Tommy Adderley Profile

David Herkt
29 May 2013

Tommy Adderley deserves a movie. He tag-teamed his times as a pop, jazz and blues singer, a TV entertainer, a legendary club-owner, a festival organiser, a junkie, prisoner, tea connoisseur and cook. It was rags-to-riches, rise-and-fall, and much, much more.

He coughs. You can hear the flick of his cigarette lighter. The chair he’s sitting on squeaks. People come and go. “Catch you later,” he says to someone.

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Tommy Adderley with The Pretty Things on their 1965 tour of New Zealand
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Tommy Adderley at the Pines, Wellington, early 1960s. From left, Mary Larkin, guest vocalist; Slim Dorward, bass; Bruno Lawrence, drums; Hymie Levine, reeds; Tommy Adderley, vocalist; Garth Young, piano and organ. Larkin was an Irish-born singer who recorded two LPs for HMV (NZ) in 1965-1966, arranged by Garth Young. One was called The Party's at Our Place Tonight. 
Photo credit: Don and Beatrice Peat/Garth Young collection
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Tommy's US & Canadian hit on one of the hippest labels in the world
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Mid 70s giveaway single, free with a new Pye stereo
Photo credit: Ron Kane Collection
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Tommy Adderley at the Pines, Wellington, early 1960s. From left: Mary Larkin, Slim Dorward, Hymie Levin, Bruno Lawrence, Tommy Adderley and Garth Young. 
Photo credit: Don and Beatrice Peat/Garth Young collection
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Jim McNaught and Tommy Adderley, Teen Beat, May 1966
Photo credit: William Dart Collection
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Headband in 1971 - Jimmy Hill, Jack Stradwick, Dick Hopp, Ronnie Craig and Alan Quinnell with Tommy Adderley in front
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Headband at Ali Baba's, Cuba Street, 1971: Billy Kristian, Jimmy Hill, Dick Hopp, Tommy Adderley and Ron Craig
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Headband in concert: Tommy Adderley on harmonica, Dick Hopp on electric violin
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Tommy Adderley with Max Merritt & His Meteors - I Just Don't Understand
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Tommy Adderley at the Pines, Wellington, early 1960s.
Photo credit: Don and Beatrice Peat/Garth Young collection
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A message from Tommy to his fanclub as 1966 dawns.
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Tommy Adderley as Lord Farnsworth And The Blue Beats in 1963. Issued on the same Lexian label, this cover of Prince Buster's Enjoy Yourself was probably the first Ska/Blue Beat styled release in New Zealan although it was Dinah Lee who took the style into the New Zealand charts the next year.
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Tommy Adderley on the cover of William Dart's Music In New Zealand in 1989
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Tommy Adderley and Lyn Barnett, the Pines, Wellington, c1963
Photo credit: Garth Young collection
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The January 1966 Tommy Adderley fanclub newsletter
Photo credit: Keith Richardson collection
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Headband: Billy Kristian, Dick Hopp, Ronnie Craig, Jimmy Hill and Tommy Adderley, 27 November 1971. Dominion Post collection, Alexander Turnbull Library EP/1971/5931-F
Photo credit: Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23173962
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Tommy hits Gisborne, 1965
Photo credit: Gisborne Photo News
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Tommy Adderley with Max Merritt & His Meteors - Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On
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A young Tommy Adderley at the Pines, Wellington (far left), with cabaret performer Kahu Pineaha (in goatee), and the Garth Young Trio: Young in glasses, Bobby Little beside Pineaha, and Hymie Levin. At the front left is a Canadian bass player, Jimmie Wilson "who played there for some time when Slim was sacked by Pat McCashin," recalls Young. 
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Tommy Adderley in a 1960s ad for Apples
Photo credit: Grant Gillanders collection
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A members card for Grandpa's (upstairs from Granny's) the Tommy Adderley owned club in Durham Lane West. The members card was one of several (flawed) attempts to allow the venue to serve alcohol in those restrictive times.
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Tommy Adderley's 1965 album for RCA. It was Tommy's only album until the 1970s Headband releases
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Tommy Adderley benefit, The Gluepot, 11 April 1993
Photo credit: Grant Gillanders Collection
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The menu at Granny's, Tommy Adderley's club in Durham Lane West, mid 1970s
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Tommy in 1965
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Larry Morris and Tommy Adderley
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Tommy's 1966 Zodiac EP
Photo credit: Simon Grigg Collection
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Labels:

Lexian


RCA


Viking


Zodiac


Pye


Harvest


HMV


Ripper

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Trivia:

Tommy was a huge fan of US jazz singer Johnny Hartman - get him started and he could talk about him forever.

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