mathew – Bass, vocals
Mathew was inspired to pick up the bass after hearing The Beatles for the first time when he was 12 years old. Since then he has been a member of various bands playing both original material and covers. Some of Mathew’s bands have been featured on BBC radio and over the years have shared bills with acts such as The Coral, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, and Dr Feelgood.
Despite his long-standing love of the music of the 1960s, Mathew had never been in a band that covered the songs of the era. He wanted to find like-minded musicians to celebrate the amazing music of the 60s, and that’s how the Hurdy Gurdies came about. Mathew plays Hofner 500/1 basses (like Paul McCartney’s).
Barry – harmonicas, guitar, keys, vocals
Barry started playing guitar and keys in the early ’90s, closely followed by the harmonica after he heard one played in the Doctor Who episode “The Happiness Patrol”. He worked up his chops playing a lot of classic blues by artists such as the Muddy Waters Band and Howlin’ Wolf, mixed in with a healthy dose of ’60s, ’70s and ’90s pop/rock.
Barry plays Fender Jaguar and Gibson Les Paul guitars, Seydel and Hohner harmonicas, and a Roland V-Combo organ. He has taken lessons and workshops with some of the best harmonica teachers in the UK and USA including Richard Taylor, Adam Glasser, Adam Gussow, Jason Ricci, Annie Raines, and Joe Felisko.
Barry has many years experience playing at blues and folk/acoustic clubs, and leads a kirtan mantra band which has been playing yoga festivals and concerts for over a decade. He is a trustee of the charity HarmonicaUK, teaches yoga classes online and in Launceston, and drives an old almond green classic Mini Cooper.
Ellie – Guitar, vocals
Ellie has been singing since she was 11, and has always had a passion for music and sound. There has been nothing else she can see herself doing in life! She started playing guitar at 18 when she realised she needed to be able to back herself when singing.
For Ellie, 60’s music has such a beautiful musicality to it and really resonates with her; she loves to be singing and playing the music, and bringing it back to life.
Ellie takes pride in her music and wants to always give her best performance; putting in 100% is really important for her, and she’s happy to have found a band that thinks the same!
mark – drums, vocals
Mark likes hitting things with sticks in time to music. He started off with table mats, chairs and various bits of kitchen equipment, but the big break came when his granny gave him his first drum for his second birthday. At this point Mark realised that he was a drummer and he hasn’t stopped since. It greatly helped that his teenage sisters bought loads of 45s, and 33s, so by the time Mark was five, he was ready to go, albeit on biscuit tins with chop sticks.
Since then, he has been in many bands and played in many places and he wants to keep hitting things with sticks for as long as he is alive on this earth, because rhythm (so he will tell you, often at great length) is life.
In his other life, Dr. Mark can be fairly quiet. He has a PhD in 19th century literature and hangs about with the likes of Dickens (lead guitar), George Eliot (keyboards) and D. H. Lawrence (bongos and congas).
The Hurdy Gurdies