John Booker- Guitar and Vocals
The Mix - 1982 Top Rank, Sheffield
John Booker - 1979
John - 1991 Take Two Studio
"The band story started in 1978. Punk rock was in full swing although the Sex Pistols had just split up. My school (Yewlands School Sheffield) like the music industry was split into two camps, the old and the new. I along with two friends (Aeg Browne and Roy Haywood) had just started watching the new bands - The Jam, The Clash, The Stranglers and realised we had to start a band ourselves and we became The Mix."
I bought a guitar and started to learn to play (still never quite managed it), Aegs brother Pat already played in a band so Aeg had a start on us. Roy decided to take up the bass and another friend of ours Rich Williams could play the drums. Rich was a bit of a rocker but we turned a blind eye. We started writing our own songs and rehearsing.
The first practice room was at Love St, Sheffield which we shared with the Human League and a band called Black Mariah. Things soon took off and we gigged everywhere including Sheffield's Top Rank, Limit Club and The Leadmill.
Around this time we had interest from a guy called Lincon Alias of WEA Records and recorded a single and a 14 track tape (Gothic Writing) which sold well in the Sheffield HMV store. We went on to meet the main man at WEA but things didn't go too well. He told us that we were out of time, the music we were playing was old hat.
In 1983 the main bands were Depeche Mode, Duran Duran and Spandau Ballet. The new romantics had arrived and we were harking back to 1978. So forsaking all of our principles we decided to join them. We got a good keyboard/piano player in Dave Benford and The Mix became Fiction. We tried to get somewhere for three years but never quite got there.
Fiction split in 1986 and I didn't play again until 1990. I got a new band together called Masque featuring Aeg Browne, Chris Stringer on bass and local superstar Driftin Dronfield on drums. We went back to our roots, recorded some new tracks and had a good time for three years then said our goodbyes.
Booker Creed started in 2011 with me on guitar and vocals, Andy Mason on lead guitar, Chris Stringer on Bass and Andy Horner on drums. So far we're having a ball. The future's so bright we gotta wear shades.
John Booker of Booker Creed
Andy Mason - Guitar
Aged 12 with Marti Caine (Sheffield City Hall)
Aged 44 with Booker Creed (Playing in pubs with old men)
Aged 18 with Bastion (Sheffield University Lower Refectory)
"'There are only two bands of any significance in the history of British popular music. They are Motorhead and the Damned. Everything else is a POOR imitation of Chuck Berry' - Andy Mason (1986)"
I started playing guitar aged 8 years and early on Sammy Hagar turned my ears away from Bert Weeden and Duane Eddy with the song 'this planets on fire' - 1979. That same year Motorhead released 'Bomber' and that was me reprogrammed.
I never really played in bands until I formed Bastion with my great mate Shaun Eason. We had a great time and played some great gigs but I really preferred the rehearsal room to having an audience (still do today) so wasn't fussed about starting another band when Bastion came to its natural conclusion. I did muck around with an arty improv punk band 'Terminal Influence' (terminally influenced by PIL) but soon realised my anti establishment non conformist cohorts were more constrained by their own image so I left.
Although I had known Booker for years I'd never seen him play. I remember he had a band at school called 'The Mix' but figured they were some sort of Irish folk band. For 42 years I had managed to avoid becoming musically involved with the man until he suggested we form the 'Bob Dylan Twins' and eat kebabs. I hadn't had a kebab for years so it seemed like a good idea at the time. Horner and Chris followed soon after and we became a 'proper' band.
So here we are in 2018. As well as building the glider in the roof space, I have started three tunnels because I fear John may shoot me down with his junior air rifle as i
endeavour to make my escape..
Chris Stringer - Bass Guitar
Masque Video Sequences
"I began playing bass at Yewlands School where the band S.O.S was formed with Roy Haywood, Russ Myers and Andy Foulkes. As Roy was originally in Johns band The Mix we had a rivalry between us. After a while, I and drummer (Russ) joined a couple of local guitarists playing cover versions. The idea was to play the club scene. This never materialized and at this point I realized that it was playing original material that really excited me."
For a time nothing seemed to be happening for me until Russ called to say his new band, The Touch wanted a bass player and after a successful audition I was in. It was with The Touch that saw me playing larger venues like The Leadmill, Top Rank (now the O2 Academy), the Octagon at Sheffield University playing gigs with other local bands like Pulp. Despite recording a track for a compilation album of local bands and signing to a management agency from the south, nothing materialized and we eventually called it a day.
Disillusioned, it was at this point that John used his unique charm and wit to persuade me to pick up the bass again and join his band Masque playing a mixture of original and punk covers.
Once again when this came to an end John kept going, which brings us to now and Booker Creed, where after much arm twisting and ear bashing
Andy and AH eventually talked John into adding a bass player to the fold. It is here that Johns charm and wit failed drastically to recruit the
right man, so once again he turned to me knowing I was one of the few people not yet sanctioned who fell for his charm.
Andy Horner - Drums
Pics coming soon
"Biog coming soon"