Home town: Bulawayo
This blues-based outfit emerged from the pips of
the SHORT CIRCUIT QUAVAS and revelled in playing music they
all enjoyed, rather than that which was more commercially
Mike Rainbow - Vocalist
Ian Davis - Lead guitar & vocals
Alan Prewett - Rhythm guitar & vocals
Ernie Mindry - Bass & vocals (1969 - 1970)
Stu Ogilvie - Drums
Home town: Gwelo
Circa: 1962 - 1963
Bob Duncan -
Dave Mc Murtrie
FINKS (Added 18/07/06)
Home town: BulawayoMembers:
This was the first band that Rob Cushman played in
and the gig venue they established themselves at was the Women's
Institute in Lobengula Street - although they also did their fair
share of house parties. Their greatest hour came when they
were placed second to the impressive FRUITS OF LOOM in a
Texan Rock Band contest.
See also ROB CUSHMAN under SOLOS and
the 3 G's, MOTETS and IVANA, RAY & ROB under
Home town: Salisbury
(Originally from the RSA)
- Maurice Fry - Guitar & vocals
- Garry Ellis - Bass
- Rob Davies - Keyboards & trumpet
- Richard Pickett - Drums & vocals
FLAGSHIP completed a very successful 3 month
residency at Club Tomorrow, Salisbury, have travelled from South
Africa to do so. Rob Davies continued to tour Rhodesia with
his subsequent band, WIZARD.
See also WIZARD under the BANDS pages,
as well as ROB DAVIES under the IN THE TRADITION
Andy Scott -
Robbie Wright -
Bill Malkin -
Alastair Coakley -
Participated in the
Texan Rock Band Competition at Trade
Fair Rhodesia in 1977.
Byron Mathias - Lead vocalist
Richard Darlow - Lead guitar
Rudi Goema - Rhythm guitar & vocals
Murray Hammond - Bass guitar &
Ronnie "Bungi" Robshaw -
Drums & vocals
FORMULA was something of an overnight event,
forming in June, 1966, and disbanding at the end of the same
year. They practiced in a church hall on the corner of
Matopos Road/23rd Avenue and taped most of the music they covered
from LM Radio. It says something for the talent that existed
in the band's line-up as, despite their short tenure together,
they excelled in being placed second to the RAMBLERS at a
Bulawayo Rock Band Contest held at the Large City Hall in
September of that year. This led to them securing a
four-week spot on an RTV pop show on Sunday evenings, hosted by
Mike Westcott and produced by Val Lunn. It is thought that
Beverly Lyn-Taylor was the leader of the dance group which also
appeared regularly on the show.
For regular gigs,
the band hired the Small City Hall for Friday evenings. Gigs
would always be followed by "chow" at Fritz Drive-In
Takeaways. Other venues which hosted the band included the
Queens Sports Club and BAC. They also appeared on the
Mayor's Christmas Show and did Callies Club on New Year's Eve.
time had arrived for the band, however, and the question of going
professional was begging. This ultimately led to their
break-up with Byron, Rudi and Richard deciding against this
option. Bungi and Murray decided to do so and relocated to
Durban in South Africa where they gigged on the local scene.
In due course Rudi returned to Bulawayo whilst Bungi moved on to
Johannesburg and, Murray, Australia.
See FRETS LTD
Bob “Rab” Duncan
And now, a little bit about the band’s members:
Pete Baker (also known Peter Lawrence) was born in England and
became one of the 'Lost Children of the Empire' as a migrant child
under the Kingsley Fairbridge scheme to Bulawayo in the 50's.
Educated there and at Milton he joined the BSAP in 1960. Later held
positions in commerce before leaving Rhodesia after the war in 1980
for South Africa. He now spends most time travelling, but can be
contacted through the Editor of this website
Paul Rust was also born England where he was educated until
recruited by the BSAP in 1962. He resigned in 1966 and went back to
his previous printing career by joining Mardons. He is believed to
have left Rhodesia for England in the mid 80's
Merlyn Evans was born in Salisbury and became Head Prefect at
Roosevelt in 1960 before doing an Honours degree at Cape Town and
returning to Salisbury to work with Town Planning. She married Peter
in 1968 and together had a son Deane-Peter who is now a University
lecturer in South Africa. Died in South Africa 19 2005 after a long
Bob (Rab) Duncan was born and educated in Scotland. He moved to
Rhodesia with his wife in 1957, after being engaged as an instrument
technician with EMI in South Africa. Formed the Fiddlers 3 with ?
and ?? (help from readers please) in 1961 after playing for some
years with trad and skiffle bands. After the disbanding of The
Fourtrekkers, Rab moved into real estate and is believed to have
moved to South Africa in the late 70's
Peter met Paul in early 60s while both in BSAP and palled up while
playing at Salisbury's Folk Club near the Central Police Station. A
year later they formed 'Peter, Paul and Merlyn' when Peter's
girl-friend (later wife) joined them, but changed to The 3 B's when
Edwin & Rachel 'discovered' them for a show on RTV and initially
sponsored and recorded them. Needing a Banjo player, Rab (ex
Fiddlers 3 and working for EMI in Salisbury), joined them and they
became The Fourtrekkers, mainly to complement their own music about
Rhodesia and its history. The group cut its only LP 'Come-A-Roving'
in 1965 (which Peter is still looking for a copy of as a fan
'borrowed' it at the release signings). Coincidentally, the guys
wives were Merlyn, Merilyn and Merle respectively. In 1968 the group
disbanded due to relocations, but Peter, Rab and Clem Tholet got
together for a few gigs as The Legends, before all went in different
directions, except Peter and Paul who often got together again on
stage, but this time at REPS theatre as actors-cum-musicians for
various productions. Come-A-Roving has the distinction of being the
first LP in Rhodesia by a Rhodesian Group with original music on
Rhodesia's folk history.
