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This album is dedicated to the memory of our good friend, Jeff 'Mayhem' Thompson. The powerful tune, 'The Warrior's Salute,' is named in his honor. We'd like to thank everyone in the Rogues family for being so supportive through the good times and the bad... without you we are dust. We'd also like to thank all of our friends and family for the way they keep the faith, keep us sane, and keep us coming home. Likewise, meeting and befriending Frank Thompson and all of Mayhem's family has been the brightest part of a dark year. Finally, we'd like to thank Mayhem for showing us that heroes do indeed walk the Earth.

Date added: 18 years, 6 months ago

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Formed in 1987, the band was originally called 'Clandestine. It was comprised of Lars Sloan, E. J. Jones, Randy Wothke, and J.W. McCormick. They quickly established themselves in the Renaissance circuit playing mostly traditional pipe and drum music.During the Summer of '93 E.J. Jones left to attend Carnegie Mellon University. Thomas Campbell was brought in to fill the role vacated by E.J.. With help from the band, E. J. was flown in to guest perform with them one weekend during Texas Renaissance Festival that year. After T.R.F., Lars, who had started to become involved with the movie industry, decided to pursue a full time career as a Special Effects Artist. J.W. McCormick left about the same time. By the Fall of '94, Lars, with his new career blossoming, chose not to return to the lineup. He also chose to reserve the right to the use of the name 'Clandestine' in the future. The remaining members needed a new name, and Sharon, Randy's wife, suggested the 'The Scottish Rogues'. The band adopted the name and thus 'The Rogues' were born. The lineup now consisted of Randy, Tom, E.J. (who by this time had returned to Texas), and Paul Rendon. During this first year together as 'The Scottish Rogues', they did not record any albums. It was during this year that Bryan Blaylock first introduced himself to the 'refurbished' group. He had acquired a bodhran and was learning to play on his own. In the Summer of '95, Paul and E. J. Jones left the group. E.J. contacted Jennifer Hamill, whom he met while attending Carnegie Mellon University. They contacted Lars and together formed a new group using the 'Clandestine' name. The remaining members of 'The Scottish Rogues', Randy and Tom, invited Jimmy Mitchell and Bryan to join the group. They recorded their first album in August of '95 and released it in tapes only at T.R.F.. For the initial run the band had only ordered 500 copies of their self titled tapes, hoping and praying that they would sell enough to recoup their expenses. If they could sell one or two tapes per show, they reasoned, they would be able to break even by the end of faire. The tape's success was over whelming. Not only, did they break even in the first weekend they would need to reorder two more times before the faire was over. At this time, the band began to expand their touring and musical boundaries by traveling to such venues as Scarborough Faire, Castle at Muskogee, Dickens on the Strand in Galveston, and Victorian Christmas in Austin. In March of '96, the band made a Compact Disc version of their first album, which was released on St. Patrick's Day in Houston. They quickly discovered that there was a greater demand for CD's rather than tapes. By the end of Scarborough Faire in '96, Jimmy decided to leave the band to pursue 'raising' his piping grade and lowering his golf handicap (He has succeeded in both). During this time, the band invited Lars to join them at Scarborough Faire. This gave 'The Scottish Rogues' three pipers for the last couple of weekends, and a smoother transition when Jimmy left at the end of the faire. Lars officially joined the group full-time and was there when the band made their debut at the Maryland Renaissance Festival and Kansas City Renaissance Festival the Fall of '96. 'The Scottish Rogues' recorded their second album that summer, and released 'Hollerin' for Haggis' at T.R.F. in the fall. In early '97, the band continued to expand its horizons by including Norman Medieval Faire and the USCO Highland Games in Oklahoma. In late June '97, Tom left the band and moved to Oklahoma helping to form the 32nd Street Pipe and Drum Corps in Oklahoma City. Jimmy came back from his 'tour' and rejoined the group. At this time, the guys decided to officially change their name to simply, 'The Rogues'. They went on the road that summer to pick up new gigs at Bristol Renaissance Faire, Great Lakes Medieval Faire in Ohio, and the new faire in Ontario, Canada. It was in Canada that they paired up with the Tartan Terrors once more after having performed with them at Scarborough Faire and in Maryland the previous season. The first Ceilidh show with the Tartan Terrors was done in August of '97 in Burlington, Ontario. The performance was recorded and became the band's third CD, 'Live in Canada, eh?' This album was released in Maryland and Kansas City, as well as the Texas Renaissance Festival that fall. The new CD, which featured some of their best music from both of the first two CD's plus some new songs, was filled with all of the energy and passion of their live show. It received an excellent review by the Dirty Linen Magazine in October '99. It remains one of their most popular CD releases to date. In January of 1999, 'The Rogues' went into the studio once more and recorded their 'Off Kilter' CD, which was due to release in late March. Prior to the release date, 'The Rogues' in conjunction with Hamilton Productions, boarded a cruise ship called the 'Enchanted Isle' bound for the Caribbean. They welcomed 38 people aboard their first 'Celtic Cruise'. The band brought the new CD with them and held a special sneak preview for the people that went on the trip. The disco never sounded better. In March of 2000, 'The Rogues' and Hamilton Productions, invited the 'Blarney Brothers' and 'Six Mile Bridge' to sail with them on their Second Annual 'Celtic Cruise' aboard the 'Enchanted Isle'. Over 100 people came along with the bands as they rambled through the Caribbean. 'Off Kilter' was officially released in March 28 '99 at McGonigel's Mucky Duck Pub in Houston. It marked the most critically acclaimed CD release by 'The Rogues'. It garnered nominations for Grammy awards in the Category 4: 'Best New Artist' and Category 61: 'Best Contemporary Folk'. Since the new CD was self-produced by 'The Rogues', it did not have enough national exposure, and therefore was not listed in the final ballot. The year 2000 marks a turning point for 'The Rogues'. With commercial success, and acknowledgment from the music industry, the band is embarking on new and greater adventures. They hope to have their latest two albums available in stores all over the country by the end of this year. To the end of this year and beyond, no one knows what the future holds for 'The Rogues'. But we do know that it's going to be a fun ride.