When You Don’t Want ‘Help’ But You Get It Anyway…

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Marky Dawson at Portobello Road's Acklam market

Portobello Market is one of London’s famous Market places where you can find treasure or tat.
The same can be said of the live music they host there. Of which I was one of the acts. I’ll let
you decide whether I was the treasure or the tat! At the Ladbroke Grove end there is an area
called the Acklam Village Market, where there is a large bar, a stage and a huge range of street
food stalls. The stage was large and kitted out with a great PA system, drum kit and even a

sound engineer! On one of many occasions I was playing there. There were two guys who turned up,
who had quite obviously been enjoying the many places to buy alcoholic drinks in Portobello.
Needless to say they were delighted to see they had live entertainment. One of the guys started
shouting at me “OYH MAYTE, DO YOU WANT A DRUMMA?!” Whilst miming playing bongos at
me. I laughed and shook my head, but he’d made his mind up. No sticks? No problem! This guy
(Who was dressed as what I would describe as half hippie and half pirate) clambered onto the
stage and started hitting the drum kit with his hands. Cue the bar manager storming up to his
companion and demanding he get him off the stage. The friend began waving his arms
frantically at my new drummer, pointing at the manager and making the “Cut” gesture. But he
didn’t care. He was Keith Moon, John Bonham AND Buddy Rich. On stage with Elton John as
far as he was concerned. The manager glared at the companion again who after some comedy
style looks back and forth between the stage and the manager. Decided to clamber onto the
stage. He come from behind and physically removed the drummer from the kit, which was still
being waved at in attempts to hit them as he was lifted. It was comedy genius, the likes of
Laurel and Hardy would be applauded for. I was unaware of just how funny it was, that is. Until I
saw the entire scene caught in photos my manager had managed to snap! They surprisingly
weren’t kicked out of the establishment and stayed to watch the rest of my set, dancing and
singing away. I changed many song lyrics around to reflect their drunken state. They didn’t
seem to notice, but the whole fiasco certainly kept everybody entertained. We never worked
together again.

You can see the photo series below!


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