Killing Floor


    Henry Jackson (Lead Guitar)
    Bryan James (Saxophone)
    Andrew Kimber (Saxophone)
    John Tanner (Bass Guitar)
    Richard Taylor (Drums)
    Alan Hunter (Vocals)

In the late sixties, the blues boom took place. The main source of groups came from the Universities around the country. At Auckland University was Henry Jackson, who was responsible for keeping the blues scene alive for a number of years.

Henry Jackson was looking for a new musical direction and became very influenced by his sisters growing collection of American black rhythm and blues music. By 1965, English bluesman John Mayall had become a growing influence, and Jackson, along with his friend Peter Kershaw, tried to form a band in the Mayall style. They formed Mad Dog Jug Band, but when this didn't end up being what they wanted, they split and became foundation members of Original Sun Blues Band in October 1967.

During 1968 Jackson left Original Sun Blues Band and formed the Killing Floor. Bryan James and Andrew Kimber had both previously been guitarists, but switched to saxophone for this group. John Tanner joined on bass and for a short time, Rob Britain was the drummer, until being replaced by Richard Taylor. Richard had previously drummed with the Geneva Place Blues Band. Alan Hunter joined as vocalist in early 1969.

In their early days, Killing Floor played a very obscure repertoire, but Henry Jackson was still regarded by most as being Auckland's finest electric blues guitarist. By the time Alan had joined, they had changed to music that was a bit more commercial, but still drawn from the works of the great black American musicians.

They played at Mojo's and the Montmartre, and also ventured out on the road, but blues had a very specialised audience and they found the going very tough. With no recordings to their name, they called it quits in 1971.

Jackson formed Dog Breath and then another university group after this called Oktober, the group that Graham Brazier and Lisle Kinney came from before joining Hello Sailor. Alan Hunter joined Cruise Lane for a while, before moving to Melbourne, eventually coming home to join Chapeaux. Henry Jackson also later recorded a single in 1975 as part of Cherry Pie.


New Zealand Music