In 1964 Hugh Cornwell joined his school band.

It wasn’t just any band. It was the band formed by Richard Thompson who would go on to form Fairport Convention.

The then 15-year-old, Hugh Cornwell posed with his Beatles style Hofner violin bass for the photo with the band called Emil and The Detectives.

Hugh Cornwell.

’I remember getting the violin bass guitar I’m holding here, I was about 15 and had saved up £50 for it. Before then I’d been playing a homemade version with a neck the thickness of a plank of wood. Richard Thompson (on the far right) suggested I learn to play bass because he was forming Emil and the Detectives (the band in the picture) and he needed a bass player, so he taught me. We were good friends from school and we played each other music that we had discovered, like the Rolling Stones and the Who. Richard’s older sister, Perri, who was the social secretary at the Hornsey College of Art in north London, would book us to play parties and pay us £30 per gig. Our biggest claim to fame was supporting Helen Sahpiro at the Ionic cinema in Golders Green. But after we took our O-level [exams] we lost touch. The next I heard he was the lead guitarist in Fairport Convention and I didn’t see him again until we both played a festival in Madrid in 2008’

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