FREDDIE AND THE FANTOMS
Home town: Salisbury
This band was another comprising former Alan Wilson High
boys and were known, affectionately, as Freddie & The
This entry is dedicated by the surviving
band members to the memory of the late Barry Nadin
Home town: Salisbury
"IT" Thomas replaced Rob Taylor
Nick Winnell replaced John Lester
Steve Bailey replaced by John "Tubby"
The brainchild of lead guitarist, Rob Taylor, the
Frets Ltd were born on the crest of the Beatles' wave of success.
At the time all the band's members were scholars at Churchill School
in Salisbury's Eastlea suburb. With Rob being the only band
member with something of a musical background, they took their first
tentative steps as the FOUR FRETS making their debut at the
Portland Cement Club in 1965. This gig was followed by others
at school functions at Churchill and Roosevelt, as well as house
gigs in the Greendale area. As the band gained experience and
confidence they started to look beyond their local boundaries,
procuring the spot as resident band at the Highlands Country Club.
Nothing To Fret About - Portland Cement Club (circa 1965)
From left to right: John Lester (rhythm)/Barry
Nadin (bass)/Rob Taylor (lead) & Steve Bailey (drums)
Five Frets At The Highlands
Methodist Church Hall (1967)
L - R: Nick Winnell/John Williams
(obscured on drums)/IT Thomas/Steve Bailey & Barry Nadin
Standing Frets - On Location At The
Crusader Mountain, Inyanga
L - R: Barry, Steve, (Bart
Simpson), Rob & John
Flamin' Frets At Oriel Girls' High
In due course the band appeared at the Rhodesville
Catholic Church's "Youth Evenings" and went on to play throughout Mashonaland, boasting appearances at places such as Bindura, Sinoia,
Wedza, Trelawney and Inyanga. Many of these gigs were hosted
inside tobacco barns "Just to add", in Steve's Bailey's words, "to
the flavour!". As they made their way their name
evolved from the FOUR FRETS to FRETS LTD. One of the key
ingredients underpinning the band's progress was the outstanding
logistical support they received from noted "drinks managers" such
as Irven Ridler, Peter Southworth, Paul Conway and Richard Broadrick.
It was well known at the time that the high Mashonaland temperatures
could cause dehydration and copious liquid intake was essential to
carry off successful gigs without flagging!
During this period the band became aware of the Fuzz
Box and, fascinated by the effects it produced, set about procuring
one for themselves. This was achieved through the technical
skills and knowledge of a friend, Paul Conway, who worked at the
Post Office as an electronics technician. Initially the band
ran the bass guitar through it before doing the same with the lead
and, in a short while, it became the latest gizmo on the local music
scene. In the absence of any conflicting evidence, the band
can probably lay claim to being the first Rhodesian band to use this
Inevitably military call-ups started to disrupt the
band's activities and Rob Taylor made way to "IT" Thomas and John
Lester was replaced by Nick Winnell. Steve Bailey was replaced
by John "Tubby" Williams. Despite these changes, the band
remained loyal to Churchill ensuring that all successors came from
that fine institution!
The band "enjoyed" some dubious publicity in 1966
when the Police raided one of their gigs at the Highlands Methodist
Church Hall and discovered drugs - believed to be dagga - on the
premises. The incident made the national media but,
thankfully, the band emerged unscathed!
members also look back upon their gigs at the Mazoe Hotel on Sunday
afternoons with fondness, especially the cornish pasties which
always guaranteed the "squirts" the following day!
The band soon found themselves on the "serious" music circuit
playing on Saturdays at the Discotheque in Union
Avenue supporting visiting artists such as Gene Rockwell and Little
Joe. On one occasion, Bennie Miller, who had just returned
from overseas did an impromptu performance with the band which left
them all totally stunned by his prowess.
Where People Used To Go To Fret!!
By this time military call-ups had become so frequent that the
band's members constantly "chopped and changed" and the forward
momentum was terminally disrupted. Among those who did manage
to stick around for a while was Hillary Thackwell on vocals.
Their biggest rip-off occurred when a very articulate and dapper
gentlemen promised them a gig to a full house at the Hellenic Club -
the thought of a full house of profits being shared sold the band on
the idea immediately. Only problem was that when they pitched
for the gig the venue management never knew a thing about it so, in
one instant, their vision of a packed hall was reduced - literally -
to an empty one!!
Beset by all these interruptions to the line-up and ensuing lack of
continuity, the band formally disbanded in 1968.
In the intervening years Barry Nadin died in Zimbabwe in 1986.
Nick Winnell resides in Australia.
"Tubby" Williams went on to sing opera and now lives in the United
Kingdom, as do Rob Taylor and Paul Conway.
"IT" Thomas is around!
John Lester resides in Botswana.
Pete Southworth is retired in South Africa after a very successful
in the banking world.
Irven Ridler resides in Cape Town's Table View suburb where he has a
private pub full of FRETS LTD momentos and memories.
guitarist, Kyle Kee, (L) and the
man with the rhythm, Dennis
Home town: Bulawayo
FRUITS OF LOOM
Home town: Bulawayo
1971 - 1972
FUNNY FARM were formed when John Kay and Roger
Sheard arrived in Rhodesia from Zambia. Rehearsing their material
in a large hut in the Salisbury Showgrounds the band were soon
established on the local gig circuit, playing at many church hall
venues. The Greendale Scout Hall, in particular, hosted a
number of their performances. They also played at Beverley
Rocks occasionally and had a residency in the beer garden of the
Mazoe Hotel on Sundays. The band's demise came about when
John Kay left its ranks, followed shortly afterwards by other band
Home town: Salisbury
as well as
a bit of
gigs at Rooseveldt