Clouds (Dublin) Feature (1969-1972)
Photo Gallery -
Band Lineups -
- Audio samples -
Where Are They Now?
The story of the Clouds is a microcosm of what was happening on the
showband scene in 1969. By this time, many of the biggest bands had
started to be perceived as stale by punters as their lineups aged
and a new generation of dancers started to fill the ballrooms
(although in lesser numbers than the early to mid 60's). Bands had
started to reinvent themselves and in an effort to appeal to younger
dancers, and many managers looked to the Dublin beat group scene for
a younger pool of talent. From 1967-1969 names like Tony Kenny,
Maurice Walsh, John Farrell and a host of others came from small
Dublin groups to front major bands.
In late 1969, another group joined
these ranks when the members of The Fire Brigade, a well know Dublin
beat group, were joined by a couple additional musicians to form the
Clouds, advertised as one of the new "progressive pop" outfits on
the ballroom scene. This same tag was used to describe bands like
The Real McCoy, Dreams, and several other new bands on the scene.
The original members of the band
were the Fire Brigade's Austin Smith (vocals), Martin Byrne (bass),
Vince Quinlan (guitar), Mick Doherty (guitar/trombone), Gene Malone
(drums), and new band members Pascal Haverty (sax from the Chessmen)
and Sean Scanlon (trumpet from the San Antones). The band played
their first gig in the Top Hat Ballroom on Saturday, October 18th,
Managers Dan McGrattan and Mick
Quinn described the band as, "young with a fantastic enthusiasm for
what they are doing. They will always put the emphasis on getting
across to the new generation of pop people." The
band released it's first (and apparently only) record, Jack and Jill in November of 1969.
In October, 1970, a small article
in Spotlight announced "Most Promising" Band Split. The article
announced that although lead singer, Austin (Stuart?) Smith, was
being kept on by the management of the band, the rest of the band
was let go. It was reported that four members would be returning to
the club scene with a new group. Former Chessmen member, Pascal
Haverty, went to the Virginians, who had undergone a complete
transformation in just a matter of months.
In February 1974, the band
announced massive changes to their lineup. The new band was: Jim
Patterson (bass), Jackie Holliday (drums), David Johnston (sax),
George brown (guitar), Davy Stuart (vocals) and another unknown
member. All the original members of the band were gone.
More to come.....
click on thumbnails for full image