Leo Ganley

My Musical History

Warning:  This is the story of my life, doing my life's work... making music with my friends.

My Musical Journey & History:

I started playing guitar as a Sophomore in high school in 1983, in Exeter NH, forming a band called Father Nature with my musical pals.  We jammed almost everyday in Mike Chatigny's basement, playing classic rock songs from the 1970's, and most importantly creating our own originals. Jeff Wyman was part of this scene too, as all of the musicians in town were growing up together. We performed at our school dances and friend's parties as we started our inevitable journey as rock musicians, an odyssey that would last us all a life time. 

Father Nature (1983 - 1990):  Leo Ganley on guitar and lead vocals; Bill Boyd on bass guitar; Rich Brown on lead guitar; Mike Chatigny on drums and vocals.  We were often joined by Chris Scammon on drums - allowing us to feature two full drum kits.  In 1985 (as a freshman at Providence College), I met George Chambers, a guitar player.  We became fast friends and started writing and performing our songs together.  He replaced Rich Brown on lead guitar in Father Nature in 1986.  George and I are still writing, recording, and performing together now, 30 years later - doing the best work we've ever done!

The Olives (1991 - 1994):  Father Nature decided to change our name to "The Olives".  We changed our line up and we changed our band, adding Sean Sumner on drums, replacing Mike Chatigny.  Sean was very influential on us, morphing us from a hippy jam thing to more of an original rock vibe. So, we changed our name to "The Olives" and our logo was a big green olive with a red pimento, or course with a small red plastic sword skewed through it... god I loved that...  After several years of AMAZING music we needed a break and decided to go separate ways and try new avenues of life.

Solo Performances (1994 - present):  Living in Portsmouth, NH I had the benefit of of being part of an amazing artistic community.  I met some new friends from Massachusetts that had moved up to be part of the scene; Chris Moore and Rob Kneeland, singers, songwriters, and multi-instrumentalists.  I didn't know it, but they would change my life.  We have been creating songs, performing, and making demos together for 20 years now.  Their singing voices and musicianship take my songs and live gigs to incredible heights.

Chaining Texas (1995-1997):  After "The Olives" stopped making music together I started to write and perform with a 'Power Trio' called "Chaining Texas".  This line up featured: Leo Ganley on guitars and vocals; Sean Sumner on drums; Bill Boyd on bass. This was a new experience for me, as I now was playing in a three piece rock band - responsible for all of the musical voicing that goes along with being the only guitar player and singer.

This was an extension of being a solo artist, but with a huge sound.  The experience was a rebirth for me, and sent me back to school, the school of rock.  We reached incredible musical highs and heart breaking, devastating lows.  As powerful as the music was, it was weaker than the herion addictions that ruined it, and we eventually lost our brother and drummer, Sean Sumner.  This still hurts.

Weed Inc. [Lemon Fresh Kids]  (1998 - 2007):  After the tragedy of Chaining Texas, I started writing and recording new songs to be part of my new solo record. As I was in the studio recording the demos for the album, my good friend Tim McCoy joined me as my session bass player.  He was the bass guitarist for local legends "Heavens To Murgatroid", and they stopped playing together so Tim joined up with me full time.  We formed a prototypical power pop trio rock band, calling ourselves "Weed" and then "Lemon Fresh Kids". Featuring: Leo Ganley on guitar and vocals; Tim McCoy on bass and back up vocals; and Norm Fuller on drums and back up vocals.

This band was the ride of my life, as we worked a lot, and got real good.  We made a lot of sound for a three piece, as our back line of amps consisted of three Matchless AC/30 guitar amps for me and twin classic Ampeg 8x10 "refrigerators" for Tim.  Needless to say, we had a WALL OF SOUND, and delivered big melodies and lots of smart backups.  Tim and Norm were amazing to work with, and we wrote A LOT of songs and played many AWESOME shows together.  

After 10 years Tim told us that he had always wanted to front his own band, so we stopped playing together so he could pursue his dream to do that... major bummer - but what a ride that was.

Leo Ganley [Solo]  (2008 - Present):  Presently I perform under the name "Leo Ganley", as either solo acoustic or full band rock show.  Depending on the venue, I perform with several different line ups that consist of my musical network.  I do solo acoustic shows, acoustic duo shows with George Chambers on acoustic guitar, or with Jeff Wyman on Bass.  I do full band performances with Norm fuller on drums, rounding out the rock sound with George and Jeff.

Most importantly, I continue to write new songs, producing and recording new demos as I am building a couple of new records.  George Chambers (my musical partner of 30 years), and I are experiencing a renaissance together, easily doing the best work of our lives.  Experience, knowledge, technology, and desire are all coming together at a perfect time in our lives, as the next chapter is being written...