The Hoodoo Gurus have announced that drummer Mark Kingsmill will retire from the band at the end of March after 30 years with the group.
“Though he still enjoys playing drums, Mark has completely lost his appetite for the endless travelling and the many hours of hotel room boredom,” revealed frontman Dave Faulkner. “The physical demands of playing the drums as energetically as he does are also exacting a higher toll on his body than ever before. Really, who can blame him for wanting a change?”
Kingsmill joined the Hoodoo Gurus in 1984 following the dismissal of original drummer and founding member James Baker; he first appeared on the band’s second album, 1985’s “Mars Needs Guitars!”
“None of us want to see him go and, to be honest, we even contemplated breaking up the band rather than try to replace him,” Faulkner continued. “Apart from all the personal upheaval that his retirement entails (yeah, we're gonna really miss him!) there will also be a significant change to the band's musical personality. Mark, like James Baker before him, has a unique style of drumming and no-one else will ever be able to replicate it.”
“Inevitably our sound will change - it's up to [guitarist] Brad [Shepherd], [bassist] Rick [Grossman] and I to make sure that the next person is as inspirational a player as Mark has always been, and that we don't diminish as a band. That will be no mean feat but, trust us, we will not settle for anything less than someone we feel is a perfect fit.”
“Most of Mark's adult life has been dedicated completely to music and it's easy to understand that he wants to begin a new phase,” added the frontman. “We're just grateful we've had the opportunity to work together for as long as we have. Thanks for everything, Mr. Kingsmill, it's been amazing!”
Kingsmill will be on board to perform shows with the Hoodoo Gurus until the end of next month.
The band recently released an EP, “Gravy Train”, in sync with their 30th anniversary last year. The project features all 8 past and present members of the Australian group performing songs dating from the earliest days of their career, including three tunes never recorded before.
Three eras of the Gurus are represented, including the original le Hoodoo Gurus crew, the “Stoneage Romeos” edition and the ”Blow Your Cool” lineup – with all 8 members forming “The Super Hoodoo Gurus” for a remake of the band’s first single, “Leilani.”
The Hoodoo Gurus were inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association Hall of Fame in 2007.
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