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Didge Digital was the keyboards player with FM during the band's 80's heyday when they released such AOR/melodic rock classics as 'Indiscreet' and 'Tough It Out' before Didge left in 1990 and the band took a more blues rock direction. Didge himslef now fronts an ELP tribute band Black Moon...

1. What are you currently up to?

Just done some gigs,they were brilliant,and now making a demo CD for promoters,agencies etc.......then a video/DVD.

2. You are now fronting an ELP tribute band. How did that come about and do you recreate the full Keith Emerson experience with knives in keyboards?

Its something that I've wanted to do for years - finally got it off the ground!- I used to do the organ throwing/knife thing when I was 17 years old - my back won't allow it anymore !!! So I just get down to the serious playing and ribbon controller gyrations !! oops not forgetting the singing as well.

3. What have been the highlights/lowlights of your career to date?

Well,I suppose FM was THE highlight - but Ive done so many things - There's definately a few dodgy bands as well! Mind you,my new band is quite a highlight for me as well (but its the hardest thing I've ever done)

4. What have you been up to since you left FM?

Doing gigs/paying the bills just like everyone else - went solo in 2000 - so now I suppose I'm a vocal/keyboard artiste and of course I've got the band now !! I did a short spell with Pink Floyd band "Off The Wall".

5. What have been the most memorable gigs and why?

London Astoria - magic night ! The early Marquee gigs - historical venue - Hammersmith Odeon - too many to mention.

6. FM - How did you come to join the band? Did you have much input in the songwriting?

Same sad answer I was originally just sessioning on the demos and showcases,and when the band got a deal,they asked me if I wanted to join! I co-wrote a few of the songs - but my main input was on the keys!

7. Why do you think FM never broke the US given that they had the AOR sound so beloved in the US at that time?

I know - its a real puzzle, I think that maybe internal company politics in Sony UK and USA were a problem/or the US doesn't like to import UK bands (but it loves to export US bands everywhere) who knows ??? Conspiracy theories abound !!!!!!!

8. How did you come to leave the band? Were you approached by other bands to join them?

I'd had enough - the band had peaked - there was no where left to go. I didn't leave to join another band though!

9. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

Er....what's spare time.......if I get any,its spent with my girlfriend Carolyn, or son Lewis (who is getting rather good on the guitar!)

10. Message for our fans?

Love you all.........check out the website loads of info - FM and Black Moon (ELP band).

Interview © 2006 Jason Ritchie/
Format and edit: The Music Index.

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