Live: David Bowie and the Buzz, Community Centre, Gosport

David Bowie and the Buzz performed at the Community Centre in Gosport on Saturday 26 November 1966.

Bowie’s backing band was reduced to a trio, following the departure of guitarist Billy Gray. It was one of Bowie’s final shows with the Buzz – the last was on 2 December.

On this date they performed two sets, each lasting around 45 minutes.

Bowie’s co-manager Ralph Horton wrote to his business partner Kenneth Pitt on this day, from the dressing room at the community centre, outlining Bowie’s decision the previous day to part company with the Buzz.

Well it’s happened this week. Perhaps I had better take it from the top. Yesterday David and myself decided to finish the ballroom scene for the following reasons (1) no work (2) wage bill mounting (3) David far too busy with writing (4) because of pressure his health will be impaired. So we gave the boys one week’s notice and they are all accommodated with jobs already. If and when David has a hit single he will do what Crispian [St Peters] did and form backing afterwards but I certainly don’t want to be bothered with vans breaking down etc. This has been what David has wanted for some time because he hates ballrooms and the kids. There is absolutely no money in the ballroom business at present as you pointed out that David can make a lot more at his writing. Rubber Band has been refused on Radio London, City and Caroline so far but Auntie [the BBC] likes it. Maurice Hatton rang me of his own accord and told me that Carl Davis has been asked to retire because he cannot produce the same quality material as David for this particular project. So I have told David to go ahead and write the material and should nothing develop eventually then at least we will have some completed material.

I have taken our agreement to Roy Friedman the solicitor making my own recommendations and we are to have a sit down conference with all when you return. Hal Shaper rang me and offered £100 per single advance and he wanted the next three singles, but I have turned him down. David and self will meet you at the airport as arranged. It looks as if I have sold the van for £100.

Letter from Ralph Horton, 26 November 1966
The Pitt Report
Last updated: 14 March 2023
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