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Cumbrian trio celebrate 55 years in same band

MU members Alan, Jimmy and Rueben Slater are three brothers who started playing professionally in 1960 when they were aged 13 to 16 years old. The Slater family business, based in Wigton, ran a funfair and the boys named themselves after one of their traction engines. Hence Rue & the Rockets.

MU members Alan, Jimmy and Rueben Slater are three brothers who started playing professionally in 1960 when they were aged 13 to 16 years old.  The Slater family business, based in Wigton, ran a funfair and the boys named themselves after one of their traction engines. Hence Rue & the Rockets.

Their first gig was at Haltwhistle Working Men’s Club in Northumberland, for which they earned £6 even though they only knew 8 songs.  Since then they have played all over the UK and in Europe, in venues of all sizes alongside many top names in the business.

Rue & The Rockets' recent CD, Down To Earth, features a variety of guest stars including ace guitarists Albert Lee, Jimmy Henshaw and Tony Rennie.

Rue is the the lead vocalist and drummer and he still has his set of German drums, made by Trixon, which he bought new in 1963. Alan plays Rickenbacker bass and also sings. Jimmy is the lead guitarist (Gibson 345 and Strat) and also sings in addition to writing much of the band’s material.

Rue & The Rockets were the first live band to appear on Border Television's "Beat in The Border" program  and their following grew during a residency at Newcastle's Majestic Club in 1962-63.

The list of just some of the many extremely varied acts they have appeared with read like a history of pop music in the UK : Lonnie Donegan, Tony Christie, Marty Wilde, The Animals, Black Sabbath, Bo Diddley, Dire Straits, Manfred Mann, Van Morrison, Billy Fury, Gene Vincent, Status Quo, Johnny Kidd, Spooky Tooth, Alvin Stardust, Joe Cocker, Ruby Murray, Alma Cogan, Guy Mitchell, Jeff Beck, Dave Berry, The Bay City Rollers, Kenny Ball, Herman's Hermits and Jimmy Shand.

More info: JAR Slater, Station Road, Wigton, Cumbria CA7 9BA

Telephone 016973 42585, email: rueslater@aol.com


Published: 01/03/2015
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