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, Guitars, 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 mainly plays Fender and Martin guitars, a Roland V-Combo Organ, and Hohner and Seydel harmonicas. He has taken lessons and attended workshops with some of the best harmonica teachers in the UK and USA, and has many years experience playing at blues clubs, folk/acoustic clubs, and festivals.
Outside of the band, Barry is chair of the board of the charity HarmonicaUK, has an MA in Indian & Yoga Philosophy, and drives an old almond green Mini Cooper.
Patrick – Guitars, Vocals
Patrick has been playing guitar since he was 12, having found so much inspiration in the musical boom of the 1960s. The electric guitar soon became both a vital form of expression and a creative release.
Starting off with the heavy influence of The Beatles, Patrick began branching out through the rest of the decade. He enjoyed exploring the diy mentality and the social movements of the time. Patrick has been in many bands and likes playing a range of styles but he has now been drawn back to his musical roots in his life as a Hurdy Gurdy.
Patrick plays Fender Stratocaster and Coronado guitars.
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).