Eric Bell Band

After Leaving Thin Lizzy,I left London and went to live in Dublin. After a few months trying to relax,i started looking for musicians. I knew people who knew other people and soon I met a few musicians.

We got together and had a play. It worked out alright,and they had a keyboard player and that was fine because I wanted to try a few of my songs, so,we started to rehearse,and soon we were playing around Dublin.

We played in Mooran's hotel nearly every month or so, (this was were a lot of well known Dublin bands played (I think The Boom town Rats started there. We didn't really play anywhere else but Dublin,apart from Belfast a few times.

A few months later,I was in London visiting,and I thought I would call into Thin Lizzy's office. I spoke to the manager, and told him I had a band in Dublin,and then asked him if he could help me get a few gigs in London. He asked me was I free and then he took me around to Oxford Street to meet an Agency.

They said they could secure me about 5 good gigs in London. Great ! About a week later I was back in Dublin,and at the next rehearsal, I told the band the news...It took along time before they all believed me we were going to play in London.

A few weeks later,and I got a large packet that contained the 5 contracts for the shows.I showed these to the guys and then they slowly started to get nervous, as the weeks passed,until it was time to go over to The Big Smoke.

We went over by ferry so we would have our own equipment,and ended up all staying in some house that was rented to us for the week. But,we weren't there very much,as we were trying to find each gig in London(which felt about 200 times the size of Dublin.) The gigs we played were just alright Everyone very nervous.

Eric Bell Band 1980A few weeks later,there was a couple of reviews in the music papers. They were quite kind to me but didn't like the band. The guys in the band saw the reviews and got very pissed off and for some reason they thought it was all my fault. They then sailed back to Dublin and I stayed in London for another week or so. When I got back,I phoned up one of the guys to see about the next rehearsal,and he sounded a bit strange, I asked him was anything wrong and he just said everyone wanted to have a talk about something. At the next rehearsal,they told me they wanted to play different music and had found a new guitarist. So, I was fired from my own band.

Even though my own band had left me,the agent in London got me some more work. I told them I had no band,but they said that was no problem,they knew quite a few musicians.So a few weeks later,I went over to London. My wife then,Linda told me I could stay in her parents house,which was in Ealing London,until I got a place of my own.It was all really difficult. I found a horrible little room in Willisdon,and moved in,me ,my guitar and a suitcase. I remember it was snowing. The agency told me about two musicians...two Guys from Dublin. I'll change their names to protect the innocent. Fred and Bert.

Fred played drums and Bert played the bass. We had a bit of a rehearsal ,then the agent introduced me to the guy that was going to drive us around,and do the sound and lift some of the equipment. We had our first few gigs in a couple of days time,and we all met at the rehearsal studio. I couldn't believe it when this old fashioned ambulance drove up,and Sid the driver got out and said "Ready to leave lads ?" we got on to the Motorway,and headed for the first gig,with Bert getting his bass out,and started going over some of the songs. We played our first few gigs.and they were alright,but I found the two guys hard to work with...

I only found out later they were into serious into coke and the other into heroin. I found this out one night when we were doing a small tour in Ireland. we played this gig,and as we finished the last song we all walked off stage and went upstairs(the gig was a hotel and we had rooms upstairs.) Bert the bass player looked as white as a ghost. I followed him into his room to see what was wrong. I'll Fucking tell you what's wrong" he said."youv'e been singing about me all night." After a few more gigs,I broke up the band.

On one of the English gigs i'd played with Bert and Fred,I'd met a drummer friend of mine,Dave,Eric Bell Band 1980 who had played drums with noel Redding and myself for a while. Though he lived about 200 miles from London I phoned him and asked him would he like to do a few gigs ...he went for it and drove up to London,and we held auditions in tthe Electric Ballroom in Camden Town for a new bass player.About 17 bass players turned up and we got the one that suited us best,a guy called Nilo. We did a few gigs,and won this small competion in a club in Birmingham as their most popular band.

We played quite a few gigs,and I went into the agents office one day,to pay them their commision. There was a strange feeling in the office,and then they told me they would have to drop me,unless I got myself a record deal. They then introduced me to a big famous publishers,who turned out to be a bunch of wally's just wasting my time. So, I had no agent anymore. Somehow,a month or so later,me,and Dave and Nilo ended up doing a 10 day tour in Holland and Denmark. It turned out very good. Then we came back to England. I knew Rory Gallaagher's brother Donel,and went to see him. He was really helpful and asked would my band like to play 6 gigs supporting Rory playing university gigs. Of course.