My story starts when I was still at school it would be about 1978, I'd always wanted to play in a band and had started learning guitar when I was about 10 years old. The first band that I played in was called Vermin and consisted of Stan on vocals, Jacko on bass guitar, Chig (of cause) was the drummer and I was the guitar person. We had a set of our own songs and actually did a couple of gigs.
1979 and Stan was more interested in his motorbike than The Vermin so we amicably replaced him with our then manager and friend Snotty and continued writing tunes.
1980 saw the departure of Jacko, it always seemed to be me that had to do the dirty deed....we'd developed the art of splitting up and then reforming without the uninterested party (at the time Jacko and Stan weren't the kind of chaps to be trifled with) Enter Ush from up north...a geordie to be exact, but he was house trained, he was also a good bass player. He departed from The Push (his old band) and we had a line up that worked reasonably well. We changed our name to Chaos (like everyone else with an O around the A), and started getting gigs around the surrounding areas, building up quite a following.
1981 We heard about a local record company who may be interested in signing us, excitement mounted it was every bands dream....being signed.....you'd made it then hadn't you!!......hadn't you?... They wanted us to do a showcase gig which we arranged for The Vine Inn in Hanley, the venue where we started to build up a large following. Everything went according to plan and we got signed to Zenon records, a branch of Staffords Neon records....but......There was a condition.....too many Chaos's so we came up with The Skeptix. Very soon after that we went into M.R.S studio in Walsall and recorded 4 tracks Routine Machine, Curfew, Traitor and Legion of the damned. Our first single was released and as far as I can remember sold about 2,000 copies.(I got a job at Neon records doing the punk mail order) We gigged anywhere and everywhere most of the time for peanuts the rest for nothing. We went back to M.R.S and recorded the Peace Force e.p. which again sold in the region of 2,000 copies.
1982 We were invited to record an album on Rock'o'Rama records, Zenon wasn't in a very good financial position at that time and we desperatly wanted to record an album......so off we all went to Cologne and had a really mental time in fact I can't remember ever not having a mental time with Ths Skeps. When we were in the studio (Am Dom) the recorded stuff sounded dead beefy.....however somewhere between us leaving the studio and us getting the album, something went tragically wrong, the sound was absolutely naff and we were all totally cheesed off. When we arrived home we continued to gig and promote our 2nd single and soon to be released album, a split single with a German band O.H.L. was released from the album
1983 We really wanted to release another single but Zenon didn't have the cash so I approached (can't think of his name) but he agreed to do a split single with us and the Insane, we did Vendetta they did Berlin Wall I'm not sure how many got sold but again I think about the 2,000 mark. Again I pestered Zenon to do another single which they eventually agreed to. We went to the same studio where we recorded vendetta, Cargo, and recorded the Return To Hell e.p.very shortly after, Zenon went bust and we didn't have a label and I didn't have a job. At that point we went through some changes, firstly I'd arranged some dates over in Europe and Chig wasn't able to get time off from work so unfortunatly we split up and reformed with another drummer..are you getting the picture? We auditioned a few drummers, the most promising was Seca from a Birmingham punk band, he stayed for a while then the distance proved to be too great and he quit. After a load of begging and eating humble pie ....we let Chig rejoin us.
1985 Unfortunatly the way the band was going and Snotty's other commitments.... we replaced him with singer from local punk outfit D-fekt, we wrote a whole new set and it seemed that The Skeptix really had it sorted out until........after constant bombardment to Clay records with our demos, they said they weren't interested in The Skeps......however DISCHARGE were doing a new album and needed a guitar person. What a decision to make....my friends, who at that time were more occupied in getting married and mortgages or Discharge one of the biggest punk bands going. I opted for Discharge and The Skeptix for the time lay on ice. I practiced for 12 months with Discharge writing what became the GRAVE NEW WORLD album, to be honest it wasn't really my cup of tea.....but come on, this was Discharge....the album came out and Discharge got a really rough ride...cant say they didn't deserve it, I wanted to play punk music not what they churned out and to top it all Cal refused point blank to play any old songs.
1986 toured The States with Discharge to very poor receptions.....seriously regretted leaving the Skeps. But there was no point in reforming as the other guys were all tied up with jobs and mortgages....After the US tour we sacked Cal and started to rehearse with other singers.
1987 Manager from Clay records came to watch Discharge with new singer to see if it was worth carrying on, he thought not but asked me wether I'd be interested in having an audition with Demon, Brit metallers, I did and got the job.....recorded 5 albums with Demon.
1992 Demon were put on ice after internal disharmonies I formed a band called THUNK we auditioned many musicians but didn't settle on a line up until 1994 learn more about THUNK on www.Thunkproject.com
1998 I was approached, completely out of the blue, by Mark Brennan of Captain OI, he wanted to release all The Skeptix stuff on a cd so we went ahead, I contacted the rest of the band and asked if they wanted to record the albums worth of material that we had when I left. We agreed to do it but it was another 3 years before we got started due to being booked again by Demon to play the Bang Your Head Festival in Germany. And Snotty being ill with his foot (inconsiderate git).
2000 Played a few warm up gigs with Demon then flew to Sweden to play Sweden Rock Festival 2000 in June. Then in August again I played Wacken Open Air festival in Germany.
2001 Recorded Spaced Out Monkey with Demon (their 13th album) played a few dates in Scandinavia.
2002 Did a 2 week tour of Europe now I'm having time out to concentrate on what I really want to do.......
The Skeptix have been practicing now since December 2001 both old songs and the new/old songs are sounding really great.
2002 We have been asked to play THE HOLIDAYS IN THE SUN FESTIVALS this year so Blackpool and Sunny New Jersey here we come...............And some US gigs around the HITS festival check out www.punknite.com for more details.
Thats basically what i've been up to, if you got this far...... well done