The Florida Rooms
The Florida Rooms at the Brighton Aquarium was for a number of years a premier venue for not only local bands but was one of the first Rhythm & Blues clubs in the country.
The Club was run by a colourful local promoter known as "Uncle Bonny Manzi". He ran a popular Traditional Jazz session that was billed as “The Chinese Jazz Club” from 1963 onwards.
Appearing at The Florida were all the current luminaries of the British Jazz Scene: Chris Barber, Monty Sunshine, Terry Lightfoot, Humphrey Lyttleton and Acker Bilk, as well as mainstream jazzers The Tubby Hayes Big Band.
At an Easter All-Night-Rave The Chris Barber band played a set which was followed by the seminal Blues outfit The Cyril Davies All-Stars featuring Long John Baldry and a very young Rod Stewart.
Rod Stewart still owes "Uncle Bonny" a fiver he borrowed from him in Bristol!
On Saturday nights groups from across the country played before packed crowds eager to see the best bands around. One band which I never tired of seeing was Screaming Lord Sutch & The Savages.