Tommy Lloyd

3 February 2013

I've just had a phone call from Kath Parkinson (wife of Ken) who rang to tell me that Tommy Lloyd who played drums with the Jazz Aces in Manchester, had died yesterday aged 94. I gather he lived in Royton, and his daughter found him in bed, which must have been quite traumatic, but nevertheless a lovely way to go. It's not a name I've come across before, can you fill me in a little for now, just so I can email it out to musicians, although I've probably told you sufficient already. His daughter has given permission for me to put it on the site, so I'll do that tomorrow. It was a sudden death, so no doubt the coroner will be involved, and possibly a post mortem.


04/02/13 Tommy Lloyd -



By Joe A A Silmon-Monerri

Another shock for me, personally, but I have to say, not surprising at age 94!!! I knew Tommy very well in the old days, but hadn't seen him for a very long time. He passed away peacefully in his sleep on Saturday 2nd of February 2013, at some time between 7:30 a.m. and 8:00 a.m., his daughter said that he didn’t look dead at all.

We first played together in Ken Parkinson's version of the Jazz Aces, first at the Thatched House and then at Wynn's Licensed Restaurant on Cross Street, which still is part of the old Corn Exchange Building, near Manchester Cathedral. This was after the Thatched House was scheduled to be demolished (in 1961-62), along with the nearby Manchester Evening News building, as the Market Street/Cross Street corner was to undergo some serious development at the time. I was still running Joe Silmon's Jazzmen at the Thatched House, so we had to find a new venue too; which was the  Black Lion, not far away, just beyond Deansgate, but in Salford. Wynn's, where Ken Parkinson's Jazz Aces ended up, was an enormous basement. If I remember rightly, that's where the first version of the Coronation Street theme was played; that wasn't the one with the famous Dave Browning on trumpet, though, which I believe was in 1976.

I also knew Tommy's daughter and her husband, whose names I had forgotten with the passage of time (about 30 years since we last met); Tony Dunleavy and his wife Maureen recently reminded me. They are, of course, Barbara and Malcolm. I felt terribly ashamed about that because they were always very nice to me; they often gave me lifts home, when there was no way I could get back from an out-of-town gig. I’m happy to say that they have forgiven me. They used to support Tommy at gigs, and, of course, help him to move his kit in and out of the venues. Ken and Tommy and a great friend of Tommy's and myself, who was a fellow Geordie, used to be in the building trade together. So they all drank quite a bit. I've never seen pints shift as quickly! They were all great fun to spend an evening with. In those days, that lethal combination ‘drinking and driving’ wasn't necessarily monitored, or even curtailed.

Tommy will be sadly missed by many on the local Jazz scene. He was a very well-known drummer; he was an all-rounder in music. He'd played a lot of dance-music and came into Jazz from that environment. He was thoroughly dependable for the beat and his wide knowledge of rhythms always meant a rock-steady tempo. I never once heard anyone fault him in any way, and he was a jolly, jovial, lovable character, who loved being part of our dearly departed Jazz scene, no matter what kind of a day he'd had at work. In the 70s and 80s, he sometimes depped at the Malt Shovels in Altrincham, where I was on reeds with the Geoff Wilde Quintet. He was standing in for the resident drummer[s] (Moe Green sometimes and mostly Bob Jones - another two of my oldest mates in Jazz). The bassist was mostly Colin Smith and at the beginning, the late and great Geoff Spilsbury was on piano; later Barrie Quilliam was the regular pianist. Occasionally, the great Malcolm Hogarth depped, along with his Kardex chord system. He had chords for everything! At times Tommy, when not depping, would just come along with his Geordie friend, who also died not long after the 80s, and would just sit and listen to the band, without insisting on sitting-in. He was a great friend of Tony Smith, and I think they had played a lot together, too, but I don't have any details of that. Tony and I have since been in touch; they mostly played together in a band in Delph. Most of our female vocalists, Julie Flynn, Sheila Collier and Marcia Pendlebury (née McConnell), will, no doubt be sorry to hear this news. He backed all three of them at some time in his lengthy career.

Tommy also used to run his own quartets and trios, but I can't at the moment provide any details of venues, personnel, or dates for that matter. No doubt other Jazz colleagues will fill in these gaps in their many tributes to our dearly departed, dapper, bemoustached, broadly-smiling great old friend Tommy Lloyd. His funeral will take place at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, the 19th of February at Dukinfield Crematorium; later there will be a reception at the Sheldon Arms, at 2 Lord Sheldon Way, Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 7UB.

The great man passed away very peacefully in his sleep, with that old familiar smile on his face. He had been so fit, and still driving until only days before, that the Doctor who signed the Death Certificate, felt that he could only write in the cause of death as Type 2 Diabetes.

On behalf of all of us on the Manchester Jazz Scene, it only remains for me to extend our deepest sympathy to Barbara and Malcolm and other members of Tommy’s family. May his soul rest at ease in the Peace of the Lord.

Joe A A Silmon-Monerri
(“Joe Silmon”)

04/02/13 -

Hi Fred, Sad to hear of the death of Tommy Lloyd.

I played for a while with him in The Chicago Teddybears in the late 70s at this time led by Roy Rogers. The line up Pete Ward [Tbn] Dereck Pierce [Bs], John Lomax [Pno] Roy Rogers [Rds], myself Trumpet, and Tommy on percussion.  I treasure a recording made by the band [Tony Dunlevy on Tbn by then] c1980 with Tommy.

Also memories of his daughter and son-in-law who loved their nights with the band. Sad news yet fond memories of those far off days.

Harold [Harry] Roberts

06/02/13 -

Such great memories of Tom. In particular at Cross Keys in Uppermill.. Dave Donohoe gig.. Mon nights.. packed to the door.

It was a stone-floored barn in the pub yard, so not being carpeted (or anything else except a bar,) I would take one or other of my dogs who would roam among the crowd whilst we played, seeking attention and especially crisps. Suddenly, I couldn't see her.. during a tune. "Where the devil is Mindy?" Eventually spotted her,

She was up on Tommy's knee, peering over the drums between cymbals and being entertained by Tommy. Because? Tommy had mints. Tommy always had sweeties. Mindy remembered! He didn't miss a beat, grinning so much that his moustache looked like it was curled up at the end. Treasured memories of the heydays of our jazz!

Howard Murray.

11/02/13 -

I want to express my sadness on hearing of the death of Harry Hitchin, also known as ' the lovely Harry' from the Longton area of Stoke-on-Trent. I had the pleasure of accompanying Harry on many of his good, jazz songs during my many gigs with Willy's Weepers at the Wilbraham Arms, Alsager. Despite his ailments, Harry always gave a good performance of any of the songs from his large repertoire.

Incidentally, Harry acquired his name, 'the lovely Harry' during band introductions by clarinet player Eric Newton.

Regards, Dave Berry


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