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First gig in ages.....and ages.......!


Way back in the depths of time (we are guessing 1993?), after many years as The Worhouse's drummer, Bob Fagan returned home to Ireland.  The Workhouse had been a strong gigging force, and Bob was going to be difficult to replace.....How many drummers are happy to listen to (and stay in time with) a click track for a whole gig? (all our keyboard parts were sequenced - with no full-time keyboard player).  So we pondered on the situation (like we do)... and decided gigging wasn't necessarily the way forward.  We concentrated on writing and recording new material.  A new drummer, Philippe Jayoner, got involved with the band and provided drum programming and percussive duties (and a few lines of backing vocals) which can be heard on My Last Breath (the song was recorded on our 8 track which we lugged round to Philippes' flat in Ilford).  Philippe was a great character, and we had some great times together - and there are some very funny stories to tell (another time maybe?).  Philippe had other projects on the go, and we drifted on with our lives, only to later learn he had sadly passed away not long after working with us.

So time moves on, we keep on recording, breeding and getting on with our family lives and really not doing anything live.  That was until May 2007 - when our friend Ray Marshall - decided to put on a gig in his back garden to celebrate his birthday - and "Raystock" was born.  We were asked to provide the entertainment - a band was cobbled together - and a great evening was had.  There is some fairly shabby mobile phone footage on You Tube so you can get the gist....  We didn't do any Workhouse songs - as we hadn't the time/inclination to rehearse a band to that extent.  Instead, we played an acoustic version of Let You Go later in the evening.  

Then in 2013 - we had "Raystock 2" - another party where a band was formed with friends and where Simon Wynn (The Workhouse's bass player from 25 years ago) came along and performed "Why" and "Loving Like Yours" with the band - apparently fulfilling one of his "bucket list" desires.  Phil resumed duties for "Let you go" - the rest of the set was covers.  Gwyn did an excellent job on the mixing desk and another great night was had with good friends.

So - after that short history, we have 2015 - and Ray is having his 50th Birthday party!!  We don't care what it's called - to us it's "Raystock 3" - however this is a real special event for us, as we have Bob flying back from Ireland to resume his drumming duties!  Excited!!!

Bob flies in next Friday, and we have a rehearsal booked - ready for the gig on Saturday.  We've had to borrow a drum kit - and we've done away with click tracks and sequencers for The Workhouse. Phil Burns (Esther's husband) is going to do a fabulous job on keyboards and we hope this will give us the kick we need to do some more gigs!  We shall see.  

Expect photos/videos/recordings soon!!!  

Peace and Love!  Phil and Stew x

Welcome To The Workhouse
A brief introduction is probably in order……

Who we iz

“The Workhouse” is currently Stewart Allen and Phil Crombie with much appreciated backing vocals from Esther Burns. In addition The Workhouse enjoys input from mentor/producer Gwyn Mathias.

We are a band that has had a wheel turning, in one way or another, under this name since 1987.

What we duz

We write, record, engineer, and perform all our own original material.

Over the years our music has had various tags attached to it; AOR, Heavy rock, Dance, Folk, Country even Electro. To be honest we are probably all of these and more. We have never adopted a set style with the songs we create. Our intention has always been to go in whatever direction the song we are writing at the time wants to lead us. The main aim is to have an end result that is honest, good music that may leave the listener with something. (Scabies / a dose ?) No, whether it be a parting emotion of happiness, anger, melancholy or even a complete hatred of what we do. We aspire to provoke something.

What we do is difficult to pigeon hole or be identified as a certain genre and that has probably worked against us commercially but, to try and market us as one thing is not what we are about.

We are not currently set up as a live group but that may change!

Stewart and Phil record and create their original material in their own little studio “The Home Breaker Recording Company”.

We can offer services including creation of music for other bands and artists, TV, film and radio as well as negotiating the use of or possible purchase of our Workhouse songs (Current and back catalogue).



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