Top Yorkshire Covers Band - REAL PUB ENTERTAINMENT!!

Thursday, April 28, 2005

The Controversial band biography by Phil (the tall one) has been leaked to this Blogsite.
Did he say it was all illegal then change his mind.....? Can you trust any of The Erics......? What happened to the hamsters......? its ALL here!!

This is everything the way I saw it & it might be good to do a biog page for each of us cos I reckon we all have a story to tell.

Phil

The truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth...............with cheese!

D.O.B. 7th Oct 1971
Classical guitar grade 3
Piano grade 6
Music theory grade 8.
Most influential band - The Beatles.
Other favourites - Tom Petty, Van Halen, Gin Blossoms, Metallica, Bruce, Tom Robinson.
Favourite Guitarist - Mike Campbell - (Tom Petty & the Heatbreakers) Why? - Because he has an unbelievable ear for 'the right guitar sound' for each song. And he's pretty good too.
Worst gig - In Ton y Pandy Naval club - Wales where we lasted only 15 minutes on stage, & for most of that we were being pelted with full bottles & cans of lager.
Best Gig - Supporting Timmy Mallett on his Polkadot Bikini tour of West Bromich.

History
I first met Dave at age 13 (and was scared of him) at West Leeds School where Paul was also lab technician (or whatever he was back then).
I Got involved with School drama productions where Paul was playing drums for the music group backing the production.
Through the after show production parties I met Sam (who was a fat bastard back then but still had hair) & shortly afterwards began to attend 4 Millions gigs where Dave was behind the mixing desk. I got quite pally with Dave & his cronies & generally we used to get pissed, turn the master volume up to full & sing at the top of our voices.
I Left school at 16 to go to music college & was recruited to play keyboards for 'Monody' a heavy rock/metal band playing all their own stuff. Most of the bass players at college were into jazz which obviously didn't fit the metal scene so 'Monody' were looking for a bass player.
We played our first gig in the guitarists front room (no bass player)
One of Dave's cronies, Kev Dodsworth, was working behind the college bar & we got talking about bands. Kev told me that Dave played bass & after weeks of trying to get hold of him, I finally got him to a rehearsal. A few weeks after that we recorded a demo tape & played our 1st proper gig at the Stone Trough in Rawdon, Leeds.
Monody split after one gig probably because we thought we'd conquered the world by having a tape & playing a gig.

After that I played keyboards in loads of bands that did nothing but rehearse until one finally came along that organised some gigs. 'Tiger Bay'. We were full of enthusiasm & thought we could be the next Bon Jovi but truthfully we were really shit and had an awful sound. For some reason though we kept getting asked back to pubs & played all over the place including 4 tours of Wales. At the end of the day we were nothing more than a working mens club band trying to do 80's rock covers & that simply was going out of date. I left because I thought I could do my own stuff better than the cover versions we were playing.

I formed Happy Salad in 1992 & took the role of lead guitar. Alright I aint no Sam Hirst but who gives a fuck. What I played worked within the songs and I wasn't that bad. Sara (my bird at the time - later married her - big mistake) on vocals, her mate Lynne on Keyboards (fit as fuck - should have married her instead), me on guitar.......no bass player & no drummer. The bass player was easy .........Dave. Drummer not so easy until Paul split up with his wife Nicky & seemed to need a focus. The 4 Millions split at that point too. He was living with Dave at the time & he talked him into coming down to a rehearsal. He turned up with a drum machine looking anything but enthusiastic. My initial thoughts were - "Tosser - what's the point?" but after running round a few ideas he seemed to pick up & got really into it.
Paul introduced us to his mate Nick Ward who had nearly made it big time on drums with a band years earlier. I forget their name. We asked him to do the mixing desk for us. First couple of gigs were fantastic but it very quickly went a bit dead. It was probably a mixture of the original material that no one had heard, a few below parr cover versions, and a less than brilliant sound due to a lack of decent equipment.
Towards the end of Happy Salad my marriage to Sara was on the rocks and I was really fucked up. Rehearsals stopped & communication between band members stopped. I imagine Paul & Dave had had enough & maybe were looking for a way out but found it hard to actually ring up & tell me. The break in communication allowed them to reunite with Sam to form 'US 4'. The good thing that came out of Happy Salad was a pretty good demo tape. I still think the songs have something about them.

