Lighthouse, a Canadian rock band, first formed in Toronto during the year 1968. A Canadian rock staple, Lighthouse combines the sound of horns, vibraphone and string instruments amid classic rock music. Beloved in Canada, Lighthouse achieved worldwide fame that now has them recognized as one of the best performing acts of all time.
The group won Juno Awards for Best Canadian Group of the Year during the consecutive years of 1972, 1973 and 1974. To this day, the band continues to tour across Canada and other parts of the world, although with a different band lineup.
History of Lighthouse the Band
Lighthouse was originally formed during 1968 in Toronto by drummer and vocalist Skip Prokop and keyboardist Paul Hoffert. The two crossed paths on a flight from New York City to Toronto, eventually discussing forming a band based around a rock rhythm section, a classical string section and a jazz horn section.
Once the band idea was set, Prokop invited guitarist Ralph Cole to play in the band. The two assembled the rest of the band by contacting friends, studio session musicians and members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. After assembling the lineup, the group began recording their initial demos. They later took the resultant demo to MGM Records, after Richie Havens suggested to do so; Havens later signed the band. Days later, manager Vinnie Fusco, ended up overturning the MGM contract, brokering a deal with RCA Victor in its place.
By May 1969, Lighthouse made their debut at the Rock Pile in Toronto, having had been introduced by Duke Ellington.
Lighthouse's original lineup consisted of 13 members: Skip Prokop, Paul Hoffert, Ralph Cole, Grant Fullerton, Vic 'Pinky' Dauvin, Ian Guenther, Don Dinovo, Don Whitton, Leslie Schneider, Freddy Stone, Arnie Chycoski, Howard Shore and Russ Little.
Into The Lighthouse
During their first year as a band, Lighthouse played one of their first concerts at Carnegie Hall. They also played in several other venues around Toronto and Boston, and festivals like the Atlantic City Pop Festival, the Monterey and Newport Jazz Festivals.
The band played a free concert at the Toronto City Hall during the summer of 1969, drawing a crowd that was reported to host 25,000 people. During the same year, Lighthouse released their self-titled debut album through RCA's Toronto Eastern Sound Studio. The next year, they made an appearance at the Strawberry Fields Festival and the Isle of Wight Festival, where they were the only act besides Jimi Hendrix asked to perform for a second night among the era's greats.
Lighthouse also began recording their second album in 1969; the album included two cover songs: the Beatles' 'A Day In The Life' and the Band's 'Chest Fever.'
An Important Canadian Band
Lighthouse were without a doubt one of the largest bands of the 1970’s. Relive past hits with many original members of the band during this rare indoor concert (as most current Lighthouse performances take place at summer festivals) September 25th.
The Marriott on the Falls is the closest hotel to the concert venue, the Scotiabank Convention Centre. For our best rates and valuable add-ons, including discounts and vouchers towards meals, wine and entertainment, visit: