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  THE FALCONS

Canada's Falcons play original instrumental rock and roll inspired by The Shadows and The Ventures. Formed in 1992 by Vancouver guitarist Mike Beddoes, The Falcons have recorded five albums, toured in Europe and Canada’s Yukon, showcased in Japan, and helped revive the instro rock genre worldwide.

History
Who's Who in The Falcons
    Lead Guitar
    Rhythm Guitar
    Bass
    Drums
Discography
The Falcons on YouTube
Falcons Archives

HISTORY

After auditioning 24 rhythm guitarists and recording an original instro demo in 1991, guitarist Mike Beddoes finally got The Falcons together in 1992 and released The Falcons EP cassette featuring Shadow Land.

Shadow Land charted coast to coast in the top ten on Canadian campus radio, appeared on Rounder's Beyond the Beach instrumental rock compilation, and in several Canadian film and television productions.

The Falcons played live in the Vancouver area through the 90s, toured in Europe in 1995, and Canada's Yukon in 1999 - the first (and only) all-instrumental rock band to play 4 sets nightly at the Capital Hotel in Whitehorse.

The Falcons have appeared twice at Pipeline Instrumental Rock Convention in London England, in 1995 and 2000.

In 1999, Mike Beddoes spent time in Japan with instro historian Yuzo Sasaki, and showcased at El Camino, Tokyo's all-instro nightclub, with Barry Gibson of Burns Guitars.

Debut album Queen of Diamonds, with guest Ventures guitarist Nokie Edwards, was named Album of the Year (1998) by UK instro magazine Pipeline. Mike first met Nokie in 1994 when he interviewed him for Canadian instro fanzine, Livewire. In 1995, The Falcons played with Nokie at his 60th birthday party and met more Ventures.

Bill Bonney, The Falcons' guest on Rebel Jukebox, played bass in 60s UK instro group, The Fentones. Bill first met Mike in 1995 at the Pipeline Convention in London, UK, when Mike joined The Fentones on rhythm guitar for the band's first reunion in 32 years.

Steel guitar virtuoso, the late Pat Gerow, is The Falcons' guest on Canadian Christmas. Pat was the first non-Hawaiian to become a member of the Royal Hawaiian Orchestra, played with the Rhythm Pals and Hank Snow, and was inducted into the Western Swing Hall of Fame.

Since 2004, The Falcons have been mainly a recording band, but perform live occasionally, most recently at the Rio Tinto Alcan International Dragon Boat Festival in Vancouver, 2013.

The Falcons have celebrated their 20th anniversary with three new albums: Atomic Guitar, the EP Collection, and Rebel Jukebox anniversary edition.

Nokie Edwards Official Site
The Fentones History Site

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WHO'S WHO IN THE FALCONS

Lead Guitar -

MIKE BEDDOES, The Falcons’ lead guitarist and main songwriter, has an original melodic guitar style he has developed by applying classical, flamenco, and fingerstyle techniques to electric guitar. He was born in London, England and grew up in Vancouver, Canada.

Mike got his first guitar when he was 8 years old, and played with a pick for the first 10 years before switching to fingerstyle. He wrote his first instro, “Queen of Diamonds”, in 1963 and, in 1964, joined his first instro band, The Rogues. He started as lead player but, when the band discovered he could play barre chords, was promoted to rhythm guitar.

In the summer of ’66, he played surf and garage with The Gremmies in Sunapee, New Hampshire and, back in Vancouver in the late 60s, formed the Mike Beddoes Blues Band to play west coast psychedelic blues: at the Aldergrove Beach Rock Festival, clubs, coffee houses, and a live music production of Michael McLure’s play, The Beard. The band ended suddenly when The Beard was shut down by police.

In the 70s Mike played rock & roll in strip clubs, and country & western at Legion halls and army bases. He toured BC with psychedelic rock band Ridgerunner and, later, played trad jazz in London and Irish & western in San Francisco. Turning solo in the 80s, he accompanied silent films in Toronto, played electric concert guitar in BC and Ontario, and, in the late 80s, formed the folk rock group, The Sharks.

In 1992, Mike came full circle and formed his second instro band, The Falcons.

Read more about the Mike Beddoes Blues Band and Ridgerunner on the Bands of the Pacific Northwest site.

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Rhythm Guitar -

GARY SCHNEPPER is a guitarist, songwriter, and IT professional. Gary toured Canada's Yukon and appeared at Pipeline 2000 with The Falcons. He plays rhythm guitar, and lead on Jokers Wild, on Rebel Jukebox.

KIM CLARKE was born in Penang, Malaysia, and most recently taught photography in London, Ontario. Kim played folk clubs in late 60s London UK, and formed the pop power trio Bonus Boys in Vancouver in 1979. Kim can be heard playing rhythm guitar, and lead on his own tunes, on Fly by Night, Live in London, Queen of Diamonds, the Canadian Christmas EP, and the EP Collection. Kim passed away from cancer in December 2010.

GARY CRAMER, BC poet and songwriter, played with Mike in Ridgerunner in the mid-70s, and in The Sharks in the late 80s. Gary plays rhythm guitar on the Canadian Christmas album. Gary died in March 2006, following complications from a 2004 car crash.

