Man who brought the Stones to town finds satisfaction in fiction

THE MAN who brought the Rolling Stones to Horsham for £50 has written a book based on his life in the 1960s.

Former Collyer’s student Cary Smith, 67, has written a fictional novel centred around the Stones’ gig as well as his attempts to get the Fab Four themselves to come to town.

However, instead of writing the rest of the book about his life in PR and local music, he made the central character a successful music man who made hit after hit using wild publicity stunts and dirty tricks.

The end result is a book written under his professional name, Cary Vincent, called Tear My Heart.

Cary said: “I have done a bit of writing working in marketing and PR and people have always said I should write a book but I didn’t think there would be enough to write about.

“Around 18 months ago I was clearing out my bedroom and I found a book I had started to put together and I thought I could do this in a different way.

“The book tells a story about this guy who books the Rolling Stones and the The Beatles and then he becomes successful.

“The guy is looking back on his life 40 years later and it then goes back to the 1960s and tells the story.”

Of course the story is based on Cary organising a Rolling Stones gig at St Leonard’s Church Hall in Cambridge Road, Horsham, in 1963 for £50. The church hall was packed and after its success he decided to try and book The Beatles.

After ringing their manager Brian Epstein, he got the booking but couldn’t get a venue big enough to cope with the band’s screaming fans.

In 2007 the contract for The Rolling Stones gig was sold for several thousand pounds.

After Jagger and company visited Horsham in 1963, Cary worked with a variety of local music acts including Horsham act The Beat Merchants.

Cary said: “My mother told me to organise something in Horsham because there was nothing for anyone to do.

“So we organised a dance and got Peter and The Hustlers to play, who eventually became The Beat Merchants. The dances were packed out simply because there was nothing going on.

“I was then at the Coffee House in London Road one day and someone threw me a pop weekly and said why don’t you book them - and it was The Rolling Stones.

“When I rang the record company he asked for £50 for the booking fee, which was a lot back then, but I decided to book it anyway.”

He added: “I then thought why don’t I try The Beatles so I rang Brian Epstein and he gave me a free Saturday night.”

Unfortunately the last gig didn’t quite work out, however Cary said he is proud of how he has turned those events into something even more interesting that lots of people can read.

He said: “I am very proud of it. The Rolling Stones was a one-off gig and how much is there you can write about that?

“I am proud that I found a way to write a book based on that event which is turned into something else.”

Tear My Heart is available to buy now from