Lobby Loyde

Lobby Loyde — aka John Baslington Lyde (May 18, 1941 — April 21, 2007) — was an Australian blues-rock guitarist who emerged in the Sixties beat groups The Purple Hearts and The Wild Cherries. In 1968, he joined Billy Thorpe‘s reinvented Aztecs and played on their 1971 album The Hoax Is Over.

Loyde made his solo debut with the 1971 Infinity release Plays With George Guitar. He cut four subsequent albums (1972–74) with Coloured Balls, a proto-punk act associated with the sharpie subculture.

In 1976, Loyde resumed his solo career with the Rainbird release Obsecration. He recorded music for a multi-media concept, Beyond Morgia the Labyrinths of Klimster, which later surfaced on Aztec Music.

Early Life

Lobby was born John Baslington Lyde on May 18, 1941, in Longreach, Queensland, to a classical-pianist mother and a multi-instrumentalist father who collected jazz and blues records and played harp, piano, and trumpet in an 18-piece R&B band.

As a child, Lyde studied classical piano and violin. He constructed his first guitar from wood and received an amplifier and a Fender electric model as gifts from his father. He later nicknamed the Fender “George.” Under the name Barry Lyde, he joined Devil’s Disciples, a Brisbane group inspired by the first wave of rock ‘n’ roll. In 1963, he joined The Stilettos, an Atlantics-style surf–instrumental act.

The Purple Hearts

In 1964, Lyde joined The Impacts, an R&B group with bassist Bob Dames. They served as an opening act on the 1965 Australian premiere of The Rolling Stones. Upon discovery of a Melbourne-based Impacts, they renamed themselves The Purple Hearts, a nickname for the uppers they consumed on tour. They cut an acetate with covers of Them (“Gloria”) and the Graham Bond Organization (“Long Legged Baby”).

In October 1966, a re-recorded “Long Legged Baby” appeared on Sunshine Records as the debut Purple Hearts single. It reached No. 24 on the Go-Set chart. They cut three further singles and an EP (The Sound of the Purple Hearts) but split in January 1967, by which point Lyde acquired the nickname Lobby Loyde (“lobby” was Queensland slang for “yabby,” a freshwater crayfish).

Wild Cherries

In January 1967, Loyde took the lead-guitarist slot in Wild Cherries, a veteran Melbourne R&B act that now embraced psychedelic rock. Between July 1967 and April 1968, they cut four singles on Festival Records. Loyde wrote their material (credited as B. Lyde), including the psych classic “Krome Plated Yabby” and the Go-Set hit “That’s Life.”

Billy Thorpe & The Aztecs

In October 1968, Loyde joined the third versions of the Aztecs, a Melbourne act that survived two beat-era iterations under singer Billy Thorpe, a former clean-cut singer in the teen idol mold. Thorpe now embraced the hard-rock of Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Loyde tutored Thorpe on guitar and spurred his move into heavy territory. In 1970, they recorded The Hoax Is Over, released in January 1971 after Loyde’s departure.

New Wild Cherries

In early 1971, Loyde assembled a powertrio with bassist Teddy Toi and drummer Johnny Dick, both fresh from the MCA one-off Fanny Adams with original Aztec (and recent Bee Gee) Vince Melouney. (Toi and Dick played in the second Aztecs iteration, between the tenures of Melouney and Loyde.)

As Wild Cherries, they performed their set-piece “G.O.D.” (aka “Guitar Overdose”) on a July 1971 episode of GTK, a music program aired by the Australian Broadcasting Corp.

They linked with the nascent Melbourne indie Havoc, which issued the fifth Wild Cherries single: “I’m The Sea (Stop Killing Me),” a Loyde original backed with the group-written “Daily Planet,” both produced by Aztecs drummer Gil Matthews at Sound Studio 31.

A. “I’m The Sea (Stop Killing Me)” features Thorpe on backing vocals.
B. “Daily Planet”

Plays With George Guitar

Lobby Loyde released his debut solo album, Plays With George Guitar, in September 1971 on Infinity. It features eight originals performed with the Wild Cherries rhythm section of Toi and Dick.

A1. “Everybody Come Together” (5:05)
A2. “Feels Good” (8:05)
A3. “George” (7:06)
B1. “Dream” (8:16)
B2. “What I Want” (3:45)
B3. “Evolution” (8:00)
B4. “Herreni” (1:05)

Wild Cherries played the inaugural Sunbury Pop Festival, a three-day event (January 29–31, 1972) at George Duncan’s farm near Diggers Rest with sets by Thorpe & the Aztecs, Blackfeather, Carson, Chain, Company Caine, Highway, MacKenzie Theory, Madder Lake, Pirana, SCRA, Spectrum, Tamam Shud, and Kiwi rockers The La De Da’s and Max Merritt & the Meteors. By February, Loyde disbanded the trio.

Coloured Balls

In March 1972, Loyde formed Coloured Balls, a psychedelic blues and proto-punk quartet with guitarist–singer Andrew Fordham, bassist Janis Miglans, and drummer Trevor Young. That spring, they recorded an album under the working title Rock Your Arse Off, but it would up vaulted until 1976 when the indie label Rainbird released the contents as The First Supper Last (Or Scenes We Didn’t Get to See).

In January 1973, Coloured Balls performed a medley (“Help Me / Rock Me, Baby”) with Thorpe and singer Leo de Castro (Healing Force, Friends) at the second annual Sunbury Pop Festival. That spring, Mushroom Records issued their Sunbury set as Summer Jam, which features Coloured Balls’ sixteen-minute rendition of the Wild Cherries number “G.O.D.”

