The Paupers

The Paupers. Toronto rock band. It was formed in 1965 as the Spats by the drummer Ronn (Skip) Prokop, the guitarists Bill Misener and Chuck Beal, and the bass guitarist Denny Gerrard.

The Paupers

The Paupers. Toronto rock band. It was formed in 1965 as the Spats by the drummer Ronn (Skip) Prokop, the guitarists Bill Misener and Chuck Beal, and the bass guitarist Denny Gerrard. In 1966, with the singer-songwriter and (12-string) guitarist Adam Mitchell replacing Misener, the Paupers emerged from Yorkville coffeehouses with two dissimilar styles then new to Canada: folk rock and 'psychedelic' rock. The latter, which featured Beale or Gerrard in extended improvisations to the drum accompaniment of the other three Paupers, brought the band attention in the USA. Appearances followed there, and across Canada, in 1967.

The Paupers had minor hits in Canada that year with 'If I Call by Some Name' and 'Simple Deed' and made two LPs, Magic People (1967, Verve Forecast FTS-3026) and, with Brad Campbell replacing Gerrard and organist John Ord added, the acclaimed Ellis Island (1968, Verve Forecast FTS-3051). Though short-lived, the Paupers were one of the most progressive and musicianly Canadian rock bands of their day. After their demise in 1968, Prokop was co-leader of Lighthouse and Mitchell (b Glasgow 24 Nov 1944) turned to a career as a songwriter and record producer in Toronto and, by the late 1970s, Los Angeles. His songs have been recorded by Art Garfunkel, Merle Haggard, Doug Kershaw, Kiss, Nicolette Larsen, and others. His popular 'French Waltz' was included on his LP Redhead in Trouble (Warner 3325), issued in 1979.