Hey all, I started playing guitar around the age of 17, a friend of my brother had been given a strat copy as a present and i quite enjoyed the sound it was making. Working as an apprentice carpenter in Newbridge, Co Kildare, I was earning a small amount of money and so was in a position to buy a guitar and as it would happen, one of the painters on site was selling one He was selling it for his brother who was back from England, so I bought it from him, it was an Antoria stat copy with a really old 30 watt amp. It cost me around 25 pounds which was a weeks wages to me then. After my purchase I did what all young lads do and clanged away, asked plenty of questions and went to gigs to learn how to play. My first real gigging band was with guys I got to know through playing and we called our selves LMT, “Limited Musical Tallent” This was the first band I gigged with and was some craic, after a time we changed lads and called ourselves Eureka Khan. We giged away as Eureka Khan and  did manysupports gigs to larger more established bands like “Cloud 9”   from Naas, whom became the band “Shadowfax” and touring bands that came into town like “Mamas Boys” We plugged away as you do until around 1981 when changes were a foot, it was around this time that I bought my first Flying V at Music Makers in Dublin, Back then they were off Capel Street,  A 1979 Gibson V in Brazilian Mahogany, this was after several supports to Mamas Boys on there “Plug it in “ Tour, and that White Flying V of Pat McManus, deadly, O man I had to have one. It cost me allot more than the Antoria Strat, but it was an excellent guitar with a super sound Eureka Khan disbanded around the 81/82 mark and I joined up with the bassist and drummer from that band and two female singers to form a pop act. I giged away with this band and in 1982 also joined a rock band from Kildare called “Warlock” For a good while I gigged away with both bands, worked as a carpenter and created music on the guitar. Over the next 2 years, there were changes to the band Warlock and by 1984 the band included two of my brothers, Ciaran & Niall. and we were now called  Blackwych It was with Blackwych that I got to secure our first release on a compilation metal album entitled “Green Metal”  The album was released in 1985 and included two of our songs, “Out Of Control and Metal Mania” After the release of this album,  I entered into negotiations for a full debut album with Crashed Records in Dublin. They had released the Green Metal Album the previous year They agreed to go ahead and in 1986 we released our first Blackwych album entitled “Out Of Control” This was through Metal Masters in the UK, and released in Ireland on the Crashed Records Label and to the world on Metal Masters Records. Many Thanks to Shay Hennessy of Crashed for his help and guidance, and Paul O Mahony for his kind words. The band went on giggin, writing and recording until the end of the 80s/early 90s myself when my brothers went on our own musical paths, Niall joined A.O.R unit “Midnight Blue”  from London, and Ciaran went forward as ‘Finn McCool’ It was a great time doing all the things young struggling bands do, If you have not slept in the van in the snow, broken down for hours on a motorway or sold your gear to help the band, Your just not trying hard enough, Yeah right. Still and all memories all the same. See here for Blackwych Song Titles List I myself continued to write and perform as a session guitarist and song writer until I severed my right hand in a rage with a Georgian wire glass panel, this left me unable to play or work as a chippy for many years. A painful period for me. i was on holiday from London when I started playing again, and in 2005 returned to my roots in Ireland, gigging with a local band and re-establishing my self in the music industry by teaching guitar, gigging , and song writing. I have been gigging steadily since then and regained my love for the art. Thankfully i had good friends who guided me back into music which was always my passion. I am now gigging away with Dec James Live and working with other musicians on their projects. Dec James
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