Circa: 1970
Home town: Salisbury

  • Francis Matos – Lead vocals
  • Eddie Matos – Rhythm guitar
  • Fernando Lopes – Lead guitar & organ
  • Jim Irvine – Bass
  • Joe Callesto – Drums

Bakersville 5

The “Bakersville” part of the band’s name was due to the fact that their rehearsal rooms were at the rear of the band leader’s residence in Salisbury’s Baker Street. During 1970 they made regular appearances Martin Locke’s Monday night television programme. At that stage, then bands were pre-recorded at 10:00 pm on the Sunday nights when the evening’s transmissions closed down. A number of guest artists appeared on this shows, one of whom, Portugal Tom Jones, is well remembered for failing to pay the band! The television company did, however, pay them twelve pounds and sixpence to cover expenses. Due to the fact that the band’s members were multi-lingual, they were able to perform in different languages giving them an edge over most bands of the day. As a result, they covered many Hispanic songs and have the distinction of performing the whole of “If I Were A Carpenter” in Portugese on Martin Lock’s programme!

The Bakersville Five also had a regular gig at the Quorn Hotel after the resident band at the time left their contract mid-way through its scheduled term. The Light House was another venue which hosted them on regular occasions. At one of their gigs after a basketball match between Rhodesia and South Africa they had the distinction of meeting Ian Smith for the first, and only, time of their lives.

Bakersville 5 @ Athenian Hall (Cropped)

The band were so successful that they were hard pushed to keep up with their gigging scheduled.  They were supporting and rubbing shoulders with many top local and South African artists and bands, including Otis Waygood, Jody Wayne and the Rising Sons.  On one occasion they backed the well known Portugese singing sensation, Victor Gomes, at the Celebrity Club as well as on a television show hosted by Martin Locke.  Eddie recalls that, whilst they didn’t get paid, the experience was invaluable!  As a result of all this, the band started to turn their eyes south, pondering tackling the professional South African circuit.

RS - Eddie on Stage

In 1968/69, in pursuit of this goal, Eddie flew to Johannesburg where he met with Maurice Fresco at Hugo Colletti studios.  Fresco indicated that he liked what he heard on the demo tapes, particularly the band’s Latin influence on the rock music they played.  This was at a time when Santana were emerging on the scene and the world was beginning to notice Latin music in the pop and rock genre.  Eddie’s visit to Johannesburg was to result in the offer of a three month stint at the Traveller’s Lodge in Johannesburg being received.

Before they could accept, Eddie had an accident to his eye which saw him hospitalised for six weeks.  His right eye was saved but he was permanently blinded in it.  The interruption had caused a loss of momentum in the band’s plans.  Jimmy Irvine departure, to Fort Victoria, complicated matters and the band was not able to take up Fresco’s offer. 

With the band having disintegrated, Eddie Matos went on to play at the Elizabeth hotel.  Inspired by finally meeting Trini Lopez in person when he performed at the Harry Margolis hall in Salisbury, Eddie teamed up again with Mike Reed.  Together with Mike Marks and Tony Evans on drums they formed PATCH OF BLUE.