Denny Blake/Helix guitarist/1990 European Tour
After we recorded and released Back for Another Taste in 1989 we needed a guitar player to take the show on tour. Brent Doerner, a member since 1976, had quit the band at the end of the touring for Wild in the Streets. He had had enough…and none of us could blame him. We auditioned many guitarists and none of them could fill Brent’s shoes. Suddenly I remembered the “kid” that had played guitar for a band that had backed us up a couple of years before on a tour through the Eastern U.S. The name of the band was MANIACS and the guitar player’s name was Denny Blake. Denny came up and auditioned and we all agreed we’d love to have him in the band. He was the first American to be in Helix. Denny was not only a top notch guitar player but also was a kind, funny, entertaining, “up” person to be around. These clips are from some of the gigs we played in Europe in 1990. Most of them were taken on the Ian Gillan tour, where we were the opening act. of note is the gig at the Moulin Rouge in Paris, where we are joined onstage by Tommy Ayers (keyboardist for Ian Gillan). It was Tommy who played organ on “A Little Help From My Friends” by Joe Cocker and “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” by WHAM. The film ends off with us in England, where we played at the famous Marquee. Helix played two gigs at both the old and new Marquee. The first one was right after we were there touring on Walking On The Razor’s Edge, which was recorded by Captiol/E.M.I. to be released only to Canadian radio as a promotional device. Ultimately they released some of these tracks for commercial sale. The second time we played at the “new” Marquee was a few years later where some Page 3 Girl from a London paper pranced around topless onstage with us. Aw…memories!
You can read about this era of the band’s history in my autobiography “Gimme an R!” available at the Merch section of the website. The Back for Another Taste CD can be purchased there as well.