Montoya take the stage at Town Show

Press Release


Look forward to a show-stopping performance from a band with comedy attitude, as Montoya take to the stage at this year's Dagenham Town Show.

Described as a mix between the Beautiful South and The Smiths, the band were formed two and half years ago by three friends in an East End pub.

Following the recruitment of a drummer and piano player, they became a five piece, but this soon became four when the novelty of dragging an electric piano around gig venues wore off.

Two changes in personnel followed. Lead singer, John Cooke, explained: "Our more talented members moved on to better (paid) things, so we've settled with a line up that lacks the ambition to look elsewhere."

Montoya have been playing live throughout London during the last 18 months, building up a firm fanbase of friends, music lovers and confused Formula 1 enthusiasts.

Montoya Are:

John Cooke Ė Lead Singer and Rhythm Guitarist

Born in England in 1978, John spent much of his childhood in Bolivia, and is a highly regarded pan pipes player. Returning to England to attend university, he met Nick Allen, with whom he was later to form the band.

Nick Allen Ė Lead Guitar

Widely regarded as the catalyst within the group, Nick puts his intricate guitar work down to a love of Airfix toys as a child. The manual dexterity he built up constructing Heinkel Bombers has since allowed him to play some of the most catchy lead this side of Johnny Marr.

Chris Kirwin - Bass

Originally the bandís piano player, Chris stepped into the breach following the arrest of the bandís bass player on the day of a long-planned gig. Following a rock-steady performance, Chris took the job of bass player full time, abandoning the keys to provide the bandís beating heart.

Pete Haworth - Drums

A former drummer in the Queenís Regiment, Pete left the armed forces in the mid 90s to study medicine. Now a fully qualified doctor, he fits in practises and gigs around his surgeries in the Home Counties.

Catch Montoya on the main stage in Central Park, Dagenham,on Sunday July 20 between 12.30pm and 1pm.

For more information on Dagenham Town Show, call the Events hotline on 020 8227 3184.



Posted by Forest Pines under Artistic , Photobloggery

One of the events from my trip to London recently: a gig by the band Montoya, at the Betsey Trotwood pub in Farringdon.* I have an interest to declare, of course: John, Montoyaís lead singer, is someone Iíve known for years, and donít see at all often enough.**

Iíd not seen them play before, but they really were rather good; and Iím not just saying that because Johnís a friend of mine.*** Lively, bouncy indie-rock with intelligent lyrics and intelligent chord progressions; look out for them.

I shot off a whole roll of photos, but - like the Shimura Curves gig a few days earlier, Iím not really happy with them. The Shimuras photos had put me off doing natural-light photos; so I went the other way, and produced a roll of brightly-lit shots with horribly detailed backgrounds and hardly any atmosphere. The few I did with natural light were by far the best. Here are some of them; I also didnít get any good shots at all of the drummer, because he was hiding away at the back.


* Directly above the Widened Lines, and almost above the Ray Street Gridiron bridge - if you look at this 1860s picture, the Betsey Trotwood is above the tunnel mouth on the left, now the Circle Line.

** Heís a regular reader, too - hi John! - and there are photos of his daughter Piglet Jaime elsewhere on the site too.

*** or because heíll be reading this.

Keyword noise: music, gigs, indie, Montoya

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