The Shades

I unfortunately have no photos from this band but it was, to say the least, an authentic “Yorkville” band and it did have two players (other than myself of course LOL), who both went on to perform in two international bands. Yorkville during the mid 60’s to early 70’s was the hub of “indie bands” in Toronto and spanned international stars such as Joanie Mitchell, Neil Young, Lennie Bruce, Ian and Sylvia, Gordon Lightfoot and many others who mostly played at the El Patio or The Riverboat

Bob McBride, our lead singer, went on to fame as the lead singer of Lighthouse and his brother Danny, played lead guitar internationally with Chris De Burgh. Danny was only 13 or 14 years of age when he played in the Shades.

Our Yorkville go to club was Charlie Browns on Cumberland St. situated behind the El Patio on Yorkville itself.

Occasionally we’d go down Yorkville between sets at Charlie Browns to a club called Chez Monique to see an unknown band by the name of The Sparrows who later became the internationally known band Steppenwolf

One of the most fun things that the band did was to play a club in a town 2 or 4 hours out of Toronto where we were billed as “The Shades: A Band From Yorkville”. This is about the closest this band came to stardom. Our hotel would become the place to be and be seen. The local girls would flock and it wasn’t uncommon to have 20 or 30 young ladies waiting outside the hotel early in the mornings to catch us.

This band was fun but I finally graduated university as an Industrial Engineer and got my first job right in Toronto. It didn’t take long for me to realize that engineering just wasn’t for me so I quit and started my first full time band

Huron and Washington”
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