Curst Sons rock the Jenny Lind


Brighton-based band The Curst Sons brought their distinctive verions of American traditional music to the Jenny Lind in Hastings on Saturday November 4, performing mainly original material with a few arrangements of traditional songs. They have released six albums on their own Curst Mountain label, the latest being The Jumping Flea.

The audience was jumping, too, as their dancing became ever wilder depending on the songs. Willi Kerr, the main vocalist, had a percussive style which gave the music a unique quality.

Willi Kerr in full flow

He was playing a staff called a mighty rhythm pole, a more sophisticated version of a Mendoza or Lagerphone or Monkey Stick  (a traditional English percussion instrument used in folk music). It was quite mesmerising.

Willi, from Essex, decided in 1998 it was time, because of illness, to relaunch his musical career and The Curst Sons were born. It did his health a world of good.

Dave Simner (banjo, lead guitar and vocals) who was brought up on diet of heavy metal and motorbikes, made his way to the coast and got involved in the Brighton music scene. He also has his own 60s R&B band, The Spectones, as well as leading music sessions for adults with learning difficulties. Tim Dunkerley (slide guitar, mandolin and vocals) is teacher/facilitator with Unified Rhythm, a samba/fusion marching band for young adults with learning difficulties.

All in all, they were interesting personalities with incredible musical talent, humour, passion and an ability to get everybody rocking, well worth checking out

Photos: Heidi Foster and courtesy Curst Sons

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  1. You state in the Our Rye News Project box at the bottom of the Home Page, and this Page too, that your area of showcasing events is a circle of about 8 miles from Rye. Fair enough, but The Jenny Lind pub in Hastings is 11.7 miles from Rye – well outside your stated orbit!

    Editors reply: Our detailed news items do tend to be from within a very approximate 8 mile radius of Rye. However, as the paper is read, not just by residents of the Citadel, but widely elsewhere including readers much further afield, we also include events (usually to be found on our Culture or Living pages) from outside this area and which we feel might be of interest, not only to locals, but also to potential or past visitors to our town. Out of the 29 new articles this week, there are 4 that come into this category – or possibly 5 if one includes the story of an Antarctic expedition. I can only express my surprise that, as a regular reader, it has taken you so long to notice!


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