SCOTT MCLEOD, founding member of the West Coast surf/instro group The Swagmen in 1978, played in punk-fueled original groups throughout the 80s. He first met Mike in the mid-80s and toured briefly with The Sharks, before joining Linda McCrae Band and touring North America. Scott plays rhythm guitar on Atomic Guitar.

MICHAEL O'BRIEN was born in Petrolia, Canada and teaches classical guitar. He plays rhythm guitar on Fly by Night and on the EP Collection.

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Bass -

GORD KEARNEY, from Toronto, has played mainly in R&B and show bands including The Questionnaires. He and Mike played on the same cruise ship, the Xanadu, in the mid 70s. Gord has been playing fretless bass with The Falcons since 1992 and can be heard on bass on all The Falcons' albums, and on lead guitar on his own tune 1979 on Atomic Guitar.

DAVE ENGLEMAN plays bass and is a sound technician. He first played with Mike in Ridgerunner in the mid 70s. He can be heard on Kim's instro Sombrero del Diablo on Fly by Night.

BRIAN HARTON plays bass and is an airline pilot. He and Ted Harrison were the rhythm section for the 60s Vancouver band, Yellow Brique Road. They both played on the earliest Falcons demo recording in 1991, released on the EP Collection. Brian also plays upright bass on Colleen and Wake Up on Fly by Night.

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Drums -

ANDRE DESLAURIERS played with Kid Chrysler & The New Yorkers in the rockabilly revival of the late 70s. He has been playing drums with The Falcons since 1998. Andre can be heard on Rebel Jukebox, Canadian Christmas, and Atomic Guitar.

DENNIS BURKE, from Edmonton, is a jazz drummer, composer, and video instructor. Dennis can be heard on Queen of Diamonds,  the 1998 Canadian Christmas EP, and the EP Collection.

TED HARRISON plays drums and is an actor. He and Brian Harton were the rhythm section for the 60s Vancouver band, Yellow Brique Road. They both played on the earliest Falcons demo recording in 1991, released on the EP Collection.

MITCH LAZER, from Montreal, plays jazz-fusion drums. In the late 80s, he played with The Sharks. Mitch appeared with The Falcons at Pipeline 1995 and can be seen on The Falcons in Shadow Land video.

LARRY "LUNCHPAIL" MCGILLVRAY plays drums and is on the Board of Directors of the Vancouver Community Metis Association. He's played with Mike on and off since the early 70s, including in Ridgerunner. He can be heard on the EP Collection and on Fly by Night

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DISCOGRAPHY

Rebel Jukebox anniversary edition (FBM-121) CD album
EP Collection (FBM-111) CD album
Atomic Guitar (FBM-101) CD album
Canadian Christmas (FBM-041) CD album
Rebel Jukebox (FBM-011) CD album
Canadian Christmas (FBM-983) CD EP
Queen of Diamonds (FBM-981) CD album
The Falcons in Shadow Land (FBM-962) video
Live in London (FBM-961) cassette
Fly by Night (FBM-941) CD EP
The Falcons (FBM-921) EP cassette

COMPILATIONS

Beyond the Beach (Rounder, USA)
Sounds from the Inside Vol I (California Music, Australia)
Spaghetti I: Duck You Suckers (One Million Dollar Records, Germany)
An Evening in Nivram: The Music of The Shadows (Musick, USA)
Spaghetti II: The Revenge (One Million Dollar Records, Germany)
Instrobeat (Fireball Records, Canada)

PERFORMANCE VIDEO

Pipeline 1995 London Convention
Nokie Edwards' 60th Birthday
Pipeline 2000 London Convention

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The Falcons (Gary, Mike, Andre, Gord) The Falcons (Gary, Mike, Andre, Gord)

 




Falcons' guitarist Mike Beddoes
Falcons' guitarist Mike Beddoes 

 


The Falcons at the International Dragon Boat Festival, Vancouver 2013
The Falcons (Mike, Gord, Gary, Andre) at the International Dragon Boat Festival, Vancouver 2013 



 
The Falcons (Andre, Mike, Gord, Scott)
The Falcons (Andre, Mike, Gord, Scott) 





The Falcons recording Rebel Jukebox
The Falcons recording Rebel Jukebox  (Gary, Gord, Mike, Andre)
Photo: Annette Wadsworth





The Falcons at the Summer of Love Festival, Vancouver 2008
The Falcons (Mike, Andre, Gord, Scott) at the Summer of Love Festival  Vancouver, 2008 


 

The Falcons (Andre, Mike, Gord, Kim)
The Falcons (Andre, Mike, Gord, Kim) 




Mike Beddoes and Barry Gibson at the Burns Guitars Showcase, Tokyo
Mike Beddoes and Barry Gibson at the Burns Guitars Showcase, El Camino,
Tokyo, 1999. Photo:Jun Endo





The Falcons in 1993
The Falcons (Andre, Mike, Gord, Kim)






The Falcons in 1993

The Falcons in 1993 (Gord, Mike, Larry, Kim)


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