- “Pete Sears & the Dawn Patrol”
I formed a band to promote my “Long Haul” album. The great Davey Pattison (Robin Trower Band) on rhythm guitar & lead vocals, Rich Kirch (John Lee Hooker) on lead guitar, Ernest Carter (Bruce Springsteen) on drums. Bass, David Hayes (Van Morrison) or Bobby Vega (Sly & the Family Stone).
I was just coming off ten happy years with “Hot Tuna”.
Our first bass player was my Zero band-mate and old friend Bobby Vega who was still playing with Steve Kimock when he agreed to come out with us for one tour.
We then started playing with another dear friend of mine on bass, David Hayes who I had worked with on a Terry & The Pirates album and my own “Watchfire” album. I had also played bass and accordion for a band he put together playing David’s solo material. Our last show was a live PBS broadcast…I love playing David’s music; it’s full of heart and soul.
Dawn Patrol was a good band, I told everyone before they joined that I’d split everything equally after expenses…which admittedly wouldn’t be much at first, but if it took off we’d all get the same. They all agreed. I made very little myself as I usually gave my share (my band…so it was only right) to try and keep everyone’s payment up to a reasonable amount.
Everyone always got their own rooms with meals provided except Rich, who shared a room with me (we used to do duo shows during the 1990’s between Hot Tuna and John Lee Hooker tours so we were used to it).
That first tour was hard with long drives, but fun. I will always be thankful to promoters like Mark Keys, and Jay Bianci at Stella Blues in Denver for helping me out.
We had a great show in Seattle, and Wavy’s Pignic in 2001. John Lee Hookers Boom Boom Room also.
We’d rehearse at Jim Johnson’s place at the old “Ultra Sound” buildings in San Rafael. Jim shot some video tape of the band also.
Our equipment manager’s and drivers at various times were John Murray, and Dan Wathen.
The photo is by Geoff Wittmer.
Special thanks to Morty Wiggins at 33rd St Records (owned by Tower Records) for signing my album “The Long Haul”.
Here is an excerpt from Jambands.com in 2001.
“Bobby Vega to Tour with Pete Sears and the Dawn Patrol. Bassist Bobby Vega, who recently parted ways with the Steve Kimock Band, will hit the road with Pete Sears and the Dawn Patrol. The line-up features Sears (keyboards), Vega (bass), Davey Pattison (guitar), Rich Kirch (guitar) and Ernest Carter (drums). The tour kicks off Thursday at Six Rivers in Arcata, CA. Other dates include July 14 at Wild Buffalo in Bellingham, WA, July 17 in Quixote’s True Blue Cafe Denver, CO, July 18 at the Half Moon Cafe Vail, CO, July 19 at the Redfish Grill in Boulder, CO and July 21 at the Lazy Daze Fest inn Strasburg, CO.” — with David Hayes, Ernest Carter and Davey Pattison.
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