The Joe Walker Band (originally “the Jaywalkers”) was a popular North East band in the 1980s headed by frontman Joe Walker and featuring a host of other fine local musicians.
Notable participants were Matty (Bull) Thompson, Mike Ivory, Frederick Siviter, Steve Evans, Stevie Saville, Paul McClenaghan, Andrew McDonald, Adrian Rea, Yusef Nimer, Mike Cuthbertson and myself but several others contributed as guest performers or with recording as occasion required (John McCoy, Stuart Johnson, Kevin O’Neill etc.).
We performed quite widely in the North East of England with notable performances at The Kirklevington Country Club (“The Kirk” – where the band was resident on Friday nights for a lengthy period), the legendary Front Page Club in Carlisle, at an event at the Dovecot Arts Centre (recorded live by George Lambelle for BBC Cleveland) and at the wedding of North East TV presenter Tony James (his fellow presenter Mike Neville also being a guest there).
We never quite lived up to our potential – (which may in part be attributable to our behaviour when Jim Beach, the manager of Queen, came to see us at the Kirk) – but we had quite a lot of fun and built up some fond memories.
Unfortunately this all took place before mobile phones and there is not much archive material of the band. What little material I have found is compiled here. Many thanks to Paul McClenaghan for helping me compile this page and to John McCoy and Martin Lawson for their photographs. ( There is an amusing story regarding a sartorial disagreement which led to the departure of Matt Thompson from the band on pages 233 – 235 of Martin Lawson’s new book – “Live at the Front Page the Story of a Legendary Music Club” available from Cumbria Books ). (I think we actually played the Front Club again after the incident referred to in the book with Stuart Johnson on sax in place of Matty before Yusef Nimer took over the sax seat in the band).
If you have any other material please contact me so that I may include it.
Live at Adrian Rea’s Wedding summer 1986
(only known live video footage)