In 1970 Gay Woods was a member of Steeleye Span with her husband Terry (ex Sweeney's Men, pre The Pogues). They left to form the Woods Band and later recorded a series of excellent LPs as a duo for Polydor Records through the rest of the seventies. This work is predominantly folk rock. The couple split and Gay pursued her own projects, most notably Auto Da Fe.
Auto Da Fe was a theatrically-inclined, keyboard/electronics dominated new wave
band formed in Holland in 1980 by Gay with new partner Trevor Knight (ex jazzrockers
No Buckets and 'experimental jazz fusion' (jazzrock) band Naima).
with Wout Pennings (guitar), Karel van Rijn (bass) and Theo Wanders (drums).
This band was a radical departure for Gay, who up until that point
was strongly associated with folk rock. On
relocating to Ireland the core duo was joined by Mark Megaray
(AKA Mark Hogan, ex Radiators, Eric Bell Band, Girl)
on bass and Robbie Brennan
Auto Da Fe built a strong following in Ireland based on spontaneous, colourful live performances which they never quite captured fully on vinyl despite the attention and efforts of Phil Lynott. Even so they managed to record two excellent singles, in 1982. Mark Megaray left in 1983 and Phil Lynott filled in on bass for live gigs. One such occasion was captured by the BBC In Concert crew in November 1983 and later released on the Songs for Echo CD in 2001. Robbie Brennan also left later in 1983.
A new lineup toured Ireland (and elsewhere) in 1983: Gay Woods and Trevor Knight were joined by Jimi Slevin (guitar) and the dutch rhythm section of Carel van Rijn (bass) and Theo Wanders (drums) who had already played with the band when it was based in The Netherlands circa 1980-81. This lineup never recorded.
A new lineup emerged in 1984 but the spirit was gone.
The band regrouped with a new
rhythm section and added a fifth member on lead guitar, altering the bass/drums/keyboards
format, and making them sound ordinary.
The recordings from this period are more slick but less interesting.
Among those who played with the band in the mid-80s are Howard Wilson,
Earl Gill Jr, John Stokes and Finn Corrigan (ex Strong Are Lonely, later of
Sid & The Stonecrushers / The Boy The Boy and
There was a late name change to Operaracket in 1986 before finally disbanding. Operaracket returned briefly in 1988 as a duo of Knight and Woods, playing a completely new set of more experimental material, but this quickly became Auto Da Fe, who played throughout 1988-89. This lineup included William Demange who'd played bass with The Crash, Toy With RhythmThe Fountainhead and Toy With RhythmToy With Rhythm. After the demise of Auto Da Fe and some years gigging in Spain, Demange founded DCFE recording studios in 2002.
Trevor Knight is now a contemporary composer. Gay Woods returned to Steeleye Span
and contines to perform. For a full bio, see her
See also the Videos page.
Phil Lynott's involvement as producer on their early singles has generated a constant level of interest in the band.
Some sources also list the UK edition as Rewind #15 but this was a Q-Tips single. Perhaps there were plans to reissue Rewind #13 for superstitious record buyers a la Raw Records!
Notes: Recorded in Lombard Studios, Dublin in 1982. Lineup: Gay Woods (vocals), Mark Megaray (bass), Robbie Brennan (drums), Trevor Knight (keyboards), Philip Lynott (vocals, timpani), Keith Donald (clarinets). A-side produced by Phil Lynott. The B-side was recorded live at Rockall's in Bray on Friday 13th August 1982 with Dave McHale (saxophone).
Singles compilation which collects all 5 A-sides to date plus one B-side.
Recorded in Chester in February 1985 except tracks A2 & A3 recorded at Amazon Studios in November 1984 and track B1 recorded in Dublin in 1982.
The re-recordings of older songs are slicker and more heavily produced.
A1-5 & B4 are re-recordings of tracks previously released as singles.
B1 & B2 were released as singles.
Tracks 1-5 recorded 30.03.83 and broadcast 16.04.83
Tracks 6-12 recorded 09.11.83 and broadcast 03.12.83
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