Parachute Club

Parachute Club. Toronto pop music collective, active 1982-8. Formed by the singer Lorraine Segato and the percussionist Billy Bryans, it emerged from the Queen Street West neighbourhood of clubs and art galleries that flourished during the 1980s.

Parachute Club

Parachute Club. Toronto pop music collective, active 1982-8. Formed by the singer Lorraine Segato and the percussionist Billy Bryans, it emerged from the Queen Street West neighbourhood of clubs and art galleries that flourished during the 1980s. The band varied in size and personnel: longtime members included Dave Gray (guitar) and Margo Davidson (saxophone, percussion), Lauri Conger (keyboards), Juli Masi (vocals, percussion), and Keir Brownstone (bass). A dozen musicians performed in what proved to be the Club's final concerts, 20 and 21 Jul 1988 at Ontario Place.

The Club's first and biggest hit, the stirring 'Rise Up' (1983, from the LP The Parachute Club, Current WAVE-2), was typical of its music: socio-political lyrics riding exuberant, Third-World rhythms. The singles 'At the Feet of the Moon' (1984, from an LP of the same title, RCA KKL1-0553) and 'Love is Fire' (1986, from the LP Small Victories, RCA KKL1-0573) were also popular. Canadian sales of At the Feet of the Moon exceeded 100,000.

The group performed throughout Canada, appeared in the USA in1985 and toured West Germany in 1987. It won Juno Awards in 1984 for single of the year ('Rise up') and as most promising group, in 1985 as group of the year, and in 1986 for best video ('Love is Fire,' directed by Ron Berti).

Segato (b Hamilton, Ont, 17 Jun 1956) undertook a solo career in 1989, forming the band Big Jump (with Dave Gray and others) and recording the album Phoenix (WEA CD-71202). Bryans (b Toronto 15 Sep 1949), who had previously produced recordings by Lillian Allen, Downchild and Dutch Mason, returned to production (eg The Phantoms, Eyuphuro) and has also accompanied Allen, Buffy Sainte-Marie and others.


Further Reading

  • Niester, Alan. 'Parachute Club spreads its wings,' Toronto The Globe and Mail, 5 Dec 1984

    Littlejohn, Maureen. 'Parachuting to victory,' Rock Express, no 107, Nov-Dec 1986

    Druckman, Howard. 'Queen Street Philly sound,' CanMus, vol 8, Dec 1986