Coloured Balls toured Australia with T. Rex and cut three singles, including the October 1973 chart hit “Mess of the Blues.” Their debut studio album, Ball Power, appeared in December on EMI. They played the third Sunbury in January 1974 with fellow hard-rockers Buster Brown, led by singer Angry Anderson.

Coloured Balls’ second studio album, Heavy Metal Kid, appeared in June 1974 and spawned a second hit, “Love You Baby.” They attracted an audience of “sharpies,” a skinhead-derived Aussie teenage subculture characterised by (alleged) rowdy antics and distinct style details (cropped hair, rolled jeans, boots, cardigans). Coloured Balls model the sharpie look on the Ball Power inner-sleeve. Their association with the movement limited their live bookings.

Solo Career

In late 1974, Loyde disbanded Coloured Balls and cut a solo single: the blues-rock original “Do You Believe In Magic?” (not the Lovin’ Spoonful song) backed with “Love Lost On Dream-Tides.”

A. “Do You Believe In Magic” (3:30)
B. “Love Lost On Dream-Tides” (4:25)

Loyde formed another band, Southern Electric, with Miglans and drummer Jimmy Thompson, a colleague from the ’68 Aztecs lineup. He invited Angry Anderson, but the singer was tied to other commitments. Lobby secured Mandu (aka Chris Morris), a mystery singer who recorded the 1974 albums To the Shores of His Heaven with alumni of Chain and the Captain Matchbox Whoopee Band.


Lobby Loyde released his second solo album, Obsecration, in May 1976 on Rainbird.

Obsecration features two multi-movement suites, two medium-length pieces, and two miniatures.

He’s backed on the album by Southern Electric and Coloured Balls guitarist Andrew Fordham.

A1. “Obsecration (Parts A to D)” (16:06)
      a. Play My Guitar
      b. Obligato
      c. Continuation
      d. Legarto
A2. “A Rumble With Seven Parts and Lap Dissolve” (5:12)
A3. “Rock and Roll Sunset” (1:58)

B1. “Dreamtide” (14:35)
      a. Statement
      b. Refrain
B2. “Goin’ to Louisianna” (7:44)
B3. “Congratulateonies” (0:47)

Recorded At – Armstrong Studios
Producer – Lobby Loyde
Engineer [Backtrack and Mix Engineer and State-Of-Art Production] – Graham Owens

Acoustic Guitar [Left Speaker Box] – Andrew Fordham
Acoustic Guitar [Right Speaker Box] – Lobby Loyde
Electric Guitar, Rhythm Guitar – Andrew Fordham
All Other Guitar Parts – Lobby Loyde

Bass – Janis Miglans
Drums – Graham Morgan (B1b), James D. Thompson
Keyboards – John (Deysey) Dey
Saxophone – Paul Dixon
Vocals – Mandu (A1-A3, B1, B3)
Backing Vocals – Andrew Fordham, Lobby Loyde

Front Cover Graphics, Layout – Steve Bevan
Photography – Elizabeth Reed

Beyond Morgia: The Labyrinths of Klimster

In June 1976, Lobby Loyde and Southern Electric recorded an instrumental space-rock soundtrack to Beyond Morgia: The Labyrinths of Klimster, a proposed film based on his just-finished sci-fi novel. When his search for a publisher appeared fruitless, he destroyed the manuscript and vaulted the music. In 2007, archivists Aztec Music released the music on a 58-minute CD.

1. “Adrift In Ether” (4:51)
2. “Relgon Hall (Home of Lord Nezim)” (4:21)
3. “Entry Into Relgon” (1:39)
4. “Threaten In Simia” (1:36)
5. “Hymenoptera’s Revenge” (15:18)
     a. March of the Arzogs
     b. Collapse of Reason
     c. Hymenoptera’s Revenge
6. “Return to Ether” (14:54)
7. “Return to Ether (Saturday Night Version)” (14:58)

Later Activity

In late 1976, Loyde went to the UK, where he lobbied record labels and produced tracks for Doll by Doll, a new wave band with songwriter Jackie Levin (aka John St. Field).

In 1979, he returned to Australia and formed Sudden Electric with Mandu, Gil Matthews, and bassist Gavin Carroll. Mid-year, they performed live in-studio at Sydney’s 2JJ radio station on AM 1540, where Mandu shared vocals with Angry Anderson, who now fronted Rose Tattoo.

In October, Loyde commenced an eleven-month bassist stint in Rose Tattoo. They cut the March 1980 single “Legalise Realise” and backed country singer Colin Paterson on the flipside (“Bong on Aussie”) in support of the cannabis reform movement. Loyde toured with Rose Tattoo in the US, where they recorded an unreleased album in Los Angeles.

Live With Dubs

In 1980, Mushroom Records released the 2JJ set as Live With Dubs, credited as Lobby Loyde With Sudden Electric .

A1. “Crazy As a Loon” (4:05)
A2. “Weekend Paradise (Part 2)” (13:03)
A3. “Media Re-Make” (7:39)
B1. “Sympathy In “D” (13:11)
B2. “Gypsy In My Mind” (8:34)
B3. “Flying Scotsman” (1:42)


After the Rose Tattoo gig, Lobby Loyde focused on production work. Between 1980 and 1983, he produced multiple titles by the Sydney post-punk bands X, Sunnyboys, and Machinations.


  • Plays With George Guitar (1971)
  • Obsecration (1976)
  • Live With Dubs (1980)
  • Beyond Morgia the Labyrinths of Klimster (2007, recorded 1976)


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