Pub musicians launch album to help raise cash

FUN Mike and Tonya Berry
FUN Mike and Tonya Berry
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VITAL first aiders will benefit from the release of a record by a popular music venue.

Tonight, The Olive Leaf pub, on Seafront, Hayling Island, is hosting a launch party for the album Hot Little Olives.

Musicians who have performed at the pub over the past three years, since owners Mike and Tonya Berry took it on, feature on the album.

All the money raised goes to the Hayling Island First Responders.

Mike, 46, said: ‘It had been closed for some time before we took over in 2009 and was in a state of disrepair and in need of a total makeover.

‘It also needed a new approach to bring back customers. The music scene on Hayling was also in a bad way, and being staunch supporters of local music we asked local musician Chris Hollins to help.

‘The main concept was to start a jam night for local musicians and to provide a place where people could enjoy live music in a friendly environment.

‘Three years on and the Olive Leaf now has three music nights every week. ‘It has a strong following of customers and musicians who attend and support the music attracting people from as far away as Southampton and Arundel.’

The volunteer First Responders provide first aid at health emergencies on the island which can sometimes be difficult for the emergency services to reach.

The idea of putting the CD together came from Chris who spent many hours producing it in the shed at the bottom of his garden which doubled as a studio.

Mike added: ‘It’s performed by the musicians who attend these evenings, highlighting the amazing level of local talent.

‘We are also planning to produce a second CD next year and make this an annual event. Hopefully, with the continuing support of the local and not so local, community, the Olive Leaf could be the premier location for music lovers on Hayling Island for many years to come.’

Some musicians had to be turned down for the record because there was so much talent to choose from.

But Mike hopes that they can be included on the next one.

The launch of the CD is tonight from 8.30pm.

There will be live music with some of the tracks performed.

The CD costs £7, £5 of which goes to the The Hayling Island Community Responders.

To find out more about the charity or if you would like to donate go to

If you are considering becoming a first responder call 07876 597194.