Issue No.18 – And The Beat Goes On

We had some great times with Katch 22, some great publicity from the Radio 1 shows and a good mix of live gig but of course, as you would expect, all good things must come to an end. We had finally come to the point where we all felt we needed a change of direction. 

The first step came when we decided to trim the band down from a four piece to a trio, namely Paul, Mick (who had now taken on the role of bass player) and yours truly. We also decided to leave the Katch 22 marque behind and so lo and behold Paintbox was born. The name manifested itself after learning that a duo of songwriters, Harry Vanda and George Young had a song that they wanted us to record. They had used the band name previously but only on recording and studio projects and had never toured or done any live work. Everyone was happy to carry on this project and it all went hand in hand with our single release of the Vanda/Young song ‘Come on round’… I even tried my hand at a bit of mandolin on the track! 

The single did manage to pick up a few radio plays and we carried on with the live gigs. In the meantime, Paul had set up his own agency and management company and quite a lot of our work came through him until eventually (and not surprisingly) it all became too much and he decided he would rather put his efforts into building up the business instead of slogging around the country in a Ford Transit. To be fair he was probably the only one in the band who was in touch with the real world. 

Subsequently we were now in the market for a new drummer. A few months prior to this we had done a show at a London venue and had been supported by a band from Swindon called Stonewall Jackson and I remembered being quite impressed by their drummer. Anyway, we managed to get in touch with the guy and after a quick audition we welcomed Dave Hacker to the band.

Work was still coming in from Paul and we even managed to fit in some recording from time to time. To start with we were clocking up miles in the UK but eventually the agency provided us with tours in Holland and Scandinavia and by this time we were injecting an element of visual comedy into the show and combined with our new edgier style of music we were proving to be very popular with the European audiences. 

One day Paul called us up and said “If you can come up with an original song I’ll be able to get you a spot on the Sopot International Song Festival”. We didn’t have a clue what he was talking about, it sounded to me like we’d be sharing the stage with the Von Trapp Family! 

To be continued…

Keith.

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