In the meantime, Grant had also left Streetalk and the two of us remained in contact with each other. In May 1987, Stuart Mattisson asked me if I'd be interested in forming a duo with him to play at a pub. I expressed an interest because it didn't sound very complicated. I did however suggest that Grant join and we make it a trio. The band was called Domino and we played at that pub (Hammersleys) for two and a half years. We moved to Rocky Street and played at Dylans' and Talking Heads for another year. We played mostly Seventies rock classics along with the odd Top Twenty song. The band used backing tapes for all of the drums and keyboards and Dave was considered the unofficial fourth member of the band. He helped with the programming of the drums and keyboards. There were also many occasions when Grant went away on business trips and Dave would then stand in as the bass player as well.
After Domino the only kind of playing that I was interested in, was with drum machines. It meant that finding venues for rehearsal wasn't a problem and that you could control the volume of the instruments effortlessly. It also meant that you could play in far smaller, intimate venues.
Domino eventually broke up and I approached Dave about forming a duo to play in small clubs with a minimum of equipment. The duo was called Times Two and was very successful in the two and a half years that we were together. I eventually had to make a decision to leave the band when I made a change in career and to my knowledge Dave has also stopped playing live.
During the last two months that Times Two was together I started building my own recording studio at home. The idea was to record original material for my own recreation. I started to write new material and even re-record some of the material that we'd recorded on Off the Edge. I'd recorded a fair amount of original material when I managed to find Tony's telephone number in Cape Town. I played some of the songs over the phone to Tony and he was so excited that he started sending some of the material that he had written to me. The first song was a reggae song about homeless kids. I mentioned that I thought that the song sounded too "happy" as a reggae song, after all the subject is anything but happy. He agreed and I rewrote the music to suit the lyrics. I then played the finished version to him and he promptly flew to Johannesburg to add the voices. We were very excited at the prospect of recording new material and immediately decided to record the next Off the Edge album. I had always wanted to re-record three of the songs that we had recorded on the first album as I felt that we hadn't recorded those songs properly the first time.
The only problem that we had now was that after sixteen years Tony was finding it hard to hit the high notes in those early songs. I had an idea to have two singers on the album and remembered a female vocalist that I had met some time ago. We had shot a music video for the band that she was singing in and I
can remember being very impressed with her ability. I gave her a copy of the material up to where we were at the time and Judy Marshall became the other singer that we were looking for.
Judy was born 29th October 1971 and has been singing professionally since 1993.
She has however had a relationship with the stage since she was ten years old. She received singing tuition for eleven years and her first appearance on stage was as a lost boy in an amateur production of Peter Pan at the age of ten.
She began classical training at the age of sixteen and continued operatic training at The Musical Theatre. She also trained in jazz, rock and commercial singing.
After Musical Theatre she trained for five months in comedy and dramatic techniques and elocution and public speaking under private tuition. She took part in two PACT productions, "The Merry Widow" and "Don Carlos" as part of the ensemble.
After those shows she played one of two female lead vocalists about the life and music of Phil Collins, called "Phil Collins – All sides" at the Balalaika Theatre.
Next was the role of lead female singer, actress and dancer in a show about the life and music of Cliff Richard, called "Cliff Richard – The Musical". This played at the Springs, State and Victory Theatres as well as touring the country and being "Pick of the Fringe" at the Grahamstown festival.
One thing Judy is very happy about is the fact that all of these shows were performed to full or near full audiences and met with rave reviews.
She also sang on a cruise liner for a while but this was not a great experience.
She has also had her share of playing pubs and clubs in various cover bands.
She then spent many months on a recording project for a band called "Kade" as their lead singer. Two of their songs were played on radio but were not play-listed.
Kade was the band that was involved in the music video where Judy and I met.
Judy was more than we could have asked for in that she took the songs and made them her own. The best thing about her joining was that she wanted to become more involved in the whole project and not just be featured as a guest artist. Tony and I started writing songs with her in mind and she could do her own interpretation of these songs. The end result has Judy singing six songs on the CD and Tony singing four.
The CD starts with an instrumental and runs straight into "If there is love". (Traffic noise recorded in Sauer Street, Johannesburg at 08h00 in the morning.)
"The Critics" was the first song sung by Judy and was inspired by some of the bad write-ups that Boss was given in the press in 1980.
"Just another band" was about the fact that in clubs you could play cover songs to your audience and the dance floor would be full, but play one of your original songs and you would play it to an empty dance floor.
"Free and Easy" is about the crime and violence that we all have to live with.
"It ain't fiction" was written by an old school friend of mine in Cape Town (Jimmy Ray Hawla) and "Running" was written by Tony, Garth and I in Boss back in January 1981. The song was originally called "The Ripper", but nobody could remember the lyrics so Tony and I re-wrote them. The song is now about emigration and the "chicken run".
"Take it on the run" is about a band on the road.
"Breaking Away" was written back in 1980, but was re-written completely. The theme is once again about the tense times in which we live.
"Evil in her eyes" was written by Boss back in 1981, but was changed completely for the first album and changed again for the second album. This was the first song that Judy sang on in the studio.
"Reprise" was once again supposed to be an instrumental but Judy added raves from "Free and Easy" and it changed the whole feel.
It has given Tony and I a tremendous feeling of satisfaction to be able to complete the second Off the Edge album even if it did take sixteen years. The album is entitled "On the Run".
The sleeve design was created by Mark Raats at Pixstar and John Paul De Stefani finished the mastering of the CD at "B Sharp Studios".
We were so happy with the result that I decided to try and "clean up" the original Off the Edge album. I then wrote this album to CD as well and included the two tracks that we recorded after that album.
A recording has also been compiled of all of the first rough demos for the first Off the Edge album and includes the interview with Chris Prior. See the Early Days CD.
Mark has once again designed the covers for these other two CDs.
I have in the meantime been busy writing and recording material mainly in the instrumental field. I found that I had enough material to record another CD entitled The Instrumentals.
The CD features one track that although slightly self indulgent, was written in 1975 with a school friend, Owen Rogers. The idea was originally Owen's and I adapted the original idea for the CD.
The sleeve was also based on the original theme for all of the other sleeve designs.
... on to 1999
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