Johnny Boonham

More Life Lines

The 1980s / 90s

Playing For Dancing

From the late 1960s up to this time, most of my playing had

been for Cabaret, Concerts, Shows, "Open Mic Singers", etc,

usually with a drummer. I had been lucky to work with some

fine, intelligent drummers over the years.

In the late 80s and early 90s I started to play more for dancing.

Although there were some "Open Mic Gigs", most artists were

now using Backing Tracks. I found myself playing solo more


During the 70s, my drummer Wally and I, had bought a

fairly portable organ that we could use "on the road".

This was an Ace Tone GT7 Organ with a Leslie 825

Tone Cabinet and gave a really nice sound.

After his retirement I continued to use this instrument for

several years until the most portable organ I'd ever seen

came onto the market. This was the Yamaha ME 50.

My First Yamaha Organ

My First Yamaha Organ

During the 1980s I played a couple of nights a week at a

local Conservative Club. In the picture above, I am playing

the ME 50, with our Compere, Ben, singing.

The Yamaha EL 25

The Yamaha EL 25

Ever since we were married, Nida has had a big influence

on my music and what equipment we need.

So that when the EL range of organs came onto the market,

we bought an EL 25 organ. This gave a much bigger sound

and was still portable. It had 2 x 49 Note Keyboards and a

20 Note Pedalboard.

In the above picture, taken by Nida, I am sitting at the organ

during a gig at Wythall British Legion Club, Near Birmingham.

John "Checks Out" the Wurlitzer


During this time Nida and I made regular visits to Blackpool.

On one of these occasions, we spent an enjoyable afternoon

in the Sun Lounge at the North Pier in the company of organist

Mr. Ray Wellbank, who invited me to "check Out" the

Wurlitzer Organ.

In the picture, taken by Nida, I am seated at the organ.

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