Once upon a time in Los Angeles there was a band called Red Zone. It was a retro science fiction band featuring Astrid Plane on vocals. Charles Ottavio was at the helm as producer of their album "Living on Lust". Larry Ross of CBS Records became interested in signing the band but it was not meant to be. In 1983 Red Zone disbanded.
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Astrid and Charles decided to put together a new band. Astrid came up with the name Animotion. They recruited Red Zone band members Frenchy O'Brien (drums) and Paul Antonelli (keyboards). Charles switched from producer/manager to bass player for the newly formed band. Larry Ross quit CBS records to become their full time manager. Larry brought in male crooner Bill Wadhams to sing lead opposite Astrid. Animotion did a showcase for Russ Regan of Polygram Records and signed with Polygram in March 1984.
During the recording of the first album Bill brought in guitarist Don Kirkpatrick and keyboard player Greg Smith. The album was released in late 1984 and Animotion began getting their first airplay from KROQ in Los Angeles. KISS FM in L.A. soon followed and Animotion was on their way to their first top 10 hit!
In 1985 Animotion hit the road for their first tour of the west coast. This was the time when the band really got to know each other and never knew when they might find a plastic dinosaur hidden in their bed. Later, they toured with Howard Jones playing to sold out arenas and stadiums across the US and Canada while "Obsession" was climbing the charts.
This was the beginning of MTV and Animotion did their first video with Ken Walz (Cyndi Lauper/"Girls Just Wanna Have Fun"). They enjoyed heavy MTV airplay and the video even made it to number 1 in Cashbox magazine's video chart. The band also shot videos of their other singles, "Let Him Go," "I Want You" and "I Engineer."
From 1985-1986 Animotion made several TV appearances on American Bandstand, Solid Gold and Soul Train. Astrid and Bill also were presenters at the 1986 American Music Awards.
In late '86 and early '87 the band went into high gear criss-crossing the Atlantic to do a video in London, TV shows in Germany and to perform at the world famous Montreaux rock festival in Switzerland. Jim Blair had joined the band as their new drummer and they returned home to Los Angeles to open for Depeche Mode.
In the middle of recording their third album for Polygram the band mysteriously, spontaneously combusted! One theory was an overdose of MSG in the Chinese food they ate that day. They were not to eat together again for 14 years.
With mega-effort from Bill Wadhams, Animotion had their first reunion on February 8, 2001 in Portland, Oregon playing to a sold-out crowd at Polly Esthers. The band all agreed that it felt like magic to be onstage together again and Animotion the sequel was launched!
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