahara Bar used to be) and earned himself the name Roger Rave in 1981 in the half sawn off car DJ box with the Heritage Band. In due course, “Time & Place” opened up next door and Roger did the first live radio broadcast from those premises.
A handful of gigs at Roslind’s followed in the company of Kevin the manager and Zimbabwe’s strong man, John Shamu (Mr T) who was, no surprise, the bouncer!
A residency at the Archipelago (“where the beautiful people go”) followed in 1985 with William Herbst aka Little Willy, now known as Wicked Willy, and Stallion Band (aka The Show Band) with Gavin Hooker and company. Lunchtime scenes were conducted with Fraser McKay. John Styandies was the man in charge, together with Tommy from S&T TRansport. Stretch was one of the many bouncers.
Roger then became the Entertainments/Night Manager for Archie’s before progressing to Turtles Night Club where Samantha’s once was.
Roger also has fond memories of Flag Ship at Club Tomorrow playing Funky Music and “When the train comes in the morning…I’ll be waiting at the station, how about you?”. During this period there was a 5 minute strobe light drum solo. Confessing to being only 15 at the time, Roger wore his brother’s dog tags outside his vest, sucked in as much oxygen as he could and pumped out his chest as fully as possible whenever he walked past the bouncer, Jason, who – it is said – had a karate background!