Photo supplied by Sheila Collier
Just heard on a Facebook post from his son Pete, that Denis Gilmore sadly passed away in California this morning, having emigrated there in the 80ís. Denis was a well known and very fine trumpet player on the Manchester scene in the 50ís 60ís era. Mainly with Pete Haslam, and also Johnny Tippets Jazzman among others. He continued to play for many years in the US. RIP Denis.
Such fond memories of lovely Denis Gilmore.
In the early 60s with the Southside Stompers. He was a good friend and lovely trumpet player. He worked for Echo Instruments as a rep going into East Germany and Poland in the old cold war days. My best wishes to his family
1971 at our Jazz Club . The Midland , West Didsbury Manchester .
And with George Melly as a guest .
I remember Denis
from about 1955, when we started The Oriole jazz band in North
Manchester and Pete Kennedy joined us and introduced us to The
Crescent. I believe he was in the RAF at the same time as Pete
Haslam when they were doing National Service, and formed a
friendship as many servicemen did in those days through their
experimenting with jazz. He also played cornet in a brass
band, I think, in Middleton, where he lived.
When he had his new job and was travelling to Europe we lost touch due to busy lives, but when I found your site and spoke to Joe Silmon who knew everything, We started to correspond.
It was 2015 when he was diagnosed with Stage3 prostate cancer and he
had lots of radiation treatment etc., but still liked his gardening
and managed to go on odd gigs on piano keyboard. He and his wife,
Samantha, then moved to another house and he didnít have his lovely
garden ,and I think he found it hard not able to do two of the
things he loved and I guess that it was then that he found life
Brenda Canty -Forrest
So sorry to read about the death of Denis Gilmore. Terrific player.
Lovely man, and great company.
Glad to see there is now a tribute page to Denis Gilmore. I was very fortunate to have played drums for several years with Denis here in California with the six-piece band he formed in 1989 to play at the Hangtown Festival in Placerville, California, first called the New Orleans Street Players. (Hangtown was the name given Placerville in the days of the Wild West.) Shortly thereafter the band's name was changed to Gremoli--an anagram of his last name, and it became one of, if not the, best New Orleans-style jazz bands in California. Since the b and was located in Southern California, I could not play all the local gigs as I had to make an 800-mile round trip to play with them on these. They often went as a five-piece "drummerless" group on them, but I made quite a few, staying over with Denis and Sam or Ron Going and his wife, Jan. The fun we had at these local gigs and the festivals we played seemed endless, in retrospect, as did the enjoyment of the music we made. Of that group, sadly I am now the sole survivor.
Denis played cornet with the band until he had to relocate due to work requirements. When he returned after a few years he played occasionally with Gremoli on piano. I always enjoyed both his playing and his company, along with that of his wife, Sam. Both enjoyed flying their airplane, and they did so to several of the festivals Gremoli played at out of state. As we say too often these days, "Another good one gone." -
Warm memories of sudden arrivals of (Middleton) Brass quartet, playing "tastefully" rendered carols at many Manch pubs at Christmas.
Your report of his passing was a great shock - I never accept that
people, me included!, are getting older.
My first introduction to traditional jazz was at the Clarendon Hotel
where the Zenith Six played to a full house on Friday nights in the
late '60s. The frontline would have graced any bandstand: Denis
Gilmore on trumpet, Alan Pendlebury on trombone and the leader Mart
Rodger on clarinet.
25/09/19 - Letter reproduced courtesy of Just Jazz Magazine
Dear Just Jazz,
In the June edition of Just Jazz, I saw with great sadness, that my old friend Denis Gilmore had died.
Denis was a great character on the Manchester jazz scene in the late 1950s and 1960s, playing at the Bodega on Cross Street, the Black Lion in Salford and many other venues. He played for quite a while with the Zenith Six.
He was much more than an accomplished jazz trumpeter. He was Chairman of the local Conservative Association and Chairman of the local Middleton Brass Band, where I played cornet. Denis played Eb bass and was good enough, along with Gordon Dean and myself, to be asked to join Barton Hall Works Band in Eccles. This was a well-known concert band, conducted by Oliver Howarth, father of classical trumpet player Elgar Howarth.
Denis also set up a brass quartet comprising of himself on Eb bass, Gordon and myself on cornet, with Pete Haslam, another Manchester jazzer, on trombone. We played at schools, Rotary meetings and the like.
At weekends when he was free, Denis, Gordon and Pete operated as a dance band. If I had no gig with the dance band I played with, I was invited to join them. Depending on availability, two drummers were used. One was known simply as 'Mr Plumrose' due to his job selling canned meats: The other was 'Non-Tangle Action', due to his work with brushes, reminding us of the view inside a 1960s washing machine. Denis was leader, well known for his limited patience with pestering, often inebriated, customers.
Afterwards we would retire to Chinese La's, Middleton's famous, early, Chinese restaurant, run by the delightful Lilian Kwok. Lilian's two daughters are now famous in Manchester as owners of the 'Sweet Mandarin' restaurant in the Northern Quarter and developers of a range of Chinese foodstuffs. We always got favourable rates from Lil, because Denis did her tax returns.
Denis was a good musician, always entertaining company, but a man who didn't suffer fools gladly.
Ron Albiston, Middleton, Manchester