ToshRollo was originally set up in Sheffield by a number of well known local musicians.
Key amongst them was guitarist Alex Oliver, bassist and vocalist Mick Shedd (later principal artist in Shedd’s On Fire etc.) and drummer/percussionist Danny Spencer (ex-Phoenix Rising). Mick involved Manchester-based Annie MacKie (ex-Fanny) on keyboards and vocals. Mick wanted an experimental line-up to start off with so he added a Hammond organ player and saxophonist in Jerome Cacache, and an additional female front vocalist and multi instrumentalist, Linda Lee Welch. The final addition to the line up was Pete Bangert (ex-Phoenix Rising) to inject some heavy rock/jazz-rock fusion guitar and improvisation,
Inevitably this line up proved unstable, due in part to the relative strengths of the individual musicians, and in part to the music they were asked to play which did not sit fully with all of the individual’s backgrounds and styles. Annie proved to be such a capable vocalist in her own right alongside Mick’s vocals, that the additional front vocalist proved surplus to requirements. Annie was also a superb keyboard player which meant the duplication of a Hammond was not needed.
Annie, Danny and Pete continued working together and they took their material into a demo studio for polishing. Part way through this process Danny was diagnosed with Leukaemia and they put the project on hold.
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