Colin Cornell was in a number of bands before he was enticed to join the Welbeck Group. He was in The Amazing Thunderheads, a sort of Syd Barrett tribute band (he won’t like me for calling it that but that’s what they seemed like- all English whimsy and light psychedelia!). He then fronted his own band, which tried to do the 80’s synth romantic sound updated with heavier lyrics for the 90s. I consider that only a partial success although Colin still feels that they pushed the music envelope.

It was about this time, still before Colin joined the Welbeck Group, that he began to invest in retro keyboard- a passion he shares with the bass player in the Welbeck Group, Danny Welbeck.

He also has as his keyboard hero, one of mine too- Vangelis. His first breakthrough album Heaven and hell still bears repeated listening today!

Vangelis today

I had long discussions with Colin Cornell about joining the Welbeck Group. It was obvious that he was talented and had songwriting as well as arranging skills. He could also play a mean keyboard. He could sing harmony, and occasionally main vocals, and could also play guitar, and slide guitar. A Multi-talented guy by anyone’s reckoning!  The reason I had such long and protracted discussions with him about joining the Welbeck Group was because he wanted to be a full member of the band, while I wanted to pay him a wage, like Alex Cooper, the drummer.

Colin Cornell shows off his retro ARP Odyssey synthesiser

However I was aware that Danny Welbeck considered Colin a musical equal and was very keen to have someone share the responsibility for coming up with great songs. So I had the usual conflict as a band manager. Money versus artistry. Was it worth the risk of having Colin come in and sharing the profits three ways (after Alex’s wage) in return for revitalisation and less strain on Danny Welbeck to be the leader of the Welbeck group all the time?

At the end of the day, I was persuaded by Danny that full band membership was the right course for Colin. I was glad about that in the long run. Colin has contributed a very keen edge to the Welbeck Group’s music. One that has allowed Danny Welbeck to concentrate on more esoteric lines of music in his songwriting, and give him the space to allow for some failures. The Welbeck Group gained more than the sum of its parts, as they say.

Colin Cornell visited and sampled the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland

Colin, of course, goes off from time to time to do his solo projects, including an interesting one about the Large Hadron Collider, where he was able to travel to Switzerland and sample the awesome sound of the LHC starting up. He also claims he saw evidence of a Higgs bosun (“God”) particle- but no-one believes him.  The Hadron album should be out this Summer and features artwork by Danny Welbeck’s wife, Yolanda Welbeck.

The Large Hadron Collider start up sampled sound!