The Second Thoughts

Bill Hope Chris Thomas Ealing England Hat & Tie Jade Warrior Jon Field July london Lucifer & The Angels Mickey Holmes Nirvana Patrick Campbell-Lyons Speedy Keen Teddy Raye The Krewsaders The Merrymen The Rocking Eccentrics The Teenbeats Thunderclap Newman Tony Duhig Vic Griffiths
Photo Patrick Campbell-Lyons. The Second Thoughts, spring 1964 outside the Ealing Club. Left to right: Mickey Holmes, Patrick Campbell-Lyons, Vic Griffiths (on van roof), Tony Duhig and Bill Hope.

Patrick Campbell-Lyons (lead vocals)

Tony Duhig (lead guitar)

Mickey Holmes (bass)

Bill Hope (drums)

Ealing, Middlesex band, The Second Thoughts were formed around February 1963 and gave birth to a number of notable bands in the late 1960s – Thunderclap Newman, Nirvana, July and Jade Warrior.

Lead singer Patrick Campbell-Lyons (b. 13 July 1943, Lismore, County Waterford, Ireland) had been active on the local scene for several years with The Teenbeats after arriving in the area from Ireland in the summer of 1961.

Campbell-Lyons made plans to form a new group after running into lead guitarist Tony Duhig (b. 18 September 1941, Acton, Middlesex; d. 11 November 1990), drummer Bill Hope and lead guitarist turned bass player Mickey Holmes in early 1963.

Holmes had previously been a member of The Krewsaders alongside future Fleetwood Mac bass player John McVie and Holmes’ cousin, rhythm guitarist Peter Carney, who went on to play with Geno Washington’s Ram Jam Band among others.

Named by Holmes, one of The Second Thoughts’ first gigs was opening for The Rolling Stones at their farewell gig at the Ealing Club on 2 March 1963.

Basing themselves on The Big Three and The High Numbers (aka The Who), the trio’s blues-rock required a harmonica player and Campbell-Lyons recruited his friend from Brentford, Middlesex, Vic Griffiths, who doubled up on rhythm guitar, around Christmas 1963.

The Second Thoughts would play at the Ealing Club regularly and from spring to summer 1964 would hold down a Sunday residency before landing another house gig in central London at the Studio ’51 Club in Leicester Square.

Around July 1964, the band expanded the line up by adding Duhig’s friend, and the band’s roadie, Jon Field (b. 5 July 1940, Harrow, Middlesex) on organ and congas.

Meanwhile Holmes brought in his former band mate from The Krewsaders, drummer John “Speedy” Keen (b. 29 March 1945, Ealing, Middlesex; d. 12 March 2002) to replace Bill Hope.

Photo: Patrick Campbell-Lyons. Left to right: Speedy Keen, Vic Griffiths, Tony Duhig, Jon Field, Patrick Campbell-Lyons and Mickey Holmes.

That summer, the band played four gigs on the Isle of Wight with Jimmy James & The Vagabonds.

Not long after, The Second Thoughts went into the studios twice. On one occasion, the band recorded tracks at a studio near Denham in Buckinghamshire. The other session took place in a studio in north London. The group covered the T J Arnall’s “Cocaine” at one of the sessions.

Four tracks were cut – “Seventh Son”, “Walking”, “You Gotta Help (Help Me)” and “Looking For My Baby” at one session.

Shelved at the time, the Essex label dug out the recordings for a rare EP in 1997.

The tracks have more recently appeared on The Tomcats’ CD, Running at Shadows: The Spanish Recordings 1965-1966, which was issued on RPM in 2016.

During spring 1965, the band cut more unreleased tracks at RG Jones studio in Morden, near Wimbledon – the Wilbur Harrison classic “Let’s Get Together” and a second version of “Cocaine”.

They also started to play more widely across the Southeast. This included playing US airforce bases in Oxfordshire with Percy Sledge, John Lee Hooker and Jimmy James & The Vagabonds.

The Second Thoughts also made their first trip to Hamburg around March 1965 (Ed. This might have been 1963) to perform at the Star Club where they shared the bill with Rory Storm & The Hurricanes and Duane Eddy.

Back in England during April, the group was performing at Beat City (or 100 Club) on Oxford Street when the musicians were approached by French singer Teddy Raye, who wanted to hire a British backing group for a month initially in Madrid.

The Frenchman, however, didn’t want Patrick Campbell-Lyons, Jon Field or Vic Griffiths for the trip.

Renamed The Gatos Salvaje (The Savage Cats), the band proved to be the main attraction rather than Raye and, buoyed by the response, the musicians made plans to return on their own that summer.

Back in England in May, the musicians brought back Jon Field and recruited singer/guitarist Tom Newman from rival Ealing band The Tomcats.

Performing their final gig at Ealing Town Hall, the new formation discovered that Keen did not want to return to Spain.

With Keen subsequently moving to Italy in July to join another Ealing band, The Rocking Eccentrics (replacing John Kerrison) with whom he stayed until January 1966, the group recruited drummer Chris Jackson from The Tomcats as his replacement.

Returning to Spain (and renamed Los Tomcats) in June, the band played northern cities like Oviedo and also returned to Madrid but Holmes soon grew tired of living out of a suitcase and came back to the UK. Another former Tomcat, bass player Alan James stepped into his shoes.

