Monday, January 08, 2007

R.I.P Steve Hayton

Tim Sharman's comment:
from Tim Sharman, former manager of Daddy Longlegs, Daylight, Andromeda etc.

I have some very sad news to report. A few weeks ago Steve Hayton, founder member and guitarist of Daddy Longlegs, died.

The news reached me on Christmas Day and really took the edge of the festivities. He told me that he had signs of cancer but was hoping a trip to the US from his Tobago home would find some treatment.

I intend to prepare a short piece as soon as I can, as a way to celebrate a fine player, a good friend and a real gent.

I am not in the business now so if you can suggest a site where I can post Steve's obit I would be much obliged.

For the record, other DLL members - Moe Armstrong and Kurt Palomaki are busy surviving in the states and piano man Pete Arnesen is now a distinguished teacher of jazz and popular music at the esteemed Mozarteum Academy in his home town of Salzburg.

Anyone who has anecdotes or memories of Steve, I would be happy to collect them.

Best wishes, Tim Sharman,

RIP, Steve Hayton

Daddy Longlegs - Oakdown Farm (guitar, vocals)
Krysia Kocjan - Krysia (guitar)
Mick Softley - Street Singer (guitar, harmonica)
Julie Felix - Lightning (acoustic guitar)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

so sorry to read about Steve's passing - first daddy longlegs album has been a firm favourite since 1970 - still listened to regularly - a classic of country rock and written mostly by Steve - glad to hear about other band members - he will be remembered in Belfast always

20 March, 2007 05:35  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

News of Steve's passing has just now reached me, how sad. I had the privledge of playing with Steve in two bands during his years here in Berkeley, Natural Grit and the Natives, and he was a great influence on me as a player. Although he left these parts years ago, he was still talked about among my musician friends. Anybody who heard him play was amazed by his brilliance and powerful playing. What creativity, few could match. How sad, Rick Purcell

30 May, 2007 11:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


06 June, 2007 04:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi everyone, my name is Mark Balgobin and i'm from Trinidad & Tobago. Steve Hayton was my dad for about 15 years he was the biggest an best part of my life an now it hurts me the most that he's gone. Steve was always there for me an my family an we were there for him the memorries an times we shared can't be replaced by anything. I still have all his equiptment an music at home an i will always hold on to it i love u dad R.I.P .

06 July, 2007 22:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Several weeks ago I learned about the death of one of our former teachers. Steve Hayton died October 12, 2006.
Steve worked at New School for 13 years, primarily with the after school children. We all benefited from his presence as he infused the school with abundant creatvity and musicality. Under his guidance the children rose to great heights as characters in the 'holiday party play', the Wizard of Oz. The buzz was that the production was no less than an absolutely amazing accomplishment given the age of children. I remember one of his spectacular art projects which started off innocently enough with the kids gluing paper towel tubes and similar cardboard items to a base. This project went on for months and involved a multitude ....he finally had to construct small wooden cart to haul the creation ...which metamorphasized into baby blue and silver castle of great complexity (not unlike an Escher drawing) and also served as a fascinating game because you could roll marbles from the top and after many, sometimes funny diversions, they would mysteriously appear at the bottom.
Steve made it clear that he was here to give to the children. In 13 years I can count on one hand the number of days he was absent, a watch could be set by his promptness in arrival each afternoon, and he made it a policy to never engage in casual adult talk while working with the kids....He was totally present for them. In the old days the entire school had afternoon snack together in the North Yard. Steve would shape this large,diversley aged group into a credible circle and then would entertain with guitar, song, and especially original stories. Teachers and helpers served the snack and enjoyed themselves while the children were caught in a world of wondrous imagination. Steve spread an interest in playing chess throughout the school and this tradition is carried on by other teachers today. The children loved it when he read fairy tales (especially one book written by a member of the Monty Python team) and they acted out the various story parts....they clamored for this event daily.
In his life outside of school Steve was a master guitarist (often being able to play a tune after hearing it once). I remember going with him to a now defunct club on University Avenue above Shattuck ....he was opening for Jerry Garcia, it was getting late and the crowd was impatient for the main act. Steve came out and sat in a chair in the middle of the stage with a single spotlight focused on him. He started to play an Indian Raga on the guitar....the audience settled in and no further sound was heard until he finished to standing applause. He played Reggae with the famous Jamaican star 'EEK a Mouse', he could play Folk, Country, Gospel,Ska, and of course, Rock and Roll. He shared his talent with us. Parents were delighted when the kids came home singing 'Rock around the Clock', Splish Splash I was takin a Bath', 'Johnny be Good', 'Love Potion #9','Coming around the Mountain', 'You are my Sunshine', 'This land is My land' and 'Irene Goodnight'.
Often at the end of the day he would sit and play piano either with the children or of those afternoons he composed a beautiful piece which he called "Song for Niki".
Steve loved to point out the ironic in life and instructed the kids in irony(this made for lots of interesting conversations between them!). The dictionary first defines irony as "the use of words to convey the opposite of their literal meaning" and also defines it as " incongruity between what might be expected and what actually occurs". One of Steve's passions for improving the school was to make the North Yard green and he pursued many methods of making the grass grow. In the end we just could not keep the children off the yard long enough for that to happen.
Steve left, retired to the Island of Tobago and made a new life. In the meantime dirt and dust overtook the playing field in the North Yard. We were advised by many playground experts that this surface was, indeed, just perfect for the games of soccer, capture the flag, running bases, volley ball etc that our children love. Now alot of us, feel the dust is detrimental to our school environment. Steve put so much effort into growing grass out there. We now realize this was not feasible given the enormous daily use of the space.
And so with a nod toward irony and in remembrance of an extremely dedicated and talented teacher I propose that we improve the environment of the North Yard by raising money to purchase and install the' Steve Hayton Memorial Turf' in the North Yard of New School.

