The Watch
The Watch

In the early 1990’s, I moved in with my good friend Derek Helvey at his farm in Blountville, TN. We became good friends while attending Sullivan Central High School where we played jazz together under the direction of Bill Canny and we played in our first band together as Infinity.

From his farm, we began to explore with our love of progressive rock music, particularly bands like Kansas, Yes, Rush, Led Zeppelin, Steely Dan, UK, Genesis and others.

As we began to record our original ramblings, several songs started to emerge from riffs and experimentation with effects and tones. One day while hanging out at Morrell Music in Kingsport, a long-haired, charismatic bassist walked in with a “Roll The Bones” Rush t-shirt popped into the store one afternoon and we immediately began a new friendship.

Bo had moved back to Boones Creek from Miami after touring with The Smithereens.

Chris Jones, a terrific drummer and budding producer from Kingsport worked at the music store and he was at pivotal moment in his life and together we decided to rent a house together in Mount Carmel to start a band. In fact, two bands – The Watch and Ahab and The Wailers.

The name “The Watch” came from a lyric from a Peter Gabriel song called “Rhythm of The Heat.” Seemed like a good enough name and it wasn’t long before we were rehearsing several nights in a basement on Dogwood Avenue.

This house was a great place for music and we hosted parties and rehearsed several times a week. From this location, we would write, record and produce one of the most original rock sounds of the era. Our original song, The Law of Diminishing Returns was our first song that caught the attention of WIMZ in Knoxville.

Their Sunday night “Homegrown Showcase” would eventually play all five of our original songs and voted the band into the 1992 Rock and Blues Awards. The band was nominated as best new act and I was humbled with a best instrumentalist award.

We would perform many times in the Old City, Gatlinburg and the Knoxville College strip before disbanding in 1993 for various reasons.

Chris left the band, got married and moved to Nashville. Jones was replaced by Morgan LaFay drummer Steve “O’ and later by Eric Augenstein who later moved to West Virginia and joined a Russian Orthodox monastery.

The band would continue to perform at many places in the region and we collected lots of great memories and recording experiences.

When Eric left the band, we continued to try to find a new drummer and by that time, Bo had left the band to pursue other interests and we worked a few sessions with a wonderful artist and lyricist, Ernie Gray, but the band dissolved shortly thereafter.

We had a great time and shared moments of the greatest hope as a band. Below are the five primary tracks that were picked up by WIMZ and video (coming soon) to mark Halloween 1992 where the band performed their best live performance on video.

Bo Bradley- Vocal and Bass
David Cate – Keyboards
Derek Helvey – Guitars
Chris Jones – Drums

Discography – All Original Music written by The Watch

Videos from 1993