In Early 2004 two (young and good looking) high-school students from New Plymouth decided they wanted to enter the rockquest. William Sklenars and Steven Gibbs started drawing together other musicians, not really knowing what they wanted, they had a 4 piece metal band.
Within a few practices William and Steven decided they wanted to go in a different direction. They started thinking of ideas and what they wanted and where they wanted to go. They came up with an idea of a "Ska and Punk and Reggae" band.
So in about March 2004, William started contacting his fellow friends (whom also happened to play instruments) to form Ska Band, Eight Orange Orchard. Consisting of the normal instruments in a "rock" band, they had: Jacob Randall on drums, William Sklenars on bass guitar, Steven Gibbs on guitar and Rachel Helms as lead vocalist and front woman.
They also had a very very very good lookin' and talented horn section too (Raynor Martin on trumpet/cornet, Ashley Boswell on trombone and Jonathan Fagg on Baritone Sax).
They came second in the regional finals of the Coke Smokefree Rockquest2004 also picking up Stage Image award and drummer Jake picking MAINZ scholar entry. Anyway, they had to write more songs... so they did, then they entered more competitions got a place in Parachute '05, played a show with Ben Lummis, came 17th in a national song-writing competition (Play It Strange) and recorded their first EP. Not a bad load of achievements for a band of less then one year.
So into 2005 it was, everyone moved up a year at school, Rachel became head girl at her school, Ashley left for university and the rest of the boys matured a little as their teachers started getting stricter. The band is starting to modify their sound and are starting to sound how they want to sound. Hoping to release another CD in 2005!
Rachel Helms (vocals)
William Sklenars (bass)
Peter "James" Bond (guitar) went on to spontaneously combust.
Jacob Randal (drums)
Raynor Martin (trumpet, cornet, backing vocals)
Jonathan Fagg (baritone saxophone, backing vocals)
Matt Hitchings (trombone)