The year was 1970... England had been knocked out of the Soccer World Cup in Mexico by West Germany 3-2, my world had fallen apart!!!
There was nothing left to cheer about, or so I believed... A new world was about to explode and unfold before me, absorbing me in every fashion. September, and it was now time to go back to school after the long and hot summer of never ending holidays, and evenings of discos and dances [which were a poor substitute for England's misfortunes,] but something exciting was about to take off; the music scene was changing, we had said goodbye to the Beatles, and now the Children of the Revolution were waiting in anticipation...
To a young boy, such as myself, everything seemed to be on meltdown. The music scene was moving into a new realm with hidden mysteries and poetical tales. The sounds of the 70s were so lyrically stimulating. The pop world was about to build to a crescendo; the Cosmic Dancer was ready to ride it on out in the sky ways.
Marc Bolan captured my imagination like no one else could. It was time to hang up my old school football boots and climb on top of my wardrobe to seek out my old abandoned acoustic guitar - once neglected but now primed and ready for some Solid Gold Easy Action.
When old enough to work, I bought every T.Rex single and album I could get my hands on. I was taking guitar lessons and soon my playing progressed.
Late 70s... the music scene had changed, sadly Marc was no longer with us, but his music lived on. At this stage of my life I was playing with various different bands.
Bobby in 1976
In the early 80s I joined a band called Eric Blake. We were writing all our own material and playing the regular circuit throughout London, including the original Marquee and various colleges up and down the country. With the release of two singles on the Carrere record label and a cork screw "hair do", people would often remark about the similarities between Marc Bolan and myself. However, after a while I decided to leave the band Eric Blake, feeling somewhat disillusioned with the whole business.
Returning to my T.Rex albums, with acoustic guitar in hand, I’d play along to my favourite L.P - Electric Warrior. This was the music that gave me the desire and inspiration to form a T.Rex tribute band, but finding the right musicians was a job easier said than done. Fate would play its part, being in the right place, with the right people, at the right time.
Bobby in 1981
Some years later, a friend of mine who runs a small hairdressing business in Chelmsford, Essex, received a phone call. Unbeknown to her she was asked to make an appointment for a Mr. Bill Legend. On arrival at his home, totally unaware, Kim proceeded to cut Bill’s hair. Going about her daily routine she couldn't help noticing various photos of her customer playing drums, Kim asked "do you play in a band?".
Bill Legend joined T.Rex in 1971 playing on the single Hot Love, his unique style gave Marc’s music a distinguished feel on songs such as Children of the Revolution and Metal Guru - with a crafted double tracked snare drum effect, it added depth and drive to those recordings. For me, Bill’s presence was undoubtedly at the heart of the music during Marc’s best period. Meeting Bill was an education in itself! When possible, I would take time out to watch Bill play by listening to the familiar rolls and feels and even enjoying the occasional joke from behind the drum kit about the recording sessions with T.REX producer Tony Visconti.
After playing with a few different musicians throughout 2001, I finally set up a band named 'The Electric Warriors' with guitarist pals Brad Cooke, bassist Matt Gibbs, and drummer Nick Warry, playing a few gigs in and around Essex.
My sidekick drummer Steevi Bacon helped out on a couple of gigs, and later joined in late 2002, and through much blood, sweat and tears, and a couple of line-up changes, we both nurtured the band into what it is today.
During this cosmic journey our booking Agent Jeff Powles would remark on the band's name ... "Electric Warrior??? "tut tut" he'd say!
"It doesn't tell people who you are???"
"Limehouse Lizzy....Fleetwood Bac, Mentallica, Dirty DC, Pink Fraud, The Bootleg Beatles etc, they are all instantly recognisable successful tribute bands!"
(obviously Bolan fanatics would know Electric Warrior straight away!!)
Anyway, so we reluctantly gave in as we knew he was right, and we respected his knowledge.
We needed a pun... a play on words that would tell everyone that we played T.REX music!
Finally I came up with the name TooREX ... and the rest is history!! Everyone knows us as TooREX nowadays and to be honest it feels like we always have been!
THE OFFICIAL MARC BOLAN FAN CLUB
In January 2002 I contacted the (then) owner of the Official Marc Bolan Fan Club - Chris Bromham. Chris, who is known all over the world as a very successful stuntman/daredevil who specialises in motorcycles, kindly invited us down to his home later that year.
Here's a link to his site
(inset) Bobby T & Chris Bromham (previous O.M.B.F.C owner) with Marc's Flying 'V' guitar (Summer 2002)
Finally my band... TooREX
TooREX are a musical tribute to the late, great Marc Bolan and his band T.Rex.
With an immense love for the "main man" and his music, we endeavour to help keep the memory alive of one of the greatest rock and roll legends that ever lived... Mr MARC BOLAN
BOBBY T xx