Ian Boyle -Vocals and Blues Harmonica
Ian first attempted to play music in the early nineties in a small local folk band in his home town of Formby in Merseyside. Playing guitar, ukulele banjo and singing he quickly moved on to play Liverpool’s social club circuit and spent a few years fronting a cabaret band. Music then took a back seat to his career and family but he continued to enjoy listening to music and developed a love for the blues.
Ian has been playing the blues harmonica since January 2014. He has developed his playing and has managed to push the boundaries of the instrument to an extremely advanced level. Ian studied and took lessons from some of the world’s top players, which along with a huge amount of practice has led to a rapid development of his playing. In October 2018 he became The National Harmonica Leagues Blues and Rock harmonica player of the year and also the melodic harmonca player of the year.
Ian has developed a style of his own which sets him aside from other harmonica players. Although blues is his main genre he also plays folk, Irish, pop, rock and has developed a taste for beatbox which he incorporates into his harmonica playing.
Neil G – Guitar and Tenor Sax
Neil is an experienced multi-instrumentalist, instrumental music tutor and writes original music. He has performed most styles of music everything from Theatre Orchestras, Folk Bands, Duos/Trios to Irish Bands, Jazz/Pop/Rock and Military Bands.
Neil wrote the words and music for a Christmas Show that was performed in a local school for a number of years and a song for Children In Need that was broadcast locally/nationally. His music has also been broadcast on an American Radio Station (Detroit). Neil has a substantial catalogue of original music both vocal tunes and instrumental. (Neil G @ Youtube and Soundcloud).
Neil’s guitar and woodwind collection is extensive – everything from Gretsch, Guild, Fender, Gibson, PRS, Godin, Carvin, Martin and Taylor guitars to a woodwind collection made up of Soprano/Alto/Tenor Sax, Flutes, Clarinets and a collection of Irish Whistles with an Italian piano accordion thrown in for good measure !!.
Performances have taken Neil all around the UK and as far a field as France, New York and Shanghai !!
Neil is fortunate to have shared the stage with musicians such as Herbie Flowers, John Harle, Don Lusher, Kenny Baker, Jack Brymer, Vin Garbutt, Eric Bogle and performed at venues such as the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall to Festivals and venues/events throughout the UK.
Dave Allen – Bass Guitar
I started playing in bands at 12 years old, with my brother Gerry in the late 60s. Initially on drums but moved to bass after a year.
My 1st serious band was Fascination , playing clubs in and around Liverpool. Such as The Cavern, The Blue Angel. Regularly at The Mardi Gras & The Victoriana, supporting the likes of. The Drifters, The Platters, Jimmy Ruffin & a young Linda Lewis, then in a brilliant band called Ferris Wheel & many more..
Through the 70s & 80s I mainly played the Cabaret/Holiday camp circuit, My sister Kath had joined us by then.
In the 90s I played in various bands. An 8 piece soul band, Country bands & Covers
bands. Doing pubs & clubs up & down the country.
Latterly I have been in various tribute acts. James Taylor, Jethro Tull & Adele.
The James Taylor tribute band performed at the Acoustic Festival Catton Hall Lich field along with The Animals, Albert Lee, Ade Edmondson & The Bad Shepherds. & many more to numerous to mention. Also headlined on the main stage at the Matthew Street Festival in Liverpool
Now working with Ian, Neil, John, Pete & Robin. All highly talented musicians.
John Uriel – Piano/Keyboard
John began playing piano whilst at school and although music took a back seat to his career, he always took a keen interest in bands and the music scene.
In his forties he rekindled his love for playing music and began deputising for cover bands as and when he was able to take time away from his non music career. He has become a well known figure in the Wirral music community organizing, directing and taking part in many musical productions and festivals.
John felt the time is right to make the jump to being a full time member of a band. He was attracted to the Ian Boyle Band by the quality of the musicianship within and has settled into the role of Blues piano player.
Pete Stevens – Drums
Years active, 30 plus
Started playing in a scout band about 40 years ago
During the late 1980s he played with a Blues Outfit in the West Midlands called Texas Flood, supporting artists including Canned Heat and Ian Hunter.
Performed with Steve Gibbons at the Rocking Robin-Dudley around 1991
In the early through to late 1990s Pete played drums for Sarah Gillespie, Sarah is an original Folk Artist who has recently released her 4th Album.
Based in South London and playing many venues in and around London.
In the early 2000s Pete played with a Wrexham based Covers band Called Jacobs Ladder and stayed with them for around 4 years.
During his career he has also Depped for many blues and covers bands.
Robin Howard – Trumpet
Robin Howard MBA, PgDip, B.Sc. (Hons) – Biography.
When I was 12 I was loaned a trumpet by my school. A year later I was the principal trumpet in the school orchestra and shortly after I became the principal trumpet in the Liverpool Schools’ Junior Orchestra. During that same year I successfully auditioned for the Liverpool Schools’ Senior Orchestra where I was appointed to 1st trumpet. A short while later I joined the Liverpool Jazz Workshop (LJW) which was led by Brian McAllister who was a terrific alto sax player and educator and the man who became my musical mentor. I was the principal trumpet and high note man with this band for many years.
The LJW gigged throughout Merseyside in its own right but was also the backing band or support act for other established performers such as jazzman Kenny Wheeler, comedian Tom O’Connor and pianist Bobby Crush to name but a few. In addition to local gigs the LJW was often invited to perform in London in venues such as Central Hall and Festival Hall. During one of our Festival Hall appearances we backed singer Frankie Vaughan and the next thing was, he had the moonlight; he had the girls; and the rest was left to him. Ain’t it fair, I mean ain’t it fair! The LJW’s performances were frequently televised and reported on extensively in both the local and national press – that’s how good that band was. The LJW also played an 8 day tour of West Berlin which culminated in a performance in the Berlin Philharmonic Hall that was reported to have completely stolen the show from all of the other international bands that had also been on stage that evening. A real tribute to Brian McAllister was owed a lot by all the kids in that band.
On leaving school I began my trade as a brass and woodwind musical instrument repairer and served my time with Hessy’s and Rushworths which were music shops in Liverpool. While I was with Hessy’s I auditioned for the Royal Marines band in Deale, Kent. Despite a successful audition and being accepted on the clarinet, flute and saxophone I had a change of heart and declined their offer to join. I later went on, however, to play cornet for several years with a number of other military bands and performed in venues such as the Anglican Cathedral in Liverpool, the Philharmonic Hall in Liverpool and the Bandstand in St. James Park Central London. I heard a rumour that when the queen heard us playing she shouted from a Buckingham Palace window, “How are you fixed for a waltz then?” although I didn’t see anyone take her up on it.
I subsequently went on a totally different tack and abandoned music completely as I embarked on years of academic and vocational study and earning a living in IT. By chance, during the early 2000’s, I tuned into a programme in which trumpeter Winton Marsalis was teaching a bunch of kids in Tanglewood Music Center (I know they spell it wrongly) all about music and he was particularly extolling jazz and blues as a creative expression of humanity. His enthusiasm and passion was contagious and with a sales pitch like that, I was back! Picked up my horn and haven’t stopped.
Brass – Trumpet, Mellophone, Frumpet.
Woodwind – Clarinet, Sax, Flute.
Percussion – Spoons.