In my teens I got involved with a band. I can’t quite remember how the initial contact was made, but somehow I was the saxophonist for Secret Fascination. There was a lead singer who was called John, but his real name was Chris (although it might have been the other way around). There was another keyboard player who had a Korg PolySix because his dad was a musician. There was a constant cycle of drummers. And another keyboard and guitarist, Alex, who became the other half of the long-running yet unproductive duo Smooly Batrash.

Chris/John and the guy with the PolySix were obsessed with New Romantics, even though it by now was about 1986 and that was all a bit passe. But it meant that there was a lot of cover versions, and (because it has a sax solo) Duran Duran’s Rio was a favourite.

We played a few gigs. One in the hall of Chris/John’s school, and another at The Pineapple pub in St Albans. Two things stick in my memory about that gig – the punk who stood right in front of us giving us the finger throughout, and the fact that no-one turned on my microphone for the whole gig. Hey ho.

https://open.spotify.com/album/02tfQwJSOLP77oCd9U8bqm

You can see the #51for50 project to date here: https://mmitii.mattballantine.com/category/projects/51-for-50/

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