22 July, 2007 16:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Steve was one of the two men I have loved all my life. The internet brought us back together...him in Tobago and me in Topanga. We met in Chicago, he showed me New Mexico, he joined me in England, we built a band...we parted friends and stayed that way for decades. We always remembered one another as young. It was fun getting to know each other all over again through the emails. I will always remember him as loyal, talented, sweet and smart. I'm so glad I knew him...I'm so glad his family loved him...I'm so glad we got to sit in Somerset with his guitar and my conga and make music in Merlin's woods. I am sure the language of heaven is music...I know he is "speaking" with the angels.

14 October, 2007 08:31  
Blogger rol g said...

In case anybody wants to hear what Steve was up to in London during 1973 here is a copy of a cassette with jam sessions made on the first floor in 18 Dennington Park Rd. Steve's playing is lightning fast. Titled : Sick Improvisation Skills

21 November, 2008 07:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In case anybody wants to hear what Steve was up to in London during 1973 here is a copy of a cassette with jam sessions made on the first floor in 18 Dennington Park Rd. Steve's playing is lightning fast. Titled : Sick Improvisation Skills

21 November, 2008 07:43  
Blogger rol g said...

In case anybody wants to hear what Steve was up to in London during 1973 here is a copy of a cassette with jam sessions made on the first floor in 18 Dennington Park Rd. Steve's playing is lightning fast. Titled : Sick Improvisation Skills

21 November, 2008 07:44  
Blogger rol g said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

21 November, 2008 07:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Steve's first band, The Vistas, hailed from Vermont, USA. You can hear their 1965 recordings here: with Steve on bass. A story on the Vistas appeared in Misty Lane magazine fairly recently.

10 December, 2008 17:59  
Blogger laceysjam said...

So sad that I never found Steve I have searched over the years. Met Steve in London we lived at Pandora Road West Hampstead. Then we made a life changing move to Little Kingshill in Buckinghamshire! Les West,(Roadie Extraordinaire - now dec'd) Liam and Anita Genockey with two year old Sean Genockey during these years Steve was playing alongside Julie Felix and Danny Thompson (Bass) Liam Genockey (Drums) Oh how I wish I had continued searching him out. Janet Lacey (Charity)

29 September, 2009 21:53  
Blogger joe in seal beach said... name is Joe...I was in the first group that Steve played in back in Vermont...the Vistas. Our group needed a rythym guitar player...and Steve lived in the house in back of my girlfriends house in Burlington. We met...Steve was only around 16. We auditioned him and asked him to join us. At first he played guitar and sang harmony....but gradually he started singing more leads and turned out to be the heart-throb of our group. Later he switched to bass and we added an organist. This was our group for several years until our makeup changed and he left. We were all very close as we traveled up and down Vt., New York and Canada. We never were able to find him again...he left and disappeared. So sad to hear of his passing...just as we finally found him. If you want to hear a young Steve go to the Vistas site...he sings lead on most of the songs'll hear Steve at around 18 years old. he sings lead on the songs I wrote for him 'i want you ' 'no more time' and 'don't know'

09 July, 2010 10:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have wonderful memories of Steve playing his 1962 Jazz Bass on stage with The Vistas in Northern Vermont in the mid 60's ! He looked like Roger McGuinn with his blue lensed Ben Franklin glasses and was a consummate showman ! His bass playing drove the Vistas !
His rendition of Dylan's "Rainy Day Women 12 & 35" was monster !
Sorry I didn't get to see Steve again after his stint with The Vistas ended...
I will always remember him !
Lyle Glidden
Franklin, VT

16 August, 2010 09:57  
Anonymous Nigel Ryan said...

My family owned a restaurant in Scarborough Tobago, called Aroma Salt and Pepper. For a couple years, shortly before his passing, I had the pleasure of jamming with Steve every Friday night. The audience was usually small but Steve's music and his spirit were always huge. Unfortunately this was a bit before social media and camera phones became the rage. I was hoping to find some little clip online of him online but I found this obit. Those will remain some of my fondest memories. Steve was a lovely man, great fun and great company right to the end, and needless to say a real talent. I am honored to have shared a little stage with Steve. Rest In Peace - Far Out!
(if anyone has any video clips I would love to see them nigelryan at hotmail)

21 August, 2015 20:40  
Anonymous Nigel Ryan said...

If Steve were alive today, every gig would create several viral videos - that's how good he was.

21 August, 2015 20:47  

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