The Marquee Club - A tribute site dedicated to the history of the legendary Marquee club at London's 90 Wardour street.

Interview with Rick Cassman of Straight Eight

Guitarist and vocalist Rick Cassman had a residency at The Marquee Club during 1978-1979 with the his band Straight Eight, playing more than a dozen of times at the club.

What is the first image that springs to your mind when you hear the words "Marquee Club?�

The tiny, cramped, dressing room behind the stage when the club was in Wardour Street.

Do you remember the very first time you ever visited the club?

Yes, it seemed very glamourous in the evening when the lights were dimmed, but when you saw it by daylight it was very run down and messy!

As a member of the audience at The Marquee Club, is there any band that you remember especially?

I remember seeing The Only ones there about 1979 as they were another band on the same circuit as us and our managers friend managed them. And our producer Johnny Burns was doing demos with them.

Which was your most memorable night at The Marquee Club?

Getting seen by Dave Dee, then head of A&R at WEA records, and afterwards him coming backstage and telling us we had a deal!

Can you remember who got you the residency at the club?

Our management managed the Heavy Metal Kids and shared an office with Laurie O'Leary -Eric Clapton's manager- and he got us a residency at The Speakeasy, then he got us into The Marquee supporting theHeavy Metal Kids and The Tyla Gang -another band with our management-.

Did you ever see other members from any your bands/projects performing at The Marquee before or after you played with them?

Yes, Rod Johnstone, our drummer, played with a band with Thomas Dolby.

Can you remember if you or anybody else from your band ever signed your name on the walls of The Marquee's dressing room?

Yes, look out for Boot Kingsman and Rick Cassman's names.

Do you remember drinking at The Ship, the pub alomg the road from The Marquee?

Yes, everybody used to hang out there.

What did you think when you heard about the demolishing of the original building at 90 Wardour street in the 90's?

It was a sad night for British rock and roll.

If you had to define the effect that The Marquee Club had in your life or in your musical career, how would you put it into words?

It was our big break to play in front of a London audience and it was always a big event for us.

Interview by K. Barroso, December 2007.
Copyright ©