Then in May we entered Fair Exchange in The First (and I think only) Guinness All Ireland Pub Band Competition. As both Alan Harris and myself had work commitments during some of this period. John Neville (lead guitar) and Pat Buckley (bass guitar) filled in for us during some of the various heats of the competition. On the 4th June the band – O Neill, Harris, Shine and Yours truly – performed in Portlaoise in the Semi-final stage and made it through to the finals. (This was largely due to the fact that bands competed directly against one another and the band we were paired with never turned up) However work commitments prevented Alan Harris and myself performing in the final on August 1st and our places were once again taken by John Neville and Pat Buckley. Although Fair Exchange didn’t win the overall competition, the lads did receive a trophy for best song performance of the Competition for Charlie’s rendition of Danny Boy.
Throughout the rest of 1983 Fair Exchange continued to gig promoting our 2 demo tracks. However toward the end of 1983 (and the stark realisation that we weren’t going to be the next U2) it was clear that the end of Fair Exchange was in sight. Charlie, Joe and John Neville had begun working with Pat Buckley in, what was to become, the highly successful band “The Media”. So having being booked for a Concert in support of The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament in the Community Hall Cahir on December 16th 1983, an augmented Fair Exchange performed our “final” gig together.
The line up on this occasion included Joe Shine, Drums & percussion. Pat Kelly, Drums & percussion. John Neville, Lead Guitar and vocals. Charlie O Neill, Rhythm Guitar Lead Vocals. Pat Buckley, Bass Guitar. Johnny Casey, Rhythm/Lead Guitar, Keyboards and Vocals. We got a rapturous reception from a large home crowd for what was to be, at that time at least, the “final” gig of Fair Exchange.
Fair Exchange at the Guinness All Ireland Pub Band Competition Semi-Final in Portlaoise June 1983.
Fair Exchange – Final Gig at The Community Hall Cahir 16/12/1983.