Royston Ellis is a British writer, biographer and poet.
As poet, he’s the main British representative of the Beat Generation.
England's answer to Allen Ginsberg.
As Richard Tresillian, he wrote The Bondmaster series of historical novels.
He began his career with two poetry collections: "Jiving To Gyp" (1959) and "Rave" (1960).
Royston Ellis did performances of rock and roll poetry - rocketry - with the future founding member of Led Zeppelin, Jimmy Page from Late 1960 to July 1961, taking over The Shadows who
became so in demand after the success of their single “Apache”. Only 3 of these performances can be pinpointed within 9 months:
• TV show with Jimmy, late 1960, on Southern Television (from Southampton, with Julian Pettifer)
• 4 March 1961, HERETICS society of Cambridge University
• Sunday 23 July 1961, the Mermaid Theatre, London
“I gave Jimmy Page his first stage and TV shows when he backed me reading my poetry...”
“This was after my stage and TV appearances with The Shadows, because they became so in demand, I had to find other musicians…”
“I appeared on television with Jimmy on Southern Television from Southampton, with Julian Pettifer, in late 1960.”
“We did other shows together, too, in the 1960s…
There was one to the HERETICS society of Cambridge University on 4 March 1961 and another at the Mermaid Theatre, London, on Sunday 23 July 1961 which was just Jimmy and myself on stage as part of an evening of poets and actors (Ralph Richardson, Flora Robson, etc) reading works…”
“I used to appear with Jimmy alone (not with the group in which he played then, the Red Cats and managed by Chris Tidmarsh who later emerged as Neil Christian) although I think we may have
recruited a bongo player for some dates…”
“Jimmy was sitting down in the background while I was lecturing.”
About that time, Jimmy Page was lead guitarist in a rock 'n' roll band called Red-E Lewis & The Red Caps and that was managed by Chris Tidmarsh who later emerged as singer “Neil Christian” fronting his Crusaders that also included Page on guitar.
“Jimmy composed his own music to back my poems - usually ones from JIVING TO GYP although I might have been performing the one with the line "Easy, easy, break me in easy" from
The Mermaid show was the peak - and possibly the final one - of our stage performances.”