1953 Memorial Society Rock 'n' Roll Band

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1953 Memorial Society Rock 'n' Roll Band, c.1972; Mitch Park, Rod Murdoch, Brett, Robbie Laven, Sid Limbert, Mike Williams

1953 Memorial Society Rock 'n' Roll Band was a Rock 'n' Roll revival ensemble formed in 1971 featuring Robbie Laven (multiple instruments), Rod Murdoch (guitar, piano, vocals), Mitch Park (bass), Bren Collison (drums) and Helen Collison (at the time Helen Phare; vocals). Prior to breaking up (c.1975), Helen Collison left the band mid-tour, and was replaced by Marion Arts. Park was replaced by Paul Baxter, while Sid Limbert and Mike Williams were also in the band for some time. Laven had moved from Auckland to Hamilton immediately prior to the formation of the band, while Arts had previously been in another Waikato University band called Swellfoot's Assembly. They were apparently popular at university arts festivals.

The band played at the Ngaruawahia Rock Festival and played regularly at the Hillcrest Tavern. They released one single in 1973 titled Tallahassee Lassie. Arts, Laven and Baxter went on to form The Red Hot Peppers, while Limbert went on (much later) to the Warratahs.

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