Good Night Maxine

By Paul Moffett

It might very well have been goodnight, Maxine, when Goodnight Maxine lost Paul Culligan and Ray Rizzo to lovesauce & soulbones and John Zangari to Candy Says last year.

But guitar whiz Billy Sutherland is not the kind to give up and, in due course, the group was reconfigured. Joining Sutherland were Joe Hanna on vocals, coming from the all-original Festive Zulu, drummer Rob Edwards from the Dishman & Ballard Band and bassist Mike Clark, formerly with I.O.U.

The group set about rehearsing and in September of 1993 began to play out once again. Serving up a mix of college rock and country covers, plus their originals, Goodnight Maxine got back out on the circuit. Their existing fan base helped ease the transition.

Since that reformation, Goodnight Maxine has recorded some nineteen original tunes, written by various combinations of the members of the group. The recordings include some solo instrumental work by Sutherland, who has twice been runner-up in Guitar Player Magazine's sound page competition.

According to Hanna, the group is now working and saving money so that they can release a project using the recorded material. The format of the project will depend on how much money they raise. Finding clubs that are open to the group's original material is difficult, he noted, but some places are. The Golden Nugget is in particular more open to the new songs.

"We sometimes open with a set of our songs," Hanna explained, "and sometimes we work them in around the covers."

Urging all Goodnight Maxine fans to come out and support them, Hanna said "Now it's different, so come."

Goodnight Maxine will be at the Nugget on June 16, 17 and 18.

Now Appearing is sponsored by the Golden Nugget.