I played bass guitar in a few bands in Perth during the late 1980s and 1990s, some of which didn't even make it from the rehearsal stage onto the real stage, but by far my favourite such experience was playing in The Hoovers
. Influenced by surf and spy guitar instrumentals, seventies power-pop, sixties soul and garage rock ‘n’ roll many of our live performances were as much parties as gigs.Craig Weighell
, ‘John Boy’ the singing drummer of eighties Perth legends The Waltons
as well as Perth popsters The Daturas
and many other bands during his decade plus of performing original music in Perth, took lead guitar responsibilities and shared the vocal limelight and harmonies with Justin Davies
, who was the big bad mad-dancing leader of the Purple Pit Swingers
. Justin would love to throw his old Maton
guitar over his shoulder in the inimitable style of the true Elvis
. Henry Willoughby
, a musical chameleon with over ten years experience in local original bands, is equally at home behind the drum kit as he is with a guitar or bass over his shoulders - all of which he mastered during his long life as a founding member of the seminal Perth ghoul band The Feends
. Henry returned to his first love of caressing and beating the skins on his low-slung drum kit, ensuring that the rhythm is solid, so the punters can dance. Michael Bolger
, formerly with grunge middle-weights As Is
completed The Hoovers line up, casually avoiding the limelight behind his vintage Hofner
bass guitar, content with ensuring that tight, danceable tunes were always the order of the day ... or night.
Well, that’s what our bio said anyway.The Hoovers
were only around for two years, as Henry moved overseas (Martin Moon
from The Marigolds
even sat in on drums for a gig or two) and I moved east, but it was great fun nonetheless. During this time we helped establish a new (if also short-lived) venue with our "The Congo Club"
events staged in the upstairs bar of the red-velvety surrounds of Subiaco’s art deco Regal Theatre
. This was done primarily due to the dearth of venues for original bands (or any bands not playing top 40 songs) to play in Perth.The Hoovers
only entered the recording studio once, with Laurie Sinagra
behind the controls, and independently released a very limited number of copies of the five track E.P. Suck!
. I’ve posted two tracks from those sessions here, one with Craig singing (I’m An Addict) and the other with Justin (Spanish Girlfriend).The Hoovers - I'm An AddictThe Hoovers - Spanish Girlfriend