Sydney based band covering Police and others.
Formed in 1987, Zenyatta was formed out of the remnants of Sydney covers band “Hekyll and Jekyll”, that exploded in a flourish of infighting.
Guitarist, Mark Johnson, tried to reassemble the band with a few calls to some ex Bleach Boys. Namely Bronte Wake and Mark Wells. This failed as Bronte was relocating to Coffs Harbour, the drummer broke his ankle in a fight, and the keyboard player didn’t like some of the new material that was coming in and so departed.
This left Wells and Johnson who had established a good friendship and working relationship through their time together in The Bleach Boys. They decided they would seek out a new drummer and try a 3 piece. Enter Bruce Fraser who was recently departed from Stormy Monday.
The three got together at Sound Level Studios in Ultimo and there was an instant musical chemistry. The only question now was what material they would do. Bruce had the idea to do a Police concept show. It was agreed on and the name for the band Zeyatta, came from the title of The Police’s third album, Zenyatta Mondatta.
The band was tight and punchy, but the show wasn’t being received well by audiences. The decision was taken to reassess rather than disband as the band sounded great as a unit. So the decision was made to include top 40 covers as well as maintaining a small Police presence. Joanne Forrester joined the ensemble to share lead vocal duties, and a sequencer was purchased to provide the keyboard parts rather than pay a fifth member.
The band enjoyed reasonable success at home and interstate, then folded after a couple of years when internal tensions started to develope.
Mark Wells would go on to join Bandanna soon afterwards. Mark Johnson decided to just take some time off to be with his family as the strains of life on the road were taking their toll at home. A few months later he too got the call to sign up for a tour of duty with Bandanna.
- Mark Johnson – Guitar / vocals
- Mark Wells – Bass/ vocals
- Bruce Fraser – Drums
- Joanne Forrester – Lead vocals
- Lisa Wright – Lead vocals