The Starlight Rooms
At the junction of Sillwood Street and Montpelier Road stands a block of flats. Beneath them, a car park.
Nothing special in that, except this block stands on what was once the Montpelier Hotel, and in the basement of the Montpelier Hotel were The Starlight Rooms. In sixties' Brighton, a club that was as influential as The Cavern in Liverpool and for local and South Coast bands, a Mecca.
In post-war Brighton, the Montpelier Hotel was empty and derelict; it had been empty for some years. But in 1962 a local, Maurice Sohn, opened a Jazz Club in the basement.
To assist him in choosing acts for the club and to play music in the labyrinthine rooms that made up The Starlight, he also had Stan Jacobs, an ex bandleader who acted as DJ and Musical Director.
The club was dark, dank and quite musty smelling.
The walls were painted black for the most part and some of the walls never actually dried out because of rising damp. So leaning against the wall in some places was not to be recommended, as you would be coated in black paint!