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The California Ballroom , Dunstable


Guest Malc Burton

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Posted

The California Ballroom , Dunstable

Live Act listing 1973 - 1979

In respect of the last - and final - listing of the live acts that played The Cali , it is interesting to see the " shift " from the more ' traditional ' soul artists from 1973 onwards , to include the more funkier acts / artists up until its' closure in 1979 .

As stated in previous posts , many of the acts played several times in the same year , but I have only listed the respective names once .

1973

The Real Thing

Johnny Johnson & The Bandwagon

Roy C

Jimmy Ruffin

Martha Reeves & The Vandellas

Sam & Dave

The Detroit Emeralds

Jr Walker & The All Stars

Major Lance

The Fantastics

Arthur Conley

Millie Jackson

The Flirtations

Edwin Starr

Oscar Toney Jr

The Drifters

First Choice

Chairmen Of The Board

Limmie & The Family Cookin'

The Chi - Lites

Guy Darrell

Ben E King

J J Barnes

The Philly Revue ........The O'Jays , Billy Paul , The Intruders and MFSB

1974

BT Express

Johnny Johnson & The Bandwagon

The Coasters

Robert Knight

The Delfonics

New York City

The Drifters

Limmie & The Family Cookin'

Mel & Tim

Harold Melvin & The Bluenotes

Jimmy Ruffin

Jr Walker & Edwin Starr - together on the same night

The Detroit Emeralds

The Three Degrees

R Dean Taylor

The Ronettes

Jimmy James & The Vagabonds

Ben E King

The Exciters

KC & The Sunshine Band

the Four Tops

Gwen & George McCrae

Chairmen Of The Board

The Tymes

Edwin Starr & Eddie Holman - together on the same night

1975

Arthur Conley

The Fantastics

Jimmy James & The Vagabonds

Kool & The Gang

Jimmy Helms

The Chi - Lites

The Hues Corperation

Rufus & Chaka Khan

The Tymes

Chairmen Of The Board

New York City

The Drifters

The Three Degrees

Jimmy Ruffin

Edwin Starr

The Detroit Emeralds

Major Lance

Rufus Thomas

The Flirtations

Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band

Jr Walker & The All Stars

Hamilton Bohannon

Disco Tex & The Sex - O - Lettes

The Fatback Band

The Temptations

George McCrae

BT Express

The Tymes

The Four Tops

The Exciters

Dee Clark

Donald Byrd & The BlackByrds

1976

Donald Byrd & The BlackByrds

James Brown

People's Choice

Trammps

Chairmen Of The Board

The Fatback Band

Bobby Womack

The Miracles

Brass Construction

The Drifters

Jimmy Ruffin

Jr Walker & The All Stars

Jimmy James & The Vagabonds

War

Ohio Players

1977

The Manhattans

The Moments & The Rimshots ...... together on the same night

Martha Reeves & The Vandellas

Edwin Starr

The Fantastics

The Commodores

Detroit Spinners & Brass Construction ...... together on the same night

The Four Tops

Jr Walker & The All Stars

Archie Bell & The Drells

The Ritchie Family

1978

The Crusaders

Brass Construction

Ramsey Lewis

Eddie Kendricks

T Connection

Donald Byrd

Tavares

Rose Royce

Lenny Williams

The Four Tops

Isaac Hayes & Edwin Starr ......... together on the same night

Third World

Platinum Hook

Sylvester

1979

Roy Ayers

Manu Dibango

Players Association

Brass Construction

McFadden & Whitehead

Grover Washington Jr

Rick James had been booked to appear in early 1980 , but due to the closure of The Cali , this obviously did not happen .

The California Ballroom : worthy of a place in the annals of soul music history ? Definately .

Malc Burton

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I wasn’t there that night but went there a lot. I remember seeing Roy Ayers, The Crusaders, Crown Heights Affair and more. We spent a lot of time in the nightclub, Dido’s. I remember the last night of

I was there in 75 when Kool & The Gang appeared, they were brilliant.

Posted

This is only one man's memory of one hot night in the legendary Cali in Dunstable hundreds of years ago..in fact, in 1976. I was a tall, lean 18yr-old chap and I'd taken my then-girlfriend Roz to see The Fatback Band, who were supported by a better (in my opinion) unknown band by the name of Heatwave! To say that particular night sticks in my mind after 42 years is an understatement! In my mind's eye I can still see the flashing ultraviolet strobe light illuminating Roy's snow-white bra from underneath her dark blue shirt! Heatwave had just released their superb funk hit 'Ain't No Half-stepping', and I was well into them! Obviously, Heatwave went onto bigger things and released many singles and albums...mostly penned by their superb keyboardist Rod Temperton, in amongst the multinational bandmembers. But I'll never forget that boiling night in 1976 where I discovered one of my favourite bands! Was anyone else there in Dunstable that hot 1976 summer's night? 

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9 hours ago, Fazzman said:

This is only one man's memory of one hot night in the legendary Cali in Dunstable hundreds of years ago..in fact, in 1976. I was a tall, lean 18yr-old chap and I'd taken my then-girlfriend Roz to see The Fatback Band, who were supported by a better (in my opinion) unknown band by the name of Heatwave! To say that particular night sticks in my mind after 42 years is an understatement! In my mind's eye I can still see the flashing ultraviolet strobe light illuminating Roy's snow-white bra from underneath her dark blue shirt! Heatwave had just released their superb funk hit 'Ain't No Half-stepping', and I was well into them! Obviously, Heatwave went onto bigger things and released many singles and albums...mostly penned by their superb keyboardist Rod Temperton, in amongst the multinational bandmembers. But I'll never forget that boiling night in 1976 where I discovered one of my favourite bands! Was anyone else there in Dunstable that hot 1976 summer's night? 

I wasn’t there that night but went there a lot. I remember seeing Roy Ayers, The Crusaders, Crown Heights Affair and more. We spent a lot of time in the nightclub, Dido’s. I remember the last night of the Calli, we were told we could rip any of the fittings off the wall because it was being demolished the next day.

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Guest Spain pete
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Went there a few times in my youth , anyone remember the downstairs?  , devils den, ? disco ,? snooker tables?  and swimming pool ? ? All very sketchy now , the pub at the top of the hill ? Fecking great getting old innit . 😱

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Guest Spain pete
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That's the one overlooking the downs,  seem to remember a flying club at the bottom of the hill,     sure the disco downstairs was the devil's den  back in my day . 

4 minutes ago, britishbarry said:

The club was called Dido’s in my day and the pub you are referring to was probably the Windsock. It was a funny shape.

 

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Posted

.....2 years later, Was googling California/O'Jays and good to see the "Calais" getting a mention here, went to many of those listed, great spot, we used to try sneak back home to Bedford on "Paper" train and once walked home along rail line

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Yeah she was on, I would have started going to All-nighters sooner tho took ages to get home.

The best live band events I ever seen, were at the Calais...1) Tymes 2) Chairmen Of The Board

Just ahead of Brass Construction at St Ive's (which was the hottest)

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