“My early memories include seeing The Beatles on Ed Sullivan and Elvis on TV. As a boy I wanted to be Donny Osmond and when I became a teenage my musical taste switched to KISS, Rush, Black Sabbath…”
Clearly, music played an important part early on in the life of Terry Banks and continues to fuel his passion for life to this very day.
Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1961, Banks was raised in a musical home. In fact, music was always present with Grandparents, Parents and older Siblings always playing records or listening and singing to the radio. It was only natural that Terry was going to exhibit some kind of performing talent.
As a young boy growing up in Northern Ontario he was enrolled in accordion lessons (at age 8) and within a year or two started playing drums. Realizing there was a whole lot more to the world of music he then added cello and tenor saxophone during his school years. Then Terry expanded his self-taught skills to include piano and bass and started playing guitar as a teen switching full time from drums to guitar by the time he hit his mid-20s. By then Terry had already started or played in bands and written a few tunes.
“My first band was when I was 13 and we played in my parent’s basement and my first performance – a paid gig – was when I was 15,” Banks recalls. “I was the drummer and I credit all the music I was exposed to growing up as developing my many different musical interests.”
Although Terry had that natural ability to pick up an instrument and start playing it, he did see the need to learn how to properly construct songs. It was because of this he took lessons in theory and the added knowledge expanded his already incredible spectrum of talent.
His first set of lyrics written (inspired by the RUSH song, “Fly By Night) for a song titled, “Thinking Of You (and the Good Old Days)” came in 1978 with music following in 2009. Terry credits a strong influence in his musical styling from Canadian and International bands and musicians who were big in the 1970s and 1980s.
“My biggest influences as a songwriter are The Beatles and Billy Joel, he says (while the list is much longer for influences as a musician) there are so many ranging from Neil Peart (Rush) on drums to Rik Emmett (Triumph) on guitar to fellow ‘lefty’ Paul McCartney on bass.”
Terry wrote his first full song, titled “U Make Me Feel” in 1990 and moved to the West Coast of British Columbia the following year. That’s a long road well travelled for a guy who played and toured with various bands as a professional in the mid-1970s and 1980s to where he is now - still playing professionally (and semi-pro) on a part-time casual basis to keep sharing his talent with others.
Terry plays drums/percussion, guitars (electric and acoustic), bass, keyboards (piano, synthesizer, organ), ukulele, mandolin as well as provides lead and backing vocals on top of songwriting and producing duties.