The only musicians that had more records in the UK charts than Billy in the 60's were The Beatles, Cliff Richard, and Elvis.
Billy was also from Liverpool, and was part of what was called The Merseybeat sound. He was in good company. The Beatles, Cilla Black and Gerry and the Pacemakers all came from Liverpool. (The Mersey is the river that runs through Liverpool.)
Billy had had Rheumatic Fever as a child. This had left him with heart problems. In the early 70's he had to have a heart operatiion.
In 1973, Billy was in the process of relaunching his career. He had just appeared in the film "Stardust" with David Essex and Ringo Starr. I was 17 years old.
RAF Scampton was a training base for new recruits in those days. (Scampton is about 4 miles outside Lincoln.) They had a fantastic Dance Hall on camp, and they always had some really well known bands and singers booked to perform every Saturday night.
Can you believe this? To make sure the young RAF lads were happy, the RAF organised two free buses from Lincoln, and shipped us girls out to the camp each week. We also received a voucher for a FREE Babycham. (See I told you I know a lot about Social History!)
We would turn up every weekend to check out the new recruits. There were always the same two airforce guys on the door. One of them was called Nick, he was a bit sweet on me and always gave me an extra Babycham Voucher. Nick also booked the acts and looked after the stars.
One particular Saturday we all turned up, eager to see Billy. My crowd consisted of Sidesaddle Sally, Showalot Sharon, Legover Linda, and me.
(My nickname was Sock-it-to-'em Sue 'cos I had no boobs and augmented my "fried egg" bosom with a pair of socks placed inside my 30AA training bra.)
Nick and I would share some flirty banter, such as "Hey up 'Fungus Face'" (me to him.) and
he would retort stuff like
"Was the Hairdresser closed this week, Tatty Head?"
"When are you gonna let me be the father to your future children?"
"That skirt would look lovely on my bedroom floor."
I'd say stuff like, "There's a queue for my affections, and you're NOT in it."
This week I restrained myself, and said nice things like, "Oooh your Hai Karate Aftershave smells gorgeous."
"Nick, sweetie," I says, fluttering my eyes so much, I nearly lost me falsies (eyelashes!)
"Would you be able to get me Billy's autograph?"
"I'll do my best," says Nick.
There was a DJ that played records during the early part of the evening. We danced to such classics as
"Cum on Feel The Noize" by Slade
"See my Baby Jive" by Wizzard
"Farewell is a Lonely Sound" Jimmy Ruffin
So there we were the 4 of us, dancing round our handbags.
I looked over my shoulder and there's Nick beckoning me over.
"Come with me," he says
WHAT HAPPENED NEXT?
(To be continued.............................)