PRoM - The laughter, the tears, the triumphs...and the shoes
THE YEAR IS 2004. And after a decade of mellifluous harmonies and floaty melodies (all very nice and enjoyable) ‘twas decided it was time to get back to some sweaty, riffcrunching Rock and Roll…THE PEOPLES REPUBLIC of MERCIA - PRoM was born. The nucleus of NICK HALL's previous band The Vanessas remained intact for the new venture: IAIN DAVIES on Lead Guitar, PETE HOWARTH swapping his Strat for the Drum stool and Nick on Rhythm Guitar, Vocals and song writing duties. After a number of false starts, BOBBY COTTERILL arrived to give the band the hard edged, driving Bass sound that they’d been missing (and some great pairs of shoes…) and there you have it – the line-up for the next five years.
After three albums (“DadPunk”, “Telecastered” and “Born Near The BSA”) and countless supports with the likes of Wilko Johnson, Eddie and The Hotrods, The Groundhogs, The Feelgoods and The Pirates, Iain and Pete said their farewells to be replaced by RICH MARTIN (Blues Harp) and ANT COOK (Drums.) This lineup recorded the “Stir Crazy” and “Coast” EPs. Sadly, Iain passed away in February 2021 after an eighteen-month battle with cancer. He was a gentleman and an incredible guitarist.
In 2015, it’s another change – MICK MULLEN replaces Ant on Drums and JASON KENNEDY joins. Jason plays on the new tracks on “Too Good To Go Down – The Best of Peoples Republic of Mercia” and “Still In The Sidings…” before he hands the Telecaster duties to BAZ PAYNE. Sadly, after twelve years of sterling service, Bobby has to bow out due to ill health and he is replaced by RUSHBO on Bass and Vocals.
In December 2016, the band released the limited edition "It's a PRoM kind of Christmas" EP and the lead track "The Other Side of Christmas" was heard by thousands of people thanks to social media. That EP quickly sold out and was officially issued in a remixed and expanded form as the DIY EP, which got fantastic support from Internet radio, resulting in a full gig sheet, including Summer festival dates all over the UK. After some time away from the band, RICH MARTIN returns and the band records a new album - "Never Judge a Band By Its Covers" which was released in March 2018.
The band decided to call a day early in 2019 and played a "farewell" show at The Windsor Club in Bearwood.
In early 2023, the band got back together to rehearse and have decided to play live again - you can't keep a good band down!