In 1990 and in tribute to Danny, I got together with the remaining band members of Phoenix Rising. We reformed, taking on a new drummer in the process, with the intention of raising funds for Leukaemia Research. However by the time we got to gigging the shakedown band, we had an expanded membership, with only myself and Chris from the original line-up. I went down the route of an enhanced line-up with another guitarist because I wanted to expand the musical range and capability of the outfit.
Due to the other commitments of some of the members and following some shakedown gigs, I reduced the band back to its original 4 piece format. The final line-up of the new version of Phoenix Rising had Mel Day on vocals (from the shakedown band), Gordon Henderson on drums and Nick Parfrey on bass. Prior to starting this new venture, I had changed my equipment to a digital set-up using digital modelling distortion and a GR50 guitar synth. This went a long way towards giving the sonic possibilities I wanted in the band so the compromise with the 4 piece was not as problematic as it could have been. We managed to produce a very acceptable noise live.
We quickly went to work to start raising funds as originally intended for Leukaemia Research. One of the first things we did was go into the studio to record a ‘live’ session of numbers for a tape to be sold at gigs along with T-Shirts etc.. It was a pure coincidence that we recorded the tape at Blank Tape Studios in Sheffield. Tom did a great job. The recording became known as the Leukaemia Research Benefit Tape and was produced on the Rising Records label. All of the proceeds of that tape from sales at gigs plus a large lump from our venue fees went to the charity and we raised a significant amount of money. The tape content is still on sale on a CD format with proceeds to ‘you know who’.
After a year and due to rising expenses we had to stop passing on our venue fees to the charity although we continued with the tape earnings throughout. By now Phoenix Rising was gigging extensively in local rock venues around the North and Midlands. We had also established a residency at ‘The Jolly Buffer’, a well know rock venue in Sheffield. Somewhere in the middle of this lot I reached the grand old age of 40.
During this time I continued to expand my musical business interests. The record label continued to produce material, run projects and record output for other artists. We established a PA and lighting hire facility, utilising our equipment and road crew in their down time. I expanded my studio equipment to include digital as well as analogue capability. When Phoenix Rising stopped live gigging in the late 90’s I was still very busy musically and kicked off another round of Pig’n’aif projects.
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