I was the drummer with the Blue Chips in the Grey Rock days. I well remember the ice rink gig supporting Screaming Lord Sutch. Heady days but great days. John was a gent and a brilliant musician. I now live in Harrogate but still think of those times. Where has the time gone. I can be contacted on 01423 569353 or 07951 279447.
Grey Rock days, John was still in school. The Blue Chips, John, Dave Rose, Colin Oaks, Mike Lee, rehearsing in our front room. Dad was their manager, Steve Pillips was the roadie. Wot a noise!! The phone rings, its only Bob ( the cheques in the post ) Wooler saying I want to book the band for the Silver Blades ice rink. The rest, as they say. is history,
John was a gentleman and a gentle man.......a phenominal bass player and an amazing voice......he was a good old fashioned guy and probably the last person I heard call his beloved wife "Me Judy".I remember the Austin Cambridge van he used to travel in.........a true test of your presence in this life is how many people talk about you and chuckle over things said and done,after you've gone......this site says it all..Steve Nicholls
Playing cards at his place 'til the early hours of the morning with my brother Dave R.I.P. and Kenny Parry, and Phil Chittick. They were and still are all heroes to me. I was only about 17 at the time and busy failing all of my exams.......but absolutely NO REGRETS. University of LIFE did me wonders, and made me friends I would never have believed. GOD Bles John and all our lost loved musician friends. Blue Bayou!!! mentioned above.......FANTASTIC!
I probably didn't know John for as long or as well as most of the musicians that will write on here but it was a pleasure and an honour to know him and, be part of his family had some great nights watching hin in Bunter and with Kenny in Streetwise, , a lovely man and a great musician Sleep Tight Christine Farrell
I was shocked and pleasantly surprised by how many people turned up to give John Farrell a send off to remember. I was more shocked by how many people had worked with him over the years, a true testament to the mans popularity and how much in demand he was as a bass player and as a friend to so many. When I organised the benefit night in toxteth for Johns family, and we had Liverpool Express, Up and Running, The Touch, Soundtrax, so many others who did not hesitate, and agreed to do the show. I will always remember Kenny Parry singing "Forever Young" at the end, I was meant to join him on stage to join in, only I took one look at Kenny and fell to pieces and sobbed all the way through it, Kenny completed the song and brought the house down. If I never thanked all that took part in that unforgettable evening, I thank you now with all my heart, as I am sure did Johns family.
I've been blessed to have been able to play with some very talented musicians in my lifetime. No disrespect to anyone who I played with before, but John was the first bass player who I melded with. I was the nut, John was the chocolate......it was that close and I couldn't figure it out then....!! (I do now..) I don't recall how me, John, Robbie and Lennie came together to form "RoadRunner"..(Probably through contacts at 'Plug Inn')..but I'm sure glad we did. Johns style was so relaxed but so ON IT, it made me sick !! I can only put it down to his consumption of whisky on Sunday afternoons....!!! As I write, "Blue Bayou" rings in my ears sung by 'The Big O'...and ..... silly as it may sound, Roy's version is the copy version of that song sung by "RoadRunner". Good Night John. I'm so happy that you came my way.... (Get the ale in , your round...)
I used to watch John play on the Selwyn Pub in Walton in a band called Roadrunner and have a chat with him afterwards he was a great musician and a great bloke.
My memory of John is one that many people may have including his good friend Bobby, John was always being asked to sing 'Blue Bayou' by friends, muso's and fans, one night when we were in a band called 'Tinka' in the 70's the usual call went out for him to play his signature tune...he did and as usual he brought the house down. John was not only an excellent musician he was such a lovely guy on and off stage. John, Kenny, Neil (now with John in Heaven) and myself always had a laugh at gigs and it was an honour to work with him...God Bless John. Tony Bolland