I was asked to join brothers Bill & Rollie Hardie, formerly of Willie and the Walkers, when they  formed a new group called Shinto. The band played around Alberta, and had an old 1947 Brill bus for travel.  It was equipped with bunks and a table, as well as lots of room for gear.

When the Brill gave up, it was replaced by a similar blue school bus which we called "Earl".  We drove it to New Jersey where we played for a week at Tony Mart's in Ocean City.  My wage for the "tour" was Bill's Fender Precision bass, which was grey/green at the time.







After Shinto, Will MacCalder (who later became a founder of Powder Blues) reformed The Walkers with drummer Rollie Hardie, guitarist Steve Palmer, and myself on bass.




I painted the Fender with a British flag design. (Later stripped it down to the bare wood finish, but it was fun at the time)








At this point I was also enrolled at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology in a program called "Radio & TV Arts".






Joined a dance group called "Patch" later in 1971.




Rick Francis - lead vocals

Gordon Belsher - bass & vocals

Ken Brenzan - drums

Henry Laliberte - lead guitar & vocals

(missing from photos: Rick Lundquist - keys)





December 30, 1972

married Charlene Drouin









Continued playing with "Patch" at clubs in Alberta, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan through 1973 and into 1974.

L to R - Doug Anderson (guitar, vocals), Rick Dubord (keys, vocals), Rick Francis (lead vocals), Ken Brenzan (drums), Gordon Belsher (bass, vocals)





Visited Prince Edward Island for the first time in 1974.  I was on the Island about 15 minutes when I said to Charlene "someday, I want to have a Prince Edward Island licence plate on my van!"






Joined the tour band for Buddy "Party Doll" Knox in October of 1974.  Started in Moosomin, Saskatchewan & toured across Canada through to April 1975.  Learned a lot about professionalism from Buddy.  What a great guy!


Buddy Knox

L to R Ric Kokotovich (drums),

Brian Tripp (guitar & vocals),

Jocelynne Lamereux (vocals),

Don Johnston (keys),

Gordon Belsher (bass & vocals)




Back to "Patch" 1975-1978

Very popular dance band in Edmonton






Gordon Belsher - bass & vocals

Rol Hardie - drums

 Rick Francis - lead vocals

Rick Dubord - keys & vocals

Doug Anderson - guitar & vocals



Moved to Prince Edward Island in August 1978 to start a new life in Guernsey Cove.