To The Limit
Anyone who chooses a life in the music industry and then decides to call himself Anthony J. Vegas must not only have a wicked sense of humour but also maintain enormous confidence in his own ability. Well, as it happens, both are true and not without good reason.
Back in that smoky Bar in Gibraltar when Pete and I first discussed the prospective line up of the band, the names of Simon Millest and Tony Vegas were instantly placed at the top of the pile. The four of us had previously worked together some years earlier and had built up a very healthy respect. Unfortunately for us, Tony was at that time pursuing a successful solo career and after careful consideration felt that he could not risk losing what he had built up to begin a new project, however tempting. Now almost six years later things were very different. Now we held the power. Now the lure of a touring headline band was too strong, even for a performer of Tony's stature and reputation. Now it seemed, the timing was perfect. This was indeed a mouth-watering prospect. In fact the summer of 2003 was a very eventful time all round. Not only were we dealing with the ongoing Con saga, but we were also busy writing our own original material. Then there was new publicity and photographs and a complete re-design of the website by Anni. Most important of all, major changes were being made to the show in readiness for the autumn tour.
We became more and more excited with each passing rehearsal and the tour loomed ever closer. We could all literally feel the life being pumped back into the band. All the old enthusiasm and team spirit was being re-kindled. This truly was a new beginning. Unfortunately the opening night seemed to be upon us sooner than we would have wished and despite our re-born enthusiasm, we had to admit that we were under rehearsed. Too late, we just had to get on with it and fine tune as we went along. All we had to do now was convince our loyal followers that everything was not only business as usual but that Talon were indeed better, stronger and very much here to stay.
The autumn tour would also mark the appearance of the Conspirito String Quartet, as well as the return of Pedal Steel players and old friends Tracy Neale, Sarah Jory and Gerry Hogan, and making his Talon debut was top Irish session player, Percy Robinson. In fact we were all so confident and excited about the tour that it became known as... To The Limit. As we progressed, it was obvious to me that the band was changing, and for the better. Jon was no longer the new boy. He had developed into an experienced, confident young artiste and performer with a style and charisma all of his own. For the first time it seemed that Peter had been given room to breathe and flourish as the musician I had known and respected for over twenty-five years. Simon too was happier. Not only had he clinched a sponsorship deal with Pearl drums but also he had been invited to test the prototype of the new carbon fibre snare drum made by Formula1 giants Jordan. A massive honour indeed.