All summer you may have heard the name Wall Street Band buzzing around the island, so we at RG Mags set out to learn a little bit more about them..
When and how was the band originally formed and how did you come up with the name?
The band was formed for the 2005 Music Festival to back local artists for the three nights, courtesy of Glenn Blakeney. We didn’t have a name until the 2008 Music Festival when our bass player, Eugene Tuzo, read out a list of potential band names that he had compiled. I liked the sound of “being backed by WallStreet”. Ironically, it was about a month before the stock market crashed.
Who is the Wall Street Band and how many members are there?
We started out as a 9 piece backing band, accompanying artists that didn’t have a band. From time to time we were asked to provide background vocalists as well. About 2 years ago we decided to be self contained and develop our own repertoire, thus increasing the size to 13 members.
What has the Made in Bermuda experience been like for the band this year? How did you get involved?
It has been an awesome experience for us with each week better the week before. The crowds were amazing and being on White’s Island, you couldn’t have asked for a better venue. Much thanks go PinkSand Entertainment’s Jonathan Tankard and Zuri Darrell for having the vision to put on such an event.
How important do you think the event is for the island’s entertainment industry?
Due to the fact that PinkSand Entertainment is committed to the development and marketing of local entertainment, ALL of their events are vital to the entertainment industry. Not only do they provide an avenue for local artists to perform, they create an atmosphere for all audiences. Over the summer we had people from all walks of life, both local and tourists, ranging in ages from 12yrs to 93yrs old – a true testament to the quality of their work.
What are you looking forward to most at the festival on Saturday?
As with any performance, we aim to give our best in terms of entertaining the crowd. Also we’ll be there to cheer on the other local entertainers who, some are up and coming, need and deserve all of our support.
The band has also been performing at several other events this year, such as Cup Match Summer Splash – how has this exposure benefitted the band?
We have a certain demographic that follow WSB, however, this year we’ve had the opportunity to perform in front of different ones: The Bermuda Festival, The Motown Revue and Summer Splash. Some of the audience members at those events had never heard of WSB let alone heard the band. However, since then we’ve gained some new fans and have even gotten booking enquiries from some of those concerts.
What’s next? Any plans for the future? Anything to look forward to?
Next? – Vacation! We’ll be off until October. After which, we go back into rehearsal working on new material for the upcoming season. Also, we’re in talks with a local producer with the goal of having our own show in 2019.