Los Tomcats continued working in Spain for a year before returning to England in early 1967 and changing name to July. Duhig and Field would subsequently leave the band and form Jade Warrior in the late 1960s.

Remaining members, Patrick Campbell-Lyons and Vic Griffiths meanwhile formed a new version of The Second Thoughts that July with new members.

They were soon joined by a returning Mickey Holmes but when the band was offered work at the Star Club in Hamburg in November, Holmes left to move into session work and the group brought in new bass player Chris Thomas around late August.

Out in West Germany, The Second Thoughts gigged until spring 1966 before finally splitting.

Patrick Campbell-Lyons remained in Hamburg and worked with Swedish band, Lucifer & The Angels, which took him to Sweden. In Stockholm, he then joined local group, The Merrymen (who’d earlier featured Boz Scaggs) but became ill.

Returning to England in August 1966, he joined forces with former member Chris Thomas in the duo Hat & Tie. The pair recorded a lone single before splitting soon after and Campbell-Lyons went on to form Nirvana.

Two former members of The Second Thoughts found huge success after the band finally split – Chris Thomas became a noted producer, working with The Beatles and Pink Floyd among others, while John “Speedy” Keen formed Thunderclap Newman and scored an international hit with “Something In The Air”.

Notable gigs:

 2 March 1963 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (support The Rolling Stones on their last gig at this venue)

 

19 April 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

26 April 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

 

3 May 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

10 May 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

17 May 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

24 May 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

31 May 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

 

7 June 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

14 June 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

21 June 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

28 June 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

 

5 July 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

10 July 1964 – Attic, Hounslow, Middlesex with Erky Grant & The Tonetts and The Tempests

11 July 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

12 July 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

19 July 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

25 July 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

25 July 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (played both weekend nights)

26 July 1964 – Ealing Club, Ealing, Middlesex (Sunday residency)

29 July 1964 – Bedsitter Club, Holland Park, west London

 

15 August 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

22 August 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

22 August 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London with The Tridents

 

8 September 1964 – Nurses Club, Jolly Gardeners, Isleworth, Middlesex

9 September 1964 – Bedsitter Club, Holland Park, west London

12 September 1964 – Bedsitter Club, Holland Park, west London

16 September 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

16 September 1964 – Bedsitter Club, Holland Park, west London

18 September 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, west London

19 September 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

20 September 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, west London

22 September 1964 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead, north London with Dave Davani & The D-Men with Beryl

23 September 1964 – Bedsitter Club, Holland Park, west London

 

3 October 1964 – YWCA Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

8 October 1964 – Ealing Town Hall, Ealing, Middlesex with The Flexmen

12 October 1964 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead, north London with John Lee Hooker

16 October 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

17 October 1964 – Witchdoctor, Hastings, East Sussex with Four Plus 1

18 October 1964 – Watford Trade Hall, Watford, Hertfordshire

19 October 1964 – Marquee, Wardour Street, Soho, central London

20 October 1964 – 100 Club, Oxford Street, central London with The Tridents

22 October 1964 – Ealing Town Hall, Ealing, Middlesex with The Challengers, Liverpool Lads and Bob Harvey

23 October 1964 – Eel Pie Island, Twickenham, Middlesex

23 October 1964 – Ealing Technical College, Ealing, Middlesex

24 October 1964 – Fratton Hall, Portsmouth, Hants

24 October 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London with The Impacts (All Nighter)

31 October 1964 – Twyford School, Acton, Middlesex

19 November 1964 – New Central Ballroom, Aldershot, Hampshire with St Louis Checks, The Cromwells and Dave Oades Orchestra

22 November 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

26 November 1964 – Ealing Town Hall, Ealing, Middlesex with Frankie Reid & The Casuals

 

13 December 1964 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

29 December 1964 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead, north London with Alexis Korner

 

1 January 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

2 January 1965 – Egham Literary Institute, Egham, Surrey

3 January 1965 – New Central Ballroom, Aldershot, Hants with The Leeways with Belinda

12 January 1965 – Nurses Club, Jolly Gardeners, Isleworth, Middlesex

22 January 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

31 January 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

 

11 February 1965 – Bromel Club, Bromley, Kent

26 February 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

 

4 March 1965 – Ealing Town Hall, Ealing, Middlesex

 

24 July 1965 – Egham Hythe Social Centre, Egham, Surrey with Bern Elliott & The Klan

25 July 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

31 July 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

 

15 August 1965 – Studio ’51 Club, Leicester Square, central London

 

4 September 1965 – Egham Hythe Social Centre, Egham, Surrey with Just Five

24 September 1965 – Ealing Town Hall, Ealing, west London with Bob Grant

 

21 October 1965 – New Central Ballroom, Aldershot, Hampshire with The Southern Valley Four

 

6 November 1965 – New Central Ballroom, Aldershot, Hampshire

Gigs taken mainly from the Middlesex County Times & West Middlesex Gazette and Melody Maker. Thanks to Mickey Holmes, Tom Newman and Patrick Campbell-Lyons.

This article originally appeared on the Strange Brew website. I’ve updated it and provided more information since but would like to thank Jason Barnard for posting it on his excellent site. 

Copyright © Nick Warburton. All Rights Reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced or transmitted in any from or by any means, without prior permission from the author.

I have tried to ensure the accuracy of this article but I appreciate that there are likely to be errors and omissions. I would appreciate any feedback from anyone who can provide any additions or corrections. Email: Warchive@aol.com

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