Adrian joined the band mid 2017 and after a few years away from the scene, came back into it ‘all guns blazing‘!
A superb bass player, Adrian (Ada) and Gaz Taylor have known each other for a long time, having played in several bands together in the past which made Ada coming into the Café fold, a piece of cake.
A complete ‘gear head’, there really isn’t much you would need even if the band were to play Wembley – PA’s, desks, amps, guitars – you name it …. Ada has it!
During the day, mild mannered Deputy Principal of a highly acclaimed girls school specialising in performing arts. By night, bass player extrodinaire and all round thoroughly nice chap!
I count myself blessed to have lived through golden decades of rock and pop evolution. My first ever 7” single (that’s vinyl kids) at the age of 11 was Get it on by T Rex and not long after my older and wiser cousin introduced me to their Electric Warrior album, which blew my mind. When I had saved up enough pennies to buy my very own first album it was Bowie’s Alladin Sane, then a good friend’s older brother educated me in hard and progressive rock in due course, making me a convicted air guitarist who basked in the glow of artistic titans you could only dream of emulating. Oddly, the first proper gig I went to at the age of 15 was Status Quo at Bingley Hall in March 1976, where most of the audience were hard core bikers and their riff based straight shooting blues and rock approach struck a chord.
Fortunately for me I was the right age to be drawn toward the punk revolution driven by the Sniffin’ Glue’ fanzine DIY (roll up your sleeves and have a go) approach to making music. I was also inspired by my discovery of the Velvet Underground’s, Loaded and White Light/White Heat, through Lou Reed’s Transformer album amid all this new arrogance and swagger and an inspirational record collection that now embraced glam, art house, reggae and “proper’ rock. Bowie and Roxy Music rubbed sleeves with Free, Sabbath and Deep Purple, King Crimson and Pink Floyd and as much of the Rolling Stones back catalogue as I could afford or lay my hands on. By this time I had started to learn a few chords on the guitar and then in late ’76 I started listening to the John Peel Show and was introduced to Iggy and the Stooges, Television, The Ramones, the Damned and the Sex Pistols and thought, “I can do that!”.
Luckily a few school mates were equally inspired by the drive and energy of the emerging punk music, and a band of sorts was born, which played its first gig to a bemused audience in the school hall; the Iggy and the Stooges style version of ‘Louie Louie’ was a particular eye opener. This experience left us elated and undeterred but also in unanimous agreement that practice probably was necessary after all. We played Punk covers under the name of Fanclub to some unlikely audiences such as Northern Soul fans at Matlock Pavilion and survived to start gigging and writing our own stuff under the name of ‘Cassette’, recording our own EP in a local scout hut.
Much to our surprise this was distributed by Rough Trade and got an airing on the much revered John Peel show! From this launch pad I was involved in numerous bands and recording projects ranging from jazz fusion and reggae to grunge, ambient, Brit Pop and Post Brit Pop that enjoyed Radio 1 airplay in the 80s and early 90s, the hallow ground back in the day and was fortunate to be in the orbit of the great and the good.
Whilst focusing on the serious business of raising a family, my artistic exploration and adventures, especially gigging, where very much on the down low from the mid 90s to 2004 when some kindred spirits dragged me back into the fray initially through some epic jamming sessions, which spilled out onto unsuspecting but appreciative pub audiences. Around the same time my ‘proper job’ in education was picking up pace and by 2011 was deservedly demanding of my undivided attention, which made gigging out of the question until August of this year when I was enticed back to the frets by a text from one of my old sparring partners Gary Taylor, to whom I will be eternally grateful for introducing me to the pleasures of playing in the Grey Café Band.
It really depends on the gig and/or venue as to what I use. My axe of choice is a MusicMan Stingray 4 Bass and for smaller venues, I go straight into a Trace Elliot 7215 300w Bass Combo with GP-7.
For bigger stuff, I’ll roll out the Peavey Tour 700 Bass Head (700w RMS into 4 Ohms), into a Peavey 410TVX Cab (700w – 4 Ohms).