“It was 1955 and I was twelve years old. We hung out in Notarianni’s coffee shop on Crowtree Road. There was seven or eight of us sitting pretending to give them business- I think we had one soda pop between us.
They had this big red and blue jukebox- a Wurlitzer. It cost a penny to put on a tune. ‘Mystery Train’ came on and I just thought ‘what on earth is that!’ The world changed.
I went straight home, got the biscuit tin, a wire and a nick and started strumming. It sounded like ying, tong, ping. I didn’t even know the words but I stood on the street corner making up my own. I already had the hair ‘the quiver’ cos of the Everly Brothers. I used to put any old grease in it to get it back.”
Photo: Hylton Castle, Sunderland