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The first friend i ever made was called Sappho, or Fo as i called her. We were both four years old and she lived next door to me. Her father was Alexis Korner……..the late and magnificant white blues man.
Without Alexis the music scene would not have flourished as it did in the sixties/seventies. Many of this countries greatest musicians, i can’t list them all………it is endless, owe him BIG time and they would be the first to say so.
We used to sit on the front step as the Rolling Stones tried to get past us. I wish i’d been older, then i could have appreciated what was going on.
Those were our formative years………Sappho and i progressed, at the age of nine to smoking menthol cigarettes. Two years later she wanted some Hashish, she strode off confidently…… nothing seem to phase her …………… and came back with an Oxo cube – they’d seen her coming from miles away.
We spent the next two years refusing to wear shoes, instead we had bells round our necks..!. We spent one hot summer prancing round to ‘Dandelion, i’ll make you mine’……….continuously.
She looked tiny when she sang on stage in Hyde Park, after Brian Jones had died. She had the purest and softest voice i have ever heard.
She was a small but gutsy lady, she took flack from no-one.
She is terribly missed by her mother Bobby and her brother, her children and all her friends ……… and by me.
Rest In Peace Dandelion.
P.S. .. If anyone should want to find me now .. ie ask questions about Sappho … then I can be found on Facebook as Sarah Darling … not sure I should give out my email address .. X

43 responses

  1. Ava

    I was looking for Sappho and came across your touching obituary. I would like to contact her family whom I lost touch with. Please, e-mail @ avastander6@hotmail.com

    April 9, 2009 at 7:18 am

    • I will do Ava … Happy New Year to you … X

      December 31, 2013 at 6:11 pm

  2. DEAN

    She was my friend too. We met at the L\’Auberge in Richmond when we were sixteen. I remember many deep coversations with Sappho and of course much laughter. We last said goodbye as she was off to Glastonbury to be with her new husband Peter. I loved her; she was a very, very special person- goodbye Fo from Mo and God BlessX

    April 19, 2009 at 8:23 pm

  3. philip

    I remember Sappho from when she played with a band called Satva around 1971, such a nice lady, I was trying to find some info about her now and got such a shock.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:39 pm

  4. Bill Young

    I went to school with Sappho in the 60’s – she was light years ahead in sooo many ways – she introduced her father to some of us – that I have never forgotten.

    Lots of laughs and a few adventures together – was just thinking about Sappho and found this site – had no idea she had left the stage. So sorry

    Bill Y


    May 18, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    • I knew her when I lived at Moscow rd…………..So many years ago and have been checking her Dad out when I came across this site and the news she had passed away , Like someone said you could help but adore her……………

      January 12, 2012 at 4:36 am

    • Jan Clarke

      Hello Bill , Were you at Holland Park. I think it was called South London Tech College or something. I was there with Sappho and we hung out a lot. A beautiful spirit. I too was looking for her and am sad to know shes gone.
      Jan Clarke

      March 25, 2012 at 2:41 am

      • Bill Y.

        Hi Jan and other friends of Sappho. We were in Box Hill School together back when we were around 14 or 15. Nice to see the recent comments…

        June 19, 2012 at 5:30 am

    • Jan Clarke

      Hello Sarah
      Thank you for the Lovely story about Sappho and letting that be the way from me to find out about her leaving us. I knew her in the mid 60’s at school and a little while after. She was my friend too and I have very special memories of going to ‘Gigs’ with Alexis together and enjoying the smokey blues atmosphere as well as daytime fun at her house and mine. We interviewed a few famous people for the school magazine and she was always more nervous than I was> A beautiful. gentle soul and a good friend.

      March 25, 2012 at 2:53 am

      • Aw Jan ..I’m sorry that it had to happen at all but many thanks for your sweet reply .. Long may you run .. Love Sarah XXX

        June 17, 2012 at 9:35 am

      • Hiya Jan ….
        Nice to finally be able to reply … having just sussed out WordPress all over again ..
        I think we must know a lot of the same people …
        Take care & I’ll be in touch again .. XXX

        June 17, 2012 at 9:53 am

      • Hiya Jan
        What a lovely thing to say ……. wishing you all the best X

        June 5, 2014 at 3:08 pm

  5. Funny thing was that her Dad came and did a gig up in ward RS3 in the BEC [ Tooting bec mental hospital ] back in 69 , It was a locked ward for drunks/druggies like me………….

    January 12, 2012 at 4:39 am

    • Hiya William ….. We were all drunks or druggies as you call them at one time …. Hope you’re okay now ….. Lots of love from Sarah XX

      December 19, 2015 at 5:25 pm

  6. william taylor

    I knew Sappho when I lived in the block next to hers on the Moscow rd , She was about 7 and I was about 9 , Met her dad when he came and put on a gig in RS3 Tooting bec mental hospital for addicts in 1969………………..I also got a shock when I read she had died , Tell me doe’s anybody know how she died ? , Ilked her her and often asked people wot had become of her …………

    January 12, 2012 at 12:21 pm

  7. william taylor

    Sent a few e-mails 2 people I’ve found on this web site but have had no reply …………..It’s just that I often revisit my past and one of those visits is 2 walk around Moscow rd where I grew up B4 moving 2 Kensington , Anyway when walking around Moscow rd [ & other places ] i walk down the side street of Burnham court where Sappho lived with her mum , dad & brother Nico as the other brother was not born if I remember rightly , and @ the back of her apartment block was a massive dog kennel which we would sit it when it rained eating sweets & biscuits ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Anyway would just like 2 know what happened 2 her 2 die so young,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,I have cancer myself !!! & don’t know how long I’ve got left on this planet ………………..

