Back in the late 80s I was really into a band called Mermaid Cafe. They were a Folk Rock Trio to start out. Andie Davidson, Joe Moon and Merrill Nisker all sang, wrote and played acoustic guitar. They had a standing gig at The Cabana Room at The Spadina Hotel for at least a year straight. Joining them frequently were Jonny Super on Bass and Evan Ritchie on Drums.
Joe Moon aka Joseph Greenbaum aka Joseph Coat was the most experimental of the three and went on to form Taksi Rider which is a pretty interesting if not slightly insane sounding record. It can be found at The Indie Music Archive. Joe later went on to be a member of Euphoraphonic or Purpeloid - whichever name you choose to use!
Andie Davidson aka Andie D. was the most folk oriented.
Merrll Nisker was somewhere in between the two, bringing her theatrical past to the stage. Merrill went on to form Fancypants Hoodlum and then The Shit before going solo as Peaches in an image turnaround only matched by Alanis Morrissette. I remember seeing her first beatbox show at the Rivoli (back when she was still room mates with Leslie Feist) and I literally didn’t know what to think. I certainly never imagined that several years later she would be writing songs with Iggy Pop. Shows how much I know about music.
Anyway the Mermaid Cafe cassette is kind of like The Yellow Tape of Toronto folk artists without anyone actually looking for it.
1. Curiosity (Nisker)
2. Walk On The Line (Moon)
3. Back Of A Cadillac (Nisker)
4. Gabey & Mike (Davidson)
5. Bully Of The Block (Moon)
6. Chapters (Davidson)
7. City Streets (Davidson)
They had some other great songs as well such as PM II and I, Dalai Lama, Destroyer Man, Shocked Out Of Love, Stay On For The Ride, 851, Gliding, The Crush, Hideaway, Twilight Ramble, Feel This Pain, Share The Power, Trying, Sylvie, Half Priced Love etc.
I have some demos and live shows which I should add to The Indie Music Archive site as well.
Here is Merril as Peaches with Iggy Pop in the Kick It video