Powerhouse was formed, Jan 15, 1986 when three horn-playing friends got together in a basement on Hamilton mountain and decided to put together an R & B horn band. The first Blues Bros. movie affected a lot of people back in those days.They got their songlist together, set up a practice basement, scrounged up the equipment and went hunting for the band. It was hard work during those first few months. They had to wait a while to lure their guitarist home from B.C., but eventually they got everyone together, the "sound" of the band emerged and they booked a short, 7-song, guest spot at Oliver's nightclub in downtown Hamilton on June 6th of that year. The songlist that day was:"Keep Playin’ That Rock & Roll" – the Edgar Winter Band"Soul Man" – Sam & Dave"Them Changes" – the Buddy Miles Band"Can’t Turn You Loose" – Otis Redding"Sweet Soul Music" – Arthur Conley"Pappa’s Gotta Brand New Bag" – James Brown"Mustang Sally" – Wilson PickettThey were on their way.Today, nearly 30 years later, the band is still going strong, still retains the original R & B 'feel', and with the many personnel changes over the years, has also branched out into Chicago Transit music, a Rod Stewart show and a Ray Charles tribute.
One of the early shows
To the right, from left to right:Paul, Mitch, Phil, John, Don, Greg & Dave
‘Da Horns’ -- Paul, Don & John
Above: the first ‘official’band picturePOWERHOUSE 1986Left to Right -- (back row): Don Berryman, Paul Augustyn, Mitch DeVeto, John Willett(front row): Dave Aldham, Phil Kott, Greg SmithBelow: The first early effort of the band to create their own promotion -- an exercise that was quickly abandoned.
In the fall of 1990, the band made a very difficult personnel decision -- they decided to go from a 3-piece horn section to four and they parted ways with their singer, Mitch DeVeto, and brought Carlo DiBattista on board -- a singer/trumpet player from another local band, Vehicle.This particular group of players and the instrumentation of 4 horns and a 3-piece rhythm section was arguably, one of the more dynamic versions of the band. They played regularly throughout the Southern Ontario and Northern U.S.A. areas during the late 80's and early 90's.Pictured to the above left: Back row, left to right, Don Berryman (trombone), Phil Kott (guitar), Paul Augustyn (sax), John Willett (trumpet) and front row, Gary Scott (drums), Carlo DiBattista (trumpet) and Greg Smith (bass guitar).