Vasco da Gama Logo 2007

Artistes

brown or red blob Scapegoat / Max Quad

brown or red blob Buffoon / Asghaard

brown or red blob Millionaire Penguin

brown or red blob AFTERMATH

brown or red blob Barracuda

brown or red blob Bloody Fasto

Barracuda

Wetherby's Best-Ever-Non-Progressive-Rock-Band

according to Pete Honeyman, that is…

Barracuda belting out the hits "It was in the winter of 1974, the winter of discontent, that Colin Young, proud owner of an Audition (Woolworths) guitar, Ivor Waterhouse, skilled operator of the first double bass drum kit in Wetherby (though he only had one pedal) and Pete Honeyman, holder of a 10 Hofner bass, got together in Pete's garage and played the riff from Satisfaction over and over again: Loud, confident and wrong. Soon they learned to play other riffs badly and were joined by Steven Kay as singer, sex-god and frontman. The band chose the name Exile. The repertoire at this time was varied - from songs by Free to others which are lost in the mists of time, but there were quite a few. Enough for a first gig at the recently incinerated (Feb 2002) Wetherby Social Club - on a Bank Holiday Monday afternoon. How cool they were with their flared jeans, pendants and long hair. The band's performance was honed to a fine edge of averageness, and more prestige gigs ensued - Barleyfields Road Scout Hut, where they were amazed to see a group of city folk dancing round a handbag - 'it wasn't the handbag that was amazing, it was the fact that they were dancing to us!' Spofforth village hall, hire-able for about three quid, Linton village hall (a bit too posh really, and looking back, highly dangerous - 'We used to plug all the amps into an adaptor in a round-pin 5 amp socket on the stage'), Collingham village hall (too posh), East Keswick village hall (far too posh) and of course the good old High School (not really posh at all). The charge was 50p for tickets for Spofforth, but if you wanted to book the band, it would have cost you a crate of Ben Shaw's Dandelion and Burdock and a whole case of Seabrook crisps. Backstage, of course, the band and their entourage were larging (largeing?) it on the odd can of Long Life or Double Diamond, Aztec bars and Olde English Spangles.

They had acquired several roadies (though how they earned the name is unclear, the band seemed to do all the humping - of gear, that is) - Kevin Saddington, who made cool lighting devices that switched lights both on and off, James Brook, John Horsfield, Philip Northway to name a few. Somewhere along the line Steve departed, 'musical differences' were cited, and Derek 'Des' Kay joined on second guitar, Colin and Pete taking over the 'singing', and the direction of the band changed - it was now 1976, and the music world was rocked by the arrival of the Sex Pistols, although the news of punk wasn't to reach the West Riding for several years. The band was now called Barracuda, in an attempt to capture some of the aggressive spirit of the times (!) though it was also occasionally known as Terry Toucan and the Big Beak Band. The repertoire, partially guided by Ivor, partially Colin, was now harder edged - Dr. Feelgood, Graham Parker, Rolling Stones, while also sharing Millionaire Penguin's penchant for the obscure - Kevin Ayers, John Cale, etc. Regular rehearsals took place every Monday night in the Crypt, in a dingy end room which Ted Kilner made us clear out and decorate before we could use it. What a scary place that was - Wetherby youth must have been desperate. But all good things, and Barracuda, must come to an end and in (probably) 1977 the band fizzled and eventually died. The last gig was at Kirk Deighton Rugby Club (not posh at all), and was unmemorable. The band had found more interesting things to play with, and the West Riding music scene was the poorer for their passing.

Vasco da Gama, Millionaire Penguin, Asghaard were all very well if you liked poncy progressive public school music, with flutes and acoustic guitars and 'meaningful' lyrics (no offence) - but Barracuda stood for good honest down-to-earth rock & roll. Where are they now? Who cares?"

the thoughts of Pete Honeyman, who can expect a call from the poncy, progressive, public-school hitmen who still revere the Gama name.

links

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brown or red blob discography

brown or red blob biography

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brown or red blob rock history