Wednesday, February 08, 2012

A Cack-Handed Photographer Preserved In Negative Aspic


My second February theme is "The Picture Within" and this week I feature one of my oldest negatives which dates back to the early 1960s. I am fairly sure that it was taken at the Halifax Gala in Manor Heath Park but other than that, I can remember nothing about it.

Two things captured my attention when I scanned the negative and examined it in detail. The first was the photographer on the right of the shot and the strange contraption he has hanging over his shoulder. It took me some time to realise that he wasn't a cack-handed snapper caught in the process of dropping his prized camera, but a film-maker, because that seems to be a fairly primitive 8mm movie camera that he is holding. Given that it is a movie camera and that he appears to be filming a band, we can assume that over his shoulder is an early tape recorder. But I am still not sure what the box is that he is holding in his left hand. Some questions are best left unanswered.

My second focus of attention was on the band itself which provides a great platform for a game of guess the date. There is a slight Beatle-ish feel to the band and the hair style of the singer would suggest the very early 1960s. 


Who the group were, I know not. What happened to them, I have no idea. But they are preserved forever in  negative aspic, peacefully hibernating until their story can be told.

13 comments:

  1. Very interesting, Alan! Are you a King Crimson fan by any chance?

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  2. Nice photo! well you know in these Beatles times all wanted be them (lol)

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  3. The thing on his shoulder looks vaguely Grundig, but the nearest think I could find is a transistor radio, so that ain't it.

    The thing in his left had could be an external battery pack.

    As for the date - pre Beatles, by the haircuts. More Teddy boy, if you ask me.

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  4. I wish I knew the full story behind this photo. Wonder if the photographer was some sort of PR person, or just the father of one of the band members.

    I agree with Chairman Bill, by the way. I'm thinking very early 1960s, before the Beatles became well-known.

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  5. I must say, this guy's equipment was before mine. I had purchased the first "portable" movie camera RCA put out and I used it for how-to films that I made. It was larger and more like what you see the TV crews carrying around (about that size and shape) and the recorder was two or three times the size of this one. Boy did it take some neat movies.

    I suppose this man's equipment did the same. For its time, it was the best there was.

    I have decided to move because I have so many problems with Blogger and Flickr.

    I am with WordPress now. Just starting.

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  6. Very interesting indeed. I am wondering who took the picture of the man taking the picture. Maybe another family member interested in the photographer too. Can't tell the time just looking at the hair. Some of the guys hair is short and nothing distinctive about the girls hair.
    QMM

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  7. There were hundreds of little bands during the 60's. this was probably one of those little bands that lasted for a couple of years and then disappeared.

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  8. What a great blog post title! But what in the world does cack handed mean? Off to ask Mr. Google....

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  9. It would be fun if one of those band members saw this and recognised themselves. And eee, you can tell Vicki's not from round here...

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  10. Hello Alan:
    There looks to be a heavy influence of The Beatles here from what we can see. And, that long, floppy hair of the band members and the photographer, very 1960s.

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  11. Could it be that he's holding the microphone, albeit an unusually shaped one? What strikes me is the melancholy look on his face. Maybe the music was sad.

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  12. Looks 60's to me too..no girls are screaming or fainting so they must not have been too good:)

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  13. Great shots! I'm a new bloger/writer and just added myself to your folowers to support you, maybe you'd like to come follow me? Thanks!

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