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Welcome to the New Ritz Club

Want to perform music from the soundtrack of your lives with like-minded musicians?

Musicians Lynette Stankovich and “recidivist rocker” Wally Te Ua have launched a new music club for 60-somethings.

Coined The New Ritz Club, by Wally, the club will initially open from noon to 2pm every Sunday at Elliott Travel.

The Ritz cabaret in Gladstone Road, roughly above where Food for Thought stands now, was a popular venue after World War 2 and through the 1950s, says Wally.

Wally's early musical roots lay in the Kiwi rock and roll culture of the 1950s. With visits from artists such as American harmonica player Larry Adler, rhythm and blues pianist Clarence “Frogman” Henry, the Quin Tikis, and locals Phil Ripia, Joe and Bob of Tolaga Bay, and the Electronic Rebels, Gisborne was rocking long before Rhythm and Vines, says Wally, who was part of local three-part harmony act, Blue Jeans.

Described by Lynette as a recidivist rocker, Wally's repertoire ranges from golden oldies to the likes of songs by LAB and Six60.

In the 1980s he and Lynette performed with their showband Beat Street. After moving to Sydney in 2002, the duo played at various Returned and Services League clubs (RSLs).

PUTTING ON THE RITZ: If you're blue, or in the pink, and you don't know where to go/ Why don't you go to Gisborne's music club for 60-pluses? to paraphrase the opening line to the Irving Berlin song. Musicians Lynette Stankovich (left) and Wally Te Ua invite mature musicians to The New Ritz Club. Picture by Liam Clayton

  1. Barbara Berge says:

    Sounds interesting, what if you only play a ukulele . . . passably well?