New Zealand Fantasy Band 1970; Picture from left to right. John Carroll Vocals; Ron “Bert” Harris Lead Guitar; Michael Brown Bass; Mike Cassidy Drums
A band out of nowhere. Won a Sydney Hoadleys Battle of the Bands with an instrumental version of the classical piece “The Sabre Dance”. 4 piece, high energy, high risk, 50% original repetoire, 3 Kiwis & 1 Aussie (Mike).
Michael Brown and Ron Harris came to Sydney Australia from New Zealand in early 1970 looking to form the NZ Fantasy Band and were joined by Mike and John. The Band mainly worked ‘residencies’ at Kings Cross clubs like The Electric Circus, The Groovy Room and the Downunder Club but also played many gigs at other venues across Sydney including supporting bands like Axiom at Caesars Palace. They also won the Rockdale heat of Hoadley’s Battle of the Bands beating hot favourites Flake. They then proceeded to the NSW Final at the Capitol Theatre which was won by The Flying Circus.
Mike Cassidy left the band in March 1970 and was replaced by former Plum drummer Derek Pellicci who in years to come joined The Little River Band. The NZ Fantasy Band then moved to Melbourne playing at venues like That’s Life, Thumpin’ Tum, Catcher and many more. They disbanded in late October 1970.
What happened to Ron Harris and Michael Brown is currently unknown. Mike Cassidy now lives in the Hunter Valley and still performs.
John Carroll moved back to Sydney and joined King Fox and began to record Radio Jingles and did vocals on many well-known tracks including the 1270 2SM Rocktober jingles. He then became a successful Radio Announcer and has worked at 1270 2SM, 2MMMFM, 2DAY FM and many more. John recently retired after a 4-year stint as a Talk Back Announcer at the Superadio Network.
John has met and interviewed many Rock Legends including Eric Clapton, Joni Mitchell, Elton John and many more. He is well known for his laid-back approach to Radio and his interviewing style. John quotes his most memorable moment in Radio is interviewing and getting to know Sir David Gilmour of Pink Floyd and was also the Music Director of Music Max (now known as MAX).
John is a tireless supporter of Aussie Music and is a member of Support Act founded by the late Billy Thorpe and Michael Chugg.
- Mike Cassidy – Percussion & Vocals
- John Carroll – Vocals
- Ron “Bert” Harris – Guitar
- Derek Pellicci – Drums
- Michael Brown – Bass