'US 4' were brilliant. The first gig I went to my jaw was on the floor. The sound, songs, & tightness just blew me away. I wanted the same & formed 'Stuff' with an old mate from school. 'Stuff' was never going to be an 'US 4' & I quickly realised it was going nowhere & packed it in.

'US 4' were going well but ocassionally I would stand in for 'Alex' their rythmn guitarist when he couldn't play. In this respect 'The Erics' (as they are now) had been formed, but I don't think at that stage any of us thought we would ever end up as a complete unit. As it happened, there appeared to be trouble in the 'US 4' camp and from my point of view their eventual split was a case of Alex & Paul fell out with Dave & Sam. Either that or Dave & Sam fell out with Paul & Alex.

These troubled times led to me, Dave, Sam & Nick forming 'The Erics'. We were struggling to come up with a name but after a boozy night in the New Inn, Churwell we decided that Eric Morecombe was the best thing since cheese was invented so we said "Right - The Erics it is then"

At the time we started there were loads of guitar bands like Oasis, Cast, Radiohead, Pulp, Ocean Colour Scene, Manics, Trash, Shed 7, Dodgy etc. So the right cover songs for the right people in the right pubs were there waiting to be played. To be honest this is a remnant of the 4 Millions days who knew how to play the right sort of stuff to an audience, and 'US 4' certainly carried this on to some extent.

The Erics though, started off playing what was being heard in the charts at that time, and people loved it. Nick is a shit hot drummer with a really good vocal range. He was able to bring something vocally to the music that wasn't really there with 'US 4' or the 4 Millions. Taking nothing away from either of the two you understand.
So there we were, playing, going down well, going back & going down well, a few arguments here & there but generally on top form & never really having a bad gig. What could go wrong? Nick - the bastard - decided he was going to fuck off to gondwanaland to take up the digerydoo & shagging sheep. Well that was it wasn't it? The Erics were doomed !

We were on the point of collapse, and lets face it the drummers we were auditioning couldn't get past the 1,2,3,4 count in bit, until Dave & Linda's 10th Wedding Anniversary. Good old persistant and lovable Dave, insisted Paul came to the do in an effort to patch things up with his old buddy. One thing led to another and before long Paul had picked up his sticks & got behind the kit again. Sam & Dave had sex. Paul's piles put me off.

It was very clear from the out set that things would rock. Paul was simply amazing. He added a whole new dimension to the band in terms of the awesome power he emmitted through the kit. Me & Sam quickly learned we would have to by new gear to cope with the increased volume.....and Dave soon cottoned on too!! We took the opportunity to learn new songs & I feel now we've really stepped it up a gear. Gigs are coming in thick & fast, new & better venues. Not that the old ones are bad!!!

To sum it up we've all been through a lot and somehow have all played a part in one another's lives for such a long time. We're all good mates.........apart from me & Sam, Paul & Dave, Dave & Sam, me & Paul, me & Dave, Paul & Sam. We know what we want in terms of being in a band and without sounding like I'm blowing our own trumpet - "WE FUCKING ROCK" and "WE FUCKING LOVE IT"

Most sincerely - Phil - the tall one.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Jenny said...

Wow !!
Luv - Jenny

8:24 am

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Duuuuuuude.

You have grade 8 theory 8-0 and im only doin grade 7...
Kate (little blonde dancing girl..not so little now I'm 18! Yay!!)
Hoping to come to your gig on March 11th at Roscoe!

8:13 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tiger Bay were not shit after you left...

12:51 pm

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Geezer, I must have seen Tiger Bay after your time, 'cos they rocked!!

12:50 pm

 

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