Errol’s Master of Music

07 Aug

Years ago I was able to conduct a short interview with Andy Hamilton, a Jamaican musician who worked for Errol in the latter 1940’s before emigrating to England in 1949. If you like a bit of jazz you could do a lot worse than buy Andy’s two albums; Silvershine and Jamaica By Night.  Both are excellent and the title track of Silvershine was actually a piece of music written for Errol in the 40’s.  Silvershine was the biggest selling Jazz album of the year in 1991 and was voted The Times jazz album of that year.

Sadly Andy died in June of this year at the ripe old age of 94. He was made a Member of the British Empire (MBE) in the Queens New Years honours of 2008 for his services to music in his adopted home town of Birmingham ( UK ). 

When I spoke to him he didn’t have a bad word to say about Errol and dismissed any suggestion that he could have been a fascist sympathiser. There was one aspect of Errol’s life that he was unwilling to discuss with me and I suspect this was around Errol’s use of drugs during that period. He spoke with considerable amusement however about the girls who continually tried to get aboard the Zaca!

Anyway, check out Silvershine if you’ve not yet heard it.

Rest in peace Andy Hamilton MBE (26th March 1918 – 3rd June 2012)





— DerekD


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  1. David DeWitt

    August 7, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    Rest in Peace, Sir Andy Hamilton… have naturally heard of him before but hadn’t realized he had passed. Thanks, Derek~

  2. Inga

    August 7, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    Derek, in what context did he write the music for Errol? That’s quite unusual?

    • DerekD

      August 7, 2012 at 6:14 pm

      He was the musical director for Errol’s entertainments at the Titchfield and on the Zaca. I think there was a three of four piece band. If you check him on wikipedia it gives a little background I think