Brand X

1969-70

Courtesy Of Mark Cuming

Keith MacInnes                          Guitar
Randy Crowell                           Guitar
Bruce White                               Bass
Doug MacKay                            Drums
Paul (Rollie) Davis                     Vocals
Paul Barrett                               Trombone
Mark Cuming                             Sax
Scott Wilson                               Sax
Don White                                  Trumpet 

Dave Fulton                                Sax (Replaced Wilson)
Barry Ryan                                 Guitar (Replaced Crowell)
Bruce Jackson                            Vocals (Replaced Davis)
Frank Paris                                Vocals (Replaced Davis)

 

Brand X formed in late 1969. Players were drawn from several “garage” bands in the town of Truro. The horn section were all high school band members, as was the drummer, which turned the band into a better than average cover group. From the original line-up, Wilson left to be replaced by Dave Fulton, Crowell left and was replaced by Barry Ryan (formerly with the Lincolns). The band played mostly in the Truro area, but ventured as far as Sydney N.S. and New Glasgow (where they were the opening act for Soma).

Brand X was the second in a series of bands to replace the legendary Lincolns at the Friday night Legion dances. Their tenure there lasted for several months and the legion kindly provided the band with rehearsal space and storage. In the summer of 1970, Davis left the band to be replaced by singers Bruce Jackson and Frank Paris who excelled at performing music by Sam and Dave. The band performed mostly music from the Stax/Atlantic Record family of performers. Ironically, the band once loaned their sound system to Wilson Pickett who performed at the Nova Scotia Teacher’s College in Truro. This was as close to fame as the band would get.

Because of the large horn section, they began playing very complex music by Blood, Sweat and Tears and Chicago. This required written arrangements for the horn section which was capably handled by the trombone player Barrett. The band eventually disbanded in the summer of 1970. Like most high school ensembles, they split up so that the players could move on with their lives and develop careers. Davis wound up as a real estate tycoon, McInnis, a photographer, MacKay continued to play professionally with Horse and Oakley. Barrett also joined Horse. Wilson, one of the original sax men, ended up working as a family physician in Whitehorse Yukon, running a local jazz society and now plays double bass with local bluegrass bands. Barrett, Cuming, and the White brothers became music educators. Other former members were either absorbed into their families’ businesses or worked elsewhere. Sadly, Paris was struck by a car and killed in Truro.

 

L to R: Barrett, White, Cuming and Wilson

Photo By D. Nichols

Courtesy of Mark Cuming and Scott Wilson

 

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