Wednesday, November 09, 2011

The Story of ANVILThe Wholigans

I just watched The story of Anvil for the 2nd or 3rd time,and you could basically photoshop The Wholigans faces into those scenarios and it would tell our tale 100% exactly the same.
it's a film you should see, as it shows  the trials and tribulations of a road dog 'overnight' success story .............that was 30 years in the making.
Fans just see the band on stage for 2hours and think that it's all a 'rock star' lifestyle,when quite frankly it's far from it.
There are the rock star 'benefits' along the way,don't get me wrong, but  'The Anvil's' of this world have worked their asses off to get to that point.

We both started in the city of Toronto at pretty much the same time (give or take) 1980-81-82
It was and is certainly a long long tough hard road, and we would be proud to shake hands with Anvil,share a few beers and talk about when times were less than great, and also the great moments.

Sometimes at the early gigs it would only take 2 or 3 people in the audience to make the night by singing every song with you ,and then they walk away with a smile and with the satisfaction of reliving their youth....... or experiencing it for the first time.
Every now & then 2 hours of escapism is all you need from lifes daily ills.
If it wasn't for those 2-3 people man, kept us (musicians as a whole) going.........thankyou.

Over our 29 year tenure both Anvil & The Wholigans have many a tale to tell, and have played to major & miniscule crowds,but overall their story is our story............only difference is ,they (Hollywood) didn't make a movie about us (yet) and nor have we been rediscovered and have found new life.
Don't get me wrong ,it's been great  :) and it's not over yet, but the tour bus is slowing down and some would say it's come to a dead stop or at least it's time for an oil change and to clean the engine out.
But with story's like Anvil's,who knows what the future holds for The Wholigans                             

     'Once a Wholigan,Always a Wholigan'

AQO: Anvil and my band in 81 (not The Wholigans) but a metal covers band called 'Trojan' shared side by side rehearsal rooms at Jane & Finch called 'music media' (rented by the month after month after month (you get the picture)
Everytime Anvil would play they would bring in the entire pa system + an entire light rig, and they would practise as loud as possible, and more often than not blow the power out of a 20 room or so rehearsal studio.
It also despite being somewhat soundproofed ,it was hard to hear what we we were trying to practise....but we did.

Anyway, bottom line is, Anvil and ourselves went down similar paths playing 'the gasworks', the knob hill,Nags head north,Tony's East and Tony's west,The Rondun and all over Canada and I mean ALL OVER !
It wasn't till the 2000's before we hit Europe  (thanks to the internet , which was not around in the 80's and we had to rely on flyers and phone calls to get a gig )

All the scenarios you see in The Anvil film happened to us , most of it was unbelievable and you had to be there,
no money ,
no gigs,
broken down vans
cancelled shows
Getting fired or deducted $ for being too loud (see here)
no hotels,
no food & it goes on and on and on.

Stupid thing is, here I am at 52 and I'll gladly get back on the road, and do it all over again.
I'd just have to run it by the wife and make sure a few bills are paid. ;)
Seriously though,if and when the call comes in, I'm out that door ! 
My wife says the bill collectors don't allow you to pay bills with adrenalin though :( ...shame really as I'd be rich were that the case.
I love the high you get from a magic audience ,& to playthe fucking great music that has been bestowed on us by the almighty WHO that we are allowed to play at unfathomable volume!

But until The Wholigans movie gets a big financial backer or a jammy lottery win,I guess we'll play when possible,and pray for the impossible.
The ride has been and is bumpy,but worth all the bruises.


We are
The Wholigans 
The worlds very FIRST WHO tribute & are the longest running since 1982  & the fans 'pick' to play as the headlining act for ..THE WHO conventions, of which there have been quite a few.

The conventions were in...
Hamburg ,Germany at the Schlachthof

2003  London UK at the Astoria/Mean Fiddler

2006 Bush Hall in Shepherds Bush w/Roger Daltrey & Simon Townshend & Casbah Club

2010 at Dingwalls in London UK ,with 'Thunderclap Newman' & Josh Townshend

NYC USA  did have a mini 'convention' called 'Wholopalooza' 2002.......and we did play that as well.

Rumour has it in 2013 there will be another 'convention', with WHO playing WHO ? ..WHO KNOWS ?

Till we meet again Wholigans, 'Turn everything louder than everything else'


     'Once a Wholigan,Always a Wholigan'

Wholigan WHistOry

The Wholigans you tube channel



Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Playing in NYC with my friends.

