May of 1970 I was playing bass guitar with Ed Coppard (B3 organ)
and Bill Ennis (drums) in a band called Trilogy in the Vancouver
area. We were playing in local clubs, Oil Can Harry's, The Daisy
and had recently opened, as a quartet with George Greenwell playing
guitar, for Billy Preston at The Marco Polo.
was not available to continue to play with us, so wanting to add
a guitar to our trio; we answered an ad in the paper placed by
Brett Wade and his friend Garry Bell. Brett and
Garry met with us at Ed's well-padded garage, and we jammed for
an hour or so. As they were leaving they asked me for my number.
They called that evening and asked me to meet with them the next
day to discuss the three of us putting a band together. Within
a few days we had moved into a cabin on the shores of Cultus Lake
in Chilliwack, BC, (which belonged to Brett's grandmother), where
we began writing and rehearsing our material.
Garry Bell and Brett Wade grew up in Chilliwack, so we had an
endless stream of friends dropping in to hear us play our latest
songs (and party of course.) One of these friends was Red Hare.
(Frank Hare was nicknamed Red for his long red hair and beard).
He was always there with his congas and tape recorder. Red joined
the group as our roady, and sometimes played conga with the band
as an unofficial member.
All our energies were concentrated on writing, and elaborate harmonies,
but after about 3 months
original Stallion Thumrock band
we decided it was time to add a drummer. One evening we walked
down the road to the Lyndale Beach phone booth and called Dick
Whetstone, who lived in Colorado. Brett and Dick had recently
played together the Electric Prunes and had recoded two albums
together in Los Angles, CA. The two albums were released by Warner
Bros./Reprise Records. He arrived in Vancouver a couple of weeks
later driving a brand new 1970 Pontiac GTO. Could that car honk!
Dick was one of the greatest drummer/singers I have ever worked
with and has been considered in recent days to be one of the grandfathers
of the hip-hop beat. Some of his grooves were sampled from those
last few Electric Prunes albums and used on early N.Y. rap albums.
Now we had a band and moved to Vancouver - Stallion Thumrock let
the gigs begin. Playing in local clubs like, the Pender Auditorium,
Oil Can Harry's, the Parlour, and the Marco Polo, the group was
getting very tight and a lot of attention, which led to playing
as the opening band for many big name acts.
first tour, in our '63 Ford Econoline van, took us to Detroit
and Saugatuck, Michigan, where we appeared for 4 weeks as The
Electric Prunes. (One Prune tune and 30 originals, go figure).
We morphed back into Stallion Thumrock and played Kansas and Colorado
on the way back to Canada.
After about a year and a half the band decided we needed keyboards
to complete our sound. As I also played keyboards, I switched
to keyboards, and Joel Wade, (Brett's younger brother) joined
us to play bass.
By early 1972, Stallion Thumrock was playing concerts and rock
festivals, and had completed several recording sessions. We finally
landed a record deal. Clare Laurence, the keyboard/sax player
for both the bands, Chilliwack and The Collectors was brought
in to produce the album for Heida records - distributed by A&M
Records. We recorded the album at A&M Studios in Hollywood
in about a week (we had a low budget). Highlighting the event
was the fact that Carol King in studio A, and Joni Mitchell and
Steven Stills were
recording in studio B next to us.
Unfortunately, in the fall of 1972, shortly after we recorded
the album, events in my life caused me to abruptly leave the band.
The band continued performing concerts as a four piece band, however
six months later Dick, as well, left the band and returned to
Colorado. A limited amount of album copies were distributed and
consequently record collectors in North America and Europe are
selling them for $50 to $60 U.S. on the Internet. Oddly enough,
a 60s & 70s Psychedelic label in Germany has also shown interest
in some of songs from the '72 album.
Source: Basil Watson
Also available at Pacific
living in Vancouver, British Columbia, song writing, recording
and he occasionally performs live. Some of Basil's Canadian
song writing credits are:
or Later - Recorded
by the Powder
Blues band with guest singer Bonnie
My Favorite Song - Susan
Jacks, The Poppy Family
on the Line - Lynne
Our Love Is In Limbo,
Walkin On Beat Street,
and Temptation In
My Heart - recorded by Long
Back on the Line
- Nominated for Producer Of the
Year 1992 BCCMA (British Columbia Country Music