Biography

In the late 70s Ken Murdoch, Michael Tortoni and Virgil Donati, under the name of CLOUD 9 were ready to transform and record an album as three piece TASTE. (the name came because manager Chris Nolan had sold the band for a ice cream TV ad called “Fancy”, They rejected the name FANCY for the band and decided on Taste!) By chance Ken ran into Joey Amenta at a guitar shop and rang Michael to tell him he had found the missing fourth member. “I didn’t know we were looking…” came Tortoni’s wry reply. After the first rehearsal it was obvious. Amenta left school that week, played two nights at Festival Hall, and then toured NSW for 12 weeks. Along the way the band purchased 7 Marshall stacks, a truck then began a long slog of 5 night weeks of gigs. Ken Murdoch: “I started singing in shitholes when I was 15. By the time I was 17 I was a veteran of pub rock alongside of Joey and Michael. We had been booed, spat upon and ignored until we got it right and that’s something bands don’t have. The opportunity to hone their skills anymore. BUT once you get it right and that crowd love you, something magical happens between the two of you. I don’t see that happen much anymore”. TASTE were the youngest recording artists for Warner Music and released three albums. They had a number of top twenty hits including the classic BOYS WILL BE BOYS. Which was adopted by Queen in their warm up music before their shows. They were also asked by Queen to support them on their US tour in 1978 but had to decline due to financial reasons . Ritchie Blackmore and Ronnie James Dio bacame fans as well. Taste went on for the next two years to tour Australia constantly. They were the first band to appear on the pilot for TV show Countdown. They were regular guests on COUNTDOWN, BANDSTAND, SOUNDS UNLIMITED, and the DON LANE SHOW. They regularly played Festival Hall with the likes of Sweet, Suzi Quatro, Sherbet and Skyhooks. They performed on the banks of the Yarra for 3XY radio to 13,000 people. They disbanded in 1979 on the eve of signing with Seymour Steins SIRE RECORDS in the USA. Constant touring, change of management and bickering led to the bands demise. Ironically in America pictures of the band started to surface in rock magazines mentioning Australia’s TASTE as a band to watch when they tour US the next year! ROCK IS DEAD Sickened by what seems to be a lack of real rock direction in music,. Tastes lyrics explore and destroy the media frenzied world that seems to accept its stars by the amount of exposure offered to them rather than by virtue of their talent. Exploring subjects such as 9/11, death, child abuse and religion the album has a dark tone lyrically while appearing jubilant musically. One of the tracks “BREATHE” written by Murdoch for his dying brother has been picked up as the theme for the Cancer Council of NSW. Another track “KYLE” made it into the top twenty worldwide rock songs for THE JOHN LENNON SONGWRITING CONTEST. The band signed publishing in USA and JAPAN. “People need heroes and singers and bands that they can trust. Every so often a Sex Pistols or Nirvana comes around. Its unstoppable,” Says Murdoch. Bridging the power chords and riffs of the late 70s with a contemporary sounds and subjects, Rock is Dead is a timeless classic that will empower anyone who listens to it celebrate the true sound of rock. “Rock Is Dead” is available at www.taste-music.com “While once again illustrating how they love the rock, pop and glam that inspired them way back then, the reunited Taste also remind us they know intimately what it is like to be a fan. This is a record worth searching out” — Christie Elizer – Australasian Bureau Chief, Billboard Magazine “If Metallica and Queen had a bastard baby it would be called TASTE!”- Brian Mannix

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