Drums, Keyboards, Vocals (1982 – 1987)
Mike was the last of our great drummers in the history of the Stickband (5th iteration), and was a lot more than an instrumentalist as he was a very good songwriter and singer.
Mike was interested in programming drum machines, which took a lot more skill back in the day than it does now, as the machines were still new and the interfaces hadn’t been worked out, so the drum machines available in that time were not nearly as intuitive as today’s models. It took a lot of smarts and patience to get the drum parts to play what you wanted them to back then. Also, it was a very new concept to use them in live performances, so for us, they were another new exciting thing to use to be creative and added another new texture to our songwriting.
You’ll see it reflected in some of the videos; sometimes Mike’s playing drums, and at other times he’s playing keyboards along with the drum machines. Sometimes he did both while singing backup vocals. He was truly a gifted musician.
I had a house that I converted into a music school, and in that building I also had a recording studio that was used by many local bands to record demos and albums. I met Mike when he was recording with his band at the time. Before I even knew he was a drummer, I heard him sing, and I loved his voice. He definitely has his own sound when he sings; he has a bit of rasp in his voice and favored a style that put a bit of a ‘cry’ in his voice when he sings, and I liked that a lot.
Mike wrote many songs we played in the band one of many notable contributions as a songwriter was the song ‘Turn Around’ which was a great piece and became an MTV style music video along the way. There will be many songs on the website to give you an idea of Mike’s song writing an lead vocal abilities, Mike was lead singer, drummer and songwriter. Check it out. Also read the story of “Turn Around” because making that video was quite the adventure. It also had some interesting and famous people in it.
Needless to say, Mike was yet another very talented person in the story of the Stickband.