& for my Scottish friends

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Friday Extra (Updated Oct 6th 2nd set added)

1st and 2nd set now up

Tampay Bay's CTTV have started a youtube channel and plan to put up a few of our yearly concerts at Lowry Parks 'Friday Extra Concert Series' from 2002.2003 and 2005.
Stay tuned for more shows daily & we hope to add a 2011 or 12 show to that list

The band at that time was....
'Pete'.... .Christopher Bacon
'Keith'.....Chris Voll
'John'..... Ray Harris

This video is 40 minutes long, there is a 2 minute intro then the set is...
Baba O'Riley
The Real Me
Who are you
Love reign O'er me
Behind blue eyes
Long live rock
Won't get fooled again.

Also Tampa Bay area residents can see the full concerts on their local cable channel on Friday nights.

Update October 5th 6pm.set 2.............45 minutes long

Interview with lead singer Barry 
I Can't Explain
Summertime Blues
Shakin all over
Magic Bus
Pinball Wizard
See Me,Feel Me/Listening to you
My Generation

See all 145 video's here 


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

In a Fog da-vita baby

Well, seeing as Wholigans gigs are becoming rarer and rarer to the point of non existance, I've decided I'd take Rogers advice with 'Use it or Lose it'
So to keep my voice in shape I've formed a local band called 'FOG''s called that for now anyway.
We basically are getting together for shits n giggles,but you never know how that goes.

I just happened to mention the idea on FB and all of a sudden I get a call from a guy around the corner Rick,and within a few hours we had a guitarist,bass & drums.
The bands age range from 30's/40's through the old fart (that's me) at 52.
So we won't be a threat to Justin Bieber anytime soon :)

What the hell I figured 'why not', it's not like I'm busy.
So far I've been the one picking the songs but that will change soon enough.... I'm sure.

The list doesn't contain any of 'The Who' for obvious reasons, it leans more towards hard  rock/metal of the UK in the 60's/70's & the 80's (just)

The story so far .....

Four Old Geezers  walked into a studio...........

heres what we stumbled through last night....*cough*...*Ahem...
  1. 'What is & what should never be'..Led Zep
  2. 'Children of the sea'.....................Black Sabbath w/Dio   (my fave)
  3. 'War Pigs'.................................. .Black Sabbath w/ozzy
  4. 'Stay with me'.............................Rod Stewart/The Faces
  5. 'Shooting Star'.............................Bad Co
  6. 'Voodoo Chile'.............................Hendrix
  7. 'Still of the night'......................... Whitesnake
  8. 'Slide it in'...................................Whitesnake
  9.  'Black Dog,................................Led Zep
  10. 'Rock Steady'..............................Bad Co
  11. a little bit of....Ready for love'........Bad Co
  12. 'Snortin whiskey'..........................Pat Travers
  13. 'Highway Star'..............................Deep Purple
& and a half hast attempt at' Highway to hell'.ac/dc

Children of the sea' & 'rock steady' were the 'highlights' for me.
But we forgot to do 'NIB' by Sabbath and we talked a bit about throwing some 'Sex Pistols' in.

I'd like to see some Trower & Lizzy & UFO & Priest (unleashed in the east)  making the cut next time though.

It wasn't the greatest "rehearsal" but ok for 4 guys just saying 'hello' for the first time.

To be continued................( or not,Who knows;)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Rockys last fight

August 16th 2011

There comes a time when everyone in all walks of life must seriously look at where they are and where they have been and what they are headed for.
Rocky Balboa did indeed survive to come back and fight one more time, but even he (the character) and quite possibly Stallone himself recognized they had turned 'the corner'

I think I may have reached 'that corner',I'm not 100% sure, but I do know I have walked one step closer since my last gig.

Shit happens 'they' say, and 'they' are right, shit DOES happen,and I've had more than my fair share of shit, but also I've climbed the ladder and reached a certain spot on that ladder, it may not have been the top of the ladder ,but I climbed as far as I could and it was pretty good.

One thing I do know,damned if I'm headed to the bottom of that same ladder and find I don't have the energy to climb back up again.

So maybe and it's a pretty fucking serious 'maybe'.......maybe it's time to step off and enjoy what was .


Thursday, August 04, 2011

Recently found

Yesterday I was going through my 'stuff' and I found a copy of a show we did in Newcastle in 2004.

It was quite a surprise, and it is now up on youtube in 4 parts.
just follow the links within to see the other 3.

Also if you go The Wholigans facebook page you will also see 2 more video's from the 2008 UK tour.


ps: We'll see you in Georgia August 13th (see my blog beneath here)

Once a Wholigan, Always a Wholigan

See All of The Wholigans video's here
TV show 'The Spot' featuring The Wholigans 2005 (scroll to the right for more or just push play)
Mute The Wholigans '' player (above) before playing these video's
These video's will play back to back for at least 3 hours