    January 13, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    • Sorry William … my email oooooooops better not give it out here ……. will find another way to contact you .. xxx

      June 17, 2012 at 9:38 am

    • William … that wasn’t a dog kennel … that was our house .. well Fo and I made it into a house ….. ๐Ÿ™‚

      December 30, 2013 at 7:20 pm

  8. Bruno

    I am this moment putting together a CD for my car with selected songs of my Alexis Korner CDs. One of the songs is called Sappho and I remembered from reading somewhere, that this was his Daughter and I wondered if I find something about her in the Net. I`m sorry to find that she isn`t no more here. More and more I realize that this is a wonderful site here. I see how many people here knew her in her Life. I only can dream of this, i was in my childhood and Teenie years far away from England and i saw the big times there always a bit later and only on Photos and Film. I always wondered, where are all the People who was there thin, i always wished to know some of them. For me, England and USA from the 50s to the 70s had the greatest music inspirations ever. I like this site, where Sappho still lives, for all , who came too late to meet her somewhere

    September 24, 2013 at 5:30 pm

  9. Fraser B.

    I saw this after reading the “Eel Pie.org” site about Richmond in the late sixties. My condolences on your childhood friend’s passing.I knew Sappho or Saffron as we called her,peripherally,as part of a group of “habitues” at l’Auberge in Richmond and just remember her as a pleasant ,friendly and quiet girl-Perhaps,compared to the rest of us young hippies- I also knew that her dad was Alexis K.,one of the formative influences in British music of the sixties /seventies. It was rumoured that she was the inspiration behind Donovan’s song “Mellow Yellow”…..i.e. “I’m just mad about Saffron,and she’s just mad about me” Was this true or mereley the product of an addled teenager’s mind? Best Regards,Peace,Fraser

    November 27, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    • Hiya Frazer,
      How weird someone told me the other day about Sappho being the influence behind ‘Mellow Yellow’ …. trouble is I never hear her mention it .. I didn’t enen know she’d been called Saffron ….
      All the pest to you too ….. A happy New Year … Peace from Sarah ๐Ÿ™‚

      December 30, 2013 at 10:31 am

  10. Bill Y.

    Wikipedia gives quite a different reason for the words in the song http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mellow_Yellow.

    There are some references on the Net that suggest the song was about a 14 year old girl named Sappho. Sappho would have been 14 when the song was released in 1966.

    I do not recall Sappho mentioning anything about Donovan or the song that year.

    December 30, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    • Hiya Bill,
      I certainly don’t remember Sappho mentioning it either … she was never a bragger but even so … I think she would’ve mentioned it …..
      Happy 2014 to you …. Love from Sarah X

      December 30, 2013 at 7:18 pm

      • Bill Y..

        Yes, agreed. Am thinking 2014 will be a great year. so right back at you Sarah.


        December 30, 2013 at 7:56 pm

      • I’ve a feeling it’s going to be a great year as well …. it will be once I stop wasting my time on Facebook
        XOX … to you too ….

        December 31, 2013 at 6:09 pm

  11. Hello Sarah… I went to primary & infants school with Alexis Korner’s daughter Sappho . It is with great sadness that I found this website and learnt about her passing. She must have been a young woman at the time. I would never have gotten an introduction to Blues music if it hadn’t been for Sappho taking me into her father’s flat, in Queensway, in the 1960s. I remember with great fondness how her father befriended me and introduced me to his musical colleagues. I went on to meet many fine musicians, including John Mayall & Eric Clapton in that flat. From my friendship with Sappho I was invited to many fine Concerts including Jimi Hendrix’s first London appearance & The Rolling Stones concert, in Hyde Park, where Alexis Korner’s Band played with Sappho on percussion and vocals. Sadly I lost touch with her in the early 1970s when I went off to University. God Bless her family and friends and may she rest in peace. My life is richer for having had her as a friend in my formative years.

    March 11, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    • Hiya Anthony ….. I’ll be in touch at a later date… I think we must’ve met … x

      March 13, 2014 at 5:37 pm

  12. susyB

    I knew Sappho in the early 70’s when she was living in Gibson Square in Islington,sharing a flat with a crowd of ex Finchden Manor people-she was a sweetie. Lost touch over next few years-so sad to hear she is gone.

