In the Beginning....
In the summer of 2014, Ian & Mark got together to try a few songs together. They started by using backing tracks but quickly realised that an instrumental backing would be more authentic, entertaining and enjoyable.
The obvious choice was guitar accompaniment, but with Ian's first instrument being a drum kit, (which didn't quite fit their acoustic vision), it became obvious that they needed a solid rhythm guitar to complement Ian's melody lead... enter Nick Dominy - with head full of chords and songs learned over many years.
With Ian's first instrument being "Drums", Mrs Kendrick - quite naturally associated "Music Practice" with "Very Noisy" so music practice was never going to be welcomed in the house - no matter how nice the singer was, so the venue for these early practice sessions was the Kendrick household garage. On the plus side, the acoustics were great but as the days got shorter and the nights colder, the garage became increasingly unattractive despite the boost that the group got from the acoustics of an empty garage!
By September, they were looking around for somewhere warmer and the local pub seemed to be the obvious choice. Roaring log fire... Beer... Approachable landlord.... relatively quiet Sunday evenings, (they were unlikely to upset too many customers).... IDEAL ! "Let's ask if they would mind us playing in a corner on Sunday nights."
The first practice night at the local pub went well. The beer was cold but the fingers weren't. James, (the landlord at the pub at that time, was delighted that they wanted to play together.... these guys weren't the first band to play informal music sessions at this pub
Seeing an opportunity to muscle in, James mentioned that he too played guitar and perhaps a little more unusually, the Mandolin. "Would you mind if I played along?" Not wanting to offend the landlord and risk a return to the Kendrick Garage (not to mention frost-bitten fingers before the Spring), the three amigos agreed that James should be humoured and he joined in.
The old sea dog declared that he'd been playing the mandolin since he was 18 year old, so 40 years later, he might well have retained the ability to string a few chords together. Not so bad then !
The mandolin gave the ensemble a fairly unique sound, so James was invited to join the band and the Gate Crashers came into being.
There is some evidence that the band's name was derived from the practice venue, but no-one is absolutely sure. In any case, it sounded better than all the previous name suggestions... which we won't list here.
This photo taken during auditions for the "Hay Hay My My" chorus leader.
The Horse (he's called Donald, by the way) declined our invitation to join the band
but offered to pull the road van when it breaks down.