    May 21, 2014 at 9:48 pm

  13. Hiya SusyB ….. I remember going to that flat with Sappho …..

    June 5, 2014 at 3:01 pm

  14. Colin Blundell

    I was a friend of sapphos I met her through my friend Annie Holden n I was her hairdresser for a few years when’d been on my mind last fee days when I came across your site was so sad to hear of her passing have fond memory’s of hanging out at her home in west london she had a great heart n I miss her

    June 18, 2014 at 12:00 am

  15. Susan

    Hi Sarah and all Sappho’s friends,

    I was searching to find info on Sappho as I had been thinking of her and found she had passed and her younger brother, Damian who I never knew.

    I knew Sappho from 76 to about 80 when I left Wales and moved back to London. In 76 she took me and my baby daughter in when we had nowhere to live. She had a beautiful showman’s wagon with a tiny cast iron stove and beveled glass windows. We got stoned together and listened to a lot of Stevie Wonder on her turntable driven by a car battery. She had a son who was a young toddler at the time, I think his name is Jesse.

    I was about 19 and very down on my luck. She filled me with her wonderful wisdom, made me believe I could make it happen and most of all kept telling me I was beautiful. Wow what a lovely, kind, beautiful woman. I am so blessed to have known her. May she rest in peace.

    Blessed be Sappho, love Susan

    June 29, 2014 at 10:03 pm

  16. I’ve read the comments from Bill Young & William Taylor and feel that I must have known you both or at least met up with you at some time in the early 1960s. I grew up and lived for my first eleven years in Queens Court, Queensway and met Sappho when we were both at Primary & infants School. That Bayswater area was dripping with musicians and artists and I loved being around them during my younger days and my teenage years.

    My abiding memory of Sappho will always, undoubtedly, be the Rolling Stones Free Concert in Hyde Park when I spent the day with her and her father at the Concert and rubbed shoulders with some musical greats that made me more passionate about all music genres and how music will always bring people together in friendship.

    Love to you all.

    December 19, 2015 at 10:33 am

    • Hiya Anthony,
      I remember Queen’s court ,… I still have an extraordinary fondness for Queensway …
      I’m sure we must know some of the same people …
      Which Primary school did you go to .. ? Hallfield or Fox … or neither of course ๐Ÿ˜‰ ..
      Have a great Crispmess … and I’ll be in touch after it ..
      Love from Sarah … X ๐Ÿ™‚

      December 19, 2015 at 12:00 pm

      • I went to Hallfield. I am still friendly with some of my friends from those days. If it helps I was born in 1952.

        I wish you and your family and friends a wonderful time over the festive season and may 2016 bring you all you desire.


        December 19, 2015 at 2:28 pm

      • I went to Hallfield as well … & we were born in the same year …. We must know each other …
        Happy Christmas to you too ..
        P.S. My surname is Payne …. we lived in Windsor Court … I’m the eldest … of 4 brothers and one sister …

        December 19, 2015 at 4:01 pm

      • At 63 my memory is not as crisp as it used to be sadly. But is it at all possible that Windsor Court is in Moscow Road and one of your brothers was Edward…I always knew him as Eddie?


        December 19, 2015 at 4:52 pm

      • Yep … Eddie was my younger bro … and soul mate …. I don’t know if you know this … but he was run over and killed when he was 19 …. sorry to have to break this to you if you didn’t already know …… My life would’ve been v. different had Eddie been around … he was an ally … ๐Ÿ˜‰

        December 19, 2015 at 5:21 pm

  17. I am so sorry to hear that news about Eddie. As a family we moved to Notting Hill when I was 12 but I always felt Queensway was like a magnet. Eddie and I, I think he was a little younger than me, met in Kensington Gardens and often went there. He even came with my parents and myself on Sunday afternoons in the days when the Serpentine Gallery was a Cafeteria. He was mischevious but I really liked him.

    I seem to remember that your sister was very young when I visited and I wish that I remembered you better. My School days at Hallfield were a real mixture of fun and being bullied…but not too horrendous.

    One of my closest friends that I grew up with, who I am sure knew your family, is Barbara Diamant who lived with her mother, in those days, across the road from Windsor Court in Shatesbury House. She is still there and that is my link now with the neighbourhood.

    I am now out near Twickenham but if you are still a Londoner, or nearby, it would be lovely to meet one day and swap stories.

    Isn’t life strange but wonderful to think we shared the friendship of Sappho.


    December 19, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    • after as I’m in panic about Crispmess I’m on my phone so seriously hope you can make sense out of this as I canT see mode -what I’m writing. Will go on the laptop tomorrow Bye for now ๐Ÿ˜Š

      December 19, 2015 at 8:48 pm

  18. GreatAnthony thanks… Then I can delete it afterward…Good thinking & thanks๐Ÿ™‚

    December 19, 2015 at 8:38 pm

    • Got it YAY, Let me know if any of your info is still visable ๐Ÿ‘“

      December 19, 2015 at 8:52 pm

  19. No…thanks for your quick work…look forward to communicating with you some…I know this week is going to be busy…Have a great Xmas.

    December 19, 2015 at 9:27 pm

  20. kreppamel

    MERRY CHRISTMAS to all and may 2016 bring all your hearts can desire.


    December 24, 2015 at 1:02 pm

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